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If your virtual servers had feelings, would they be hurt?


Written by Stacey King

Stacey is a world-wide product marketing manager for HP ExpertOne, focusing on HP Networking, Storage, and Printing and Personal Systems certifications.



What does “virtualization” really mean?  According to my Merriam-Webster dictionary mobile app, “virtualization” doesn’t even exist as a word, which I thought was odd.  Granted, the word does exist via more techie reference guides such as Wikipedia or   But staying true to my mobile appendage’s inventory of words, I went to the heart of the word virtualization, “virtual”, which has the core meaning of “being such in essence or effect though not formally recognized or admitted”.  Could we then define IT “virtualization” as not yet ‘formally recognized or admitted’ – especially for the entire data center of IT resources?   I think we all know the world has in fact ‘admitted’ to virtual servers as being ‘recognized’ solutions for application deployment.  According to IDC*, “Today, over 50% of all applications run on virtual machines (VMs) on virtualized servers, and in many large organizations, levels of virtualization often exceeds 80%”.  


Is traditional networking or storage to blame?

What about networking and storage joining their virtualized server counterparts to provide a complete IT stack, or family, for applications to enjoy?   Does legacy networking and storage easily recognize and accommodate their many virtual server relatives?   Or, is networking and storage simply getting confused and bogged down by so many virtual servers and their applications begging for time and attention?  Are your virtual servers and the applications they host potentially getting hurt by not having enough time and attention?   I relate this to having too many children where you might start calling them by the wrong names and not fully meeting their individual needs.  Wouldn’t it be nice to create a virtual world where every child has their own virtual parents providing equal attention and meeting their needs?  I know I could use a few more virtual me’s to be more effective (and maybe get more sleep).


 “Today, over 50% of all applications run on virtual machines (VMs) on virtualized servers, and in many large organizations, levels of virtualization often exceeds 80%”.  


I think it’s safe to say the virtual world has won when it comes to IT.  No more “formally recognized” concerns.   Now we simply need the entire IT family, including networking and storage, to become an integral part of this new virtual reality to be truly effective.  Let’s take a look at some nice options for the mother of IT, networking, since she’s the one who connects the entire IT family together. 


What can be done to help?

Network engineers, you have an opportunity to get started learning how to spread more love by incorporating networking into the virtual world.  Would you like to explore how networking can be architected to realize the full benefits of a virtualized data center? Would you like to bring more joy to those sensitive virtual servers as well as to yourself?   If so, please take advantage of this exclusive on-demand technical training course, Architecting a Virtualized Data Center. This course is free to members of our HP ExpertOne learner community.  If you are not currently an HP ExpertOne learner, please join our community to get immediate access to this training as well as other training and resources across IT solutions, such as: cloud, wireless and wired networking, servers, storage, security, big data, management software, and client computing. 


The Architecting a Virtualized Data Center course will help you: 

  • Describe how server virtualization brings both joy and pain.
  • Explain how to make virtual servers feel more loved by establishing resilient, redundant, load-balancing links to the server access layer of a virtualized data center
  • Explain options to achieve better visibility and coordination between physical and virtual servers
  • Explain how OpenFlow and Software Defined Networks enable network virtualization so entire IT families can become one throughout the IT process.

Knowledge from this course should help you remove some barriers to achieving scalable benefits from virtualization and escalate your IT ROI, responsiveness, and of course joy.  If and when you have a break from managing your own IT family, we would love to hear your thoughts on IT virtualization in general and/or on this particular course. 


Let’s face it, it’s time for all of your IT resources to join hands and become one big virtual family.  Let’s stop all those virtual servers from feeling so lonely or neglected.  Look forward to hearing from you soon.


*IDC White Paper: Avoiding the Stall: Riding the Momentum of the Next Levels of Datacenter Virtualization – A Business Value Perspective.  March 2013. 


For more information on HP’s industry recognized ExpertOne certification program, visit


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Thank you,

Karl Kovacs
Global Sales and Partner Enablement
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About the Author


20+ years in IT, including data center architect, pre-sales engineer, certification development and management. Passion for technology, gadgets and the outdoors. Always looking for ways to blend them together in one big adventure.

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