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Virtualization and creating computing power from existing machines

  1. Jan 2, 2008 #1

    In its most basic form virtualization creates computing power from existing machines. In the process of creating additional resource it uses - i would imagine a vanishingly small amount of energy, is this a reasonable assumption?

    If so how is virtulization described in terms of conservation of energy? If what you consider to come out of additional computing power to be energy of some sort?

  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 4, 2008 #2
    Virtualization doesn't create computing power.
    A virtual machine is just software that emulates hardware.

    And computing power is not energy.
  4. Jan 4, 2008 #3


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    Not only that but it's a vastly inefficient process.
  5. Jan 8, 2008 #4
    It generates hardware to replica a machine with its own processing power to carry out computer processes.

    In doing so, do the computing resources required by the host machines use more computing power than that that is generated by the virtual machine? Judging from VMware's success on and since floating I would have to say NO.

    Advances in computer hardware have increased computing power - but with an additional energy requirement ie higher electricity bills. Even though the latest machines are becoming more energy efficient, there is a physical limit to how little energy has to be used. Is that sensible?

    I am asking if the process of virtualization is different in that it is not bound by such physical limitations?
  6. Jan 8, 2008 #5
    ...and you would be completely wrong.

    Virtual machines are just software. That runs on the host - the real - machine.
  7. Jan 8, 2008 #6
    Virtualization doesn't conjure 'computing power' out of thin air.
    It merely presents existing 'computing power' in a different way.
    And the conversion comes with some overhead.
  8. Jan 8, 2008 #7


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    That depends. There's overhead involved in running a system in a virtual host as opposed to running it directly on the hardware. But it has the advantage of enabling you to control fragmentation of computer resources. Traditionally you might have a server room with a number of servers each running with full ownership of the hardware resources and which often exceed the actual system requirements.

    With virtualization we're able to gather these unused fragments and put them to use in hosting another VM. The VMWare ESX environment provides information on the hardware requirements of each running VM plus tools to correctly assign hardware resources.

    From this perspective it's an efficient process.
  9. Jan 11, 2008 #8
    use a software called vm ware....i used it and it was simply great!
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