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Virtualization can be a tricky technology for storage managers who need to apply traditional methods while navigating new obstacles.
Before we start, let's review the different kinds of virtualized systems. Virtualization can exist at the physical layer or logical layer. Physical layer virtualization lets you have system resources dynamically assigned to operating systems. Logical layer virtualization lets you have a host operating system (also known as a hypervisor) that runs on a single physical box. Logical layer virtualization comes in two flavors: a type-1 or bare-metal architecture hypervisor, and a type-2 or hosted architecture hypervisor. With physical layer virtualization, the hypervisor runs as the primary operating system on the physical box; in the latter case, it actually runs as an application or shell on another already running operating system. Operating systems
| running on the hypervisor are then called guest or virtual operating systems. Regardless of the type of virtualization in play, the challenges from the storage side are similar.
This was first published in December 2007