vSphere 5 Licensing – Cast your vote!

Licensing has been the talk of the town lately so I decided, why not do a vote? So, here it is!

Do the Math Then Cast Your Vote!

Visit Alans, PeetersOnline or Luc’s site for a scirpt to look at your current licensing for vRAM entitlements!

I am curious to hear other peoples answers. I did have an option of doing away with vRAM capacity but honestly I think everyone would choose that option.

Feel free to comment with any suggestions!

***Disclaimer: The thoughts and views expressed on  and Chad King in no way reflect the views or thoughts of his employer or any other views of a company. These are his personal opinions which are formed on his own. Also, products improve over time and some things maybe out of date. Please feel free to contact us and request an update and we will be happy to assist. Thanks!~


About Chad King

I am an IT professional working in the industry for over 10 years. Starting in Microsoft Administration and Solutions I was also a free lance consultant for small businesses. Since I first saw virtualization I have always been fascinated by the concept. I currently specialize in VMware technology. I consult daily on many different types of VMware Solutions. I have experience in all domains related to virtualization and cloud solutions. From help desk, administration, engineering, implementation, and design allowing me to provide creative solutions with the understanding and gaps at all levels.

Posted on July 15, 2011, in Licensing, vSphere 5 and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

  1. I think they should leave current vRAM/processor entitlement as is but provide a cheaper alternative for increasing your vRAM entitlement once you max out and on Ent+ without buying a new “processor” connected license. Perhaps Ent+ HC (High Capacity)
    This way if you have 192GB w/ 2 processors you’re not spending $14K, perhaps make each additional 48GB an additional $1200 instead of $3500.


  2. I agree – it would be nice to have a different model for vRAM, no need for additional CPU’s for most.


  3. Josh,
    Just had that conversation of a vRAM SKU and the point was raised that keeping the way it is does provide flexibility. If you buy a vRAM SKU today but next year decide to scale out instead of up you may then have vRAM SKU’s that you can’t use. VMware then faces the situation where they have people wanting to be able to convert those vRAM SKU’s to full processor SKU’s. I can understand both sides of that debate. I think I still prefer the vRAM SKU but that’s because that’s the path I see I would end up going. On the other hand 2 years from now if I wanted to change and scale out I would not be happy about having vRAM SKU’s that would go unused while I purchased more full vSphere licenses.

    So in the end I can see why they went with the option that provided the most flexibility and least complexity for those who might move between scale up and scale out environments.


  4. Fred Peterson

    A vRAM Additive License is likely the route they will go. However they will likely price it in such a way that eventually it just makes more sense to buy the CPU license.

    So an E+ is what? $3500 for 48GB? So the vRAM Additive will probably end up being someting like $1800 for 24GB. So a dual socket 6 machine doing a total RAM assigned of 144GB on the machine would need an additional 48GB of memory. So thats either a $3500 E+ license or $3600 for two additives.

    Something like that.


  5. I’d like to see the model changed to give more vRAM with each licensing level. I’m an Enterprise Plus level customer, and 48GB per physical socket is a tad low for my model; I have been using 96GB – 128GB per CPU. VMware recognizes that CPUs are getting lots of cores and will only be getting more, so having 48GB of vRAM associated with today’s new 10 core, hyperthreaded Intel CPUs seems very low.


  6. I think VMware should decouple the CPU and vRAM licenses. It makes very little sense to managers to tell them you need to order additional CPU socket licenses to increase vRAM capacity. Do something like this:

    Reduce per-socket license cost by say 25-33% with no vRAM entitlements
    Add a new SKU for vRAM only entitlements, and price the vRAM entitlements according to per-socket license type (standard, enterprise, EP).

    For EXISTING 4.x customers, come up with a scheme to provide vRAM entitlements that cover existing pRAM. This decouples CPU sockets and RAM, so you can scale out or scale up as needed and lets users upgrade to 5.x and not lose functionality or pay a licensing increase. All newly issued 5.x licenses would be subject to the split CPU/vRAM model.


  7. Microsoft is very happy, they must have helped VMware come up with the pricing.


    • Microsoft will indeed be happy with all the new customers just waiting to change to HyperV.

      I’m sure the marketing dep. at Microsoft wildest dreams came through.

      Most of our customers would see a two og threefold increase in licensing fee if they stay at vmware. Most of them are very pleased with the product, but are already talking about alternatives.


  8. VMware is number one in virtualization.
    VI3 and vSphere product was licensed Per CPU based and then it came to per VM and now they came to vRAM and simply words VMware vSphere5 is called VMware want all your money.


  9. Maybe they could abandon the CPU license entirely, and move solely to a vRAM model. Then license the amount of vRAM used across the DC. Existing customers would have a switch over, something along the lines of 48-64GB per socket for Enterprise, 64-128GB per socket for Enterprise Plus.

    Alternatively, and as much as I initially disliked it, an IBM style “processor value unit” would be fairer to all. This could be either the only license count, or it could be coupled with a vRAM license as well, with the PVU license being relatively low cost.

    The worse thing in this fiasco, is that many customers feel done over by the Enterprise to Enterprise Plus license change from V3 to V4, especially since most of the improved features heavily touted pre-V4 release were only available in E+


  10. Indeed MS will be happy. They still have a long way to go and migration in large enterprises do cost a large amount of resources. Time, money, planning, and etc. At least VM’s can be easily moved between different environments. I think this is the time for MS to step up and show what it can really do. I used to work for a very large enterprise (the largest in fact) and found out that they won’t be staying with VMware after this. They already get insanely cheap discounts from MS and to top it off they are saying goodbye to Vmware and hello to Citrix for their desktop virtualization platform now… I can see enterprises turning over new trees, not leafs.. lol.


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