Server virtualisation is now firmly embedded in European organisations, says research from analyst IDC.
IDC said that firms already using the technology were in the process of virtualising 35% of the servers they had bought in 2007, and 52% of those bought in 2008 are expected to be virtualised.
The research found that 54% of those organisations not using virtualisation expected to be doing so within 18 months.
"Virtualisation use has exploded since our last survey of the European market," said IDC analyst Chris Ingle. "Both large organisations and smaller businesses are using the technology for a wider range of applications and for business-critical projects.
"As the use of virtualisation grows, the challenges around managing complexity, finding skills and software licensing become more apparent."
IDC said expertise and skills were the biggest barrier to virtualisation adoption.
VMware was the clear market leader in virtualisation technology in the IDC survey: 82% of the sample organisations used it.
Despite high levels of Linux use, only 3% of the sample used Xen as their virtualisation platform. Microsoft was used by 13% of the sample base, with various Unix technologies and mainframe systems accounting for 14%.