VxRail hit another milestone this week – we released 4.7 code into the manufacturing process and can now ship all VxRail 14G PowerEdge based nodes with VxRail 4.7 code preloaded. One of the biggest benefits of this is we now allow customers to choose the version of vSAN license they’d like to apply to their cluster.
In the past, VxRail would come with an embedded vSAN Enterprise license, which allowed customers to have access to every vSAN feature possible, but as always, there was a cost associated with that. This isn’t the first time we’ve made a change like this. Shortly after we first launched VxRail, we moved from an embedded vSphere license to a model t hat would allow customers to bring/choose their own vSphere version. Allowing customers to choose their version will not only help reduce the cost of VxRail, but it’ll also allow customers to leverage their existing vSAN licenses they may have in their VMware ELA.
Here’s a quick view of the new licensing model for vSAN with VxRail:
We now support all versions (Standard, Advanced, and Enterprise) of vSAN on not only the socket based licenses, but also the ROBO based license, which is based on VM Count, not sockets in the server.
In order to use the new flexible licensing model, the vSAN licenses need to be acquired by 1 of 2 avenues – through the VxRail quote or through a VMware vSAN ELA. The ROBO based licenses (as noted) can only be applied if they’re obtained through a vSAN ELA with VMware (this isn’t a technical limitation, but much rather a licensing/legal one).
I’m personally excited for this change because not only will it help drive down the cost, it’ll also allow customers to leverage their existing licenses. There was a plan in place in the past, but it wasn’t as simple and streamlined as this new process. I personally feel we’ll see most customers leverage the vSAN Advanced license as it provides the functionality that a majority of customers will need. There will still be the need for Enterprise, but as you can see, it will only be necessary if DARE or Stretched Clusters are required.
Also, quick note for current customers that are upgrading – you’re safe and you will continue to have the full vSAN Enterprise features available to you. This is really a change for net new clusters. The upgrades from 4.0/4.5 to 4.7 will continue with the vSAN Enterprise license as normal.