Virtual realities

It's nigh on impossible to hear a bad word about virtualisation software at the moment, but is it good news for everyone?This week I talked to Open Universities Australia (OUA) IT manager, Anthony Russo, for a story about their PeopleSoft Campus Solutions and CRM rollout.

It's nigh on impossible to hear a bad word about virtualisation software at the moment, but is it good news for everyone?

This week I talked to Open Universities Australia (OUA) IT manager, Anthony Russo, for a story about their PeopleSoft Campus Solutions and CRM rollout.

Russo was positive about PeopleSoft, but even more so about virtualisation software.

Without me even asking about it, Russo told me how OUA adopted VMWare three months ago while in desperate need of more servers.

"A lot of our applications require a dedicated machine, but use only a fraction of the power," he said.

OUA virtualised its development and testing environment, and it seems they couldn't be happier with the results.

"Where we were desperately needing more machines, we now have spares," he said.

OUA has 30 Dell servers, but that would probably drop to about 20 using virtualisation, said Russo.

He said they also plan to virtualise their production environment.

"[Virtualisation] makes me look like a very good IT manager," he said.

Consider that quote. A marketer's dream. But what does virtualisation mean for Dell and other server manufacturers?

A while ago, Dell probably had a few server orders pencilled in for OUA. Since virtualisation, Dell must now be wondering if they'll ever see the colour of OUA's money again.

For so long server sales reps must have delighted in telling customers, "You'll need another box to run that app". Now, virtualisation and server consolidation threatens to slow sales.

Has virtualisation helped you put an end to high hardware costs? Or are server vendors finding other ways to bleed you dry?

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