VMware Pricing Model Change

There is some big news making its way around the blog community and it has some potential to impact you if you were planning to implement Site Recovery Manager (SRM) in to your VMware environment. Currently when you buy SRM it is sold as a per-cpu model. This allows for easy license counts and technically an all-you-can-eat environment (outside of hardware limitations).

The new model that will be released on September 1st 2010 will be switching to a pay-per-vm model. This will change the way to plan and purchase SRM drastically. For one, the minimum package size will be a 25 VM pack. So for example is decide to protect 2 machines but need 26 licenses, you will have to buy 2 25 packs, which could be expensive and a bit overkill. As well, some customers only need 2 licenses at a time and may have a difficult time getting budget to pay for such a large purchase. In theory, according to VMware “this new pricing model will make it easier and less expensive to take advantage of the vCenter product capabilities.”

This model will be based on a rolling average. So if you hit 250machines in December but the rest of the year you hover around 100, you would take your daily maximum total of virtual machines (average around 153) and that is what you would buy.

There are a few things to note and take in consideration, for instance, what if I already some licenses? VMware will be providing a transition plan to allow for you to exchange your per-processor licenses that are based on the new model. I don’t know what the exchange rate is, and VMware hasn’t given a lot of details on this.

What if you want to keep your current per-vm model? Again, according to VMware you will continue to use and purchase SRM licenses as normal until December 15th 2010. And even be able renew support as normal. This is still vague and we will continue to wait for further information from VMware. I am assuming there will be a time when VMware makes the customer convert over to their new model but I don’t know the exact date.

I also don’t know the conversion rate. It could be 1 for 1, it could be 1 for many. It isn’t clear. I am sure there will be a lot of questions and concerns from people as the move or decide to adopt SRM.

One huge question a customer brought up is about mixed environments. This would take place is you didn’t buy any more licenses and needed to have more SRM. You would still have per-cpu and now per-vm? Not sure how that will work.

One Final note this doesn’t just affect SRM, it also impacts: vCenter AppSpeed, vCenter CapacityIQ (early 2011), and vVenter Chargeback. If you were planning to buy these products I would make sure you did it soon and strategically.

More information to come.

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