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Why virtualization has become virtually irresistible

Quoting ComputerWorld

I just perused a piece I wrote last year on the Spring Storage Networking World conference entitled "Notes From Emerald City." Man, what a boring piece. Was I bored? Maybe, although I didn't feel that way at the time.

What's different about this 2007 version of SNW in Emerald City can be summed up in one word: Virtualization. "Oh no," you say, "another tired virtualization riff." I implore you to hang with me for just a few more lines.

De-duplication is supposed to be the white-hot storage topic. Yet, when I scan the show agenda, I only see de-dupe mentioned once. On the other hand, I see virtualization in many of the presentations and in many settings. Scan the agenda for yourself if you don't believe me.

I know that storage virtualization is supposed to be this overworked, trite thing from the perspective of us analysts who are supposed to be hot on the trail of the next new technology. Storage virtualization is as old hat as a 1Gbit/sec. Fibre Channel port. Not this year at this show.

I often think that the storage industry has a bad tendency to get way ahead of itself when vendors opt to capture mind share well before they can actually capture market share with a real product. That was Virtualization Act I. Think of 2007 as Virtualization Act II -- the year of real products, real alternatives and real interest from users.

My two-word explaination for this phenomenon is "server virtualization." VMware, Virtual Iron and Xen -- not to mention the original true-blue VM -- have all gotten users thinking good virtualization things. Yes, there is a value proposition, and yes, it works.

It's sad but true that IT users just can't break the habit of putting servers before storage. I guess I can take that if it leads to a better understanding of the versatility of storage. By now it should be obvious that bladed storage is next.

Read or comment on the original, here.

Published Wednesday, April 18, 2007 6:14 AM by David Marshall
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