SuperSpike
Contributor
Contributor

vSphere 5 Licensing

I took a minute to read the licensing guide for vSphere 5 and I'm still trying to pull my jaw off the floor. VMware has completely screwed their customers this time. Why?

What I used to be able to do with 2 CPU licenses now takes 4. Incredible.

Today

BL460c G7 with 2 sockets and 192G of memory = 2 vSphere Enterprise Plus licenses
DL585 G7 with 4 sockets and 256G of memory = 4 vSphere Enterprise Plus licenses

Tomorrow

BL460c G7 with 2 sockets and 192G of memory = 4 vSphere Enterprise Plus licenses
BL585 G7 with 4 sockets and 256G of memory = 6 vSphere Enterprise Plus licenses


So it's almost as if VMware is putting a penalty on density and encouraging users to buy hardware with more sockets rather than less.

I get that the vRAM entitlements are for what you use, not necessarily what you have, but who buys memory and doesn't use it?

Forget the hoopla about a VM with 1 TB of memory. Who in their right mind would deploy that using the new license model? It would take 22 licenses to accommodate! You could go out and buy the physical box for way less than that today, from any hardware vendor.

Anyone else completely shocked by this move?

@Virtual_EZ
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1,980 Replies
LockAze
Contributor
Contributor

Didn't VMware get it? I for one do not want a cap on the virtual memory, I could understand it if it was the physical, but virtual? I don't like beeing screwed in the long run. So even with this "great" changes from VMware who "lisens" to it's customers...... I will still continue with checking out if it's possible to switch to eighter Hyper-V or XenServer....

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kopper27
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

I just think even when vMware made some changes it's too late...

what they did made people start looking for other products hyper-v, xen and now that people started talking about how easy/$$$ was to deploy those products

people were like caged with vmware but this license thing open their eyes...

what I mean they thought they were the only one in the virtual world..... even when I love vmware my boss started to talk about hyper-v.....

kinda late

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tom11011
Contributor
Contributor

Dear VMware Partner,

On July 12, 2011, VMware announced our new Cloud Infrastructure Suite. The launch featured vSphere 5, the newest version of our flagship product.

As many of you know, as part of this announcement, we introduced changes to the vSphere licensing model in order to align costs with the benefits of virtualization rather than with the physical attributes of individual servers. While our goal was to provide a licensing model based on consumption and value rather than physical components and capacity, we strived to make the new model as non-disruptive as possible.

These changes generated much debate in the blogosphere, in conversations with our partners and customers, and across VMware communities. Some of the discussion had to do with confusion around the changes. We have been watching the blog commentaries carefully, and we have been listening to the partner and customer conversations very intently. A great deal of feedback was provided that examined the impact of the new licensing model on every possible use case and scenario, and equally importantly, reflected our partners’ and customers’ intense passion for VMware.

Our success depends on the active involvement of our channel partners. We are a company built on partner and customer goodwill, and we’ve taken your feedback in earnest. Our primary objective is to do right by our customers, so we are announcing three changes to the vSphere 5 licensing model that address the most recurring areas of your feedback.

• 

We’ve increased vRAM entitlements for all vSphere editions, including the doubling of the entitlements for vSphere Enterprise and Enterprise Plus. This change addresses concerns about future-looking business cases that were based on future hardware capabilities and the previous vSphere licensing model.  Below is a comparison of the previously announced and the new vSphere 5 vRAM entitlements per vSphere edition:

vSphere edition

Previous vRAM entitlement

New vRAM entitlement

vSphere Enterprise+

48 GB

96 GB

vSphere Enterprise

32 GB

64 GB

vSphere Standard

24 GB

32 GB

vSphere Essentials+

24 GB

32 GB

vSphere Essentials

24 GB

32 GB

• 

We’ve capped the amount of vRAM we count in any given VM, so that no VM, not even the “monster” 1TB vRAM VM, would cost more than one vSphere Enterprise Plus license. This change also aligns with our goal to make vSphere 5 the best platform for running Tier 1 applications.

• 

We’ve adjusted our model to be much more flexible around transient workloads, and short-term spikes that are typical in test & development environments for example. We will now calculate a 12-month average of consumed vRAM to rather than tracking the high water mark of vRAM.

Finally, we introduced the vSphere Desktop edition to address vSphere licensing in a desktop environment. The vSphere Desktop edition does not have any vRAM entitlements, and allows customers to purchase vSphere for VDI use case on per user basis. Our price books are being updated and will be distributed shortly.

We are confident that our vSphere 5 licensing model based on pooled vRAM is the right one for the cloud computing era. We are fully committed to meeting our partners’ needs, and have several resources on Partner Central available to help you and your customers understand and calculate how the new licensing model applies to existing environments. We also have a vmLIVE session available for replay as well as an additional vmLIVE session on August 10th.

We would like to hear from you about this change; please join the conversation on our Partner Blog.

Thank you for your continued passion in our mutual sucess and partnership.

Bogomil Balkansky
SVP, Product Marketing, Infrastructure Product

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Bigi201110141
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

@ LockAze

So if Standard had a limit of 128GB RAM whats the difference between that and vRAM 128GB limit?

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Baddos
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

NickEvans wrote:

Fantastic news!

Although it won't please everyone (going by the comments), but you have to applaud VMware for acting so quickly, and not being too proud or arrogant and actually listening to their customers.

Nick.

Acting quickly? It's been almost a month of nonstop negative PR.

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GaryHertz
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Baddos wrote:

NickEvans wrote:

Fantastic news!

Although it won't please everyone (going by the comments), but you have to applaud VMware for acting so quickly, and not being too proud or arrogant and actually listening to their customers.

Nick.

Acting quickly? It's been almost a month of nonstop negative PR.

They didn't have a choice with VMworld coming up.. They didn't want this taking over VMworld like it took over the v5 announcement.  They really should have resolved it two weeks ago.

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tomaddox
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

cmangiarelli wrote:

That's kinda interesting since the new licensing for View is pretty damn good with the unlimited vRAM license.  However, they did screw over existing View customers by not allowing a conversion to the newer model... but people just starting VDI should see a benefit on the new View licensing model.

Hooray, now I can pay for and manage even more licenses by number and type! I can't wait!

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rjb2
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Bigi wrote:

Thanks vmware for listening to your customers. Great work everyone for sounding your comments on this board/phone/email.

Although its not the best case scenario. vmware still has to make $$$$$ and hire best people etc.

vSphere 5 here we come.....

Yes, thanks VMWare for listening to your customers. There will still be some unhappy ones, but the changes will certainly reduce their number.

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devilz666
Contributor
Contributor

Do all these posts not show that Vmware never listened to customers in the first place?

Their marketing/license department needs a complete overhaul with how they completely stuffed up the new version before it was even released.

Changing the license scheme before its released a second time shows that something went terribly wrong in their internal management, they have already lost customers to Xen/HyperV before their new version is publicly released.

They should have discussed the IDEA of vram license with customers before making it public and destorying their customer base, we've already converted customers to Xen and have others looking at it ONLY due to the fact of Vram issue and thats even before the version was out!

If it takes shouting and complaining by customers to get what they want, customers will simply move to a company that doesnt require people to complain to get what they need/want.

They may as well have been a movie studio telling the public a movie was bad before it even reached the theatres, or maybe say that the ticket to view will be $100, then because no one goes to the movie they drop the ticket price to $10 but the damage is already done and everyone has already decided not to see the movie and gone to the next big blockbuster instead.

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freefall
Contributor
Contributor

I still think the licensing model is flawed.

I understand that with greater RAM capacity and core counts will in time  reduce the revenue to support the hypervisor and VMware needs that  revenue to keep the hypervisor as the leader of the pack.

VMware needs to send a clear message to the industry on how they are going to do this. The current licensing model does not do that. Either vRAM or CPU count is the model of the future, not both. The image customers are getting is that of a kid run loose in the candy store just grabbing anything they can get their hands on. Not a good image if you ask me.

vRAM on its own is a workable model for internal use or private cloud.

So the revised licensing goes some way to getting the vRAM to the right sweet spot (in my opinion for Enterprise Plus) however it does make it as confusing as all hell and it will significantly increase the licensing management overhead moving forward.

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DSeaman
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

I've posted a blog about the vRAM revision, and also compare it to the new vSphere 5.0 VSPP vRAM model that is migrating AWAY from the allocated vRAM model that we are now stuck with, and on to a reserved vRAM model that makes more sense to me.

http://derek858.blogspot.com/2011/08/vmware-changes-vsphere-50-licensing.html

In fact VMware makes a strong case why allocated vRAM does not make sense and why basing it on reserved pRAM is more appropriate. I agree..just too bad we can't use the same, more logical IMHO, model.

Derek Seaman
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Dracolith
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

tomaddox wrote:

cmangiarelli wrote:

That's kinda interesting since the new licensing for View is pretty damn good with the unlimited vRAM license.  However, they did screw over existing View customers by not allowing a conversion to the newer model... but people just starting VDI should see a benefit on the new View licensing model.

Hooray, now I can pay for and manage even more licenses by number and type! I can't wait!

At this point I have little faith that marketing folks didn't strategically plan to do it this way all along,.

Especially since changing from "high water mark"  to  "12 month average"   involves code changes;

"high water mark"  is a very strange term to use to describe "all allocated vRAM must be licensed at time of usage",

unless an average usage model was already contemplated prior.

The revision doesn't really address the concerns about monster VMs.    A 1 TB  VM is just an extreme example of the problem.

An  Enterprise+ license is a high cost for one VM!

The revision doesn't address the concerns for folks performing development and testing functions;  development/testing/training isn't

something you do 1 month out of the year.  And if vs5 is still to be released this month, they don't have much time at

all to implement and properly vet such vCenter code changes.

But if they had the "final vRAM entitlement"  numbers all worked out  months ago, this would be easy.

So here's the rub... you want to make your pricing more expensive, you come up with this model,

you know your customers/partners will hate and revolt on it;  they would justifiably ask questions.

So what do you do?  Use a demotivational tactic, an  "It can be worse plan"

Announce your model as  twice as bad as it will be in the end.

Then wait for the "commotion" to die down, and announce a pre-planned "cure".

What they have failed to do still is answer the fundamental question.

The WTF? question.

"We are confident that our vSphere 5 licensing model based on pooled vRAM is the right one for the cloud computing era."

The question not answered is "Why is that"?

At this point we're quite sick of   VMware using the word "Cloud",

which has nothing to do with internal Enterprise virtualization.

At the end of the day, they're still trying to force a model on our organizations that doesn't make any sense,

and in the long run will force us to find a solution that is not vSphere.

We don't expect VMs to stop requiring more and more RAM  every year  just to run basic OS functions.

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jasoncllsystems
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

http://blogs.vmware.com/partner/2011/08/vmware-vsphere-5-licensing-and-pricing-update.html

Yes, this is confirmed and I just get an official email from VMware Team.

http://www.malaysiavm.com
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wuffers
Contributor
Contributor

Looks like lots have happened since I've been gone!

I've closed the survey and for those interested in the final results, they are here:

http://wuffers.net/2011/07/18/vsphere-5-migration-survey

The results haven't changed very much since the first or second round results, just a bigger sample size and reducing our margin of error (confidence level of 95% with 4.08% margin of error - I'm no statistician so please correct me if that's wrong). More importantly, thanks to all that participated!

I'm thinking of putting up another survey based on the new vSphere 5 licensing tweaks that were announced officially today. I'm still of the opinion that this is a step forward, but that they need to do a bit more.

I have a few questions in mind already, do others want to chime in with what they want to see?

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DSeaman
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

VMware also made some changes (or clarified some issues) for VDI users that have vSphere 4.0 and want to upgrade to vSphere 5.0. They've waived the vRAM entitlement limits in certian configurations (in addition to the vSphere Desktop SKU that was widely known) and for vSphere 4.x licenses purchased before Sept 30, 2011. You can check out the details and restrictions here:

http://derek858.blogspot.com/2011/08/vsphere-5-vdi-licensing-redux.html

I think this is a great move, and will allow existing VDI deployments to migrate to vSphere 5.0 for little to no additional cost, regardless of vRAM usage.

Derek Seaman
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LockAze
Contributor
Contributor

DSeaman wrote:

VMware also made some changes (or clarified some issues) for VDI users that have vSphere 4.0 and want to upgrade to vSphere 5.0. They've waived the vRAM entitlement limits in certian configurations (in addition to the vSphere Desktop SKU that was widely known) and for vSphere 4.x licenses purchased before Sept 30, 2011. You can check out the details and restrictions here:

http://derek858.blogspot.com/2011/08/vsphere-5-vdi-licensing-redux.html

I think this is a great move, and will allow existing VDI deployments to migrate to vSphere 5.0 for little to no additional cost, regardless of vRAM usage.

Yes, great. You now can move over to vSphere 5 and knowingly be screwed when you have to upgrade... Awsome... Thanks but no thanks.

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depping
Leadership
Leadership

DSeaman wrote:

I've posted a blog about the vRAM revision, and also compare it to the new vSphere 5.0 VSPP vRAM model that is migrating AWAY from the allocated vRAM model that we are now stuck with, and on to a reserved vRAM model that makes more sense to me.

http://derek858.blogspot.com/2011/08/vmware-changes-vsphere-50-licensing.html

In fact VMware makes a strong case why allocated vRAM does not make sense and why basing it on reserved pRAM is more appropriate. I agree..just too bad we can't use the same, more logical IMHO, model.

Reserved RAM works for VSPP customers as they use reservations in their model. Most customers I know don't use reservations at all so this model would not work.

Duncan

Yellow-Bricks.com

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hmtk1976
Contributor
Contributor

DSeaman wrote:

VMware also made some changes (or clarified some issues) for VDI users that have vSphere 4.0 and want to upgrade to vSphere 5.0. They've waived the vRAM entitlement limits in certian configurations (in addition to the vSphere Desktop SKU that was widely known) and for vSphere 4.x licenses purchased before Sept 30, 2011. You can check out the details and restrictions here:

http://derek858.blogspot.com/2011/08/vsphere-5-vdi-licensing-redux.html

I think this is a great move, and will allow existing VDI deployments to migrate to vSphere 5.0 for little to no additional cost, regardless of vRAM usage.

I'm sorry but I call this bullshit.

For those having View in production NOW this entire scheme sucks and blows at the same time.  We "just" need another vCenter to manage our VDI machines.  Oh fun, everything's working with my current vCenter so now I have to pry View loose just for same harebrained licensing scheme? You call this not unreasonable, I call this a dealbreaker.  Besides the cost of another vCenter, perhaps a Windows license and backup agent for the VM it's another machine that uses resources for the simple stupid reason that some sales guys at VMware live in another world.  Not to speak of extra work, downtime, ...

Existing customers are still shafted with the licensing.  There's no possibility of trading licenses.  Our View environment is running on vSphere Enterprise licenses.  Why not trade those licenses to an equal value of the vSphere Desktop SKU?  That would have been easy and fairly painless.

These guys are clueless and unless Citrix and Microsoft do something equally stupid with their upcoming virtualization products they've lost me as a customer.

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depping
Leadership
Leadership

hmtk1976 talk to your VMware Sales representative and express your concerns.

Duncan

Yellow-Bricks.com

vSphere 5 Clustering Deepdive - eBook | Paper

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hmtk1976
Contributor
Contributor

Apparently VMware isn't listening so why bother.  They've lost all credibility so do you really believe they'll announce another  change in licensing?

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