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Bare metal servers vs containerization: Which is better?

Latest Update: 22/02/2024

Bare metal servers vs containerization: Which is better?

Server virtualization has become common nowadays in IT infrastructure, allowing companies to consolidate multiple physical servers onto fewer, more powerful hardware. This increases efficiency and lowers the total operation costs. However, Bare Metal Servers, that don't use virtualization, still have advantages in some use cases. Meanwhile, containerization provides another alternative to virtualization for isolating workloads on shared infrastructure. This article will examine the pros and cons of Bare Metal Servers versus containerization to help you determine which is best for your business.

What should you know about Bare Metal Servers?

A Bare Metal Server is a physical server dedicated to a single user or operating system. The server is not shared with anyone else. The server's resources such as CPU, RAM, storage, and network card are allocated to the single user. The operating system and software run directly on the hardware without any virtualization or hypervisor layer in between.

Bare Metal Servers provide dedicated and isolated computing resources. There is no competition for resources from neighboring virtual machines. This enables predictable high performance and low latency. Bare Metal Servers also offer flexibility and customizability since organizations have full control over the server hardware and software. You can select the CPU, RAM, storage, network cards, and operating systems based on your specific workload requirements

What is containerization?

Containerization is a method of operating and deploying applications that allows them to run consistently across different Bare Metal Server hardware. It involves encapsulating an application, along with its dependencies and configuration files, into a lightweight and isolated container.

Containers are self-contained, portable units that package an application and all its necessary components, including libraries, frameworks, and system tools. This packaging ensures that the application can run consistently and reliably on any system hardware that supports containerization, regardless of the underlying infrastructure.

Containerization is made possible by containerization platforms like Docker, which provide the necessary tools and runtime environment to create, manage, and run containers. These platforms utilize containerization technologies, such as namespaces and control groups, to isolate and manage the resources and processes of each container.

Some differences between Bare Metal Servers vs Containerization

Bare Metal Servers and containerization are two different approaches to hosting and deploying applications. Here are the key differences between them:

Infrastructure

A Bare Metal Server refers to a physical server dedicated to a single tenant or application. It runs directly on the underlying hardware without any virtualization layer. On the other hand, containers run on top of one or many bare metal systems, which can be a physical server or a virtual machine. Multiple containers can share the same host OS, utilizing its resources efficiently.

Resource isolation

Each Bare Metal Server is isolated, providing dedicated resources for the application running on it and the user has full access to the server's resources. Containers share the host OS and its resources, such as CPU, RAM, and disk space. Resource allocation and isolation are achieved through containerization technologies, ensuring each container operates in its own isolated environment.

Performance

Since there is no virtualization layer, Bare Metal Servers offer direct access to hardware resources, resulting in optimal performance and the fastest response. Containers introduce a slight overhead due to the virtualization layer and sharing resources with the host OS and other containers. However, the performance impact is generally minimal.

Scalability

Scaling Bare Metal Servers typically involves provisioning additional physical hardware, which can take time and effort and require experienced IT staff to perform. Containers like virtual machines are highly scalable. They can be easily replicated and deployed across multiple hosts, allowing for horizontal scaling by adding or removing containers as needed.

How you can choose between a Bare Metal Server and Containerization

So which approach should you choose for your workload? Here are some key considerations:

  • Performance Requirements: If your application requires maximum performance and direct access to hardware resources, a Bare Metal Server is typically a better choice. Bare Metal Servers eliminate the overhead introduced by virtualization layers, resulting in optimal performance.
  • Resource Utilization: Consider the resource utilization of your application. If your application consistently utilizes a significant portion of the server's resources, a Bare Metal Server might be more appropriate. However, if resource utilization is variable and can benefit from efficient sharing of resources among multiple applications, containerization provides better resource utilization.
  • Scalability: Evaluate the scalability requirements of your application. If you anticipate the need for rapid scaling, especially in a cloud or distributed environment, containerization offers more flexibility. Containers can be easily replicated and deployed across multiple hosts, allowing for horizontal scaling. Bare Metal Servers, on the other hand, require provisioning additional physical hardware, which can be time-consuming.
  • Deployment Agility: Consider the speed and ease of deployment. Containerization provides faster deployment and easier migration between different environments due to the lightweight and portable nature of containers. If you require rapid application deployment or frequent environment changes, containerization is advantageous. Bare Metal Servers involve manual installation and configuration, which can be more time-consuming.
  • Isolation and Security: Evaluate the need for isolation and security. Containers provide a level of isolation between applications running on the same host, but they still share the host's operating system. If your application requires strict isolation or has specific security requirements, a Bare Metal Server might be preferred, as it provides dedicated resources and stronger isolation.
  • Infrastructure Management: Consider your infrastructure management capabilities and preferences. Containerization often involves utilizing container orchestration platforms like Kubernetes, which require additional management and operational expertise. Bare Metal Servers may be simpler to manage, especially if you have existing processes and tools in place for managing physical servers.

Advance bare metal solution from VNETWORK

Recognizing the increasing demand for investment in the Vietnamese market and the need to find reputable Bare Metal Server partners, VNETWORK offers the Bare Metal Server solution to meet the requirements of establishing ICT infrastructure in Vietnam. This solution provides:

  • Outstanding performance: VNETWORK's Bare Metal Server inherits a new generation server system with AMD EPYC or Intel Gold CPU processors, NVMe SSD hard drives, and a multitude of upgrade and expansion possibilities. Customizable capacity with up to 1028GB RAM and Network 200 Gbps uplinks, assisting in the optimization of business services performance.
  • High accessibility: Comprehensive infrastructure, a large number of server systems located at Tier III standard Data Centers belonging to ISPs: Viettel IDC, VNPT, FPT, Mobifone in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, providing Full infrastructure deployment & expansion services within 24 hours, ensuring business continuity.
  • Flexibility and cost savings: With Bare Metal Server VNETWORK, organizations may make use of the full sophisticated infrastructure system at the lowest possible cost. Respond fast with free, transparent 24/7 local assistance that provides clear pricing, services, and advanced alternatives.

If your business is interested in experiencing Bare Metal Server solution by VNETWORK, do not hesitate to contact us for consultation and support at Hotline: (028) 7306 8789 or email us at contact@vnetwork.vn or sales@vnetwork.vn.

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