Snapshot: Virtualization

Delivering on the Promise of Virtualization

At first, the Federal Data Center Consolidation Initiative (FDCCI) was greeted with equal parts enthusiasm, puzzlement and denial. Since then, it’s fair to say the program has had only moderate success whittling down the number of federal data centers. What’s not in doubt, though, is the influence of the technology involved.
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As government has pushed the mantra of “more bang for the buck,” virtualization has become an accepted way of doing IT. Server virtualization is transforming the data center environment. With that comes storage and network virtualization as well. With physical infrastructure now so abstracted, the traditional approach of throwing more hardware into the mix to solve problems is being turned on its head.
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Containers have become one of the hot buzzword technologies. Although the concept has been around for years, deploying containers in a modern, virtualized IT environment is promising a new level of speed and efficiency in developing and deploying applications and services.
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Virtualization, particularly service virtualization, could play a big part in how agencies embrace DevOps. With continuous testing being a major element of DevOps, service virtualization can provide an “always there” test environment for when physical test environments might not be available.
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The promise of virtualization to improve the use of IT resources is now well established. Unfortunately, understanding the attending security issues has not kept pace. In the age of advanced cyber threats, sophisticated malware and regular high-profile breaches of both private and public organizations’ security, virtualized environments could prove particularly vulnerable.
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