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A quick guide to choosing the right virtualization technology

Virtualization is no longer a niche market. It is now a pre-requisite for success in webhosting industry. Gartner’s server virtualization report of 2011 mentions a virtualization market penetration of 40% for x86 server work loads. A study by Tier1Research on Mass-Market Hosting for Winter 2011 showed that 60% of webhosts provide VPS solutions.These findings tally with the technology adoption trend we see here in Bobcares as well.


For someone entering the VPS hosting business, it is important to choose the right server virtualization technology based on your market segment requirement, and cost considerations.


Here we provide a quick overview on what all factors need to be considered while choosing a server virtualization technology.


1. Reliability and ease of maintanence

The VPS technology should be well supported by its vendors, and the installation process should be straight forward. There should be regular patches released to make sure the security of the base kernel is not compromised, and these patches should be easy to implement. Sticking to market leaders like Parallels, and Microsoft will ensure this.


2. Resource sharing among tenents

There are primarily two type of virtualization; viz, soft and hard. In soft virtualization (also called OS virtualization), un-used resources can be shared among the tenents. In hard virtualization, each tenent is given a resource allocation which cannot be shared. While soft virtualization is good for mass VPS hosting, with better ROI, hard virtualization can be used for high reliability market where stability of individual VMs is critical. The most popular hard virtualization solution is HypeV, and a popular soft virtualization technolgy is Virtuozzo.


3. Multi-OS environment

Soft virtualization allows only one OS type for the tenents, while hard virtualization allows multiple operating systems in the same server. So, if your market segment demands a variety of operating systems, and your sale volume does not permit you to deploy multiple servers for each OS type, it is better to use a hard virtualization technology.


4. Remote management

Feature rich remote management for the customer as well as the administrator is important in the success of a VPS solution. The common interfaces for managing a VPS systems can include, web portal for adminsitrator, windows application for adminsitrator, and web portal for clients. If your clients are tech savvy and would like to manage their own VPS, you would need to consider a solution like Virtuozzo that provides you a client portal, while if your market segment would rather let you manage their VPS, you can choose a solution like Hyper-V which has only a windows based management console.


5. Integration with third party hosting solutions

The capability to automate and integrate VPS tenent management is a crtical aspect in choosing a solution, as it will allow you to scale up without much effort. Sticking to popular commercial solutions like Parallels and VMWare will make sure such integration is available.


To summarize, the ideal VPS technology for each market segement can be different. The choice of VPS solutions are based on various key factors that changes from one market to another.


In our next article in the series, we will run a one to one comparison on the above factors for popular VPS solutions. So, stay tuned.


Any questions????


We will be happy to hear from you.. 🙂

About the Author :

Neethu P Shine works as a Software Engineer in Bobcares. She joined Bobcares in December 2012. She loves reading books and listening to music in her free times.



Bobcares is a server management company that helps businesses deliver uninterrupted and secure online services. Our engineers manage close to 51,500 servers that include virtualized servers, cloud infrastructure, physical server clusters, and more.