What is Server Sprawl?

Server sprawl can be defined as a situation in which IT resources including hardware and software applications housed in a data center remain under-utilized, leading to poor productivity and proficiency. This situation usually occurs where an organization acquires a larger number of servers than it should be depending on its present and future growth. Server system sprawl condition occurs due to uncoordinated planning.

What is Server Sprawl Meaning in simple terms? 

Let us define sprawling in simple terms. Say, an organization has 5 active servers. They only need two servers to properly run their IT operations. The remaining three servers could either be underutilized or not utilized at all. While having some additional resources pays off with greater flexibility, too many extra resources can get expensive. Even if the organization says it is utilizing all its servers, the servers are certainly running at extremely low capacity -10% or less. A server normally uses only 10% space, they are consuming almost the same power a utilized server would use. Thus, it’s essential to understand what is sprawl before they begin to find the solution to the problem of server sprawl. 

What is system sprawl?

It’s a process that identifies the undocumented assets available on the network. System sprawl uses discovery scans to complete this search. Various techniques have been introduced by the experts to mitigate server sprawling, for example – computer virtualization and server consolidation. These techniques help in reducing the number of physical servers and thereby trimming down the costs associated with their management and maintenance.

What are the security concerns highlighted by Server Sprawl? 

Is there anything bad about having additional computing resources? So when things can be carried out at a set capacity then why pay for additional capacity. But what is server sprawling?

It is a situation wherein the servers that are less utilized are covering up more space as well as resources. Most of the time it is justified under the name of workload. Server sprawl virtualization is a trend that can be commonly found in many IT departments. The reason for it being very commonly found is because of the easy availability of virtual servers and its quick deployment. 

This is why owners tend to overburden their IT infrastructure with innumerable virtual machines. This leads to inefficiency and lost technical control. It also leads to loss of management and reduced performance. Hence server sprawl visualization must be prevented in any case.

Dedicated server hosting designed to avoid all possible server sprawl.

What is VM sprawl?

VM sprawl or Virtual Machine Sprawl is a situation that occurs when an administrator loses control of virtual machines available on a network. The situation of virtual sprawl occurs when multiple VMs are set to use by different departments simultaneously. 

Why is VM sprawling an issue?

Virtualization sprawl is an issue as it affects the server’s abilities to reduce the workloads. When a server does not handle the allocated workloads, organizations tend to spend more to cool down their servers. 

How do you prevent VM sprawl?

Following are three ways that IT department personnel can prevent VM sprawl.

  • By focusing on server consolidation processes
  • By avoiding mild server sprawl vulnerabilities
  • By educating the team on data sprawl meanings and system sprawl definitions

How do I consolidate my server?  

Server consolidation is a process that enables an IT department to create a more efficient workspace for them. To consolidate servers, the IT department will either combine all the available servers or replace the server legacies with VMs.  

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