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Utility computing has the potential for wide-reaching business benefits. By freeing resources from specific tasks, it becomes easier to manage applications and systems. This directly impacts total cost of ownership and leads to significant capital savings. Furthermore, by treating their IT infrastructure as a utility, companies become much more flexible and agile in their management and support of all resources—what people are calling the dynamic or adaptive enterprise. IDC asked more than 400 customers worldwide to list the most valuable potential benefit of utility computing. The number one answer was lowering IT operating costs.

Over the next few years, customers will address one of their main concerns—high data center management costs—by adopting platform monitoring and management tools. Then they will move into server- and application-level provisioning embedded in utility computing. It's a great technology that can help IT, end users, and management to deliver value and services quickly and with flexibility to meet the swings in demand.

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