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Bare-metal provisioning

Bare-metal provisioning

(also bare-metal deployment)

Bare-metal provisioning definition

Bare-metal provisioning is installing an operating system or applications directly onto a server’s hardware without an intervening layer such as a virtual machine or a hypervisor. The term “bare metal“ refers to the actual physical hardware.

See also: clean install

Bare-metal provisioning examples

  • Imagine you’ve bought a brand-new computer (this is your “bare metal”). Before using it, you need to install an operating system, like Windows or Linux. This process of installing the operating system onto the computer’s hardware is a basic example of bare-metal provisioning.
  • Suppose you’re running a business that needs a high-performance database system. Virtual machines might not be the best fit because they can introduce additional overhead. So, you decide to use a bare-metal server and rent one from a cloud provider. But when you first get access to it, it’s just a blank slate with no operating system or software. Before you can use it, you need to install an operating system, database software, and any other necessary applications. This process is bare-metal provisioning.

Bare-metal provisioning pros and cons

Bare-metal provisioning can provide better performance and efficiency because no other operating systems or virtual machines are competing for the server’s resources. However, it can also be more complex to manage. It has less flexibility than a virtualized environment where you can easily create, delete, and move virtual machines.

Further reading

Ultimate digital security