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Find Out Why More Organizations Are Using Virtual Machines for Their Business Operations

What is a virtual machine?

Virtual machine is a single computer that has more than one operating system. In this article we will discuss virtual machines and how they work.

What is an operating system?

In a computer you can find various hardware components such as motherboard, RAM, processor, hard drive, etc. The operating system is the software that is used to control the hardware components of the computer. Some examples of an operating system are Microsoft Windows, Linus, Android, etc. The operating system can be used to perform multiple tasks such as accessing the memory on the hard drive, browsing the World Wide Web and utilizing the random access memory to smoothly run the browser. At any given point of time a single computer has a single operating system being used to control the hardware components.

Can you have two or more operating systems on one computer?

There are times when you might want to use multiple operating systems on a single computer. The process of virtualization is utilized to install a software that functions as an independent computer within a physical computer. The installed software behaves like a secondary computer and is also referred to as a virtual machine.

It might sound a bit complicated, but the virtual machines rely upon the hardware of the host computer. The virtual machine is constantly communicating with the host computer’s operating system to gain access to the hardware components of the physical computer. The virtual machines cannot function without the host computer’s operating system. However with the help of virtualization one single computer can have multiple operating systems. The user can benefit from the computing power of two operating systems with just one physical machine.

What are virtual machines used for?

Some of the most popular reasons people run virtual machines include:

  • Testing – Software developers use virtual machines to test applications. Virtual machines allow users to test applications with different operating systems. Virtual machines are a more cost-effective solution than buying multiple physical machines.
  • Running software designed for other Operating systems – Most of the applications are meant for a single operating system. However, virtual machines can be used to test applications that are designed for multiple operating systems such as Mac and Windows.
  • Running outdated software – Virtual machines can also be used to run outdated software. This can be achieved by installing an older version of an operating system that is compatible with the outdated software.

How does cloud computing use virtual machines?

Most of the cloud hosting service providers also offer the added advantage of virtual machines as part of their hosting plan.

  • Running SaaS applications – Software as a service- It refers to the process of providing access to a particular software over the internet. Most of the cloud hosting service providers utilize virtual machines to deliver SaaS applications.
  • Backing up data – Virtual machines are also used by cloud service providers to maintain data backup. Virtual machines also require very little maintenance in comparison to physical machines.
Conclusion

Virtual machine hosting can be used by organizations that are looking for ways to use multiple operating systems without having to expand their physical infrastructure. This is the reason why more organizations are using virtual machines for their business operations. Virtual machines allow the users to use different operating systems on one machine. If you are planning to use applications that require a particular operating system then virtual machines can prove to be quite helpful. As mentioned earlier virtual machines can also be used by the developers to test their applications with different operating systems. 

 

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