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Virtualization: What Challenges Appear When Moving a Data Center to the Cloud?

Nov. 19, 2021
Global Knowledge

There are many challenges that come to the forefront as you begin the process of virtualizing the data center and moving away from the current physical network setup.

For example, replacing physical pieces of equipment with their virtual counterparts can be more difficult than you initially envision, as some elements can be forgotten in the transition, while security on the entire network will need to be updated to include and protect this new home you’ve created for your data in the cloud.

While you may have a robust security plan for your current data storage setup, changing to a virtual server can mean including new protections to keep data secure where it now resides. These are just a few examples of the concerns you’ll need to address while planning and executing a migration to the cloud.

By beginning the migration to the cloud with ample knowledge and how to configure it, you can ensure that data center virtualization goes smoothly and your data is protected at all times during the transition from physical to cloud-based storage.


An Overview of Data Center Virtualization

The term virtualization refers to moving from physical to virtual equipment, which typically lives in the cloud.

Enterprises may choose to virtualize in order to reduce equipment costs, make data more accessible to remote offices and employees, prevent losses of data due to a natural disaster, or to have the ability to scale up or down quickly.

There are five kinds of virtualization that refer to distinct parts of the computing process, including:

  1. Storage
  2. Applications
  3. Desktop
  4. Network
  5. Server

For a systems administrator or engineer, participating in or even leading the process of virtualization can mean using all of their skills to create a network within the cloud. This includes combining cloud and physical resources to create a secure online space where data can live and be accessed by anyone in the organization with the right permissions.


What Major Data Center Challenges Exist?

While virtualizing a data center can have many advantages for the business, there are challenges likely to appear during the process of virtualizing the data center that requires advanced knowledge to solve them.

A few of these issues include:

  • Setup and post-deployment challenges. Once the initial virtualization and deployment of the new cloud-based network are done, challenges can still appear as you look to optimize your new data center. For example, excess physical data storage that is no longer needed and redundant processes that the cloud makes obsolete can take up an outsize share of resources immediately following migration. So, the team will need to analyze these issues and determine how to make more efficient use of cloud-based storage solutions.
  • Combining physical equipment with the virtual network optimally to create a hybrid environment that meets the business needs. While virtualizing will allow you to eliminate much of the physical storage and servers you have on-premises, you’ll still need desktop computers and an optimal connection powered by the right hardware to ensure backups are done regularly and cloud-based data is kept accurate and up to the minute.
  • Virtual machine sprawl. Replication of the same data across multiple virtual servers is a real problem that some systems administrators face as they move to a cloud-based data center. This kind of virtual sprawl can be time-consuming to manage and resolve once it has begun, but proper planning can stop this issue. Planning the life cycle of your virtual machines can help limit the sprawl.


What Opportunities Exist in the Data Center Field?

With more businesses than ever ready to move to the cloud, the need for qualified professionals who can assist in this process is growing. Already, three of the top 15 highest paid certifications in IT are related to network virtualization.

For example, a professional who has the Citrix Certified Associate - Virtualization certification earns an average of $115,308 annually for installing and configuring an environment that combines desktop-based delivery controllers, cloud connectors, and the Citrix Workspace app to create a hybrid network tailored to the business needs.


You Should Get Virtualization Certified

Certification in virtualization can help you establish a career path and move forward in an organization thanks to the demonstrated, valuable skills you possess.

While pursuing a Citrix certification through Global Knowledge, students can expect to get a broad foundational knowledge in Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7, including installing, configuring, and managing a Citrix site and cloud connectors.

Students will learn how to create app layers and prioritize them, as well as use workspace environment management to optimize performance and user experience. Advanced courses are more in-depth to refine the student’s knowledge and prepare them for certification exams.

This knowledge is ideal for systems administrators who can use it to migrate to the Citrix cloud.

To learn more about the availability of upcoming courses in Citrix, costs, and course prerequisites, visit the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7 Administration On-Premises and in Citrix Cloud and Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7, App Layering, and WEM Administration certification pages on the Global Knowledge site.