Virtualization appears to be on the cusp of making the next great leap forward.
According to a survey of 250 IT professionals conducted by Information Technology Intelligence Corp. (ITIC) on behalf of Stratus Technologies, the number of mission-critical applications that are likely to be deployed on virtual servers is about to substantially increase.
However, while that is more than likely good news for VMware, the survey also finds that other virtual machine platforms, such as Hyper-V from Microsoft, are gaining ground rapidly. The survey finds a 20 percent increase in Hyper-V adoption year over year, with 53 percent reporting that they now use Hyper-V, compared with 56 percent for VMware.
To what degree any of that reflects increases in virtualization adoption within Microsoft's core small-to-medium (SMB) customer base or frustration with VMware licensing fees is unclear. But what is clear is that it's increasingly likely that IT organizations will be managing VMware, Hyper-V and other virtual machines side by side for years to come.
The better news appears to be that comfort levels with virtualization are increasing. IT organizations are planning on deploying more business-critical applications on virtual servers. At the same time, they report that the number of applications that require high levels of availability is increasing, which Roy Sanford, chief marketing officer for Stratus, says means many IT organizations will be hedging their virtual server bets by relying more on fault-tolerant systems that only cost a fraction more than traditional servers.
Nevertheless, the survey also makes it clear that there will still be a lot of physical servers running dedicated applications, which means the complexity of the overall IT environment is likely to increase in the years ahead.