Virtualization In INDIA: “The Less Noise, More Action”

Development of a segment of virtualization as a whole is in full compliance with the extended version of the law, which describes the time variation of the public interest in new technologies and their level of actual use. However, in contrast to SOA, the use of which still lags well behind the projections of three-four years ago and the prospect is still not very clearly visible, with respect to virtualization, it can be said unequivocally: a public frenzy around the topic significantly decreases, but the scope of use of these funds is growing rapidly, that can fully describe the adage “less noise, more business.”

Server Virtualization

In recent years, issues of virtualization focused almost exclusively on the problems of server consolidation. This trend will certainly continue to evolve, both in terms of expanding the number of customers, and the depth of penetration of virtualization on IT infrastructure. This trend is seen quite clearly, and so we can fully agree with analysis of the IDC, which in the autumn of 2009, noted the passage of the Indian market funds of Virtualization on the stage of “Learning Opportunities” to the stage of the extended use of virtualization of individual servers to the creation of virtual environments at a data center.

Interests of customers quickly shifted to the construction of an integrated virtual infrastructure and management. Superficially, this is reflected in the fact that the term “hypervisor” which was a hit in the articles on the topic of virtualization. At the same time, an increasingly significant role in this market are beginning to play companies that do not deal with hypervisors, but have a very respectable position in the field of IT infrastructure management. With the accumulation of experience in the application virtualization customers have increased confidence in the technology, resulting in markedly accelerated the transfer of business-critical applications and services and start to master the dynamic model of virtual environments rather than static.

However, despite the fact that virtualization has long been recognized by leading trend of the IT platform, yet to be understood that the formation of this segment (in terms of penetration of this technology in the IT systems of customers, on the one hand, and the balance of power in the market, on the other ) is still far from complete. Although many companies have used the server virtualization (maybe even in majority) of its Level (percentage of virtual servers in the server infrastructure), variously estimated at less than 15-20%. It should be borne in mind that virtualization are first and foremost the least business-critical tasks.

Here we must pay attention to the fact that while the scope of virtualization for many years in the field of attention the world’s leading analysts, until recently, experts have explicitly avoided making traditional quantitative assessment of vendors’ positions in the best case, calling the size of the market as a whole. The situation changed only with studies in the middle of this year: Gartner first unveiled its “Magic Quadrant” market of server virtualization. Commenting on this report , we noted that even the overall assessment of the situation clearly shows the incompleteness of market formation and, moreover, casts doubt on the validity of the formulation of the question of the existence of the IT segment as a separate part of the market platform software.

It seems that quadrant shows that VMware has created a gap with a reserve of strength that talk about serious competition which is not necessary. Yet the fight for the championship still to come, and VMware will be the main competitors of Microsoft and Oracle. And not just because it is a major platform vendors. The fact that they offer different (different from VMware) virtualization strategy and try to play on the field against the rules, but on their own.

Recall that VMware believes virtualization independent segment, infrastructure software, which should push the traditional OS in the background, or even completely removed as unnecessary. Microsoft holds the opposite opinion, considering the only virtualization as part of the OS. Well, Oracle is betting on virtualization software is not at all, and its software in the first place. In the paramount applications (of course, their own), and virtualization is regarded as a means to support them.

Here it is useful to recall that virtualization is applied to IT. After all, IT was originally built on the principle of virtualization of computing processes, and it turns out that virtualization technology – it is something like “butter oil”. However, this paradox can be resolved if we take into account here such a formulation, found a few years ago in one of encyclopedias: Virtualization in IT – this means that it extend the capabilities of traditional IT architecture. ” This implies an unexpected conclusion: as soon as these funds become part of the traditional IT architecture, they no longer belong to the category of virtualization.

PC Virtualization

As it is known, the use of virtualization to the x86 architecture computers began in the late 1990’s with a PC. Dedicated Server technology appeared after two or three years, and quickly took the lead in terms of demand for market, relegating the problems of the PC in the background. However, in the second half of 2009, became noticeable growth of interest in virtualization personal computers. You can find a number of reasons for this trend. The first is, of course, have to say about a number of objective points, such as raising the overall level of confidence in virtualization, coupled with the desire of customers to reduce operating costs and ensure the work of the expanding range of mobile users. But in addition, be sure to note such factors as the beginning of mass transfer of enterprises on Windows 7, which requires to solve the problem of support for this OS legacy applications.

It should be noted that virtualization PC is very difficult technical direction, and in no way be regarded as a “simplified” version of server technologies. Moreover, in many aspects of virtualization, personal systems are much more complex than with servers. And it can be seen even by the fact that the issue of desktop virtualization involves several different (often overlapping) organizational and technical areas.

But to understand all this variety, there are two main types: client and server.

First in general terms, all computations are performed on the PC (including a fully autonomous), in the second case – on the server and workstation (or even more accurately – user terminal device) performs only functions of the user interface. The classic way to implement the first option – these are the client virtual machine, which begins with the x86-virtualization (a pioneer in this direction VMware WorkStation represented now at version 7.1.4). The second option – the architecture of Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), which has long been in the focus of IT community.

We will not delve into other virtualization solutions for the PC, just note that among them, there are many different approaches and combinations (eg, application virtualization, management of client virtual machines from a server).

The fundamental difference here is that the client virtualization is aimed at “correcting” deficiencies desktop OS, primarily to support legacy applications, reliable operation of the applications, while the goal of VDI – reducing IT costs and support for mobile corporate employees. From this it is clear that the client virtualization is still more to do with solving problems of tactical nature, while the VDI can be classified as strategic.

The term VDI appeared in the IT market a few years ago, and many vendors have already stated that they have a VDI-making. However, until recently, the question of the prospects of this area remained dug: leading analysts talked about the practical absence of demand from customers. However, in 2009, it seems, there was quite a decisive change for the market to VDI: the process of implementing this architecture, “went”, and in the world, and India. Among the reasons for this include improving themselves VDI-making, increase capacity and reliability of the Internet, as well as the need for companies to reduce operating expenses (generally considered to be almost proven that VDI does not save the capital costs).

A clear reflection of prospects VDI has, in particular, a significant correction of Microsoft’s position in this matter. If the corporation had always emphasized its skeptical attitude toward the technology (although it had in its arsenal of such funds), then in March of 2010, it declared the intention to significantly increase its activity towards VDI. It is noteworthy that for a successful fight against VMware in this area Microsoft collaborated with his longtime strategic partner, Citrix.

It is significant that it is the VDI issues were the focus of the past, the conferences of all three major players – VMware (it held a special event just for that category in the submission of a number of projects implemented in India), Microsoft and Citrix. We also note the increased number of publications in the media about the experience of the VDI.

From virtualization to the clouds

One of the most notable differences from earlier last year in India – the beginning and increasingly moving from a pure virtualization subject to cloud Affairs (Cloud Services). In fact, even the first representatives of the vendors avoid the word “clouds” in their presentations, and local news, explaining it very simply: “No need to scare and confuse the customer, let them first become accustomed to virtualization.” All of this was evident by publications in professional mass media: the clouds in the articles and news were already present continuously, but they were mostly stories that were not about our local affairs, but the foreign ones. Outwardly, it looked even quite funny: the impression that the same vendor (eg, VMware or Microsoft) at home and at us – they are two different companies …

This year the clouds began to talk about (in our country at home, they talked about this for a long time) and all other providers of virtualization. As usual, the most audible voice was Microsoft, which presented its vision for the transition to the cloud. Such migration should be carried out in three major steps: from the traditional data center to a public cloud, and in this scheme need to pay attention to a very important stage of transition from a virtualized data center to a private clouds (some other experts equate these concepts ), which consists in a fundamentally important point – the use of the service model in the relationship between IT and business.

In this case, we  made a number of tips on preparing for the introduction of cloud virtualization systems:

  • Implement virtualization.
  • use, scalable data center equipment.
  • Use a single management system for both physical and virtual resources.
  • Design of IT services based on architecture resource pool.
  • However, it should be noted that the virtualization technology directly cover only the basic part of the cloud theme, that sphere of clouds, which belongs to the category IaaS (Infrastructure as a service). And although in the short term the practical work of Indian enterprises with Cloud Computing is likely to be concentrated in the direction IaaS, nevertheless, have a business in the coming season, platform vendors will begin to psychological preparation of the customers for the future use of the model PaaS (Platform as a service).

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