Virtualization Heads into the Mainstream


It may have taken a while, but virtualization is heading solidly into the mainstream of the enterprise industry, with penetration rates now heading past the 50 percent mark.

The latest numbers from Forrester Research show that the United States and Europe are leading the virtual trend among large organizations and SMBs. Forrester reports that 54 percent of large enterprises have adopted virtualization on their x86 platforms or are planning to do so within the year. SMBs are only slightly behind, with 53 percent.

As to the depth of deployment within individual organizations, SMBs seem to be making larger gains. Large companies report more than 31 percent of operating system instances having been virtualization, while SMBs report 36 percent. Within the year, those figures are expected to be 54 percent and 61 percent.

Meanwhile the next technology wave, cloud computing, seems to be where virtualization was at this time last year: lots of chatter but little actual use. Only 5 percent of large enterprises report implementing pay-per-use hosting of virtual servers, with only 3 percent planning to do so in the next 12 months. Only 2 percent of SMBs report implementing pay-per-use, with only another 2 percent expected to join them within the year.

Other key findings include 81 percent expressing interest in cutting energy use in the data center and 74 percent looking to lower PC maintenance costs through desktop or client virtualization.