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Long Distance vMotion License


While presenting vSphere 6 changes this week, I was asked what vSphere Edition was required to get a Long Distance vMotion License. I hadn’t thought about it before, and stated that I thought it was part of the basic vMotion licensing. During a break, some colleagues told me they thought it was part of Enterprise Plus. That had me floored. How could vSphere check for a Long Distance vMotion license as opposed to a normal one? Is there some network check of the round trip time? What exactly is being licensed?

Some checking of source material is required here. First of all, KB 2106949 – Long Distance vMotion requirements in VMware vSphere 6.0. The license is right there in black-and-white:

Your license must cover vMotion across long distances. The cross vCenter and long distance vMotion features require an Enterprise Plus license. For more information, see Compare vSphere Editions.

Well, let’s follow the link. Sure enough…

vMotion Feature License

So what’s being checked? Well, let’s read between the lines. Other than the original guidance of 100ms round trip time (which KB 2106949 now lists as 150 ms), 250Mbs of bandwidth per vMotion operation is required. This implies a combined vMotion and Storage vMotion (aka XvMotion, enhanced vMotion, etc) which we know is included in Essentials Plus. So again, what’s being done at the license check level?

The only thing that really make sense here is the crossing of the vCenter boundary. Put another way, not only is cross-vCenter vMotion supported, but those vCenters can be 100/150ms rtt away in latency.

Long-Distance vMotion really implies Cross-vCenter vMotion as well.

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John White is walking the path to virtualization mastery.

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