Differences of Bare Metal and Virtual Machines

Bare Metal servers are dedicated physical machines allocated to the single tenant. The user operating system is loaded directly onto server and allows for maximum theoretical performance.

In contrast, Virtualization is a technology that allows running multiple logical systems to run on a single physical server. This is used to maximize hardware utilization, provide machine customization, and improves system management through fast backups and restores.

Virtualization typically "costs" 1-3% of total performance, however actual results depend on the specific use case.

There is no performance impact for Denvr AI clusters because the critical resource - the GPUs - are not virtualized, and instead are passed into the VM as native hardware.

Feature comparison


Bare MetalVirtual Machines


Hypervisor requires CPU and memory resources


Potential variability in performance


Bare MetalVirtual Machines

Tenant isolation

Multi-user access

May require additional software to manage user isolation and Quality of Service

Security risk

Higher risk due to shared infrastructure. Virtualization is a mature technology in use since the early 2000's.

Data privacy


Bare MetalVirtual Machines

Node types


Full node only

Software and drivers

Denvr only installs the GPU and fabric drivers.

Time to launch


Backup and restore

Difficult to backup the operating system for recovery

Last updated