What is Virtualization in Cloud Computing? Types & Benefits

Cloud computing has opened gates to flexible computation mediums for companies and the general public to have an on-demand computing service at their convenience, smoothening the process of data accessibility. The cloud computing model aims to simplify the accessibility of services such as data storage, security, recovery, analytics, networking, and database management with the web as its host, rather than personal devices, which don’t offer as much accessibility. Moreover, virtualization helps improve the vision of the cloud computing model. 

Virtualization helps cloud computing to provide users with necessary computing resources. It is an efficient medium to access physical computing resources through virtual servers. The act of virtualization has offered various benefits to the digital world for cost-effective accessibility and IT agility through cloud computing that is traditionally relevant to hardware. 

Server limitations are no more trouble for cloud computing services as virtualization has made it easier for companies to offer better services at limited operational costs. It’s an excellent way to power cloud computing services. Let’s look more into how it works, its various types, and the resultant benefits.

What is Virtualization?

Virtualization is a significant aspect of cloud computing that powers the web-based system with multiple systems working on the same server. In simple terms, the process of virtualization creates a virtual ecosystem with physical resources, like a virtual version of computer hardware. 

Virtualization creates a virtual computer system by relying on software that companies leverage to run multiple applications and operating systems on a single server. This virtual computer system efficiently runs a mixture of cloud infrastructure from security, data management, servers to remote computing or networking. Virtualization can also be called the foundation of cloud computing.

Initially, virtualization technology was created to provide computers with access to the batch of multiple computers, though readily, with a lack of servers to run various tasks, virtualization’s popularity skyrocketed as a prominently used process by companies. The use of virtualization is so prominent that even virtualization management software is created to keep up with enterprises. However, virtualization is impossible to carry out without a program called Hypervisor. 


A hypervisor is a layer between physical and virtual resources to run virtual machines. It is an emulator that allows the host machine to set up multiple virtual machines and allocate physical resources to them as required. These virtual machines run on a single hardware device, saving operating costs. A host system working with a hypervisor can be perceived as an overall virtual computing system, for it has access to all physical attributes of a system accessible virtually. 

A hypervisor is the base of virtualization and is commonly found in two types. One is the Native Hypervisor which runs with the host device’s hardware to create virtual machines. The next is Embedded Hypervisor, which runs as software on the host devices. 

Role of Virtualization on Cloud Computing

For decades, virtualization has been a part of the IT domain, yet its amalgamation in cloud computing has drastically powered service-providing companies to reach accessibility goals. Moreover, as convenience goes hand in hand with technological advancements, this one creation has led millions of people to approach remote computing methods for a hassle-free experience.

Virtualization plays a crucial role in cloud computing as cloud computing leverages virtualization technology to create a virtual environment where customers can access virtualized services without the trouble of buying a hard drive. It works as a foundation for cloud computing companies to extend their virtual services as a complete cloud-based service. 

This ‘reflective’ layer of computing processes has helped businesses ample room to offer and accept innovation, as the core technology of virtualization led cloud computing to scale up and acquire even more significant features. Moreover, with the help of virtualization, cloud computing is creating both private and public virtual ecosystems that individual entities and organizations can take advantage of to access diverse resources. 

Types of Virtualization

There are various types of virtualization programs specialized for multiple resources. To integrate the right virtualization for the relevant resource, it is necessary to understand the different types of virtualization. 

  • Server virtualization: The process of server virtualization works to divide one server into multiple virtual servers to run as separate virtual machines. The process helps save hardware costs and improve IT efficiency.
  • Desktop virtualization: This type of virtualization runs on the host computer with the help of an emulator called Hypervisor. Virtual machines don’t run on the host hard drive but on a central remote server. Desktop virtualization simulates all computer processes to access the cloud for easier networking. 
  • Application virtualization: Application virtualization allows access to computer applications from different systems virtually by installing the application on virtual servers. Application virtualization’s usage can help professionals to virtualize applications from host computers to grant access to it through a network from other computers. 
  • Network virtualization: Network virtualization is the imitation of a physical network on virtual machines to run the same functions but virtually. The network offers equal operational benefits but with lesser hardware dependency. 
  • Storage virtualization: Storage virtualization refers to collecting storage resources from the host system to multiple networks to make it work as a single storage device. Storage virtualization helps data migration be allowed quickly to smoothen the workflow.

Advantages of Virtualization 

After knowing the various functions and types of virtualization, let’s find out the various advantages of virtualization usage and implementation. 

  • Data transferring becomes easier with virtualization as there is no limit to data transfer, and the data can be retrieved at any time.
  • It is a cost-effective way to get computing resources without paying for expensive hardware.
  • Cloud computing with the help of virtualization helps in sharing data and resources with multiple systems. As physical machines are no longer required to share data, efficiency grows simultaneously. 
  • Virtualization is an energy-saving method that reduces operating costs, and energy consumption rates are lower with the limited and accurate utilization of resources. 
  • Virtualization offers hardware independence, granting easy access to remote computing.
  • Virtualization simplifies data retrieval; for instance, obtaining lost data from the crashed desktop is hard, but the cloud keeps it safe at any such instance of desktop failure or hardware mishap.
  • The on-demand access to cloud computing allows its access from multiple systems located anywhere globally, which is the biggest advantage over maintaining a connection with the host computer for resource retrieval.

Want to learn more about cloud computing? We are here to help you out!

upGrad’s Cloud Backend Development Certificate Program offers excellent learning to specialize in the field of cloud cloud backend development. The program is offered by Purdue University, to acquaint learners with the expansive world of cloud computing. 


Cloud computing is a rapidly emerging technology, accessible to provide its services for multiple domains. Its safe and easy implementation has led millions of people the convenience to obtain or regulate physical computing resources through the internet. Visualization is a fundamental part of the cloud’s existence, and as the demand for cloud services increase, the knowledge of virtualization is becoming crucial for professionals.

Learn Software Development Courses online from the World’s top Universities. Earn Executive PG Programs, Advanced Certificate Programs or Masters Programs to fast-track your career.

Why is virtualization an essential part of cloud computing?

Virtualization helps cloud computing systems grant efficiency within the company’s limited hardware system. Cloud customers receive better service, performance, cost-effectiveness, and multiple resources all at one place. Virtualization is an integral part of cloud computing as it encourages efficient use of resources by offering various operating systems and storage solutions on a single server.

Who invented virtualization?

Records state virtualization came into existence in the 1960s, and the credit behind its creation goes to Jim Rymarczyk. Although recorded history states virtualization’s creation to be dated around the 60s, many believe it has a longer history than stated. The technology was not widely adopted until the early 2000s.

How is virtualization different from cloud computing?

Virtualization and cloud computing are two parts of the same vehicle. Virtualization is a programming aspect that helps cloud systems to run smoothly by offering one source to act as many. On the other hand, the cloud computing model provides access to many computing resources under one pool. These two work together to deliver tech efficiency to the customers, with few working pay-on-the-go bases.

Want to share this article?

Plan Your Software Development Career Now.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Our Best Software Development Course

Get Free Consultation

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get Free career counselling from upGrad experts!
Book a session with an industry professional today!
No Thanks
Let's do it
Get Free career counselling from upGrad experts!
Book a Session with an industry professional today!
Let's do it
No Thanks