Businesses Save Thousands Moving to Microsoft Virtualization

REDMOND, Wash. — Aug. 27, 2009 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that some business customers are saving on average $170,000 (U.S.) when they switch to Microsoft virtualization software from VMware Inc. software. Customers are turning to Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V and Microsoft System Center management tools to help reduce energy consumption, hardware costs and recurring licensing costs, and improve their overall management of virtual and nonvirtual applications, servers and computers.

Customers that have switched to Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V, System Center and other Microsoft virtualization solutions include Avanade; Brick Township Board of Education, New Jersey (U.S.); Convergent Computing; Crutchfield Corp.; INA (Croatia); Ingersoll Rand plc; Jackson Energy Authority; Mamut ASA (Norway); the National Concert Hall of Ireland; NetBenefits (U.K.); PoundHost Internet Ltd. (U.K.); Siemens Standard Drives (U.K.); T2 Systems Inc.; Voith IT (Germany); and University of Miami.

Strong customer adoption of server and application virtualization software helped drive growth of the Microsoft System Center suite of management tools. Microsoft recently reported that the company’s management division revenues grew more than 30 percent from 2008 to 2009 and is now at approximately $1 billion in annual sales.

Industry consulting firm Information Technology Intelligence Corp. recently published its “2009 Global Virtualization Deployment Trends Survey” of more than 700 IT professionals. The results showed that Microsoft made big year-over-year market share gains across small and midsize businesses and enterprise organizations. The survey showed current use of Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V is 32 percent. The survey also showed that 59 percent of the respondents plan to adopt Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V in the next 12 to 18 months.

“The light switch has gone on for customers, and they realize they no longer have to pay a virtualization tax with VMware that creates an isolated, virtual island within their IT departments,” said David Greschler, director of virtualization and management marketing in the Server and Tools Business at Microsoft. “The System Center management suite and Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V provide a cost-effective, interoperable and scalable enterprise-class virtualization solution. As a result, more and more customers are switching to the Microsoft solution, and some are saving on average $170,000 when they switch.”

Customers Switch to Microsoft Virtualization

PoundHost is a fast-growing hosting service provider in Maidenhead, England, that embraced server virtualization as a way to curb hardware costs and lower hosting prices. However, the high cost of VMware software and lack of physical management tools hurt PoundHost’s competitiveness and ability to manage its entire infrastructure. PoundHost turned to Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V technology to help reduce licensing costs by 80 percent and add new services. With the addition of Microsoft System Center management tools, automated server provisioning has reduced IT costs by more than $50,000 annually. The dramatic increase in virtual machine sales and reduced licensing costs has enabled PoundHost to increase profitability by 55 percent.

“We could use VMware tools to manage the virtual machines, but we wanted to offer server monitoring, backup and software-update services to increase our services and revenue,” said Matthew Munson, group technical director, PoundHost Internet Ltd. and BlueSquare Data Group Services Ltd. “VMware didn’t have a suite of tools to do these things. The Microsoft System Center products work with Hyper-V, so we could manage and provision servers much more easily than we could with VMware.”

Crutchfield, based in Charlottesville, Va., is a leading consumer electronics retailer with a mail-order catalog and e-commerce Web site. The company’s IT staff turned to virtualization to cut datacenter costs, improve IT staff productivity, and promote business agility. However, its VMware-based solution limited its server consolidation ratios, and a software upgrade would have cost $44,000. Instead, Crutchfield deployed a cost-effective solution using Windows Server 2008 with Hyper-V technology and the Microsoft System Center management suite. Today, Crutchfield has cut datacenter heating output by 50 percent and reduced physical servers by 30 percent. The IT staff uses Microsoft System Center to manage both physical and virtual servers, boosting IT staff productivity by 40 percent.

“We had so many reasons for building out our virtualization solution, but with the VMware-based platform we couldn’t make any headway,” said Craig Vanhuss, system administrator, Enterprise System Group at Crutchfield. “Since deploying Hyper-V, IT has shown a new level of agility and responsiveness. Thanks to our Microsoft virtualization solution, we are meeting the needs of the business while minimizing costs.”

More information about how to begin cutting costs, including case studies on PoundHost and Crutchfield, can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/virtualization. Microsoft product and solution experts at VMworld 2009 can be followed via Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/virtualization or by monitoring the hash tag #MS_Virt.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

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