Virtualization Cost For Small To Medium Businesses

Advertising builds expectations that lead to sales pipelines loaded with prospects armed with the seeds of anticipated pricing. Virtualization rapidly rose to the top of technical must-haves for businesses looking to upgrade their computing infrastructure.

Recently, Dell promoted it’s virtualization with an interesting ad. I don’t often get such a clear opportunity to demonstrate the costs that small to medium businesses can potentially incur from typical virtualization scenarios.


I probably don’t need to remind you that this ad does not include software licensing, conversion and maintenance costs. In a typical twenty-five user office scenario, software might include Microsoft Exchange Server for email, Microsoft SQL Server for the LOB database back end, Microsoft Terminal Services application delivery services for LOB software, fax services for network fax capability, a Goldmine or Act server for CRM, file services for document management, services to extend security software to each computer and services for Peachtree or QuickBooks Multi User accounting software.

Virtualizing all of these services and software components would not only require hardware in excess of the $25,999 package, but the software costs would push this project well beyond the $150,000.00 range, not to mention IT costs incurred to deploy and maintain your virtualized environment. I can easily see over $5000 per month in amortized and recurring costs, a large price to pay for a small business to move current infrastructure into a virtualized environment.

From a technical perspective, I love to do this stuff. And, your environment will look more uniform, take up less rack space, will be more recoverable and will perform well, all good reasons to leverage virtualization. However, there is a better way, one I will explore with you in my next post.

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