ATM Testing Software Best Practice: Virtualization - (Part 1)

Virtualization technology has evolved significantly from where it started back in the 1960’s when IBM first created “virtual machines” on their mainframes as a way to partition and manage workloads so that expensive hardware could be more fully utilized.

At the turn of the century, the technology blossomed as a way to tame the complex tangles of under-utilized and difficult to manage x86 hardware, taking up acres of expensive floor space in packed data centers. In 2002, Amazon Web Services was born to take advantage of virtualization’s capabilities to deliver cost effective services via the “cloud”.

The rest, as they say, is history.

At its core, virtualization offers a number of significant advantages:

  1.   Simplified provisioning, deployment and management of resources
  2.   Increased productivity and more efficient utilization of IT assets
  3.   Rapid scalability, both up and down
  4.   Improved IT resiliency, recovery capabilities
  5.   More effective, policy-based security
  6.   Superior sustainability
  7.   Reduced Costs

Virtualization is clearly an enabling technology. The cloud as we know it today would not exist without this capability and many financial services organizations have already taken significant steps to virtualize their IT infrastructure so that they can take advantage of opportunities presented by the cloud. Virtualization can also be leveraged in other specific areas, such as ATM testing, where it enables additional benefits, such as:

Flexibility

Once an ATM has been virtualized, it can be easily configured, copied or cloned to support product release schedules, changes in project priorities, etc. Virtual ATM images can be built, maintained and stored for use whenever and wherever they are required. 

Accessibility

The future of work is remote and virtualized ATMs are readily available to developers, testers and QA staff any time and from anywhere. Using a server-based testing platform like VirtualATM from Paragon also facilitates remote access to test data, media results and reports - all crucial components in effectively supporting a remote workforce.

Efficiency

Virtualization enables automation which promotes faster testing, increased test coverage and shorter delivery timeframes – all leading to improved quality and profitability. Virtualized ATMs can also be accessed and controlled programmatically via an API, facilitating integration with other enterprises systems, such as a CI/CD pipeline.

Security and control

A centralized command and control infrastructure for administration of the virtualized ATM environment means that management always knows who is using the system and what they are doing – especially important when the workforce is remote.

Reduced Costs

ATM hardware and raised-floor lab space are expensive. So is the ongoing maintenance of the physical devices, including break fix costs incurred when fault testing goes wrong. Consolidating these environments and relying on unbreakable virtual ATMs will help reduce the overall cost of managing and maintaining the ATM channel.

Improve the efficiency and profitability of your ATM channel

Virtualization technology has enabled Paragon Application Systems to develop its innovative VirtualATM solution that helps financial institutions automate their ATM testing processes - expanding test coverage, improving quality, speeding time to market and reducing costs.

Are you interested in learning more about how it works? Request a consultation from our team of ATM testing experts today.

 

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