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 remains under-utilized, leading to poor productivity and proficiency. This situation usually occurs where an organization acquires large number of servers than it should depending on their present and future growth. Server system sprawl condition occurs due to the uncoordinated planning.

Say, an organization has 5 active servers, even though it only need two to properly run its IT operations. The remaining three servers could either be under-utilized or not utilized at all. While having some additional resource pays off with greater flexibility, too much extra resource can get really expensive. Even if the organization says it is utilizing all its servers, the servers are certainly running at extremely low capacity -10% or less. Notwithstanding the servers are using only 10% space, they are consuming almost the same power a utilized server would use. Thus, it is essential to deal with the problem of Server Sprawl.

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.

Is server sprawl a problem?

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.

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