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Chapter 3. Advantages and misconceptions of virtualization

3.1. Virtualization costs
3.2. Virtualization learning curve
3.3. Performance
3.4. Flexibility
3.5. Disaster recovery
3.6. Security
3.6.1. Virtualization security features
3.7. Virtualization for servers and individuals
There are many advantages to virtualization and perhaps an equal amount of misconceptions surrounding it. This chapter explores these points.

3.1. Virtualization costs

A common misconception is that virtualization is too expensive to justify the change. Virtualization can be expensive to introduce but often it saves money in the long term. It is important to perform a Return on Investment (ROI) analysis to determine the best use of virtualization in your environment. Consider the following benefits:
Less power
Using virtualization negates much of the need for multiple physical platforms. This equates to less power being drawn for machine operation and cooling, resulting in reduced energy costs. The initial cost of purchasing multiple physical platforms, combined with the machines' power consumption and required cooling, is drastically cut by using virtualization.
Less maintenance
Provided adequate planning is performed before migrating physical systems to virtualized ones, less time is spent maintaining them. This means less money being spent on parts and labor.
Extended life for installed software
Older versions of software may not run on newer, bare metal machines directly. However, by running the older software virtually on a larger, faster system, the life of the software may be extended while taking advantage of the performance from the newer system.
Smaller footprint
Consolidating servers onto fewer machines means less physical space is required. This means the space normally occupied by server hardware can be used for other purposes.