Virtualization has become quite the buzzword in the world of information technology - and with good reason. In fact, analyst firm Gartner Inc. has recently ranked virtualization as the No. 1 strategic technology in its Top 10 technologies list for 2009.

Today's organizations are using server virtualization (ways to divide up a server so they can handle more tasks, better and faster) to consolidate multiple workloads onto a single physical server, enabling their IT departments to do more for the company with less. With many IT managers struggling to boost their data centres, while keeping IT infrastructure costs low, virtualization can be an effective solution in order to cut costs, streamline IT infrastructure and maintain a high level of data centre efficiency.

Here are three compelling reasons why you should consider server virtualization:

1. Reduce operational costs
Today's organizations rely heavily on multiple servers to run their computer systems and applications. With traditional physical servers commonly using a fraction of their peak computing capacity, many organizations are paying to run costly and inefficient servers.

Tools such as Windows Server 2008's Hyper-V functionality, for example, improves server infrastructure, while significantly lowering overall IT costs. With server virtualization, businesses can eliminate the need to continually purchase and maintain costly server hardware, reduce energy costs stemming from powering and cooling outdated servers and also lower office expenses by diminishing the need for additional storage space.

2. Improve business continuity
Savvy IT managers understand that hardware and software aren't always fool proof. In an instant, natural disasters, power outages and even planned maintenance can bring your computer network down for extensive periods of time. This downtime can often leave IT departments scrambling to ensure critical business information is not lost.

Virtualization solutions, like Hyper-V, improve business continuity with effective data protection, higher levels of availability and streamlined backup and disaster recovery. In this way, virtualization solutions create a more efficient and dynamic server infrastructure. This means organizations can increase the availability of their server network, reduce disruptive events and reduce the time needed to bring a network back online after downtime.

3. Maximize IT time and make your business more responsive
Windows Server 2008's virtualization solutions help companies become more agile. For example, Hyper-V enables businesses to access information more rapidly, which helps staff be more responsive to customer needs.

Virtualization also helps IT staff maximize their time. With Hyper-V, IT departments can reduce the time previously spent maintaining traditional servers, while being able to easily add computing services to reflect business growth. This helps IT staff adapt more quickly to changing business needs.

When analyzing these key benefits of server virtualization, it's clear the technology has strong business value. IT managers can use virtualization to maximize their return on investment, reduce business costs across the enterprise, improve business continuity and make their business more responsive.

Related Links: