by Adam Armstrong

This week, VMware announced updates to its per-CPU pricing model. VMware has gone from a pricing per CPU to a pricing per 32 cores, or an additional license for CPUs that are over 32 cores. This seems to put a cost disadvantage for newer processors that have up to 64 cores, with the onus landing more on AMD and their gen 2 EPYC CPUs more so than Intel gen 2 Scalable.

According to VMware, they are trying to make their license pricing more in line with software industry standard of pricing based on core-count versus CPU socket. Standardizing pricing makes it easy for potential customers to do a price comparison, though per socket was also a fairly easy comparison to make. The 32-core limit was derived from where the core count is in the current CPU market. While it looks as though it will have a negative impact on those using high core count CPU, particularly those from AMD, VMware doesn’t believe it will be too large of an impact given what it currently being leveraged in the market today. 

VMware goes on to state that the vast majority of their existing customers won’t be impacted by this change, as most have 32-cores or less. For those that have purchased a software license for over 32-cores, they will be eligible for additional free per-CPU licenses to cover the CPUs on that server, if purchased prior to April 30, 2020. While the pricing seems abrupt to some, it is in line with over VMware products such as VMware Enterprise PKS and VMware NSX Data Center subscription.

The new pricing changes go into effect on April 2, 2020.


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