A survey by business and IT consultancy Morse found that 67% of the large companies which had deployed virtualisation technologies have no idea how many virtual machines they were running, with only 57% saying they had a means of tracking them. In many cases, this might not even be possible: a third of the sample said they operated decentralised systems that enable developers and systems administrators to create and remove virtual machines at will, a trend particularly noticeable in the financial sector (55%).
The need for management tools only ranked as a priority among 23% of those IT directors polled; the greatest fear by far (at 40%) was of not having a back-up and recovery strategy for a virtualised environment.
“IT directors need to realise that virtual machines will change the IT environment because they are so cheap and easy to deploy,” said Morse consultant Tom Brand.
“Unless companies start to be realistic about the extent and spread of virtualisation throughout the organisation, they will quickly find that without proper management tactics, virtualisation can actually cause more problems than it solves,” he said.