VMWare: Time To Re-Think Virtualisation Costs


VMware wants to move the debate over the cost of virtualisation technologies away from licensing and toward virtual machine density

VMware is trying to change the way enterprises evaluate the value of their virtualisation deployments.

VMware March 23 unveiled its VMware Cost-Per-Application Calculator, an online tool designed to let users estimate how much money they’re saving using VMware technology, as compared with other virtualisation platforms.

Company officials want to move the cost argument around virtualisation platforms away from the upfront license-price comparison. A key argument competitors—including Microsoft and Citrix Systems—use when talking about VMware is the higher cost of some of VMware’s technologies.

However, VMware officials argue that their products enable enterprises to put more virtual machines onto a single physical server—what the officials call “virtual machine density”—than they can do with other virtualisation platforms. That drives up the server consolidation ratio and reduces the overall infrastructure—including server and storage hardware, networking, power, cooling and space—and software costs, they said.

The result is greater value to enterprises than can be offered by competing virtualisation technologies, officials said.

The online calculator is designed to show enterprises the cost to virtualise a set number of applications and to compare virtualisation technologies.

The unveiling of the online calculator came at the same time VMware highlighted a report from research firm Taneja Group that said that VMware Infrastructure 3 offers the greatest level of server consolidation in the industry.

In a prepared statement, Taneja Group analyst Jeff Boles said the firm has been closely watching how VMware Infrastructure and competitive platforms scale, and that VMware’s technology was better than that of other vendors.

“We validated in a number of tests that VMware virtualised servers can run twice as many applications than other hypervisors at equal or even greater performance levels,” Boles said. “In our view, customer should be assessing virtualisation on a ‘cost per application’ basis. VM density has a significant impact on cost per application because it is tied to server equipment, software licensing and cost.”

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