Yes, You Can Virtualize 100% of Your Datacenter

This week, we saw Austin Radiological Association announce an implementation of Zerto Virtual Replication into their data center. According to ARA, their data center is currently 25% virtualized, and they are going to be 100% virtualized by revamping infrastructure — a project that will take approximately 12 months.

“We believe that the virtual machine is the new atomic unit for replication strategies,” said R. Todd Thomas, Chief Information Officer, ARA. “Zerto works at the virtualization level, which allows us greater flexibility in the type of storage we replicate to and removes the limitations around LUN-based consistency groups.”

Virtualization in order to Replicate or Replicate in order to Virtualize?

For ARA, Disaster Recovery is not only about cost-effective application protection — it’s actually the key element in getting their environment 100% virtualized.  If mission-critical applications can’t easily be protected in virtual environments, they become a virtualization barrier. For ARA, getting Zerto in their data center is not only about BC/DR, it is about getting the maximum benefit out of virtualization.

All agree virtualization significantly reduces data center costs.  Of course you’ll save on pure hardware costs, but there’s also power, servicing, storage space, cooling, real-estate and property taxes — all of these costs are reduced by virtualizing.  According to a recent Baseline Magazine article,

“More than one-third of the 525 companies [we] surveyed say that at least one of their data center facilities will run out of power, cooling and/or space in 2011 or 2012. What’s more, the survey indicates that one-third of the data centers in operation are currently understaffed.”

It’s becoming cost-critical for IT managers to get more of their data centers virtualized.  Hypervisor-based replication is going to be a key part of virtualizing business critical applications.  I expect we’ll hear more about companies hitting their ‘100% virtualized’ target in 2012.

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