Virtualization vs Consolidation

820 pts.
Tags:
Physical Machines
Server consolidation
Virtual Machines
Virtualization
The process or running multiple virtual machines on a single physical server, is that called virtualization or consolidation?

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Virtualization: “The creation of a virtual (rather than actual) version of something, such as an operating system, a server, a storage device or network resources.”

Consolidation is usually where you take multiple servers doing the same or similar roles and reduce them to fewer servers. Common examples would be database servers, web servers, or file and file servers. Usually as a result of improvements in system performance, but also because of changing business needs.

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  • Jim4522
    Gabe9527, I am aware of the definition you pointed me but maybe I didn't ask the correct question. I was recently told by someone who should know the following: "Consolidation vs. Virtualization Consolidation is the process whereby many hardware systems (boxes) are consolidated onto one (or few). Hence the phrase “many to few”. This process provides all the advantages currently discussed in trade journals including smaller footprint, reduced power consumption, lower overhead, etc. Virtualization refers to the process of pooling unused resources for the purposes of greater utilization. A typical example – several distributed (and connected) servers utilize only 10% of their resources (CPU, DASD, etc). These systems have unused capacity which can be used by other systems if those resources are put into a “logical” virtual resource pool. This pooling of resources often prevents, or at least delays the need to purchase additional hardware. This efficiency contributes to the environmental footprint by retaining it at it current levels." I was trying to understand the distinction between consolidating and virtualization. If what I was told is true then they both seem to increase efficency thus reducing the need for so many servers. Jim White
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  • carlosdl
    You could have consolidation through virtualization, but you could also have consolidation without using virtualization, and you could virtualize with other purposes than consolidation.
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  • Gabe9527
    Sorry I did not understand Virtualisation is using many servers running on 1 hardware. VMWare etc. This would run multiple servers running different OS / IP / Job and function etc. Consolidation would be more looking at the performance needs of your environement and reducing the amount of servers / devices needed using new hardware etc. So by having loads of servers on one server is virtualisation..... this is why the short response. There are allot of I am told HOME WORK questions on this site that I would like to assist not not anser for them. I hope this helps.
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  • Jim4522
    I now understand the difference between consolidation and virtualization, and I understand that someone might consolidate without virualizing, meaning the user would get all the benifit of more power by going to newer hardware without undertaking the overhead of virtualizing software , but would the reverse be true, would a x82 user virtualize at say a 5 to 1 ratio but not move to a newer more powerful server? Jim White
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  • Jim4522
    That should have been x86 server. Jim White
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  • carlosdl
    Consolidation does not necessarily mean "new hardware". Consolidation is the process of reducing the number of servers (or other hardware) needed to operate. Whether you need new hardware or not would depend on specific details. As for the 5 to 1 virtualization, you have to take into consideration that each virtual machine will need a considerable amount of RAM, and also each one will require CPU time, network, and storage, so, if your current hardware does not meet the requirements, you will need new hardware.
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  • Kevin Beaver
    Sounds like both me to.
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