Virtual data centers and cloud computing models continuously share and implement resources, software and information taken from the Internet and delivered to servers, computers and any other connected devices.
By using cloud computing, users can dramatically cut costs associated with hardware, software and services by paying a provider for only the resources or services that are used. As cloud computing and Software as a Service become implemented in almost all business practices, they will begin to require a scalable platform that possesses the functionality to deploy cloud-ready applications.
Appliance platforms provide software vendors with an option to deploy their applications as either physical, virtual or hybrid for private, public and mixed environments.
Officials from NEI (News - Alert) stated, “It’s important to note that the principal difference between a software and hardware appliance deployment is resource sharing versus dedicated hardware. A hardware appliance uses fixed processing, memory and storage capacity -- all tuned to the tool’s requirements.”
A virtual appliance in comparison “operates in an environment where processing, memory and storage are shared resources. This can introduce I/O latency and other performance-related issues if the virtual data center or cloud structure does not have timely access to necessary compute resources.”
Essentially this means that designing and then building an appliance that can work as either a physical or virtual appliance is possible by looking over all of the options and then basing your decision on specific application and market needs.