Nine out of 10 organisations that have adopted virtualisation technologies have done so to reduce datacentre costs, according to research from IDC.
Of those organisations surveyed, almost half said they see virtualisation as standard for new application deployment now or within "a few years".
IDC conducted the survey of 650 European companies between January and March of this year. One of the sponsors of the research was virtualisation-software supplier VMware.
The survey claims that "virtualisation is mainstream and is becoming a standard deployment platform for applications in datacentres around Europe", according to Chris Ingle, research director for IDC's European systems group. "Customers across the region are running core business applications, test and development and business continuity systems on virtual infrastructure."
The pace of virtualisation uptake has "increased a lot over the last two years", according to Ingle. "In 2007, 35 percent of datacentres had some form of virtualisation in place. It will be 52 percent this year."
Virtualisation is not only popular with large corporations, it is catching on among medium-sized companies as well, according to Ingle: "Medium-sized companies are a bit behind, as you would expect, but not by much."
However, IDC said that virtualisation does pose some issues for IT managers to think about before adoption. These issues are largely to do with managing virtualised systems. In its survey, IDC asked IT organisations how they managed their virtual estates. "The answer was: they don't," said Ingle, who said this is an important lapse. "If you don't measure it, you have problems measuring the value you are getting."
Some of the problems involved in measuring returns from virtualised estates arise from the fact that many of the tools for measuring IT performance and return are designed for physical environments, said Ingle. However, he added that the necessary tools are quickly becoming available in the virtualised world.
VMware is still the comfortable leader in the virtualisation market, with 82 percent of European companies that have adopted virtualisation using VMware software, according to the IDC survey.