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Microsoft has placed its stamp on the virtualization phenomenon with the launch of Hyper-V, a new technology that adds to the power of the Windows Server 2008 platform.  Hyper-V represents the next era of virtualization, allowing administrators and hosting customers to get the most out of their sever investments and usage.  What sets it apart from other virtualization platforms is the ability to run a number of different operating systems in parallel on a single physical server.  It doesn’t matter if you prefer Windows, Linux or Unix, Hyper-V allows you to take full advantage of 64-bit computing.

Server Consolidation

Today’s businesses are under a lot of pressure to simplify management processes all while reducing costs and maintaining competitive benefits such as flexibility, scalability, reliability and security.  Hyper-V enables organizations to meet these goals by consolidating multiple servers within a single system while maintaining isolation.  Aside from saving money on individual servers, this type of virtualization also provides for lower processing power, cooling and management costs.  Businesses of various sizes can benefit from an asset standpoint as well as capabilities that allow them to effectively balance workloads across multiple resources.  This results in improved flexibility that allows for the integration of 32-bit and 64-bit operations in the same environment.

Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity

Business continuity refers to the ability to reduce both scheduled and unscheduled downtime.  This includes time lost due to routine operations such as backup and maintenance as well untimely events caused by failures and outages.  Hyper-V offers extensive business continuity features such as live backup and seamless migration capabilities that enable businesses to meet demanding uptime and response metrics.

Disaster recovery is an essential element of business continuity.  Emergencies, natural disasters, malicious physical attacks and even simple configuration issues such as software conflict all have the power to cripple an organization’s vital data before administrators have a chance to back it up.  Leveraging the clustering features integrated into Windows Server 2008, Hyper-V supports disaster recovery across diverse IT environments and data centers.  Fast, reliable disaster recovery and business continuity tools help to ensure minimal data loss and enhanced remote management capabilities.

Improved Testing and Development

Testing and development are usually the first functions businesses take advantage of with virtualization technology.  The use of virtual machines allows development staff to create and test a wide range of scenarios in a secure, self-contained environment that precisely approximates the operation of physical clients and servers.  Hyper-V enables the maximum utilization of test hardware, helping to reduce costs, improve test coverage and life cycle management.  With support for numerous operating systems and checkpoint features, this virtualization solution makes an excellent platform for test and development environments.

Server virtualization is a hot commodity in the IT world for the potential of benefits that can be weighed on the scales of cost and performance.  Already one of the pioneers in web technology, Microsoft can now be credited for enhancing the virtualization concept and enabling businesses all over the world to enjoy a more dynamic IT infrastructure.

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