VMware Licence Management

How can we advise you?

Optimise licensing position and negotiate contracts.

Get clear on your licensing position ahead of renewal dates.

Cut costs, maintain compliance and increase security.

Respond effectively, minimise disruption and negotiate settlement.

Manage VMware licensing in VMware’s cloud or a third-party platform.

Truly independent VMware licensing advice to help you keep VMware licence costs down under the subscription model.

The requirements for on-premise VMware footprints have been impacted in recent years as more and more organisations embrace the capabilities of public cloud hyperscalers and the virtualised environments they provide. VMware has made changes in turn, moving to per-core licensing, converting customers from perpetual to subscription models, and upping its audit frequency.

However, the biggest changes have come with Broadcom’s acquisition of VMware in late 2023, which saw the termination of perpetual licence sales altogether in favour of a subscription-only model.

Nevertheless, virtualisation is still at the heart of data centre operations and core applications in most enterprises, and this software and the associated licences still need to be managed, whether they are on premise or in the cloud.

Whether you’re thinking of jumping ship or doubling down on your commitment to VMware following its acquisition by Broadcom, now’s the time to act. Invictus Partners can help you understand your current VMware licensing footprint and what to do with it going forward.

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VMware Licence Management: Ensure software usage stays in line with the terms of your VMware ELA.

Invictus Partners provides expert licence advisory across all VMware product portfolios. We do this in three phases, which are available as an end-to-end service, or as separate engagements.

Phase 1

VMware Licence Review

Phase 2

VMware Licence Optimisation

Phase 3

VMware Contract Negotiation

VMware manage licenses

Phase 1

VMware Licence Compliance Review

Invictus Partners conducts a comprehensive review of your VMware estate and compares your installments and usage with the terms of your licence agreement. We reconcile device and user data against Active Directory data where possible, and map virtual machines to physical hosts. This process gives you a clear view of your licensing position and uncovers any compliance issues.

Phase 2

VMware Enterprise Licensing Optimisation

Once we know how VMware is deployed and used in your organisation, we seek to understand current and future business needs to make recommendations on your path forward with VMware subscription licensing. As part of this process, our team can help you evaluate the financial and operational impacts of the shift from a perpetual to subscription licensing model to help you decide on the best course of action.

Phase 3

VMware Enterprise Agreement Negotiation

Many VMware customers are worried about their bargaining power heading into contract renewals now that Broadcom is at the helm. Invictus Partners is skilled and experienced in high-stakes software negotiations and we can empower your team with the information required to get on the front foot with Broadcom, regardless of your starting point.

Download our VMware Licence Management datasheet

VMware subscription license services

Download our VMware Licence Management datasheet

VMware subscription license services

VMware Renewal Management: Know your position ahead of time to minimise the impact of VMware licensing changes on your organisation.

VMware’s licensing model has drastically changed following its acquisition by Broadcom, and organisations should expect to be hit with a much higher renewal bill as a result.

According to Gartner, it’s common for organisations to pay two or three times as much at renewal time, though some customers are facing renewal costs up to 12 times higher than their last bill*.

VMware customers aren’t left with much choice; either “upgrade” to the new subscription model or move away from VMware altogether. But for organisations that have invested heavily in VMware products over the years, transitioning to another vendor may not be possible.

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As renewal dates approach for many VMware customers, the time to prepare is now. Considering the enormity of the price hikes and the complexity of the licensing changes introduced under Broadcom, we do not recommend going into VMware renewals alone.

Invictus Partners can help you assess your current licensing position and determine the best path forward for your organisation. We do this in three phases.

Phase 1

Perpetual Licence Review

Phase 2

Transition Impact Assessment

Phase 3

Renewal Negotiation Strategy

Phase 1

VMware Licence Compliance Review

Your VMware licensing costs are guaranteed to go up come renewal time; it’s just a question of how much. To have any chance of negotiating costs down, you must have a clear understanding of your current state with VMware infrastructure and management products.

We strongly advise that you do NOT run any scripts provided to you by Broadcom/VMware. Doing so will give VMware full visibility of your existing licensing position and will reduce your bargaining power in negotiations.

Instead, our team can work with you to conduct an internal audit of your on-premise VMware licensing footprint, taking note of renewal dates and refresh cycles. As part of this process, we:

Phase 2

Phase 2: Assess the impact of moving to the VMware subscription licence model

With a comprehensive understanding of your current VMware usage and desired future state, our licensing experts can advise you as to whether moving to a subscription model is in your organisation’s best interests.

We don’t have any vested interests in VMware/Broadcom or its partners, so you can be assured our advice is objective. If we don’t believe your organisation will gain value from the new model, we will tell you.

As part of this process, we:

Phase 3

Phase 3: Prepare for VMware licence renewal negotiations

By this stage, your organisation will have the information required to start renewal discussions with Broadcom/VMware on the front foot. Now all that’s left to do is close the deal.

Our team can help you achieve an optimal negotiation outcome by:

Have VMware’s pricing changes priced you out? We can help you explore alternatives.

If it turns out that staying on as a VMware customer is not economically viable for your organisation, we can help you examine alternative pathways.

Many organisations are choosing to migrate their VMware platforms to public cloud hyperscalers, either as part of a hybrid cloud or multi-cloud architecture. However, it’s important to know that there are licence-related risks, costs and impacts associated with this move.

More often than not, organisations actually require less licences in the cloud, but this can only be determined by evaluating your current usage and understanding your future-state infrastructure requirements.

Invictus Partners can help you optimise your VMware licensing and rightsize your on-premise workloads for your chosen environment(s) to ensure you don’t move across licences you don’t need.

VMware Audit Defence: Minimise the business impact of a licence audit and strengthen your negotiation position.

In the post-Broadcom acquisition era, no VMware customer is safe from a licence audit. Now is the time to evaluate your VMware estate and uncover any compliance gaps to ensure you are prepared. If you’ve already received notice of an audit, Invictus Partners can work with you to minimise its impact on your organisation. Depending on your needs, we can play a supporting role by advising your in-house legal team on the most appropriate way to handle audit-related communications or work in the trenches with your vendor and IT teams to meet and defend any audit actions from Broadcom and its appointed auditor.

Our VMware Licence Audit Services

We can help defend against a VMware/Broadcom audit in three phases, which are available as an end-to-end service, or as separate engagements.

Phase 1

Internal VMware Audit

Phase 2

Remediation Strategy

Phase 3

VMware Audit Negotiation

VMware self-audit notification

Phase 1

Internal VMware Audit

When facing a licence audit, you must know where you stand in terms of your entitlements versus usage before sharing any information with VMware. To find out exactly what you’re dealing with, we start by performing an internal review of your VMware software usage against contracted entitlements.

Phase 2

VMware Remediation Strategy

Once we have identified where the VMware licensing exposures are, we develop an effective remediation strategy and guide you through the implementation process. If additional licences are required, the subscription model will be the only option.

Phase 3

VMware Audit Negotiation Advisory

We ensure your organisation has the right response and that your negotiation strategy is planned and effectively executed.

VMware Software Asset Management: Licence management, audit defence and vendor management in one end-to-end service.

Invictus Partners can review and monitor your VMware deployments on an ongoing basis with our VMware SAM service. This gives you a complete and continuous picture of the software you own and keeps you in an optimal licensing position by addressing any compliance exposures as they arise.

We tailor our SAM service to suit each organisation’s needs. We can provide SAM for VMware only, or as a multi-vendor solution to help you manage your entire software environment. Additionally, we can help you build an in-house SAM function or you can outsource it all to us.

 

VMware Cloud Licensing Advisory: Stay compliant while you migrate and optimally run VMware in cloud environments.

Moving VMware workloads to cloud environments introduces specific licensing considerations. Invictus Partners can help you evaluate the cost implications of running VMware workloads in the cloud compared to on premise. If you decide to move, our team can help you understand how your existing VMware licensing model translates to your chosen cloud environment.

VMware private cloud: VMware Cloud Foundation licensing

VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF) is a comprehensive platform that includes vSphere for virtualisation, vSAN for software-defined storage, NSX for software-defined networking, and vRealize Suite for management and automation. Broadcom has introduced some positive changes to this offering, which include halving the list price of the previous VCF subscription and adding higher service levels.

 

Before considering a deployment of VCF, you need to assess your current workloads, applications, and data – and how they are licensed – to understand their dependencies and requirements. Invictus Partners can work with you to:

  • Ensure compliance with VMware’s licence mobility policies during migration.
  • Keep track of VM provisioning and decommissioning to avoid over-licensing or under-licensing as VMs are dynamically created or removed.
  • Ensure proper sizing of VMs to align with licensing metrics.

VMware hybrid cloud licensing

Organisations wanting to adopt a hybrid approach can integrate on-premise VMware environments with public cloud platforms such as AWS and Azure. It’s important to understand how this model affects your licensing, especially if you will be moving workloads back and forth between environments.

VMware Cloud Connector for hybrid cloud management
VMware Cloud Connector is a tool that enables data synchronisation and workload migration between on-premise data centres and public cloud platforms.

Licensing VMware in public cloud environments

Different cloud providers offer VMware-based services, but the licensing terms vary. We can help you understand the licensing impacts of moving VMware to different cloud platforms. It should also be noted that moving to a third-party cloud makes you a target for a VMware audit – just in case you need another reason to get your licensing in order.

VMware multi-cloud licensing

Multi-cloud is becoming a strategic priority for many enterprises and VMware is positioning itself as a partner on this journey. With VMware cloud
offerings, enterprises can integrate on-premises and public cloud infrastructures into a common IT environment. Naturally, though, more cloud platforms create more licensing risk. Invictus Partners has the expertise to help you maintain consistent compliance across multiple cloud environments.

 

VMware Cross-Cloud Architecture for multi-cloud management

VMware Cross-Cloud Architecture is a suite of services designed to simplify multi-cloud management. VMware customers can use these tools and services to manage, deploy, and monitor workloads across public cloud platforms and on-premise environments.

Licensing VMware on AWS Cloud

AWS is VMware’s preferred public cloud partner for all vSphere-based workloads. VMware Cloud on AWS is an integrated offering that provides access to VMware software and services on AWS infrastructure, enabling easy migration and hybrid cloud scenarios. Invictus Partners can help you weigh up the pros and cons of VMware Cloud on AWS versus standard AWS, and help you optimise your licensing for your chosen environment.

VMware Cloud on AWS or standard AWS?
VMware Cloud on AWS is managed and billed by VMware, completely separate from any existing AWS accounts your organisation has. While these two services can be integrated, be mindful that this will add extra steps (and costs) to your migration project.

Licensing VMware on Azure

Microsoft’s Azure VMware Solution (AVS) allows organisations to run vSphere cluster natively on Microsoft Azure infrastructure. Microsoft manages the environment while you manage your workloads using the same VMware tools (vCenter, vSphere Client, vRealize Operations, etc). VMware HCX technology is also included to support migration projects. Invictus Partners can help you optimise your VMware licensing footprint and rightsize your on-premise workloads for AVS.

VMware Cloud on Azure or standard Azure?
AVS may offer an easier option for migration purposes, but it comes with huge monthly fees. Azure is already associated with bill shock, so you want to make sure the benefits of AVS are worth the investment if heading down this route. Choosing between AVS and a standard Azure environment requires an understanding of how your organisation currently uses VMware, how you plan to use it, and what you hope to achieve by moving to the cloud. Our Cloud Licensing specialists can assist you with this.

Licensing VMware on Google Cloud Platform

VMware customers can lift and shift applications to a dedicated VMware Software-Defined Data Centre in Google Cloud Platform (GCP) with Google Cloud VMware Engine (GCVE). This Google-run service comes fully integrated with other GCP services, and with VMware licences included. It’s still a good idea to review your VMware estate to make sure you are compliant before you move and that you avoid moving across licences you don’t use.

In February 2024, Broadcom and Google Cloud introduced a licence portability scheme for VCF subscription customers, enabling them to run their workloads in GCVE while maintaining licensing entitlements.

Google Cloud VMware Engine (GCVE) or standard GCP?
To determine the best migration path for your organisation, you must know your current VMware environment. Our team can evaluate this for you by conducting a VMware Licence Review, and gain an understanding of your business goals to gauge how suited the GCP environment is to fulfil your current and future-state infrastructure requirements.

 

Licensing VMware on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure


You can run VMware workloads on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) using Oracle’s VMware Solutions program. Invictus Partners can help optimise your VMware licensing ahead of a move to OCI to avoid licence-related risks and costs.

 

Licensing VMware on IBM Cloud


IBM provides hosting for VMware workloads with IBM Cloud for VMware Solutions. IBM Cloud also offers managed VMware-as-a-Service whereby IBM handles the configuration, hosting and management of your VMware environment. Invictus Partners can help you navigate an IBM Cloud migration and ensure you are correctly licensed with VMware.

The Invictus Partners difference: VMware Consulting Services

Invictus Partners is an independent software licensing advisory firm that supports and supplements our clients’ in-house commercial, procurement, IT and vendor management teams. We aren’t affiliated with VMware, Broadcom, or any other vendor, but we do have a team of specialists with up-to-date knowledge of VMware’s licensing terms, contractual clauses, agreement structures and sales processes.

We have developed proven methodologies and strategies to empower organisations to take charge of their VMware licensing, reduce costs and compliance risks, and bolster their negotiating power. Whether you need help to navigate VMware’s new licensing structures under Broadcom or to evaluate alternative vendors, we can support you.

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