A year ago, we had published a whitepaper on how server virtualization was going to move to the next phase of evolution – Virtualization 2.0 – and how manageability was going to be key to the success of these next-gen virtualization deployments. We discussed in this whitepaper how enterprises will seek to get more out of their investments in virtualization technologies and look to pack a larger number of VMs per physical server. You can download a copy of this whitepaper here.
There is growing evidence that Virtualization 2.0 is here. Some of our clients are starting to deploy multiple virtualization technologies. Many of them already have VMware vSphere in place, and are starting to test Microsoft Hyper-V. Also, VM density is becoming important, and many enterprises are starting to look at how many VMs they can have on each physical server. Large servers with tens of GB of RAM and 16+ processors are not uncommon. We just found that one of our customers had scaled their VM environment to 10,000+ VMs deployed on 200 or so physical servers. 30-50 VMs per physical server is not uncommon when deploying virtual desktops but in this instance, there are 50+ VMs hosting server applications per physical server. That’s pretty unique and demonstrates how with the right amount of planning, instrumentation, and oversight, it is possible to get the most of your existing hardware investments.
This deployment also highlights the cost-effectiveness of eG Enterprise’s single agent licensing model . You can have 16 processors, 64 GB RAM on one of your servers and 60 VMs hosted on it, yet you just pay for a single agent license (i.e., the licensing of the virtualization monitoring solution is not based on CPU cores, sockets, or number of VMs). Amortized over 60 VMs, the monitoring cost per VM is a small fraction of the software and hardware costs of the VM. In this infrastructure, eG Enterprise is collecting over 1.2 million metrics. That’s just a few cents per metric to own the monitoring solution!
As part of our Virtualization 2.0 vision, we had envisioned that virtualization would not remain a separate infrastructure silo, but rather that it would be monitored and managed within the broader IT service management ecosystem of an enterprise. The silo structure of most organizations has meant that the integration of virtualization into the overall IT service management ecosystem has been slow. Very few organizations have extended IT service management to the virtualization tier, and provisioning of VMs and managing them is being done without keeping in mind the requirements of the business services they support. We expect this scenario to change as virtualization technologies and deployments mature. To understand why it is critical that you think of monitoring virtualization in the context of the business services it supports, check out our presentation titled “Virtualization 2.0 is All About Manageability” here.