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We’ve examined the basics of virtualization, what the technology can do for your business and how virtual environments are now being used in research. But what about real-world use cases? Does this solution translate from IT infrastructure to actual cost savings? Let’s put virtualization to work.

Foolish Games

Financial services company The Motley Fool had a problem: traditional data center overcrowding. According to a Tech Target case study, the company had used every available inch of their data center space, filling it with equipment to meet increasing consumer demand. The result? Severs running hot as air conditioners struggled to keep up along with sky-high power demands. Jeff Lovett, director of technical operations, said, “it severely hampered our ability to offer more [computing] capability to do work.”

Part of the problem was introducing new workloads — to make a change, IT professionals had to drive 45 minutes to the data center, then move and carefully reconfigure equipment to make room for new apps or servers. IT response time suffered, frustrating both C-suite executives and admins.

Another Option?

The company tested several virtualization platforms before making a choice and starting small-scale migrations. First came small, low-priority workloads that needed new resources — when virtualized environments proved to be stable and efficient, Lovett started converting more mission-critical servers. Now, the company runs almost 75 percent virtualized using just 10 physical servers and 200 virtual machines (VMs).

Direct Benefits

Lovett cites several benefits for the company now that they’ve made the switch. First is time to deployment: where spinning up a new Web server used to take almost 48 hours, it now takes just an hour or two. Power costs are also down significantly — 33 percent plus the benefit of fewer physical servers in the racks, which means better IT flexibility. It also gives room to expand on demand, either to the cloud or by adding more virtual instances, decreasing the amount of time between compute requests and IT response.

Closer to Home

How can this real-life example help your business? Take a look at your infrastructure: like The Motley Fool, is your data center overcrowded, overheating and overly complicated? Are IT professionals frustrated with the time it takes to make even small changes, and are users frustrated with the delay in IT response?

If the answer is yes to any of these questions, it’s time to consider virtualization. Start with the basics — spin up new, low-risk resources as needed and see how virtual environments can do the same work as physical servers but without the same need for maintenance and physical manipulation.

Consolidation means less time spent configuring technology and more time using compute resources, in turn lowering IT spend and total power consumption. Bottom line? Virtualization at work can work for your business.

Want to make the most of your compute resources? ICC has experts ready to support your virtualization. Contact us today and discover the real benefits of going virtual.

-Written by Srijay Sunil