Analyze Your Landscape
Identifying candidates for server virtualization can be as much art as it is science. However, it’s best to start with some hard facts—how many servers the data center has, how efficiently they are being utilized, the age and health of the machines and future application usage.
The best way to get a handle on those statistics is through an audit. Audit logs can offer a great deal of information regarding activities that have taken place on servers. The major virtualization suppliers offer plenty of tools to perform such audits.
The audit will help clarify which servers are candidates for replacement and which are candidates for virtualization. Older servers nearing end of life generally are better candidates for replacement, experts say. And newer servers can be repurposed to maximize their lifespan.
Calculate the Total Cost
Server virtualization can make an enterprise really see green—and not just via the technology’s impressive energy savings. Significant cost savings can be achieved by reducing server numbers, maintenance and floor space as well.
A major hardware manufacturer compared the cost of maintaining an infrastructure of 20 physical servers with the cost required to consolidate the same environment with three servers running 20 virtual machines.
The company found that over a three-year period, a firm deploying a completely physical environment would have to spend an average of $57,640 on new servers, plus $8,000 in provisioning costs and around $48,000 in power and cooling charges.
Conversely, an organization that consolidated through virtualization would spend $25,566 on the new servers, $1,500 on virtualization software, $800 on provisioning and $20,000 on power and cooling over the same three-year period.
The end result? The firm that chose server virtualization would pocket $65,774 over three years. While not part of the study, additional cost savings can likely be gleaned via reduced labor hours due to less time required for server deployment, maintenance and refresh.
How VMware Fits In
VMware vSphere is the industry’s most reliable and trusted virtualization platform for enterprises and small and midsize businesses. Use it to turn your data center into a secure private cloud—without wasting your current technology investments. From there, VMware makes it easy to build a bridge to your choice of public clouds. The result is hybrid cloud computing that adapts to your needs so that you can get the most from your applications.