VKernel does Hyper-V bean counting

Virtual machines cost real dollars — and now you'll pay


Capacity-management tools provider VKernal, working with Microsoft, has fashioned a chargeback tool that is being revealed to the world Tuesday at Redmond's TechEd Europe conference in Berlin.

CIOs love virtual machines because they help them run efficient infrastructure, but CFOs are learning to love them because — thanks to chargeback systems — they can allocate those cloudy infrastructure costs to businesses and their users. Just like Amazon does with its EC2 compute cloud.

Chargeback systems are not new in IT departments, and they're not necessarily popular or accurate on physical systems. But with virtual machines, where you can meter the use of CPUs, memory capacity, network bandwidth, and storage, and where the hypervisor is actually keeping track of these capacities, metering usage and then providing chargeback info is somewhat easier.

As El Reg previously reported, VMware added a feature called vCenter Chargeback to its vSphere server virtualization stack back in July 2009. This feature costs $750 per processor socket upon which you want to be able to use for chargeback. VMware also has its own capacity management tools, called Capacity IQ.

VKernel was founded in 2007 and launched its Capacity Management Suite 2.0 bundle for VMware environments back in August.

That bundle was comprised of rejiggered products with lower prices, including Capacity Analyzer 5.0 for performance analysis and capacity planning for virtualized server environments; Optimization Pack 2.0 for provisioning CPU, memory, and storage for VMs based on what they use (not on initial setup conditions required by the OS and software stacks); Inventory 2.0, a VM tracking tool to show where virtual servers are out there on the network; and Chargeback 2.0, an updated tool for showing allocated and measured VM usage by user, line of business, or company. All four modules cost $299 per socket each for the servers under their management, and they can be licensed separately.

The Chargeback 2.0 product, which came out with the Capacity Management Suite 2.0 bundle, added support for Microsoft's Hyper-V hypervisor and its Systems Center console to the VMware ESX Server hypervisor and vCenter Server console. Up to six vCenter consoles can plug into the CMS 2.0 VM management tools, so hundreds to thousands of VMs can be monitored and managed with a single CMS instance.

Not every customer needs the full-tilt-boogie CMS 2.0 toolset, according to Bryan Semple, chief marketing officer at VKernel, and Hyper-V customers in particular want to stick with their Systems Center tools and still get chargeback functionality.

And so VKernel has worked with Microsoft to create a standalone tool called Chargeback 2.5 for Hyper-V, which integrates into the Virtual Machine Manager self-service portal that Microsoft created for its Systems Center Operations Center console and that it's showing off at TechEd Europe. That VM self-service portal software for Systems Center went into release candidate state back in July.

Chargeback 2.5 with Hyper-V costs $299 per socket, just like the similar but somewhat different chargeback feature in the Capacity Management Suite 2.0. That tool can accept data from Hyper-V and Systems Center, but CMS — not Systems Center — is the console you use to drive it. ®

Similar topics

Broader topics


Other stories you might like

  • Now that's wafer thin: Some manufacturers had less than five days of chip supplies, says Uncle Sam

    Components fabbed using 40nm-plus process nodes hit hard

    Hardware manufacturers hit hardest by the global semiconductor shortage had less than five days of chips in their inventories last year – and should expect supply chain issues to continue throughout 2022 – the US Department of Commerce said this week.

    Demand for semiconductors skyrocketed during the pandemic as folks purchased more PCs, laptops, and tablets to work or learn from home, and cloud giants scaled up their backend systems to cope. Supply, however, couldn't keep up. The median inventory of semiconductor buyers in 2019 was 40 days of supply. By 2021 that figure was down to less than five days for certain key US sectors, the department said in a report, while demand was up 17 per cent.

    Production was initially slowed at factories around the world due to shelter-at-home orders as the coronavirus pandemic took hold. Some facilities had to temporarily shut down after they were hit with natural disasters, such as fires and snowstorms. But between Q2 2020 and the end of 2021 fabs were operating at over 90 per cent capacity and still couldn't meet global demand.

    Continue reading
  • Baidu's AI predictions for 2022: Autonomous driving! Quantum computing! Space! Human-machine symbiosis!

    Did a computer program tell them to write this?

    Baidu Research's AI-centric "Top 10 Tech Trends in 2022" report has outlined the Middle Kingdom megacorp's predictions for technology over the coming year.

    Baidu CTO Haifeng Wang describes AI as a "key driving force of innovation and development," thanks to rapidly evolving core technologies, cross-domain connectivity, and expanding applications.

    It's no surprise that the list focuses on AI given Baidu's business domain. The Beijing-based company's search engine captures over 70 per cent of the Chinese market while also developing other products, particularly AI research and cloud computing. The research arm takes a deeper look at its associated technologies. Think Google but Chinese.

    Continue reading
  • Nvidia reportedly prepares for un-Arm'd fight with rivals: $40bn takeover may be abandoned

    Softbank, meanwhile, remains 'hopeful' it can offload Brit chip designer

    Nvidia is quietly preparing to give up on the purchase of Arm, according to Bloomberg, after repeatedly butting heads with competition regulators amid a wave of opposition from the tech industry.

    A report by the newswire states Nvidia privately told its partners it does not expect the Arm transaction to close. The report also claims Arm's current owner SoftBank is pressing ahead with an IPO of Arm.

    The $40bn bid Nvidia lodged for Arm in September 2020 has proved controversial: Arm licences its chip designs to multiple clients and some felt that buying the company will give Nvidia the power to stifle competition.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022