Somewhere between the physical and the virtual
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As you may have noticed, this week Microsoft released public betas of two new System Center IT management products: DPM 2010 and SCE 2010. However, what you may not be aware of is that there's a much broader story unfolding.
Over the last 3-4 years, we've engaged in a LOT of interesting conversations with customers in midsize business (~50-500 PCs) who face the same day-to-day challenges in managing their IT infrastructure as larger companies. The problem is there aren't a lot of IT management solutions designed for THEM. So, they're faced with adopting "ok" products to manage parts of their environment, combined with some manual processes or trying to adopt "Large IT" solutions that can be too pricey for their budgets and may be "overkill" from a complexity standpoint.
The bottom line is that, like larger companies, these customers would like for Microsoft to help them: reduce IT costs, improve IT availability, and improve IT service quality.
Here's how Microsoft is doing that.
By providing powerful, low-cost virtual platform tools
In just the last year, we've noticed midsize companies wanting to "virtualize" like large IT departments. The main reasons for this are to:
Considering the current economic environment, this seems like a smart move. Microsoft's Hyper-V technology provides a virtual platform on which you can consolidate multiple server roles as separate virtual machines (VMs) running on a single physical machine. You can download Hyper-V server for free to access server virtualization capabilities, or if you already have Windows Server 2008 or plan to upgrade, you will have Hyper-V already built-in.
By providing integrated virtual and physical IT management
Here's where we get to the SCE 2010 and DPM 2010 part of the story. While some competing products manage only virtual resources, you can use these integrated Microsoft products to manage both physical and virtual resources. SCE 2010 is designed specifically for midsize businesses and delivers a unified physical and virtual IT management experience. It enables you to better secure, update, monitor, and troubleshoot your servers, PCs and applications from a single console. DPM 2010 is the backup and recovery part of this solution. DPM is capable of protecting your physical & virtual servers plus PCs/laptops. Microsoft® solutions for virtualization provide you with the tools to both virtualize your IT infrastructure and manage virtual and physical environments in an integrated way.
And the story continues...
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