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12 CHAPTER 1 What is virtualization? As a general rule, you should leave database servers until last. It is usually a bad idea to virtualize database environments unless they contain little- used tables. Your biggest gains when developing your strategy will likely result from considering the following: n n n n n n n n Application servers File servers Print servers Domain controllers Web servers Testing servers Development servers Business recovery environments Virtualization planning documents are available from Microsoft, for both servers and end-user devices, at http://tinyurl.com/Microsoft-IPD. We refer to these resources throughout the design and setup chapters. SUMMARY Virtualization was an inevitable result of the increasing capability of datacenter technology and the continuing pressure to reduce technology costs; hardware use is optimized, recovery times are reduced, and IS is able to react quickly to changing business-user demands. However, virtualization is not an answer for every system in your datacenter. Not every application behaves well--and not every vendor for that matter-- in a virtualized environment. A careful analysis of current hardware utiliza- tion, application constraints, and vendor support is a critical first step, even before you put together your business case for virtualization. It is difficult to understand business value when you do not understand how many of your applications are candidates for aggregation. Once you have this information, you can begin working to get virtualization technology into your IS budget. Finally, virtualization is not a panacea. It introduces new challenges which you must consider in order to adapt security and operational monitoring and controls. REFERENCE [1] Singh A. An introduction to virtualization, kernelthread.com; 2004 [cited January 2010]. Available from www.kernelthread.com/publications/virtualization/.