Are you a small business owner? Have you avoided virtualization software because you think it’s only for large corporate enterprises or because you’ve heard it’s too expensive, unnecessarily complex to implement, or less secure than traditional server technologies? There are a lot of misconceptions surrounding virtualization out there, and we’re here to help you understand fact vs. fiction. You’ll probably be surprised just how versatile (and small business friendly) virtualization software really is!

But before we get into the details, it’s important first to understand what virtualization really is. According to our partners at VMWare, virtualization is “the process of creating a software-based, or virtual, representation of something, such as virtual applications, servers, storage, and networks.”

For example, if you currently have three separate physical servers with individual dedicated purposes (e.g., mail, web and legacy apps) and each server is only running at 25% of capacity, then you can quickly begin to see the inefficiency in this traditional server setup. With virtualization, you can combine these functionalities into a single server while still running separate operating systems for each task.

Now that you understand what virtualization is, let’s look at the three main misconceptions associated with SMB’s use of virtualization.

Fact:      Virtualization can boost efficiency and cut long-term costs.

While it is true that a virtual server requires more support than a traditional one, the increase in capacity almost certainly means you won’t need to purchase (or pay to set up) an additional server for a long time. You may even be able to reduce your existing hardware inventory. This quickly equates to savings over the life of your servers. Furthermore, managed virtualization services almost always follow a pay-as-you-go model, so you avoid large upfront charges and instead pay a little bit each month based on the actual services you use.

Fact:      Virtualization is simple to implement and eliminates current hardware limitations.

If you’re like most business owners, you probably have a degree of comfort with legacy server technology, but that doesn’t mean that virtualization has to add unnecessary complexity to your operation. In fact, because virtualization allows you to expand IT systems on demand, it’s likely that once you make the switch to virtualization, you’ll wonder why you waited so long!

Fact:      Virtual servers have the same degree of security as physical servers.

As with legacy physical servers, the security of your virtual server depends on your company’s individual security standards. There is nothing inherently less secure about a virtual server. Virtualization has been used by large companies, enterprise corporations, and government agencies for years without any reduction in their ability to protect and manage the data on their virtual servers.

Are you ready to learn more about implementing virtualization technology in your SMB? The team of IT professionals at ATB is here to help ensure it’s a smooth and positive experience. To learn more about the process and costs, contact an ATB representative today!

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