The Virtualization Room

Feb 16 2010   3:30PM GMT

VMware vs. Microsoft on support costs

Colin Steele Colin Steele Profile: Colin Steele

When you’re trying to figure out if virtualization is right for your business, or which platform to choose, it’s crucial to understand virtualization costs.

There are the obvious costs, which include software, hardware and labor. Then there’s the hidden costs: network and storage hardware upgrades, security, management and training.

In its unending pursuit to discredit all things Microsoft, VMware has brought up another important cost to consider: support.

By now you should know the back story. Microsoft says Hyper-V is cheaper than VMware. VMware says Microsoft is using fuzzy math. Microsoft says, “Nuh-uh!” VMware says, “Yuh-huh!” On and on it goes.

In VMware’s latest retort, they take Microsoft to task about its virtualization support costs. Both VMware’s Production SnS and Microsoft’s Software Assurance cost 25% of license price. But, as VMware points out, Software Assurance limits the number of support incidents, while Production SnS offers unlimited support.

Depending on your organization’s needs, Microsoft’s support may be just fine — and cheaper than VMware. Either way, support costs are definitely something you need to consider when you calculate return on investment for virtualization projects.

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