Virtualisation software, such as VMWare, OpenVZ and KVM, allows one physical server to appear as multiple servers on a network, called virtual servers.
We can use virtualisation to help you:
Save on hardware and power costs
One powerful server is less expensive and uses less power than a number of single servers of comparable combined computing power.
Save on physical space requirements
Where space is at a premium, for example in co-location situations or when rack space is limited, virtualisation is especially useful. Using virtualisation technology allows you to run many virtual servers while taking up the space of only one server.
Provision new servers quickly
There is no need to purchase and wait for new hardware to arrive; within minutes, a new virtual server can be created and brought online.
Implement flexible systems
Virtualisation software separates the operating system from the hardware that is it running on, which allows virtual servers to be moved between physical servers with ease. This allows better server utilisation by grouping low or complimentary usage virtual servers on a single physical server. If requirements change then virtual servers can be easily moved between physical servers.
Run different operating systems on the same hardware
There are often times when businesses need to be running multiple operating systems to cater for differing software requirements. Virtualisation allows for one physical server to run multiple different operating systems simultaneously. You could be running Windows and Linux or Windows Server 2003 and Server 2008 at the same time on the same computer. Running multiple versions of the same operating systems can be particularly useful when upgrading systems to allow staged migration of services from one version to another.
Restore your systems quickly when there is a hardware fault
Virtualisation allows virtual servers to be moved between physical servers with no modification. Virtual machines are commonly used in conjunction with Storage Area Networks (SANs). When this is the case, servers running on defective hardware can be placed on new hardware easily and returned to service quickly.