Computers are great tools.  Workstation operating systems allow you run application software which allows you to be wonderfully productive.  The problem is that these two entities – the hardware and the software – are very interdependent.  If you’ve ever had “driver issues” when you add a new component to your computer or after a “system update” you’ve seen this in action.  So what happens when the computer fails?

Computer failures can happen for a lot of reasons.  A chip (anyone of hundreds on the main-board) may just die.  Or, it may be killed by an overload from a power line surge, a lightning strike, or by physical trauma like dropping the computer, dropping something on the computer, or some other form of malady like coffee or coke.  The result is a “brick”.  Now what?

Well, you buy a new computer, reinstall operating system, reinstall all the applications, restore all of your data, and poof you’re back to work.  Never mind you’ve just spent a lot of time and money and potentially missed a lot of deadlines.  Now imagine that didn’t happen to your workstation but the server that you and all your superiors and subordinates use to conduct the daily business of your company.  Quite a large impact in most cases, even for a small company.

Virtualization fixes this by severing the dependency of your operating system to your hardware.  How it does this is quite interesting and very clever but the bottom line is that works.  Even more importantly than that is the allows the entire computer to backed up, to be copied, or to be moved as one file.  Awesome, to say the least.  The advantages are great, the difficulty in fielding a stable working virtual environment is not trivial.  Nor is it beyond the capabilities of most reasonably technical individuals.  If you would like to explore this technology or if you need help implementing it, give us a call.