While affordability and flexibility are often the primary benefits cited by IT professionals when it comes to virtualization, a recent report by Continuity Central asserted disaster recovery and data backup ought to be included in the list.

"So, what are the real benefits of virtualization? Typically, when you ask this question, answers will include maximizing hardware investment, enhanced management capabilities, standardization and reduction of operational costs," the report states. "Virtualization technologies have add-on disaster recovery and high availability tools that are often overlooked and may well be the most significant."

According to the report, virtualization services, including desktop and infrastructure virtualization, are being increasingly adopted by businesses both large and small. And businesses that use the technology for backup and disaster recovery often find it affords them better solutions than legacy systems.

This is a notable claim, as IT-related outages can have devastating effects on a business' operations, reputation and bottom line. The ability to recover quickly can help a company resume business as usual with minimal downtime and avoid these problems.

When it comes to business continuity, every minute counts. According to a recent study by Enterprise Strategy Group, 53 percent of businesses say their revenue would be significantly affected by less than one hour of downtime.

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