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Virtualizing streaming video servers

My company uses video streaming technologies a great deal. Are there any options for virtualization here?

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Depending on the performance requirements, front-end web or database engines delivering the video can most likely be virtualized. However, the servers delivering the video may be another story.

Streaming video server virtualization will depend on the network and storage input/output (I/O) and bandwidth requirements of the virtual host delivering the video from the storage regardless of the networked storage protocol. Does the virtual machine (VM) host have enough network cards and I/O to support that intense of a delivery mechanism? Network file system (NFS), iSCSI and network-attached storage (NAS) have become production oriented, not just for VMs, but in the data center. When doing your capacity planning, take a look at the network I/O and the storage I/O from the devices delivering the video and make sure your virtual machine host and software can sustain the throughput without performance degradation. The virtual machine software on top of the hardware is taking some of that power already, so ensure that your applications have what they need.

This was first published in April 2008

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