Custom Information Services

The Difference Between Virtualization and Cloud Computing

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By: Brittany Meeks, Custom Information Services

As a newbie sales and marketing assistant at Custom Information Services, I kept getting these technical terms thrown at me that I was unable to grasp.  That is until I did some research and discovered the easy way to understand and implement such terms or questions as, “What’s the difference between virtualization and cloud computing?” Originally, I couldn’t even tell you the meaning of virtualization or cloud computing, let alone what the differences were.

Virtualization is a computing technology that enables a single user to access multiple physical devices.  Another way to look at it is a single computer controlling multiple machines, or one operating system utilizing multiple computers to analyze a database.  Virtualization may also be used in the form of running multiple applications on each server rather than just one, this in turn reduces the number of servers companies need to purchase and manage.  It enables you to consolidate your servers and do more with less hardware, it also lets you support more users per piece of hardware, and deliver applications and those servers which the applications are ran, are faster to those users. Follow this link for more detail on virtualization VirtualizationWhitePaper.pdf

Cloud computing offers scalable infrastructure and software off site, saving labor, hardware and power costs.  Financially, the cloud’s virtual resources are typically cheaper than dedicated physical resources connected to a personal computer or network.  With cloud computing, the software programs you use aren’t run from your personal computer, but are rather stored on servers housed elsewhere and accessed via the Internet.  If your computer crashes, the software is still available for others to use.  Simply, the cloud is a collection of computers and servers that are publicly accessible via the internet.

Here is something else I found online which may be helpful in better understanding cloud services Microsoft Cloud Services.pdf

One way to look at it is virtualization is basically one physical computer pretending to be many computing environments whereas cloud computing is many different computers pretending to be the one computing environment (hence user scaling).  Virtualization provides flexibility that is a great match for cloud computing, moreover, cloud computing can be defined based on the virtual machine containers that is created with virtualization.  Virtualization is not always necessary in cloud computing, however, you can use it as the basis.  Cloud computing is an approach for the delivery of services while virtualization is one possible service that could be delivered.  Large corporations with little downtime tolerance and airtight security requirements may find that virtualization fits them best.  Smaller businesses are more likely to profit more with cloud computing, allowing them to focus on their mission while leaving IT chores to those who can do more for less.

Plainly, virtualization provides more servers on the same hardware and cloud computing provides measured resources while paying for what you use.  While it is not uncommon to hear people discuss them interchangeably; they are very different approaches to solving the problem of maximizing the use of available resources.  They differ in many ways and that also leads to some important considerations when selecting between the two.  Not only do we offer Dynamics GP, but we also offer services for cloud and virtualization for your business applications.   Our new website set for a September go live will have more information on this subject.

Give us a call or drop us an email at or call 817-640-0016 and ask for Brittany or Nancy.

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