As virtualization trickles down to small businesses, the same network infrastructures that make virtualization successful in the enterprise are needed on a smaller scale. The other key part to virtualization success is, of course, price.
Virtualization is really a stab at reducing total IT costs by moving several servers into a single box. This reduces both the component costs and the long-term costs from running the servers, with power weighing heavily on the scale.
When Intel released Romley with up to eight DRAM slots and eight cores per CPU, virtualization moved to a new level. Not only were lower bin Xeons cheap, but they also had the processing power to run several virtual machines. This eventually led to a new bottleneck forming.
While the virtual machine count increased, more machines were trying to communicate outside the node via the same gigabit Ethernet port that's been a standard for several years. Then, the systems soon required additional storage. This led to further constraints on the network as external NAS and SAN products supplied the additional storage density.
We're now at a tipping point for small businesses. 10GbE is now in a familiar form, RJ45, and the price is within budget for even small remote offices. The Netgear XS708E is the product that brought 10GbE to this point.