Virtualization Management: Emerging Opportunity or Old News?
Large enterprises have spent the past decade deploying virtualization — mostly VMware — to consolidate data centers and improve server utilization rates. In some ways, the virtualization trend is old news. But is the story different in the small and midsize business market — especially for MSPs seeking to remotely manage and optimize customer systems?
I ask the virtualization question because it seems like every major MSP-oriented software company has been introducing new virtualization management technologies in recent weeks. Among the examples:
- The latest SolarWinds Virtualization Manager for VMware and Microsoft Hyper-V shipped last week.
- The recent Doyenz Spring ’12 release includes a new rCloud Agent for VMware vSphere; Doyenz says the agent allows customers to restore their virtualized environments in 15 minutes or less.
- Last week’s LabTech 2012 launch included integrations with VMware ESX and the Doyenz cloud. Side note: I believe most of the major RMM (remote monitoring and management) software providers support the monitoring of VMware and Microsoft Hyper-V environments.
So, virtualization management capabilities are everywhere. But…
- Do small businesses need virtualization management in a big way?
- How deeply have VMware, Microsoft Hyper-V, Xen and KVM (kernel-based virtual machine) penetrated the SMB market?
- As small customers increasingly leverage cloud applications (SaaS) rather than on-premises applications, will it minimize the virtualization management opportunity for MSPs?
Generally speaking, I think the biggest virtualization opportunities for MSPs involve…
- disaster recovery as a service in the cloud
- virtual desktop integration, with an emphasis on extending Windows and Office application access out to tablets
Admittedly, this blog entry is filled with educated guesses, hunches… and plenty of questions.