We have been interacting with CIOs and IT managers of multiple organizations and here is a list of management issues that we have noted:

  • Tracking VMs: Virtualization has caught some of these CIOs and IT managers off-guard. For instance, to make a machine available to a user, the typical process of getting physical hardware is around six weeks, based on their availability in stores. Once the hardware was procured, it had to be re-imaged with the organization template and then configured for the user. Each machine has a unique code with an excel sheet containing this data. With Virtualization entering the mix, procuring a machine for a user can be done in just a few minutes. Today, users request VMs for everything, starting from scalability testing to source code repositories, because of its simplicity and the request for VMs is increasing with its popularity. The IT guys  still maintain VM ownership records using excel sheets which is not scalable. Also, the default vCenter / SCVMM does not have the ability to capture all the details about the machine ownership.
  • Grouping of VMs: Every company has projects, every project has IT needs and every project wants to keep their resources separate. Extending this to the Virtual Environment means that there should be a way to group VMs. Doing it out of the box with vCenter / SCVMM is not possible.
  • Self service: IT administrators no longer want to create VMs for users, if the users want to create it on their own. This also means that the IT administrators don’t want to do anything related to user management, system preparation, addition to domain, etc.
  • Information of dormant VMs: There are a number of VMs that are used just once and stored. A way to discover these VMs and eliminate them is a question that arises for such instances.
  • Hypervisor affinity: A few VMs run only on certain hypervisors. For example, finance teams have SAP running on VMs and they don’t want these VMs to leave their two favorite hypervisors.
  • Special IT privileges: These privileges give an IT administrator the ability to selectively modify VM creation requests.
  • Multi Hypervisor Support: While VMware is the most popular platform, organizations are beginning to evaluate Hyper-V. Red Hat KVM is also being considered.

More thoughts on these are welcome.