Dell has announced the availability of virtualisation services that aim to help enterprises draw up and implement their virtualisation plans - and it'll help you choose from its own hardware and software portfolio too of course.

The process starts with Dell’s Virtualisation Readiness Assessment (VRA). The VRA provides companies with a way to evaluate the impact a virtual infrastructure will have on its data centre, according to the company. Dell reckoned that the service indicates the potential financial savings of a virtual infrastructure and explains how a virtualised environment could improve server management, maximise uptime and streamline deployment, and enable a company to simplify and scale operations to meet present and future demands.

Dell's partners in the initiative include VMware, Microsoft, Redhat and Novell/SuSE.

Dell said it provides a number of other virtualisation services including ‘health checks’, infrastructure and migration workshops, as well as design and implementation services that include proof of concept testing prior to deployment. The aim, said Dell is to provide a single source for a tested and vendor-validated virtualised solution.

The Texas company said its services division aims to provide an end-to end virtualisation solution that simplifies IT and helps its customers design, configure, test migrate and maintain their systems, as well as reap the benefits of virtualisation.

Dell quoted four reference sites for its services. The first is Deelgemeente Ijsselmonde, a local authority in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. The system Dell helped set up helps to deliver key community services to its surrounding population, via a consolidated server environment.

The second reference site, said Dell, is Belgian consultancy ARCADIS which has implemented a SAN with a virtualised system that makes disaster recovery simpler and represents a step towards an efficient disaster recovery plan.

Third, AZ Vesalius, a hospital in Belgium, is using a virtual server infrastructure to improve scalability to support the hospital’s growth, according to Dell. And lastly, when the Marienhaus Klinikum Hospital in Germany needed a dependable IT Infrastructure for its 24/7 medical services, incorporating a back-up strategy for business continuity, it did so with the help of Dell's virtualisation services.

"Increasingly, companies are looking for ways to make themselves more agile and competitive as well as create the most efficient IT infrastructure within the organisation," said Dell's infrastructure consulting director Francois Argouges. "By managing and scaling resources as needed, organisations can continually refresh their IT infrastructure to support their dynamic business needs. Dell is committed to working with its customers and partners in order to deliver the most enhanced virtualisation solution on the market, backed up by industry leading support and services.”

The company also announced that it'll be unveiling a Vista migration service in autumn 2007.