GovBytes: Do You Know the Difference Between Cloud Computing and Virtualization?

Confused about cloud computing and virtualization? Apparently you’re not alone. Nearly two-thirds of state and local government employees felt that there was confusion in their organizations over the meaning of cloud computing and virtualization, according to a recent article in Government Technology:

“The survey was surprising,” said Paul Christman, Quest Software’s vice president for state and local government and education sales. “We expected that there would be a very clear understanding of what virtualization is because it’s been around for so long. And it’s been implemented in various aspects of information technology, whether it’s networks or storage or computing.”

Virtualization is generally defined as creating a virtual version of something, such as a desktop or a server. Cloud computing, on the other hand, is on-demand provisioning of computational power from a pool of resources, sometimes delivered over the Internet.

Cloud and Virtualization Definitions Still Confuse Most Govt. Officials

Several people interviewed for the article felt that marketing efforts were partly to blame for the confusion. For instance, many new online services may bill themselves as “cloud computing” when they are not true examples of the technology. However, this doesn’t explain confusion over virtualization, which is not being hyped in the media in the same manner.

Do you know the difference between cloud computing and virtualization? Is it important in your job or organization to understand these technologies?

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