Retail giant Target is looking to save millions of dollars in the next few years by implementing server virtualization technology from Microsoft, the software company recently reported.

According to the report, Target's IT infrastructure currently consists of more than 300,000 endpoints distributed across its 1,755 stores. However, the retailer plans to replace its 8.650 servers with Hyper-V virtualization and Windows Server 2008 Datacenter technology in all its stores by 2012.

The company also currently houses seven servers in each of its locations. By utilizing Microsoft's virtualization technology, the number will be reduced to two servers per location, Microsoft stated.

"We used to work in a model where if you were developing an application for a store, you’d have to buy a server for that application," said Target senior group manager of server technology and enterprise storage Fritz DeBrine. "Over time, that’s amounted to a lot of money. We wanted to reduce the number of physical servers that we need to run our applications at each store."

As more companies turn to virtualization to reduce their server footprint and their IT expenditure, the server virtualization market will continue to thrive. According to IDC, the enterprise server virtualization market will reach $19.3 billion by 2014.

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