So far VMware sold its virtual lab automation product, Lab Manager, charging the customers for the server product and each agent installed inside the ESX hosts.
Such model has been completely changed in mid-May as virtualization.info has learned: the new pricing scheme only counts the total number of CPUs inside the ESX hosts managed by Lab Manager.
The price per CPU is fixed at $1,295.
The server component is now free and customers can install in multiple instances.
This is good news to the relatively small businesses. With a small vi3-environment you can have an affordable labmanager setup. Since the server part is not being billed anymore you only have to pay per CPU. Lets say you have a small company which has a virtual infrastructure with a minimum of two ESX hosts (typical two-CPU with dual or quad cores) you will be paying half the price as the minimum before the pricing model was changed.
The previous model was of course based on Labmanager 2.x which had it’s own agent installed on each host. With the upcoming Labmanager 3.0 it is expected to use VirtualCenter instead of the separate agents (Stage Manager which uses the same technology concepts as Labmanager already uses VirtualCenter). In that case there aren’t any agents installed and VMware obviously cannot bill you for something you are not installing. Lets hope the changing in pricing will lead to a higher penetration in the SMB market.