One of the major contributing factors to virtual sprawl is the tendency of some users to partition a virtual machine, run a few applications, and then fail to decommission the partition after they're done, leaving an idle block of server and storage capacity.
VMware is looking to alleviate this problem in the latest update of its Lab Manager test system. Besides adding support for 64-bit operating systems like Vista and Solaris 10, LM Ver. 2.5 lets admins automatically pare down or remove entirely unused VMs. It also lets you reserve resources for application development and testing and provides remote access into enterprise software labs.
The new Lab Manager also includes a pair of test automation suites: the SilkCentral test manager from Borland Software and a new beta from Genilogix for the HP Quality Center.
Now that the early adopters have experienced the hassles of server sprawl, virtualization newbies at least have the tools to deal with it.