Virtualization software has a number of useful applications, from creating a private cloud, to setting up a
VPS server for your personal or business needs. Up to 66 percent of businesses take advantage of server virtualization solutions to get the most out of their hardware, reports VMWare. Here are virtualization software packages you should be aware of.
If you’re using a Windows VPS, Hyper-V is the only option for server virtualization. You might not have any choice with virtualization when it comes to Windows server-based machines, but Microsoft spent a lot of time getting it right and making it an integral part of the operating system. Windows Server 2008 R2 and 2012 both come with Hyper-V as part of the packages, and it keeps getting better and better. It supports 64 processors, 1 terabyte of memory and 64 terabytes of hard drive space. Hyper-V works with virtual private servers and cloud-based servers, with an extensive number of features that improve the flexibility and scalability of this platform. Up to 4,000 virtual machines are supported on a single machine through Hyper-V, Microsoft reports.
VMware has long been the powerhouse in the server virtualization world with 60 percent market share, according to ReadWrite.com. There’s a definite reason for that dominance, as this software package has pioneered and innovated plenty of features for the virtualization world. VMware vSphere has worked to create the most stable foundation possible, while keeping the total cost of ownership low. The VMWare control panel is centralized, making it easy to manage and create virtual machines. It also has safeguards in place to prevent server capacity overloads from occurring with virtual machines.
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for System z
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for System z is an example of a rather specific virtualization solution. System z was built from the ground up to support mainframes. The application virtualizes server resources to distribute load across multiple mainframes, or consolidate the hardware you’re using to avoid additional server overhead. You have options for using the virtualization software through Linux directly, or through a hypervisor called z/VM.
Unix-based operating systems such as FreeBSD use a “jail” system for virtualization. A FreeBSD jail creates separate virtual machine environments that use their own sets of permissions to handle user access. Processes are also isolated in the jail system, keeping any runaway processes from affecting other jails contained on the server.
Kernel-Based Virtual Machine
The Linux kernel has virtualization built in to some distributions, such as Red Hat. It’s called a Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) and supports a number of processors, including x86. This application has also been ported to the OS X server environment. The /dev/kvm interface allows users to create the virtual machine space and operating system, provide in-put and out-put and create a video out-put for remote access.
What virtualization software do you prefer? Share your thoughts in the comments.