Feeds

IBM and Oracle must change software pricing – AMD

Or be open sourced away

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

AMD expects companies like Oracle and IBM - devising Byzantine pricing metrics for their software in virtualized environments - will be forced to compromise on licensing by their customers or risk losing business to open source.

The chip manufacturer believes concessions are vital for vendors in order to make their licensing easier to understand and more palatable for enterprises, and also to help virtualization take off in the small and medium business (SMB) market.

So, what's the main concession that will be made? AMD believes Oracle and IBM will be forced to offer site licenses.

AMD's director of commercial solutions Margaret Lewis told The Register Oracle's multiplier pricing for multicore is "esoteric." "Anything that's hard to multiply introduces a complex equation that isn't going to be as friendly to the user," she said.

Oracle last year split from a growing industry consensus on multicore around charging per chip, rather than per core, and on virtualization, that will see vendors like Microsoft allow multiple instances of their software to run on a chip in a virtualized scenario. Oracle's system uses a variety of multipliers, depending on the processor being used.

IBM is also eschewing the industry consensus, having recently announced plans by the end of 2006 to charge using a set of in-house devised metrics - called Power Value Units - that charge the user based on the processors' "power".

AMD is in "deep," on-going dialogue with licensing groups at Oracle among others to devise sensible licensing metrics for multicore and virtualization.

Lewis claimed, though, AMD's influence is limited because it can't tell partners how to sell their products. "With a lot of conversations we try to drive it without being heavy handed," Lewis said. "The end user has the power to drive this.

"What's going to happen for a lot of enterprise customers is they are going to negotiate software licenses by site. To make licensing more acceptable, vendors will make concessions by site. As software licensing moves out into the midmarket and SMBs this will have to be addressed. One solution is to have multiple instances with one license on one machine - the Microsoft approach."

Lewis believes open source - particularly Xen and the Linux, Apache, MySQL and Perl/PHP/Python LAMP stack - will provide leverage on closed source vendors. Without that leverage, closed-source vendors' pricing will delay uptake of virtualization at large, as only certain types of applications move to virtualization.

"Open source gets away from some of these grassroots licensing issues. The fact that Xen is being looked at with such interest and [there are] solutions like LAMP, means there's a group of people who have sidestepped the licensing issue," Lewis said. "Some people will look at using an open source database instead of Oracle or DB2."®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Docker's app containers are coming to Windows Server, says Microsoft
MS chases app deployment speeds already enjoyed by Linux devs
IBM storage revenues sink: 'We are disappointed,' says CEO
Time to put the storage biz up for sale?
'Hmm, why CAN'T I run a water pipe through that rack of media servers?'
Leaving Las Vegas for Armenia kludging and Dubai dune bashing
'Urika': Cray unveils new 1,500-core big data crunching monster
6TB of DRAM, 38TB of SSD flash and 120TB of disk storage
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
SDI wars: WTF is software defined infrastructure?
This time we play for ALL the marbles
Windows 10: Forget Cloudobile, put Security and Privacy First
But - dammit - It would be insane to say 'don't collect, because NSA'
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.