Server virtualization still hot topic

The largest data centers in the world and the largest Internet content providers, such as Google, continue to focus on server virtualization,a new studysaid.

According to the Infonetics Research study, data center owners want to increase the value of their existing data center assets—no matter the extent of server virtualization—as a means to increase revenue via cloud services, both to keep their current customers satisfied and to attract new customers.

 “Server virtualization has been the focus of the data center industry for several years now, and the largest data center owners and internet content providers like Google are ubiquitously exploiting virtual machines,” said Michael Howard, principal analyst for carrier networks at Infonetics Research. “Yet the reality is the bulk of data center owners are more pedestrian in their deployments, finding it more operationally convenient to leave many areas of their data centers alone, using server virtualization for only select applications.”

The study further said more operators than anticipated plan to continue investing in fiber channel for their data centers, even in the face of growing usage of the newer Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE)

The number of data center server LAN connections is growing quickly, with 10 Gigabit Ethernet connections growing and the average capacity of a data center WAN connection is expected to increase more than twofold between 2012 and 2014

While the use of virtual machines in data centers continues to grow, many servers are not yet virtualized, the study said.

For its annual data center survey, Infonetics interviewed incumbent and competitive service providers and cloud specialists that have data centers with at least 100 servers. The survey provides insights into data center interconnection strategies; storage network investments; data network technologies deployed; WAN/internet connection capacities; and number of physical servers, virtual machines, Ethernet and SAN interfaces in use at medium, large, and super data centers.