Opinion Piece on VMware Licensing

So over the past few months I’ve been seeing a lot of customers within the Public Sector and Education looking at transitioning off VMware vSphere and onto Microsoft Hyper-V! With tightening budgets or even budget cuts, IT admins in these industries are looking for quick wins in slashing their IT bills and many see dropping VMware for the ‘free’ Microsoft hypervisor as an obvious choice!

The problem is, you can argue about VM densities per host, resource scheduling, live migrations, DR, and other technical aspects of why vSphere trumps Hyper-V…. However, the reply is always the same…. “Well Hyper-V is Good Enough for our environment…. and it’s Free!!”

Yes, Hyper-V is good enough as a hypervisor… and yes it’s free…. but when you have a large estate, the density ratio impacts the amount of servers you need to buy and you still need to invest in System Center with Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM) if you want to effectively manage a cluster of Hyper-V hosts.

Unfortunately, I’m now of the impression that VMware advocates can no longer keep using the same argument when doing comparisons between vSphere and other hypervisors…. IT admins just don’t care any more…. “if the hypervisor is free and can virtualise my servers, then that’s the one I’m going for!!”

Anyways, I ended up sitting down and writing an opinion piece for SearchVMware.com on this topic….. you can view it here:


2 thoughts on “Opinion Piece on VMware Licensing

  1. Maybe a bit of research would have been good for this article.
    Your claim that ‘Hyper-V is free’ is simply invalid snd a bit of googling would have shiwn that.
    There’s no such thing as a gree lunch….
    So your ask to VMware to lower vSphere prices makes no sence.
    In the real world (enterprise environment) VMware is in modt cases actually cheaper.


    1. Given that I work for a VMware partner and fully endorse VMware, I think I’m pretty well place to know what the arguments for and against Hyper-V are….
      Hyper-V “IS” free, it’s given away with Windows Server Licenses…. a bit of googling would have told you that!
      Large enterprises are pretty much VMware houses, I don’t know many enterprises that use Hyper-V… the issue is with the SMBs and those in local government or education who have budget constraints.
      These industries are being targeted by Microsoft with the “free” marketing because to them, hyper-v is good enough for virtualising their estate (maybe 100 VMs)… they don’t need the likes of SCVMM, they don’t have loads of hosts so the density argument is moot… most also have a Microsoft ELA with heavy discounts, and given they have to license their Windows Server OS, they’re looking at it from a licensing cost perspective…. VMware solution = cost for VMware licenses + Windows OS licenses. Hyper-V solution = already in the Windows OS licenses….


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