How does a virtual machine work? What are the benefits of using virtual machines?

Dec 06,2022
How does a virtual machine work? What are the benefits of using virtual machines?

Previously, I have introduced what a virtual machine is. A virtual machine is a virtual representation or simulation environment of a physical computer or server. However, some new investors will ask, how does the virtual machine work? What are the benefits of using virtual machines? So, let's take a look.

How does a virtual machine work?

Virtual machine is realized by virtual technology. Virtualization uses software to simulate virtual hardware that allows multiple VMs to run on a single machine. A physical machine is called a host, but a virtual machine running on it is called a guest. This process is managed by an application called a management process. The management process is responsible for and provides resources from the host to guests, such as memory and storage. It also allocates operations in the virtual machine so that they do not exceed each other when using resources. The virtual machine can only work when there is a virtual machine management process to virtualize and distribute host resources. Two types of management processes are used in virtualization.

Category 1 management process (also known as bare metal management process) is locally installed on the underlying physical hardware. The virtual machine directly interacts with the host to allocate the hardware platform without any additional software layer. Hosts that operate category 1 management processes are used for virtualization only. They often appear in server based environments, such as enterprise data centers. Some instances of Category 1 management processes include Citrix Hypervisor and Microsoft Hyper-V. An independent management tool is needed to handle visitor activities, such as creating new virtual machine cases or managing permissions.

Category 2 management process (also called agent management process) operates on the host computer operating system. The hosting management process passes the VM request to the host operating system, which then provides each user with appropriate physical resources. Category 2 management processes are slower than their Category 1 counterparts, because each VM operation must first be based on the host operating system. Unlike bare metal management processes, customer operating systems do not rely on physical hardware. Users can run virtual machines and use their computer software as usual. This makes the Category 2 management process applicable to ordinary users or small businesses without dedicated virtualized servers.

What are the benefits of using virtual machines?

No matter in the enterprise or in daily learning, virtual machine can play its great advantages.

As we are learning, we can install multiple virtual machine deployment services to achieve the effect of clustering, which can greatly reduce the cost of renting servers and make our learning more comfortable.

Or in the enterprise, we can greatly reduce costs and allocate system resources flexibly. For example, build Maven private servers, code hosting platform SVN/GitLab, deploy software services, and so on.

When we don't need the server, you can delete it at any time, and flexibly allocate system resources.

1. Operational flexibility

The main advantage of virtualization is to operate multiple monitors or systems from the same console. For example, Linux and Windows. Allows customers to switch between operating systems. VM simulates the feeling of using multiple computers together, which is very suitable for complex servers with multiple system requirements. In addition, these systems are completely separate from each other, which enhances a layer of security for all operations.

2. Reduce expenses/costs

Perhaps the most intuitive benefit of server virtualization is that you can reduce costs without purchasing so many physical servers. In most data centers, some servers run at their maximum capacity, while others rarely use or use them for less demanding applications.

Depending on virtualization, operating systems and applications with low hardware requirements can operate on the same server, thereby saving server hardware costs. The end result is that the physical server required for application can be reduced because the server can be applied more effectively.

3. Disaster recovery

VM ware has an efficient solution for disaster recovery. Because the virtual opportunity makes its operation history scripts on time (you can trace and browse these scripts again as necessary), there is little risk of content loss in case of hardware failure. In addition, because the hardware cost in the virtual environment can be ignored, the server has a low risk of system exceptions at the beginning.

Speaking of this, I believe you have a certain understanding of how virtual machines work and the benefits of using virtual machines. In general, like many other technologies used today, if it were not for the original virtual machine concept introduced decades ago, these new innovations would not be developed. Then, we also look forward to the future development of virtual machines.