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Going by the current trends by most companies,virtualization has been proved to significantly help in reducing both capital and operational expenses.These are not the only benefit of virtualization ,but it has enabled businesses to effectively respond to the changing business needs.Hence,application virtualization can be described as a collective term used to describes software technologies which are used to enhance portability, control and compatibility of various applications through encampassing them from the existing operating system,upon where they are executed. Though a completely virtualized application is not necessarily installed in the current one, it functions as if it were.During run time the application is made to behave like it is interfacing with the existing operating system together with all other resources managed by it ,whereas it is actually not.From this idea the term virtualization was derived to reter to the various artifacts which are being encapsulated in the operating system. Application virtualization has a very core focus of helping eliminate application incompatibilities.It can accomplish this goal by freeing an application from dependencies on physical hardware or the host operating system, enabling it to execute in its own isolated virtual environment. Application virtualization gives administrators a way to create virtualized applications that help minimize risk, save time, increase user satisfaction , and reduce costs for support and regression testing.
Among those virtualized application to be installed within the companys' main operating system ,there are some applications which are critical to the companys' operations and cant be virtualized. Mission critical application,means those application that would cause the company to come to a stand still if they were not running.An example of such amission critical applicatipon in an airport would be the airline reservation system or if it was in a retail chain store,the order processing would become the mission critical application.The following are some of the challenges to be encountered as a result of the non compatibility along with some solution options that the company would use to counter the challenges.
Challenges on deploying virtualization
One of the most common physical method used to ensure the availability of a business critical application is to deploy a traditional high availability clustering solution.These solution serve to protect any unforeseen failure of a component by providing the ability to restart an application(s) on additional servers.In addition to protecting the system from unexpected failures ,these solution would be still utilized to minimized the effects of being out of operation during during maitenance of the main system. Another issue that would emerge from the increasing of the application availability is the additional cost in terms of some idle hardware,and a bunch of softwares or support and of course the additional management cost as there will be need to to maintain multiple systems which are identical. Similar to when there would be any change or for a new product,bringing in virtualization in the ICT field would call for extra training.For this reason ,any business venturing in the any virtualization plan,should consider the factor of cost ,time and capital outlay.
Although virtualization does good by reducing the number of physical machines , proper management is of atmost importance.As a result, efficient management should be deployed with failure to which a bigger problem would arise.Another major issue in order to realize full benefits of virtualization would be for the virtual machines to be located on a powerful processor.The major set back would be for the company to compromise between the cost of acquiring new hardware with the decrease of benefits by maintaing the same less powerful computers In most cases ,the inability to visualize of the returns of virtualization investment has been the reasons why most firms havent been ble to appreciate the importance of virtualizatin.With regard to our targeted reduction in power consumption as well as the efficiency of our services to our clients,that the company would so much be willing to adopt virtualization .
One of the major challenges is the purchase of Software and Licensing of the same. One of the greatest issues to be conversant with is that it ,with virtualization in place ,it would be very easy to create a new server if need be. If the comppany would be working in an open source the server sprawl would nor be an issue to consider.On the other hand if the company deals with a proprietary server situation it would translate to very expensive a process to obtain license. While these concerns persist, there is wide recognition that compelling benefits exist when companies virtualize mission critical applications. According to some research ,59 percent strongly agreed that virtualization would result in server consolidation and related power and cooling savings, while 49 percent strongly agree that failover/disaster recovery capabilities would improve in a virtual environment. 41 percent agree that their agility and responsiveness to the business would improve. Yet, the majority of companies still expressed a lack of confidence that their applications could succeed in virtual environments.
Another challenge of virtualization during its implementation would be the poor co-operation between the department of it and that of business. This initself would mean that ,there would be some scraches which in the long run would affect the companys' clients.A technical cahllenge would occur when plannng for the for the virtualization project,where the the licensing of the operating system must be thouroughlt scrutinized.This is crusial as some of the operating system oor even proograms may fail to get started in the virtual system.The issue of scrutinizing of the licensing fee would be for the reason that many operating system manufacturers impose some limitations on how you would use theor products. Such occurences are mostlyy described in a very seperate license chapter.Some other problems with the licensing of the software would be that the manufacturers may further enforce that the license be for a certain number of processors ,since the virtual machine uses smp to depict a different number of processors than would be on the host system.In connection with this , the company should look forward to some pleasant characteristics of operating system virtualization.For instance the company could opt to use the fact that ther are unlimited number of virtual system working with windows server 2003 datacenter new edition without at any point incurring extra cost .For this problem it would emerge critical for a thorough analyzing of the hardware and the software components within an IT infrastructure and looking on the possibilities of moving into a virtual environment.Most of the software developers are not ready to give a guarantee fail free operations with their programms in the machines.to solve this kind of a problem the company should conduct a thorough inventory on its hardware and software.In line with this arguement , the company should encquire on how well the hardware and the software would work in a virtual set up.
The virtualization support problems could be divided into three categories:technical limitation which include the support for some specific hardware and softwares,the security of the virtualization platform and the marketing strategy in that the virtualization should enable the company attend to its customers more efficiently as well as with the issue of reducing power consumption.
The issue of security can further still be divided into two groups:the security of the virtual machine and that of the virtualization platform itself.The company should purpose to protect the virtual machine by improvising ways of safeguarding the software which must be installed in another guest operating system.the virtual machine and the network should be securely configered to ensure that intruders or internet hackers dont exploit some loop holes in th esystem and as a result interfere with the operations of the company.For a virtual world ,the issue of security may take a different dimension which has to do withsome requirements not yet defined by the virtual system.an example is some virtual switches insome work station servers which acts as hubs such that it si open to other virtual machines to intercept other unprotected traffic and hence be able to deceive the system administrator. Dealing with the virtualization platform security issues ,after planning a virtual machine deployment strategy,the company must analyze the reports on the vulnerabilies of virtualization platforms and hence take the neccessary measures to deal with the issue of choosing the platform.Continous and timely updates of the virualization system and tracking major tracking vulnerabilities must be implemented as a major activity of the system care ad maintenance.there could also exist some internal vurnalabolity where some insiders could decide to obtain some unauthorrized access to the main host system.But this should not worry the company very much though it should not be neglected and the reason for easing the pressure on the issue is due to that fact that virtualization has not been
Different application virtualization solutions employ different methods to help simplify application deployment, but one method is typically the simplest to execute and manage while also requiring the least amount of infrastructure overhead.packaging everything that an application needs into a single self-contained executable.After the deployment of the virtual machine ,their efficiency should be evaluated on various aspects.It becomes more difficult to detect loop holes in the virtual infractructure than t is inthe real ones .this performace flaws does not only depend on the standard factoers but also on some more specific matters .the developers of softwares should soon adapt and make their products get to the level where virtualization would be implemented.Some manufacturers have solved this problem by developed some tools to be used.
While the virtual infrastructure are been put in place as well as the corporate needs in virtual machines continue to grow, we are faced with the problem of virtual machines scalability. The pressing component of this problem is due to the reason that hardware performance does not always grow uniformly. For instance the multi-CPU systems are speedily developing, and they are allowing in the increase in the number of virtual systems operating on a single physical machine. However, there are some other hardware components which do not grow on that fast rate . Here is a practical example - network throughput. It is now proven that ,we can l soon be able to operate numerous dozens of virtual machines on just a single physical server.After all, the large-scale virtual infrastructures need homogeneous software, which can be managed on the same level of a guest system, which consequently pose some challenges.
Due to the easeness of deploying virtual machines ,many users have the likeklyhood of hosting them even though they don't have any control and this poses a challenge of performance as well as how the load would be distrributed . Thus software developers are trying tocreate some very complex system on which they can deploy virtual machines and gain control of them.following the fact that most virtual servers operatte from a single physical server .it is therefore neccessary to create some disaster recovery plans in case th e worst happens.The problem of the virtuals machines being incompatible with the hardware is not a rare occurence and thus having a platform which has an integrated tools which ensure the reliability of the virtual component would be a viable solution for the companyto undertake.The platform would even be of more use if it could serve the purpose of recovering of some solutions from other developers.Virttual machines can be backed up in three distint levels .There is the guest system level which would entail installing some special agents in a guest system.The second level would be by hosting the system level whereby there would be the copying of the images of virtual machines or may be some files in a guest system.The third level would be to have storage level where virtual infrastructure elements which correspond to particular segments.
The high availabilty of virtual machines can be made possible by having the platformss themselves which would contain diverse elements like the optimized file system where virtual maachines can restart automatically on another server in a case where one of the main server fails.It is expected that some thirds party developers will commence working on a high availability of tools for virtual machines in the near future. In practice, the inability of most companies to evaluate the kind of returns of virtualization investments has been the main reason why nearly half of companies cannot term their virtualization projects as been successful. A persistence problem with tools which can measure quantitative and qualitative aspects of a virtual infrastructure. It becomes bearly out of order to speak of virtualization efficiency not with standing all of its merits not until we have no such tools first been developed . Nevertheless, the company should be well aware of what it needs virtualization for, and what economic significance it would bring to the company.As the virtualization market is continuasly growing the virtualization platform vendors are now in constant competetion with one other for the support of their own products ranging from hardware manufacturers to software developers.
The virtualization technologies are radically changing the standard approach of deploying an information technolgy infrastructure in our company which is connected with the aim of solvingf some high power consumption as well s enhance service delivery. Despite all the given advantages of virtualization, its deployment may raises a lot of serious problems as they are mentioned above especially if it is been deployed opn mision critical schema of the company. A competent approach to solicate these problems is of vital importance. A striking role of this element of approach is thorough proper and prior planning of all virtualization implementation stages.There could be need for some special softwares that may be neede d at each and every stage of the deplyment, which are of course not free of charge but would recquire the company to incur extra costs. Most of the major virtualization projects were a failure due to their inability to currently estimate their efficiency in terms of numbers.These failures existed since there were no tools which could maintain virtualization platforms at all implementation stages.
When the company is planning its virtualization project, it will have to some more special attention to disaster recovery strategies.The company should also take into account the various operating systems licenses, and their peculiarities of integration and compatibility with the existing building the company is relocating to. We shall also take into great consideration of the fact that virtualization technologies aremaent to facilitate computer management and use on one hand, and absolutely complicate their structure on the other hand in order to deal with the issue of system insecurity. This will call for highly skilled specialists though currently there are but few of such specialists inthe market although it is expected that their numbers will increasingly grow owing to popularity of this amazing new technology.Currently virtualization is been used by oil companies, financial sectors , telecommunication, and other major companies, and being an undisputable component of their IT framework. Nevertheless the full virtualization effect can only be achieved if and only if the company would understand whats required, taking into consideration the various virtualization requirements, and thoroughly laying down a strategic plan on how to deploy virtualization stystem in the company though it is coarsing with some basic roles of the company.