Will the New VMware vSphere 5 Licensing Affect Blade Vendors? (PART 2)

Since my last post, I heard lots of rumors that VMware would make some changes in their new licensing model. Well, this week VMware made an official announcement of changes and posted here.

VMware made very clear that all the changes were motivated by the feedbacks they have received:

These changes generated debate in the blogosphere, across the VMware communities, and in conversations with customers and partners.  Some of the discussion had to do with confusion around the changes.  We have been watching the commentaries on the blogs very carefully, and we have been listening in the customer conversations very intently. We got a ton of feedback that probed the impact of the new licensing model on every possible use case and scenario, and equally important, reflected our customers’ intense passion for VMware.” Said the Product management VP, Bogomil Balkansky.

This shows how important feedback is! We can say that changes come from us.


So, let´s see the new comparison of vSphere 4.x licensing vs the vSphere 5 model:

To see the original document, click here.

The main changes:

  • Increased vRAM entitlements for all vSphere editions, including the doubling of the entitlements for vSphere Enterprise and Enterprise Plus.
  • Capped the amount of vRAM  in any given VM by 96GB.
  • Compliance policies will not be measured by high watermark. Instead, a 12 months rolling average of daily high watermark. That´s very important for testing and developing environments.

Plus: An official monitoring tool will replace all the scripts that have been circulating around the community to calculate how much “vRAM” customers are using now.

VMware confirmed that the new licensing model was made to keep up with the market changes and that changes are unlike, but necessary.

So, to compare apples to apples, let’s use the same example of last post: an IBM HX5 blade server with MAX5 maxed out with 640GB of memory with the NEW (I mean the newest) licensing model a user would need 7 VMware vSphere 5 Enterprise Plus Licenses to be “legal” vs 14 of the previous vSphere 5 licensing vs 2 with the current VMware vSphere 4.x licensing model.

That´s more reasonable. Especially if keep in mind that customers would not use all the physical RAM in the vRAM pool. They must have some free physical RAM to be able to do a vMotion for example.

We have to give VMware some credit to change so quickly and listen the community. Would any other vendor do something like this? I don´t know.


About the Author
Thales Osterne is a contributor for BladesMadeSimple.com.  He has over six years in the IT field with four years of experience in IBM BladeCenter and System X.  When he is not blogging, Thales works as a product manager for IBM System X & Bladecenter at Lanlink Informatica, a major business partner in Brazil.  He is fluent in Portuguese and English.

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