More and more organizations are turning to virtual machines (VMs) to optimize their hardware resources and tighten security protocols.
However, successfully implementing and managing server and desktop virtualization requires a hypervisor. Without a hypervisor, you can’t create or run virtual machines on any physical hardware.
As a result, many organizations want to know what a hypervisor is and how it works. This post will explain the role hypervisors play in the creation and management of virtual machines.
Before choosing a virtualization platform or solution, it is important to understand hypervisors.
Creating Virtual Machines: What Is a Hypervisor?
A hypervisor, or virtual machine monitor, is software that creates, runs, and manages virtual machines. A hypervisor also emulates hardware to multiple guest VMs.
One physical machine can be split into multiple virtual machines with a hypervisor. As a result, you could run multiple operating systems on a single machine and fully utilize the physical resources of the underlying hardware.
You might wonder why an organization would want to run different operating systems on the same device. This approach has several different benefits, especially regarding software testing and resource utilization.
For example, your organization might use one operating system for a specific business process or operation and another operating system for a different process. Whatever the underlying motivation is, with a hypervisor, your organization is not bound to use the operating system of the host hardware.
The Types of Hypervisors
There are two primary types of hypervisor, Type 1 and Type 2. A Type 1 hypervisor is also referred to as a bare metal hypervisor.
Bare metal hypervisors sit directly on the host’s hardware and manage guest operating systems. A bare metal hypervisor replaces the host operating system and schedules VM resources directly to the hardware.
Type 2 hypervisors, or hosted hypervisors, run on conventional operating systems and act as a software layer.
Instead of replacing the host operating system, a hosted hypervisor abstracts guest operating systems from the host and schedules VM resources through the host’s operating system, which then executes on the hardware.
Type 2 hypervisors often cost less to implement and are simpler to set up than Type 1 hypervisors. As a result, Type 2 hypervisors are better suited to the needs of small businesses or individuals who want to run multiple operating systems on their computers.
Type 1 hypervisors are generally used in enterprise data centers and server-based environments.
The Benefits of Hypervisors
The benefits of hypervisors are very closely related to the benefits of virtualization. However, we can highlight some of the top benefits of hypervisors, including the following:
- Resource efficiency
Computer resources are expensive. The only way to get more computing power is to purchase additional hardware. However, most organizations are not fully utilizing the computing resources of their current hardware and IT infrastructure.
Hypervisors allow organizations to fully utilize their existing computing resources without spending additional money to purchase new hardware.
Not only will businesses save money on hardware costs, but they will also consume less energy which will also save them money and be more eco-friendly.
Since the operating system no longer depends on the hardware running it, hypervisors give organizations more flexibility. Run the operating systems you want on the hardware you want with a hypervisor.
Organizations with more flexibility can innovate and utilize their resources and time more efficiently. The flexibility enabled by hypervisors is at the core of why organizations use virtualization solutions to improve their processes and business outcomes.
Hypervisors run virtual machines independent of the physical device they operate on. As a result, VMs are highly portable, thanks to hypervisors. When your IT team wants to shift workloads or reallocate resources, the portability of VMs makes this task simple.
Without a hypervisor, this level of portability would not be possible. Hypervisors make your VMs more reliable, flexible, and portable.
The hypervisor plays a vital role in virtualization. It is important to understand what a hypervisor is and the different options available to your organization. While there are only two types of hypervisors, the things you can achieve with them are incredible.
If you want to learn more about hypervisors or how virtualization could impact your business, reach out to an experienced technical partner like Koombea.