Editor's Note: Living in the virtual world

Nearly every aspect of the modern infrastructure can be run virtually, from desktops and apps to servers and staff.

Lafe Low

Virtualization isn’t just about how you “replicate” machines, servers, OSes and applications. It isn’t just about cost savings, efficiency or security. Virtualization is becoming more a part of any IT infrastructure and more a part of how modern enterprises operate. Forrester Research recently estimated nearly six in 10 enterprise applications currently in operation are running virtualized.

Virtualization is changing how you run your business, and how you design and deploy technology infrastructure to support that business. It drives your decisions on how many servers you need, how to provision those servers and where to locate them. By extension, it’s also a major component of any organization’s datacenter strategy.

The virtual world is full of virtual machines (VMs) running virtual OSes, virtual and hosted applications, and connecting virtual workers from every corner of the world. If you’re managing a team of IT professionals spread out across continents and time zones, don’t miss Camille Preston’s “Virtual team leadership.”

Leading and inspiring virtual teams, getting them to work together and getting the most out of them is an entirely new skill set you need to learn as a manager. Preston offers her executive coaching on how to best communicate, collaborate, and build and foster relationships with coworkers and colleagues you may not ever actually meet in person.

Go virtual

To what extent has your organization embraced virtualization technology? Are you virtualizing desktops or servers? Are you just running virtual apps? Are you establishing an entire virtual datacenter? And when it comes to managing all those VMs, virtual servers and virtual employees, how do you get a handle on it all? Drop me a virtual line by signing up for the TechNet LinkedIn group, sending an e-mail to tnmag@microsoft.com or e-mailing me directly.

Lafe Low

Lafe Low* is the editor in chief of TechNet Magazine.* A veteran technology journalist, he’s also the former executive editor of 1105 Media’s Redmond magazine.