Why is virtualisation take-up so slow?
There's an interesting blog post here from Ron Oglesby, who works at Dell's infrastructure consulting services arm, which starts with the assumption that every server that can be virtualised should be virtualised -- and that there's very few that cannot be virtualised.
He sets up a virtualisation technology adoption curve, which shows the degree to which organisations have virtualised their servers, and is a little non-plussed as to why relatively few have done so.
Well, naturally, he has a stake in this as Dell's server range is now hypervisor-ready pretty much across the range with the recent Nehalem refresh. And he's also disparaging about companies who don't jump to the technology as a result of politicking -- he calls it making excuses. Specifically, he notes is that people and departments are accustomed to being able to point to physical assets that are loaded onto the department's bottom line.
Dell's been pretty aggressive in its efforts to market its consultancy services in recent months so you'd think that it would be noticed that customers don't always leap at the latest technology. They prefer to analyse its effects, wait for refresh cycles and, as one commentator pointed out, "There are also cases where vendors don't support running their application in a virtual environment. Either they require physical hardware, or they have only 'certified' a particular hypervisor. This is, by far, the biggest contributor to our slow adoption rate."
Others point out that companies need to make risk assessments prior to the introduction of any new technology into a production environment, citing issues such as security and compliance concerns, along with the general view among larger organisations that they would rather follow than lead in new technology -- and let others discover the glitches on the bleeding edge.
Either way it's an interesting insight into just where real-world thinking about virtualisation is right now: vendors are of course keen to push on, while organisations whose bottom lines are at stake and who are naturally risk-averse at the best of times -- and these are not the best of times -- take a somewhat less bullish view.