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Keeping virtual machines secure

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Reaching for the cloud at VMworld

Can virtualization in the cloud deliver on its promises?

Technologies come, and technologies go. Some make big promises. Through it all, virtualization remains one of the few technologies that actually delivers on those promises.

Over the last decade, virtualization has changed from a tactical technology to save money into a must-have business strategy for competitive advantage. At VMworld 2011 this month, VMware will attempt to push the technology to the next level with its vision of virtualization in the cloud. Attendees can get a first-hand upclose view of what that vision might look like in their data centers.

In “The Evolution of Virtualization,” VMware vExpert Mike Laverick recounts the crucial steps in the development of virtualization in the data center and sets the stage for the cloud. Although Laverick says that it’s difficult to see whether the cloud will deliver on its potential or whether it will add yet another layer of complexity, he urges VMworld attendees to dig deep, ask tough questions and explore.

One question that is always on the minds of data center administrators is how to keep virtual machines (VMs) secure. When your servers are VMs, they are difficult to secure because they are essentially a set of files in a folder.

Even though the files themselves don’t move around too much, the running state of the VM often moves around from one host server to another in a virtual environment during regular maintenance and administration. VMworld includes an entire track on security and compliance, helping IT professionals protect their virtual infrastructures, establish trust and manage risk in the data center.

Need even more advice on security? Danielle Ruest and Nelson Ruest lay out a step-by-step strategy in “How to Keep Virtual Machines Secure” and offer best practices for keeping servers well protected now and in the future.

If the cloud is in your future, tell us about it. Send an email to ccasatelli@ techtarget.com, and let us know.

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