Virtualization is a framework or methodology of dividing the resource of a computer into multiple execution environments, by applying one or more concepts of technologies. This new virtual view of the resource is not restricted by the implementation, geographic location or the physical configuration of underlying resources.
Commonly virtualized resources include computing power and data storage.
Most important thing that comes in the virtualization is the Virtual Machine, which can be defined as a machine, completely defined and implemented in software rather than hardware. It is often referred to as a "runtime environment"; code compiled for such a machine is typically called byte code.
Virtual machine allows a single hardware platform to host multiple operating system and application, reducing the number of physical servers required while maximizing the utilization of each server.
The creation and management of virtual machine is often referred to as server virtualization.
Benefits of server virtualization is fewer wasted cycles and a reduction in processors brings power saving, management simplification, enhanced security and extreme agility to the data center.
We will take a look into real scenario of virtualization. Now days many operating systems are available in the market like: Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Linux and so on.
If you want to choose which operating system to use among many then, either you have to install a multi-boot loader that lets you choose what OS to load during boot-up time. But that involves some experience and a little bit of skill, and partitioning hard disks is not for the faint-hearted or one more thing you can do you can use a different hard disk for each operating system and swapping the required hard disk during boot time, but this solution is really very costly.
Now the best solution for choosing one among many operating systems is virtualization.
With virtualization, you can install new operating systems as easily as installing a new game on your PC, and you can run more than one operating system at the same time.
There are many forms of virtualization some of them are listed below:
With virtualization we are looking Forward to Hardware Independence
As processor speeds rise and storage costs drop, virtualization can be expected to continue increasing in significance and ease of use. Products from industry leaders like Microsoft (who acquired Connectix's virtualization assets) and VMWare (recently acquired by EMC), as well as the open source community and newcomers such as Serenity Systems, are already making cross-platform emulation and desktop and server virtualization easier. If virtual machine solutions continue to increase in number and sophistication, they could very well free developers, administrators, and end-users from the frustrations of hardware dependence and platform migration.
We will talk more about virtualization in my next article.