Developing enterprises are constantly looking for new solutions that will allow them to accelerate the processes of creating and developing applications.
Effective use of resources is a way to significantly reduce operating costs and develop the company's activities without incurring significant costs related to the purchase of additional devices. Equipment is a huge investment, so the maximum use of existing devices is extremely important in order not to generate additional expenses for the company.
One of the solutions that can increase efficiency and facilitate resource management is virtualization. In the article, we will try to introduce you to the subject of virtualization and VMware related solutions. If you are interested in these issues, we encourage you to read this text.
Virtualization is a broad term that denotes a technology that is used to run many different operating systems and software simultaneously by allocating physical resources to each of the running systems of a computer or server.
Virtualization can be used for networks and applications as well as servers, workstations, or mass storage devices. In a situation where we use a server in an enterprise that supports only one operating system, in order to increase its performance and make more use of its capabilities, we can install specialized software for server virtualization, which will enable us to run many independent servers or operating systems at the same time.
We call independent instances launched by us virtual machines.
This solution allows for maximum use of network resources, which is associated with reduced operating costs of network solutions.
Companies use virtualization mainly for servers, but it is also possible to virtualize desktops and workstations.
Why is virtualization needed?
We need virtualization primarily because during the standard operation of devices or systems, we are not able to use their capabilities to the maximum.
Companies invest huge sums of money in creating efficient data centers, but they cannot configure them to use all their resources.
Having multiple servers generates considerable costs related to the space occupied, electricity consumption, the heat produced, and maintenance and operation costs. Even if we have several servers in the company - each of them designed to perform a different function - we are not able to use them to the maximum.
The use of virtualization enables the consolidation of all necessary servers in the form of one piece of computer hardware. Another problem that can be solved by virtualization is the problem related to the scalability of hardware needs for a given service or application.
Thanks to virtualization, it is much easier to manage computer resources, as the administrator can easily change the number of resources assigned to a specific virtual machine. In the event that drastic changes are needed, it is even possible to transfer the entire virtual machine to another physical server with its simultaneous uninterrupted operation.
Virtualization works primarily on the principle of server consolidation and lowering the operating costs of the enterprise thanks to the maximum use of resources, which allows you to run multiple services on the same hardware.
This solution also allows you to quickly create a test environment that allows you to simulate the behavior that will occur after the introduction of new solutions in your organization. If any errors occur, the company does not bear any costs related to the consequences that could occur after running these solutions immediately on the physical equipment used for all tasks.
Advantages of virtualization
Virtualization is a solution with many advantages that should be taken into account when considering how to increase the efficiency of our company.
In this part of the article, we will present the most important advantages of using virtualization:
increasing the efficiency of IT solutions while guaranteeing savings,
much greater job mobility,
increasing the efficiency and availability of resources,
automation of operations performed in the data center,
greater ease of managing IT solutions in the enterprise,
lower costs of maintaining and operating network solutions,
increasing the continuity of IT solutions,
facilitating data recovery after a failure, which increases the efficiency of the enterprise,
significant reduction of operating and capital costs,
availability of a real data center, program-defined,
eliminating or minimizing downtime,
simplified and intuitive data center management,
increasing the productivity, efficiency, and responsiveness of IT solutions,
faster and more efficient provision of resources and applications.
As you can see, this solution has many different advantages that can encourage you to choose virtualization. There are many solutions in this field available on the market, and one of them, highly recommended by experts, is VMware.
VMware is a California company.
It provides software for virtualization. The company is a global leader among manufacturers of cloud infrastructure and business mobility. The solutions offered by VMware are perfect for modern data processing centers and guarantee the company a high level of security, reliability, efficiency, and functionality.
VMware products are able to guarantee users a stable and failure-free working environment, as well as significantly reduce the costs of maintaining and servicing equipment. It is also possible to move virtual machines between hosts (for example in the event of a fault).
The intuitive operation of many different environments at the same time is also a great help. Software data management provided by VMware solutions to help you draw conclusions, analyze operational data, and ultimately increase control and management of your business.
The company of the same name started in 1998 as a ghost entity, spending its first year in the shadows to develop its products in a relaxed way before seeing the light later. The software that represents them is one of the best demonstrations of the scope of virtualization and the possibilities that this type of service provides. It is compatible with the main operating systems and although the desktop version is called VMware Workstation, there is an option for servers known as VMware ESXi.
Users have the opportunity to configure virtual machines on their computer and make use of them in a parallel way without having to access the machines themselves. The use of Vmware is highly optimized, allowing each virtual machine to have its own operating system, which provides a great series of possibilities. If we do not use proprietary operating systems, we can take advantage of this environment for free thanks to the free access version of Vmware. But in the case of wanting to use it with Windows, we must have the corresponding licenses.
What is it for?
Knowing a little better what Vmware is and where it comes from, we can better position ourselves to understand how it works. The definition of virtualization is the key to all of this. What we do when virtualizing is emulating an element that we are not having direct access to. In other words, if we virtualize a computer with a Windows operating system, what we will be doing through this software is to have access to that resource with which we physically do not have any type of contact.
This same example has to make it clear to us that if we virtualize a Windows computer on our Linux computer, we will be having an access window to another machine without physically having access to it. This includes not only the operating system but also all the other elements that are part of the machine, such as the RAM, the hard disk, or the processor. If we are working remotely and we benefit from the support provided by a virtualized host, it will be possible to use its power and its features to carry out the work or tasks that we consider convenient.
Once the system is running, everything is as if we were using that equipment physically before us. There is no difference and we can, if we need it, run different virtualizations from the same computer. This would allow us to have different virtualized operating systems to carry out software tests with platforms to which we normally do not have access. This is just one example since virtualization tends to be used more commonly in tasks focused on saving resources and optimizing equipment.
To carry out all kinds of complex and demanding processes, virtualization becomes the best option, which is used by companies and professionals alike. More and more virtualization is positioned as the answer in order to be able to squeeze resources in an absolute way, always with good results and without the limitations of operating with a single operating system.
Benefits of VMware
As the leader in virtualization, VMware offers a number of products and services specially suited for data center virtualization. Benefits of using VMware for virtualization include:
Cost savings by partitioning a single physical server across multiple virtual machines
Greater IT agility and flexibility to deploy workloads across infrastructure as needed
Simplified virtual machine deployment, management, and maintenance
What type of virtualization to choose?
The offer of VMware solutions includes various options, depending on the needs of a specific company that decides to introduce virtualization to its data center. Perhaps you hesitate between full virtualization and para-virtualization.
In this part of the article, we will try to describe both of these solutions and indicate the most important differences between them.
Full virtualization is a solution that can be used on any x86 operating system. Each emerging virtual machine has all the functionalities of a classic operating system running on a physical device.
These include a virtual BIOS or the possibility of virtual memory management. The solutions offered by VMware enable the use of all available resources to maximize efficiency and obtain the best results.
It is worth paying attention to the fact that full virtualization does not require hardware or operating system support to virtualize sensitive or privileged commands.
The great advantage of full virtualization is the best level of security for virtual machines, as well as facilitating the mobility and efficient transfer of data between individual devices - both physical and obtained through virtualization.
Examples of such virtualization are VMware products or Microsoft Virtual Server solutions.
Para-virtualization is a type of virtualization that relies on a virtual machine's operating system working together with a hypervisor. This solution uses the revised kernel of the guest operating system. Applying changes consists of passing commands to execute critical processor instructions to the hypervisor environment.
What is a hypervisor for?
It is responsible for dividing the working space of components between virtual machines (for example, processor, RAM, or disk resources). The hypervisor is responsible for resource management in such a way that operating systems do not interfere with each other's work. Its other function is to guarantee the separation of virtual machines. Para-virtualization is not a completely new solution - VMware introduced it by providing a certain device with special drivers to increase the performance of guest operating systems.
Which option should you choose then?
It depends primarily on the needs of a specific company. A large corporation is certainly guided by other aspects in choosing this type of solutions than a small company that has recently appeared on the market.
Before buying, it is worth thoroughly analyzing the company's needs, considering how the company will develop in the future, and choose the solution that will work best and will guarantee what is necessary.