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In addition to VMware consulting, what services can service providers offer to virtualization projec

Learn how VARs can offer infrastructure and business process management support to their virtualization clients.

Virtualization customers may need help with holistic infrastructure design, including storage and networking. Also, virtualization is game-changing as far as the IT/business manager political landscape goes because it helps customers with a proven method for dealing with issues like departmental control of virtual machines and new accounting methods such as departmental chargebacks for resource utilization.

This shift requires a VAR with technical expertise as well as business savvy. The VAR may want to employ a business-focused team to work alongside the technical/engineering team. For chargebacks there is an interesting solution provided by a product called VKernel. This is a VMware-certified virtual appliance that measures resource utilization and creates chargeback reports that can be used to invoice the appropriate departments. The price is $199 per CPU socket.

Finally, a weakness with many VARs is that they do not offer training for their customers after the virtualization project is complete. I would argue that the project is not fully complete until adequate training is completed for the staff that will be administering and using the VMware products. Perhaps the VAR could negotiate a deal with a VMware-authorized training center to do on-site training. The training would be even more effective if some VMware Certified Instructors were employed as part of the integration team.

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