Understanding Virtual Data Centers
Virtual data centers (VDCs) use technology that partitions a single physical server into multiple distinct operating systems and applications. In effect, the virtualization technology of a VDC allows you to turn one server into several servers; these “servers within the servers” are called virtual machines (VMs), and they are ultimately controlled by a responsive and intelligent software system.
Since a virtual data center is essentially a pool or collection of cloud-based resources within existing physical hardware, businesses can easily implement a VDC that works with the IT infrastructure and hardware they already have. This is accomplished via a site-to-site virtual private network (VPN) that allows VMs in the cloud to communicate with both physical servers and VMs at the network or Active Directory layer in a company’s internal datacenter.
However, businesses can also avoid the costs of on-premises hardware entirely by working with a provider that offers infrastructure as a service (IaaS). Either way, virtualization comes with numerous important advantages over a traditional data center.
When considering the benefits of virtualization, keep in mind that implementing a virtual data center isn’t a one-size-fits-all process. You can move your business’ entire IT infrastructure to the cloud. You can add virtual resources to your current physical infrastructure and keep those resources available for emergencies. Or you can build a solution anywhere in-between.
Benefit #1: Saving Money on Hardware
There’s no question that hardware is one of the biggest expenditures when building a traditional data center. Not only is the hardware expensive, but it’s difficult to make optimal use of your physical hardware without investing in support staff and infrastructure. As a result, most physical servers end up under-utilized as a result.
However, when your business implements a virtual data center, each physical server can hold multiple virtual machines. This leads to a reduction in physical hardware needs whether you’re implementing a virtual datacenter in tandem with your existing physical infrastructure or exploring an entirely cloud-based solution. Less hardware means savings on electricity, climate control, storage space, and all the other costs of maintaining physical servers.
Benefit #2: Scalability and Agility
Deploying new physical servers is a pain. First, you have to fill out a purchase order, then you wait for the server to arrive, and then you endure the time and cost of the installation process. There’s also the ever-growing array of racks and cables you need — and that’s assuming you already have the space to handle additional servers.
When your servers are virtual, it’s quick and easy to set up new ones whenever your business needs them, even on short notice. Virtualization allows your system administrators to clone an existing virtual machine in minutes, which means your business will always have the data resources it needs to keep up with your customers’ needs and your competition. Additionally, you can easily “tear down” (delete) a virtual machine if you no longer need it or no longer want to pay for it. With physical servers, your costs are already sunk in that expenditure.
Benefit #3: Easy Access to Data
Maintaining dedicated applications and servers locks your data into silos. With a virtual data center, your staff can share data across all your applications without worrying about compatibility issues and other limitations.
Implementing a virtual data center also takes your business one step closer to having cloud-based infrastructure. Once you have a virtual data center, migrating it to a private cloud or a cloud hosting facility is a smooth and relatively straightforward process. By incorporating virtualization into your data center, your business can get a head start on realizing all the benefits of a completely cloud-based environment. You can also create your VDC entirely in the cloud to start realizing the benefits of the cloud immediately.
Benefit #4: Less Productivity Loss During an Outage
When a physical server dies, the time it takes to redeploy depends on whether you have a backup, an image of the server, the right data available on the backup server, and more. Even in the best-case scenario, getting a new server up and running can take significant time — more time than your business has to spare.
However, when you use a virtual data center, redeploying a new server is as easy as making a few clicks. Even in the face of a complete disaster, you can use snapshots of your virtual machines to get back up and running in minutes, which leads to less downtime and increased productivity for your employees.
Benefit #5: Better Data Security and Disaster Recovery
By storing data off-site in a virtual environment, you can ensure that a disaster at your business never leads to a disaster for your data. While virtual servers can go down, a virtual data center allows you to maintain a total backup of all virtual servers along with backups and snapshots of all your virtual machines.
Recovering from a disaster is as simple as migrating your virtual machines onto another virtual server instance, which takes only a few mouse clicks to execute. With a virtual data center, your business can effectively continue to operate through any type of outage or disaster.
Stratus Innovations Group Can Help Your Business Realize the Benefits of a Virtual Data Center Today!
The list above covers just a few of the many benefits you can experience by working with Stratus Innovations Group to implement a virtual data center for your business.
Our expert team can help your organization with every aspect of virtual data center implementation:
- Integrating your existing IT infrastructure with virtual assets
- Centralizing user account management through Active Directory
- Extending your data security with disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS)
To learn more about how Stratus Innovations Group can help you scale up your business’ network efficiently and safely with a virtual data center, call us toll-free at 844-561-6721 or fill out our quick and easy online contact form.