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Virtualization vs. Public Clouds

Published on 2/14/2013 by

The virtualisation of technology has redefined every level of government and enterprise. This creates many budgetary, resource and compliance issues. Now, more than ever, the cloud and other virtual environments deliver THE pivotal commodity - real-time IT - that every business needs.

However, there are subtle and crucial differences between cloud and virtualised platforms and as a result of the big data explosion and mobilisation of technology, it is virtualisation that has become the game-changer for institutional success at scale. Why?

1. Consolidation of Service

Migrating from multiple applications on separate (aging) servers, virtualisation integrates IT services onto a single machine. At a time when real-time data is paramount, managing resources and applications centrally, creates a streamlined IT environment - performance centric, secure and easy to use.

Virtualisation consolidates data centre management much more expeditiously than is possible through any generic cloud platform. Public clouds, for example, have the capacity to store, access and secure masses of data, but they don’t have the ability to deliver tailored functions - applications, hardware specifications, OS configurations or the regulatory compliance - your business model needs to stay ahead.

2. Virtual Desktops

Flexible, virtual desktop designs cater for multi-department, multi-lingual, multi-national setups on a single machine. This reduces your desktop footprint and hardware expenditure across an organisation, whilst delivering a native experience for all user groups. This level of customisation empowers users, accelerates uptake and delivers better enablement of services from planning to deployment to support.

Virtual desktops are cheaper, easier and more scalable to deploy. They are also built to specific requirements as opposed to being triggered by SLAs that may not fit your brief, budget or resources.

3. Dynamic Load Balancing

Virtualisation is designed to manage resources through optimised load balancing server capacity. Such dynamic and automated capabilities help maintain reliable and consistent performance of all server resources.

This is a considerable advantage of virtualisation over public clouds, to be able to load balance as users demand resources and bandwidth. As opposed to being at the mercy of shared environments in a public cloud where 3rd party scheduling, version control, performance and maintenance must also consider other clients of the service. Having limited control is a major issue for many business leaders in a culture that demands accountability and reliability from every technology stack you run.

4. Reliability, Security & Disaster Recovery

A virtualised environment provides considerable safeguarding against system crashes, minimising the harm caused by downtime, activity spikes or memory corruption. With solid backup and disaster recovery, companies also have total peace of mind that their entire IT infrastructure is in good hands.

Businesses need full control over what is passing through their networks, who has access and what they are doing. They demand reliable, predictable performance. Keeping latency low helps establish and maintain control, whilst delivering coordinated in-house and outsourced support that aids all levels of decision-making.

5. Testing & Development

Virtualised test, pilot and ‘go-live’ environments enhance all phases of IT enablement - planning to roll-out - which in turn establishes better day-to-day management of virtualised architecture. Being able to isolate and test scenarios, helps assess and rectify potential server bottlenecks before they reach real users.

Rapid deployment of isolated application servers via controlled environments also helps measure and monitor services instantaneously. This eliminates problems with system instability, downtime or migration, increasing further service reliability, security and availability.

Wrap Up

Virtualisation offers more than an off- the-shelf service as is common with public clouds that cater to the masses. For all the benefits of mass data storage, tight security and online accessibility, any public cloud offering will struggle to meet your bespoke business requirements through IT enablement.

Virtualisation and private clouds have changed the potential of customisable IT by eliminating the fundamental problem of public clouds which still leave many sceptical of the inherent risks - giving up control, external (over-)reliance, minimal flexibility and unnecessary tie-ins.

As demographics become more complex and evolve based on blurring socio-economic boundaries, virtualisation offers the best strategy to deploy resources and applications. To deliver high performance computing that is always available, load balanced, secure and tailored to you. This is crucial for business of every kind today.