Legacy systems surviving with virtualization

While data has been well utilized by organizations taking advantage of cloud computing, those that have chosen to support IT operations through on-premise data centers have struggled to keep up with competition. However, many enterprises apprehensive about making the jump to the cloud are realizing that there's other ways to expand storage capacity and enhance processing abilities.

Extending capabilities
Creating a virtual version of a device or resource, such as a network or operating system, allows companies to better allocate computing actions. For example, employing this tactic would allow a business forming two enormous data sets to place them on two separate servers - one of them being tangible. In other words, if a physical database can't handle both collections, a virtual form can be rendered in order to hold both of them.

Steve Rosenbush, a contributor to The Wall Street Journal, noted that many enterprises, such as Royal Dutch Shell and Mazda North America have all made use of virtualization in an effort to expand their ability to aggregate and process big data. American Airlines' CIO Maya Leibman stated that a popular practice involves creating virtual networks within their own premises, which surpass the capabilities of local area networks.

"Now you are talking about going beyond your data center," said Leibman, as quoted by Rosenbush. "Some will ask, why do you even need servers at all? The network can be the backbone of everything that happens in Technology. Costs, speed to market and paradigms will be changed."

Key advantages
Rosenbush acknowledged some of the main benefits associated with server virtualization, claiming that it separates the underlying hardware from the management and control layer of a system, meaning that applications and services can be deployed faster. Telecommunication provider AT&T plans to implement the first of its virtual network products to large corporations by June, allowing its customers to procure greater capacity within minutes. Before the initiative was established, AT&T's consumer base had to order, deploy and test physical gear, a process that took anywhere between 12 to 18 months.

In addition, because the hardware and virtual server are technically two separate entities, the information and applications hosted by the latter version can be accessed from almost anywhere. This means that employees working for a nationwide company such as AT&T can share intelligence with each other seamlessly.

Breathing life into legacy systems
Some organizations that have yet to upgrade to cloud infrastructure are using virtualization to make their data centers economically viable. Silicon Angle noted the success household appliance maker Sub-Zero has encountered by employing the technique. Craig Wuerzberger, the company's systems engineer, claimed that Sub-Zero's on-premise servers became inadequate as more applications were adopted over time.

"We ended up getting into a situation where our backup system was not able to handle what our current load was as afar as data protection," said Wuerzberger, as quoted by Silicon Angle.

To resolve this issue, Wuerzberger stated that his organization looked toward virtualization as a solution in 2008, witnessing a return on investment in less than three months. Apparently, the Sub-Zero's servers were down for the count, but implementing the creative technique brought them back to life.

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