About the IBM updated licensing scheme for WebSphere...

I previously blogged about IBM middleware licensing that is now replaced with a new licensing scheme, which IBM called Processor Value Unit (PVU) Licensing. WebSphere administrators and IT architects must take this licensing into consideration for operational costs. In a nutshell, this is how IBM defined PVU as: "A Processor Value Unit is a pricing charge metric for license entitlements which is based upon the quantity of processor cores used for a given product." More details on this can be read in this URL where you'll find the PVU's for supported processor architectures. You can also use the IBM's PVU calculator. In it, Sun UltraSPARC processors are under RISC and AMD processors can be found in x86.

For deployment on the Sun Solaris platform, here are a couple of things that I'd like to highlight:

  • Niagara-based servers (e.g. T1000/T2000) has the best price/performance. The reason: US-T1 processor used in these systems require 30 PVU per core. That translates to 240 PVUs for a fully loaded 8-core system. If you compare this against other multi-core processors (i.e. Intel Itanium, HP PA-RISC, IBM Power5, Sun US-IV), they require 100 PVU per core; thus, for a system with 8 cores, it translates to 800 PVU's. (Keep in mind that US-T1 processor also does 4 simultaneous thread executions per core -- more throughput than the traditional RISC processors.) You can determine the license costs by multiplying the PVU to the dollar amount for the software (e.g. WAS). On the performance side, Sun has two best SPECjAppServer 2004 benchmark results with single node/instance WebSphere and WebLogic Application Servers. Compare this performance factor and PVU's requirement against other processors, you'll find the advantages in the Niagara servers. You can even get energy rebate from PG&E! Also, take a look at the space+watts consumption vs performance, you'll see the advantages in the Niagara servers.
  • To take advantage of Sub-Capacity Licensing, you can use Solaris 10 Containers. With sub-capacity licensing, you can control your deployment costs while being able to consolidate on larger SMP servers. Solaris Container requires almost zero overhead and does not require any additional or specialized hardware/software. It is all built in the Solaris operating environment as of Solaris 10.
Besides, do you know Ask the similar questions about other vendors' OS, processor, roadmap, compatibility, etc. That's all for now from a Solution Architect point of view...

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