With a new, simplified licensing plan for its System Center 2012, Microsoft is looking to spur the adoption of its private cloud offerings.
If there is
one data center problem that cloud computing has obscured more than any other
issue, it is licensing. IT managers are finding the licensing surrounding cloud
technologies, especially virtualization, have become near impossible to manage.
in an effort to spur adoption of its cloud portfolio,
is attempting to
simplify the licensing scheme for the company's System Center 2012 offering.
had previewed its licensing plan for System Center 2012
to industry insiders,
the company officially announced the scheme Jan. 17.
Garth Fort, general
manager of Microsoft's Server and Cloud Division, highlighted what was changing
and how those changes will accelerate private cloud adoption, as well as
demystify the licensing around System Center 2012.
moving toward a model in which just two editions of System Center 2012 will
replace the dozens of combinations offered in the past, according to Fort.
These two editions will include all the primary elements needed to build
simplification of SKUs and editions proves critical for Microsoft, especially
since the company is positioning System Center 2012 as the
primary tool for managing both private and public clouds
simplification comes at a time when Microsoft is rebranding all its on-premises
server products as part of its "private cloud" family.
the new licensing scheme offer include simplification of license management,
ease of ordering the correct products for a private cloud implementation,
improved software protection and upgrade processes, as well as potential cost
2012 will be available as two distinct editions. The first is System Center
2012 Standard, which includes two operating systems for physical or lightly
virtualized environments, and the second is System Center 2012 Datacenter,
which offers unlimited operating systems for highly virtualized private cloud
offering the "single bundle" concept as a way to simplify its private and
public cloud messages and make customers more comfortable with cloud-computing
concepts, such as self-service, elasticity and automation.
Fort did not
offer a release-to-manufacturing (RTM) or a specific launch date for the final
version of the System Center 2012 suite. However, the company is expected to
offer more details in April to coincide with its annual Microsoft Management
of System Center 2012 will contain the same suite of products, which include
some new point products:
Controller (code-named Concero): New addition to System Center with the
2012 release. This is an integrated management portal providing IT
professionals with a single view of their private and public cloud
resources. From App Controller, administrators can deploy and manage
services and virtual machines.
- Orchestrator: Adds workflow automation and third-party integration with the 2012
release. (This is the new branding for the Opalis workflow technology that
Microsoft acquired in 2009 and integrated into System Center.)
Machine Manager: With the 2012 release, IT administrators can now manage
even more hypervisors from Microsoft, as well as selected third-party
providers. This is the part of System Center that adds the long-promised,
server app-virtualization capability to Microsoft's cloud offerings.
point products: They include Operations Manager, Configuration Manager, Data
Protection Manager, Service Manager and EndPoint Protector.
percent of existing System Center customers already buy the full suite of
products, which should make upgrading and transitioning to the new editions
relatively easy, said Fort. Those customers who only purchased individual
components will be offered various incentives and offers to make it less
painful for them to buy the whole bundle. Each edition will be licensed based
upon physical CPUs and not cores or virtual machines.