Nimble Storage conducted a survey late last year of 476 IT professionals on the state of virtualization of business critical application in today's datacenter. Fifty-five percent of respondents have virtualized half or more of their business-critical applications, and the survey results indicate that number will increase to 66 percent in the next 12 months. While these results validate the future adoption of virtualization, respondents cited budget (54 percent), inadequate IT infrastructure (49 percent), and insufficient virtualization skill set and application knowledge (46 percent) as barriers to their plans for virtualization.
The survey revealed an unwavering motivation to adopt and deploy virtualization despite the challenges faced. The respondents indicated the top benefits behind this trend:
• 61 percent indicated cost savings
• 60 percent indicated greater flexibility
• 45 percent indicated agility or time to deploy
• 48 percent indicated higher availability
In addition to these drivers, better scalability was listed as a key benefit of virtualizing business-critical applications by 33 percent of respondents.
Databases such as SQL Server proved to be the top virtualized workload today. 72 percent of respondents virtualizing some or all of their databases including SQL Server, MySQL and Oracle. Messaging applications such as Microsoft Exchange and Lotus Domino are the second most-virtualized applications, according to 51 percent of respondents. Collaboration and application servers followed closely behind, with half the respondents virtualizing some or all of these workloads. The survey also shows a growing trust in the performance and maturity of virtualization technologies for critical data. When asked how they store and serve application data storage, 60 percent of respondents indicated they did it through the hypervisor (e.g., VMDK/VHD, RDM), relying on the virtualization layer to handle data storage.
Additionally, the survey revealed a reliance on host-based backup processes for protecting critical application data. Seventy percent of respondents reported that they still rely on host-based backup processes in some form. The good news for virtualization adoption is that almost half of respondents are also using VM-consistent snapshots, which improves recovery time and recovery point objectives. This makes a very good case for integrated backup solutions such as the Nimble Storage SmartStack for Data Protection with CommVault.
The survey asked for the opinions of IT professionals within organizations conducting business in the U.S. Respondents represent a variety of demographics; 63 percent were employed by companies with less than 1,000 employees, 21 percent by companies with 1,000 – 5,000 employees and 16 percent by companies with over 5,000 employees. Titles ranged from IT administrators to IT and executive managers.