Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Division of Information Technology
910.521.6260 | email@example.com
Virtual Assessment helps UNCP evaluate what needs to be done
The University of North Carolina at Pembroke is ready for server virtualization. We received a donation from Dell with a cost avoidance of over $30,000 for labor, training and virtual assessments. During the third week of March, Dell performed Virtualization Readiness Assessments to examine the level of the current server and application usage. This process helps us understand our computing environment and what it would take to effectively implement a virtualization strategy. This is the first step toward virtualization.
What is virtualization? It is an approach to remove the applications from a direct relationship with the operating system (OS) and hardware, such as a server. The OS interacts with the hardware, and applications normally reside on top of the OS. The virtualization technology separates the OS from the hardware by simply adding another layer, called hypervisor. It imitates separate individual operating systems to many different applications residing within the same hardware. Applications are thus completely isolated from the physical hardware.
How does virtualization benefit us? Abstracting applications from the hardware will not only boost server performance, but also help us manage the server efficiently. For example, users are still able to run an application while upgrading or repairing another application. Applications can even be moved to a different server while running. Virtualization enables users to always access applications, and also time and other expenses required for maintenance are reduced.
Multiple configurations are not only limited to applications. We can create multiple operating systems – Windows and Linux, for instance -- on the same server as well. Virtualization provides us abilities to monitor and manage specific application needs with a greater flexibility. Each application requires different elements of server resources, such as processors and memory. Resources can be allocated anywhere needed at any given time.
Taking advantage of what server virtualization can offer, DoIT will be able to provide the UNCP community a wide variety of possibilities.
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