Gartner Analysts: Virtualization Will Be Disruptive For Server And Storage Vendors

This comes from the 27th Annual Gartner Data Center Conference, which opened at the MGM Grand Conference Center in Las Vegas: virtualization is proving to be a disruptive trend for server and storage vendors, according to Gartner analysts.

“Virtualization should be seen as not just a tool for (server) consolidation, but as a modernization catalyst,” said Thomas Bittman, a Gartner VP and Chief of Research for its Infrastructure and operations area. “It’s changing how we deal with the business.”

As DataCenterKnowledge points out, Bittman foresees the emergence of a “meta operating system” – a virtualization layer between applications and distributed computing resources that will play a central role in the next-generation data center.

“We’ve been seeing a migration from the idea of a box to a chassis to a data center in a rack or container,” said Bittman. “Servers are fundamentally becoming a part of the fabric, The server of the past is becoming like a brick, a commodity.” And that has implications for server vendors, he said. As we move towards virtualization, (server and storage) vendors are becoming concerned,” Bittman added. “Their world is getting turned completely upside down. They’re now looking at being the lead vendor at the top of a layer, or they’ll get commoditized.”

Gartner estimates that 12 percent of all x86 server workloads are currently running in virtual machines, and expects that number to rise to 50 percent by 2012. For now, virtualization is being used primarily to consoldiate servers and save on space and energy usage.

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