Getting To Know The Bare Metal Environment
By stripping back the operating system you can focus on using the hardware in a way that better suits your needs. It’s in this state that a machine can be referred to as ‘bare metal’ and you can replace the operating system with a ‘virtual machine’. Yet, clearly, computers need to run to be effective. So what about the environment in which you use your bare metal?
What Is Bare Metal Server?
A Bare metal server is a popular common name for simple server hardware. This is a physical server that will run your operating system. Typically a data center will host many bare metal servers.
Since most of the server hardware is high configuration it is common to add a virtualization layer to make the best use of it.
Usually, running one simple application on a bare metal server is not enough. You can run more application and software based on the usage.
When you go for a dedicated hosting option, you are getting access to bare metal servers that you can control.
Learn More About Bare Metal Servers?We have compiled a list of tutorials and useful videos on YouTube that explain all aspects of bare metal environment.
Using Bare Metal Servers
You will need to tap into the power of bare metal servers. Your bare metal machine will use a hypervisor to manage the virtual machine and this will allow you to benefit from the resources of your own server. As Techopedia highlights, each virtual machine has a separate guest operating system and share of memory, power, and storage. The hypervisor that you use has its own device drivers and interacts with components for the tasks that you require.
Using that bare metal environment – which is also sometimes known as a tier-1 environment - can help to deliver a bespoke service, with the option of flexibility over the level of support you get, the speed that you benefit from and the security that you can fall back on. It also means more power, fewer wasted resources, and better quality service.
The performance that this provides compares favorably with virtualized infrastructure as a service. Choosing this option means that you have a physical server to hand. Not only that, but this comes with your own firewall.
Bare Metal Cloud Servers
It is also possible to use the cloud with the bare metal environment too for a win-win scenario.
See below snippet of Computer Weekly notes about bare metal environemnt.
This balances the scalability and automation of the virtualised cloud with the performance and speed of a dedicated server. The hardware is fully dedicated, including any additional storage. Bare-metal cloud instances can be provisioned and decommissioned via a web-based portal or API, providing access to high-performance dedicated servers on demand.
Also, depending on the application and use case, a single bare-metal cloud server can often support larger workloads than multiple, similarly sized VMs.”
Business Cloud News notes that many companies have found that using the cloud alone does not always meet their needs.
It quoted Toby Owen, of Rackspace, who argued:
What we’re finding is that as people are starting to move production workloads into the cloud, some are finding that the cloud is no panacea.
It’s great for some workloads but if you’ve got a non-bursty workload that’s reasonably steady and predictable, it’s probably both better for performance and cheaper to run on bare metal.
Consider What You Want From The Bare Metal Environment
The cost involved in a bare metal environment will depend on what you are looking for.
You can, as this article demonstrates, get:
- servers with virtualized environments
- proprietary storage devices
- dedicated parts of a multi-tenant SAN
- multi-tenant switch that can provide switches or ports
- a multi-tenant load balancer that can provide load balancers or ports
So, how do you know what you should be looking for?
Well, this depends on the amount of work that you need to be able to handle, the money that you have available and the level of technical knowledge that you have. One size really doesn’t fit all – look for the right package that is suited to your very specific needs. It’s fine to be picky.
You need to find the right ‘happy medium’ – a package that you can afford is within your technical capabilities and can deliver the performance and flexibility that you desire. By getting to know the bare metal environment, you might well find that this is an option that works on all of those points.