The act of creating a virtual (vs. actual) version of something. Virtualization is done with hardware (platforms), desktops (as in VDI), software, storage devices, network resources, operating systems (known as containerization), memory, and data. Hardware, or platform, virtualization refers to the creation of a virtual machine that acts like a “real” computer with an OS. The software that’s executed on virtual machines is separated from the underlying hardware resources.