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HP Gets Virtual

Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) today overhauled the pricing strategy for server virtualization software running on its HP-UX operating system in an attempt to lure more customers over to its Adaptive Enterprise strategy (see HP Drives Adoption ).

Virtualization, which splits a physical server into a number of different partitions for different workloads, is now being touted by HP as a major element of its Adaptive Enterprise strategy.

Adaptive Enterprise is a somewhat loosely defined campaign meant to serve as a launchpad for a range of products and services similar to those offered by IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM). Among Adaptive Enterprise catchphrases are business continuity, information lifecycle management (ILM), and of course, the "V" word.

As part of this effort, HP today announced its HP-UX 11i Virtualization Licensing Program for the its Integrity and HP 9000 servers. Previously, users needed to license software for the entire server, whereas now they only need to license the software for the virtual partitions within the machine they are working on.

The idea is that users can be charged on a per-processor basis, rather than charging for the servers overall processor capacity. This strategy is viewed as a better way to deal with constantly fluctuating workloads. ”You may only be running the software for a quarter of that machine, so you can license it for a quarter of that machine,” says Nick van der Zweep, HP’s director of virtualization and utility computing.

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