5 tips to get the most out of vSOM (and licensing too)

Vmware vSOM Practical Tips and Licensing

In February 2013, VMware released vSphere with Operations Management or vSOM. Since vSOM is turning two very soon, we want to offer four practical tips for getting the most out of vSOM and a quick licensing breakdown.

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You voiced your concerns. VMware listened [VMware]

 Major Adjustments to vSphere 5 licensing announced today

It’s been over two weeks since the launch of vSphere 5 and the licensing changes  that ensued. There has been some concern from customers about the changes, and in fact the twitter hash tag “#vTax” has become the popular way to discuss the issues.  Most of the vSphere 5 changes are positive as they reflect cloud type consumption and the technology advances are great too, but many were still unsettled with the new model.

Some reports and blogs out there said that this change would provide significant cost increases, however 90-95 percent of all businesses would NOT have seen a change in what they are currently paying for their licensing.

Just to recap what was first announced:

  • On July 12th, VMware announced they would be releasing VMware vSphere 5 in their Cloud Infrastructure Launch, set to be launched in Q3
  • In this Launch they also announce a new licensing model for vSphere 5 that introduced a new factor called vRAM entitlement.
  • There would be a vRAM entitlement for each licensing of VMware vSphere 5 as follows:
  • vRAM entitlement referred to the allocated virtual memory to a powered on a VM.
  • vRAM is not a physical limitation, but a limitation on the virtual memory allocated in a VM.
  • vRAM can be pooled across hosts, clusters, and datacenters with the use of vCenter.
  • They removed the physical core limitations off their licenses, so a license could support an unlimited number of processor cores.

There were a few common misconceptions:

  •  vRAM does not represent the physical RAM.
  • You do not need to migrate immediately to vSphere 5 if you do not like the model.  VMware will be supporting vSphere 4 up until vSphere 7 is released.  If you stay with vSphere 4, you still will be supported and will be bound by the previous licensing model.
  • Most customer environments were analyzed, the changes only impacted a small handful of customers, and for the handful that it did affect, it represented incremental license costs.

However, based on the feedback from customers and the Partner Technical Advisory Board which Softchoice sits on. VMware announced today some major adjustments to the new licensing program.

The 3 new adjustments to the program are:

1.  To address the issues of additional costs as a result of vRAM entitlement, VMware has increased the vRAM entitlement level for each license level as shown in the below chart.

2. The other concern that customers had was that if they allocated a lot of vRAM for Tier 1 applications, they would need a significant amount of licenses.  (e.g. for an Application like Oracle or SAP with 1TB of vRAM, it would represent almost $70,000 in licensing costs alone).  [Read more…]

Big changes in licensing model for VMware vSphere 5 UPDATED [VMware]

There has been major adjustments to the vSphere 5 licensing model since this blog post. Please see updated post for full details.

Today VMware announced the release of VMware vSphere 5. This exciting new product comes with a lot of new features that I will explain in a future post, but also important are the significant changes to the licensing structure that you need to be aware of. These changes go into effect today, and as of a to-be-announced date in Q3 2011, you will only be able to purchase new licenses in vSphere 5.0. This means that  if you are already invested in VMware, you should take some time in the upcoming months to understand which licensing model is best for your organization.

The 4 key changes that are explained in this post are as follows:

  1. VMware is no longer licensing just based on the cores within a CPU.
  2. After the official release, VMware will no longer be selling previous versions of vSphere.
  3. In the new release of VMware vSphere 5.0, VMware will no longer be supporting the ESX hypervisor.
  4. In the new version, they will be eliminating the Advanced Edition of vSphere and migrating those customers to the Enterprise Edition.

Why change?

vSphere 4.x licensing did not reflect the fact that vSphere excels at pooling physical hardware resources across the entire data center and presenting them as a single, unified, shared infrastructure—an innovation that is one of the core pillars of cloud infrastructure. The hardware-based licensing model of vSphere 4.x made it difficult for customers to transition to the usage-based cost and charge back models that characterize cloud computing and IT-as-a-Service.

The new licensing model

vSphere 5.0 will be licensed on a per-processor basis with a vRAM entitlement. Each vSphere 5.0 CPU license will entitle the purchaser to a specific amount of vRAM, or memory configured to virtual machines. The vRAM entitlement can be pooled across a vSphere environment to enable a true cloud or utility based IT consumption model. Just like VMware technology offers customers an evolutionary path from the traditional data center to cloud infrastructure, the vSphere 5.0 licensing model allows customers to evolve to a cloud-like “pay for consumption” model without disrupting established purchasing, deployment and license management practices and processes.

The vSphere 5.0 licensing model is per processor (CPU) with pooled vRAM entitlements. It offers customers the following benefits relative to the previous vSphere 4.x model:

  • Simplicity– Removes two physical constraints (core and physical RAM), replacing them with a single virtual entitlement (vRAM). Customers now have a clear path to license vSphere on next-generation hardware configurations.
  • Flexibility– Extends the concept of resource pooling from technology to the business of IT by allowing aggregation and sharing of vRAM entitlement across a large pool of servers.
  • Fairness – Better aligns cost with actual use and value derived, rather than with hardware configurations and capacity.
  • Evolution – Allows customers to evolve to a cloud-like “pay for consumption” model without disrupting established purchasing, deployment and license-management practices and processes.

The new vSphere licensing model applies only to new purchases of vSphere licenses [Read more…]