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VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

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  • VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

    Hi All,

    I’ve got VMware vsphere essentials license but somehow i cannot make the two VCenter talking to each other for migration and template deployment across two different VCenter.

    and so i open up the PDF brochure from VMware for the upgrade to the next level of VCenter where i can use more than three ESXi hosts
    URL: http://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/vsphere_pricing.pdf

    my questions are:

    1. if i buy vcenter standard edition, from what i know is that the licensing is calculated per CPU sockets and it is already included VCenter mgmt. server forthe ESXi to join ?
    2. if i buy the stand alone VCenter Server 4 USD $ 4995 does this means i can join as many ESXi host as possible since the price is just one off ?

    my current 2x VSphere Essentials license will become useless after I take either one of those options.

    My goal here is to be able to manage more than 3x ESXi hosts within single VCenter which consists of:

    ESXi01 – 2x Intel Quadcore
    ESXi02 – 2x Intel Quadcore
    ESXi03 – 1x Intel Quadcore
    ESXi04 – 2x Intel Hexcore
    ESXi05 - 1x Intel Core2Duo

    can anyone please help me about this licensing please ?

    Thanks.

  • #2
    Re: VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

    VMware vSphere Essentials comes with a special version of vCenter, called VMware vCenter Server for Essentials. That version is limited to 3 ESX hosts with 2 processors each, and cannot communicate with any other vCenter Server.

    You'll also note that the PDF says that Essentials versions cannot be combined with any other vSphere product.

    So I'm afraid to say that if you want to manage 5 separate ESX hosts from a single management server, then you need to purchase vCenter Server Standard for $4995 and 8 VMware vSphere Standard licenses at $795 each.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

      Originally posted by TokyoBrit View Post
      VMware vSphere Essentials comes with a special version of vCenter, called VMware vCenter Server for Essentials. That version is limited to 3 ESX hosts with 2 processors each, and cannot communicate with any other vCenter Server.

      You'll also note that the PDF says that Essentials versions cannot be combined with any other vSphere product.

      So I'm afraid to say that if you want to manage 5 separate ESX hosts from a single management server, then you need to purchase vCenter Server Standard for $4995 and 8 VMware vSphere Standard licenses at $795 each.
      Hi there,

      thanks for your reply,

      I'm confused here so does the VSphere Standard license is only for the ESXi not including the VCenter ? wow if yes then VMware solution is very expensive in the upfront compares to Microsoft virtualization.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

        No, the bare-metal ESX hypervisor on it's own is free. That's enough for setting up a single virtual host and running as many VM's as you like on it, managed through the service console or some other ESX compatible tool, such as SCVMM.

        What you get extra with Standard is:

        • VMware vStorage VMFS
        • Four-way virtual SMP
        • VMware vCenter Server Agent
        • VMware vStorage APIs / VMware Consolidated Backup (VCB)
        • VMware vCenter Update Manager
        • VMware HA
        • VMware vStorage Thin Provisioning

        The important one is the agent, which is what allows an ESX host to be managed by vCenter Server, which in turn allows features like HA to work.

        But yes. Both Hyper-V and Xen include the VMotion capability as standard in their free versions, called Live Migration and XenMotion respectively. To get that in vSphere you have to buy the Advanced license for $2245.

        That fact alone has contributed to the erosure of VMware market share, with many SMB's opting for Hyper-V or Xen over vSphere for smaller virtualization deployments. However, vSphere is the standard when it comes to enterprise virtual data centers.

        What I've seen though is that for most SMB's, virtualization is a proof of concept, a prototype or something the IT guy wants to try.

        F5 have a great whitepaper about the challenges to virtualization.

        I've also spent a great deal of time the last few months doing a comparative analysis of the main 3 hypervisors, and I can say that if I only looked at my 1 year goals, I would go with Xen because Hyper-V isn't really ready for production environments.

        However, I have to look ahead 3, 5 and 10 years - in which case vSphere is my choice, because there is lot more going for it, especially when it comes to shared storage support.

        Just look at the recent announcement by EMC for their new VPLEX. One of the features they are pushing is the fact you can do VMotion over distance of upto 100Km.

        If you want to future-proof your virtual data center, at this time I have to say go with vSphere - If you can afford it.

        In your case Albertwt, you can either continue to manage 2 groups of ESX servers, fork out for the vSphere Standards, or look for a third-party management tool that will handle all 5, but I don't know if there are any licensing issues with that.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

          Well ESXi is not really free. Sure it is for a single host but if you want multiple ESXi it isn't when you are going to use vCenter.
          Yes, VMware is costly but I think compared to other products like Hyper-V or Xen virtualization I personally think you are better of using VMware.

          Maybe this will help you
          http://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/vmwa...ison-ch-en.pdf
          Marcel
          Technical Consultant
          Netherlands
          http://www.phetios.com
          http://blog.nessus.nl

          MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
          "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

          "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
          "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

            @TokyoBrit: thanks man for your suggestion it is really helpful to know that VMware is actually better and of course it comes with a price tag.

            However getting 3rd party app to manage ESXi ? I don't think that is possible.

            @Dumber: thank you for the PDF it is of course make sense and explains why VMware is the market leader in virtualization.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

              Microsoft Virtualisation Manager for SCOM supports almost all virtualisation technologies. Check out the videos

              However, MS licensing cost involved....

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

                The PDF is comprehensive, but please remember it is not an independant comparison.

                If you rewrote some of the bullets slightly, then you could put X's for Hyper-V or Xen, and write No for vSphere. It all depends on perspective, and VMware's is to sell vSphere.

                Also, I don't think "Centralized licensing. Administer and manage all license keys centrally within vCenter Server.", as an example, really counts, as 1) Of course you don't get vCenter Server with Hyper-V or Xen, and 2) you can centralize licensing with a Windows License Server.

                Saying that, vSphere is undoubtedly the best virtualization product suite on the market. Whether it remains so will depend on VMware making the right strategic aquisitions and implementing features that customers say are lacking.

                simondrake79 is correct though in that you can use SCOM VMM to manage ESX hosts, and that you would need to purchase both the management suite and the various device licenses (which are the MS equivilent of the agent licenses).

                I believe that route has been shown to be more expensive over purchasing the vSphere ones at the onset.

                However, I may be in the same boat as Albertwt, as although I would prefer to future proof my virtualization purchases, the people that sign off on the budget may decide differently, in which case I'll be stuck with getting Essentials and throwing it away a few years down the road.

                I'm hoping that none of the executive management find out that a low cost option that would cover our requirements for this year, but not next, is available. They can be so short-sighted.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

                  Originally posted by TokyoBrit View Post
                  I'm hoping that none of the executive management find out that a low cost option that would cover our requirements for this year, but not next, is available. They can be so short-sighted.
                  How true!

                  Simon

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

                    Originally posted by simondrake79 View Post
                    How true!

                    Simon
                    yes you're all correct too mate

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: VMWare VCenter 4 licensing and usage for > 3 ESXi hosts

                      Originally posted by TokyoBrit View Post
                      The PDF is comprehensive, but please remember it is not an independant comparison.

                      If you rewrote some of the bullets slightly, then you could put X's for Hyper-V or Xen, and write No for vSphere. It all depends on perspective, and VMware's is to sell vSphere.

                      Also, I don't think "Centralized licensing. Administer and manage all license keys centrally within vCenter Server.", as an example, really counts, as 1) Of course you don't get vCenter Server with Hyper-V or Xen, and 2) you can centralize licensing with a Windows License
                      Of course this isn't independent but it's a starting point. However I think VMware offers quite a few benefits depending on your license. For example, HA, DRS, DPM, FT and so on. Oh and no blue screens. At esx they are purple

                      Anyhow the PDF is just a starting guide and if you look at your own requirements it can help you search further.
                      With Hyper-V en Xen I don't have a lot of experience so I can't make the list
                      Marcel
                      Technical Consultant
                      Netherlands
                      http://www.phetios.com
                      http://blog.nessus.nl

                      MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
                      "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

                      "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
                      "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

                      Comment

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