Cloud computing and virtual computing share a few of the same benefits and limitations. Among the benefits is the ability to run multiple OS options from the same virtual platform and to have all data backed up in one convenient, non-local space. Among the limitations are not so pretty details of how the whole system works together under the hype and bright lights of the industry. This is a system which, if it malfunctions, can mean days of work for an IT manager trying to track down the virtual server that is malfunctioning or the piece of physical hardware that has failed.
In order to address these under-the-hood issues, virtual server providers and experts at VMware have now released a new set of tools called vCenter operations that allows IT managers to see, at a glance, a wide array of performance metrics for an entire system, giving them the ability to track and address problems in the system more easily – at least theoretically. The plan with vCenter is to give IT managers more direct control over apps that are running in the system, allowing them to tweak or terminate them if need be. This will eliminate the need for day-long hunts to find a single problem or point of issue.
While this toolbox is an excellent step forward in streamlined cloud management, businesses do need to be aware that at a basic level even cloud structures are still hardware based. Physical wires, servers and cables are needed to make a server function and no toolbox will ever be a substitute for careful examination of a server in the case of failure. Nonetheless, vCenter is one more way to effectively manage apps and performance in the virtual world.
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