What is Server Virtualization?
Server virtualization allows multiple (and vastly different) operating systems to run on a single physical machine known as a virtual machine (VM) and share hardware resources across multiple physical servers. These virtual machines are stored as regular files which presents a completely new level of flexibility and stability into the world of Windows Server. Workloads can be consolidated across multiple underutilized servers onto less server hardware. This leads to reduced costs through lesser hardware, decreased energy consumption, data center rack space and management overhead, while creating a more dynamic IT infrastructure. Server virtualization also offers an unmatched ease and cost efficiency when it comes to high availability, fault tolerance and disaster recovery.
Standard Windows Operating based servers only utilize a small percentage of the configured hardware capacity and virtualizing those servers typically allows for consolidation rates of 10:1. That means that one of today’s servers can power up to 10 virtual servers. This allows for immense savings in cost associated with server sprawl, decreases the storage space, power and cooling required to run. Rather than paying for many under-utilized server machines, each dedicated to a specific workload, server virtualization allows those workloads to be consolidated onto a smaller number of more fully-used machines.
Hardware Virtualization uses software to create a Virtual Machine (VM) that emulates a physical computer. This creates a separate Operating System environment that is logically isolated from the host server. By providing multiple VMs at once, this approach allows several operating systems to run simultaneously on a single physical machine.