Local research charts virtualization shift

Early adopters drive emerging trend

So far this year, Computerworld has covered the burgeoning area of virtualization with reports on technology development and enterprise usage scenarios. Computerworld's coverage also included a joint survey with Sydney-based research firm Hydrasight.

The survey revealed IT leaders are embracing virtualization for greater good but hurdles still remain if the technology is going to fulfil its promise of simplified infrastructure management.

There is an almost equal split between organizations using or considering server virtualization and those who are not. Among the anonymous responses were tales of overall improvements in infrastructure management.

"It has reduced the overall number of servers required, providing us savings in capital expenditure and [it] frees up time for IT to manage systems," one respondent wrote.

Another claimed virtualization has been "extremely beneficial as it is a very cost effective way of adding new servers without having to continuously justify capital".

Which makes sense considering the same research indicated Australian businesses, on average, will deploy one Windows server for every 30 employees.

Other drivers include improved backup and recovery times.

When asked what the most significant barriers are to the adoption of virtualization, respondents questioned the cost and business justification.

Another inhibitor is a "lack of understanding" of the technology and whether that will translate to security and DR "complications".

Hydrasight managing director Michael Warrilow said the virtualization market may be polarized between those who have benefited greatly and those who have not touched it, but that does not necessarily mean adoption isn't growing rapidly.

"Polarized maybe a strong term because it's just happening so fast," Warrilow said. "With 43 percent using it in some fashion, and another 20 percent planning to in the next 12 months, that's very rapid in the business world." Warrilow said if the same survey was done a year ago "it would be very different".

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