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Choosing the Right Hypervisor

By CIOReview | Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Possibly the best way to determine the right hypervisor is to compare their performance metrics. The comparison may be lengthy and complex as it may include CPU overhead, amount of memory the host and guest can store, support by virtual processors etc. But it is not always only the metrics that may help you in determining your choice for hypervisor. The capabilities of a hypervisor must also be taken into consideration and be verified with the guest operating systems that each hypervisor supports. 

If your service network comprises of heterogeneous systems, then a hypervisor that supports the current operating systems shall be selected. If the homogenous network is based on Linux or Windows, then a support for small number of guest operating systems may fit the needs. 

All hypervisors are not the same but more or less all of them have the same features. The most essential aspect of any hardware virtualization hypervisor selection procedure is to understand the features of the hypervisor as well as the guest operating system each supports. Matching these both to the organizations requirements will be the core of the decision one makes. 

Below mentioned are the important factors that are to be considered before choosing a suitable hypervisor:

 Virtual Environments – A powerful virtual system must meet or exceed the performance of its physical counterparts, especially in relation to the applications within each server. Everything beyond meeting these landmarks can be termed as profit. An ideal hypervisor must optimize resources to maximize the performance of the virtual machines. The question may arise that how much one is willing to pay for this optimization. The mission criticality or the size of the project may determine the value of the optimization.

• Availability – With each vendor having its own high availability solution but the way each archives it may be different ranging from varied approaches. Understanding disaster recovery methods as well as disaster prevention methods for each of the system may be very critical. One should never bring any virtual machine online without being aware of the protection and recovery mechanisms.

 Migration – Migration is one important process for users. One need to carefully consider individual hypervisor that are offered in the area along with support for live migration across different platforms and the capability to migrate two or more VMs simultaneously.

 Network Security and Storage – Hypervisors must support network interface cards, teaming and load balancing in networking. Tools that support fiber channel network storage and enterprise data protection software support with some preferences. Fiber channel over Ethernet and virtual disk multi-hypervisor compatibility shall be used.

Most of the companies need the same things that are listed above, but it may still vary with varying needs. Since it is easy to be specific with the speeds and stats while choosing for a hypervisor, it is more important to only move onto the second step with understanding the needs fully. The selection of right hypervisor may also depend on some other factors. For instance, some enterprises may choose VMware as it delivers the oldest and the most reliable hardware virtualization hypervisor in the market.

The crux is to choose the hypervisor that best serves the needs of the company, how much ever may the hypervisors e different but they all offer the same features. Understanding the key features and factors that affects the usage of hypervisor and the operating system that it supports is the most vital step in the process of choosing the right hypervisor. Matching the data is to the requirements of the company’s system is another useful aspect of the decision one makes.