vSphere 5.1: VMware schafft ungeliebtes Lizenzmodell ab

VMware hat auf seiner Hausmesse VMworld seine neue Virtualisierungsplattform vSphere 5.1 vorgestellt. Neben technischen Neuerungen gibt es auch ein neues Lizenzmodell, mit dem VMware auf heftige Kritik seiner Kunden reagiert.

Beim neuen Lizenzmodell für vSphere 5 spielt es keine Rolle mehr, wie viele CPU-Kerne und wie viel RAM in einem Rechner stecken. Auch die Zahl der virtuellen Maschinen und die Menge des virtuellen Speichers sind nicht mehr beschränkt. Stattdessen richtet sich der Lizenzpreis nun, wie zuvor bei vSphere 4, nach der Zahl der Prozessoren. Das neue Lizenzmodell gilt für vSphere 5.0 und 5.1.

Mit vSphere 5.0 hatte VMware sein VRAM-Lizenzmodell eingeführt, bei dem Kunden eine bestimmte Menge virtueller Speicher zur Verfügung steht, den er auf beliebige virtuelle Maschinen verteilen kann. Nach heftiger Kritik von Kunden hatte VMware das Lizenzmodell noch vor Marktstart der Software leicht verändert und den nutzbaren VRAM in den einzelnen Lizenzstufen erhöht. Nun macht VMware einen großen Schritt und kehrt zu einer Abrechnung nach Prozessor zurück.

Die Preise für vSphere beginnen bei 83 US-Dollar pro Prozessor. VMware Essentials gibt es für 495 US-Dollar, VMware vSphere Essentials Plus kostet 4.495 US-Dollar. Die Essentials-Kits sind auf 6 CPUs und 3 Hosts beschränkt. Details zum neuen Lizenzmodell hat VMware in einem Whitepaper zusammengefasst.

Neuerungen in VMware vSphere 5.1

Darüber hinaus sind rund 100 Verbesserungen in die Virtualisierungsplattform eingeflossen. So unterstützen die VMs unter vSphere 5.1 nun bis zu 64 virtuelle CPUs und es gibt ein neues Virtual-Machine-Format, das größere VMs, Leistungszähler für CPUs und eine virtuelle geteilte Grafikbeschleunigung bietet.

VMware vMotion wurde so erweitert, dass sich VMs nun ohne Shared Storage in Echtzeit migrieren lassen. Zudem gibt es mit vSphere Data Protection eine neue Funktion für einfachere VM-Backups, -Recovery und -Replikationen. VMware vSphere Replication soll für einen kostengünstigen Disaster-Schutz sorgen.

In VMware vSphere 5.1 wurde auch der vSphere Distributed Switch ausgebaut. Er soll nun bis zu 500 vernetzte Hosts pro Distributed Switch unterstützen.

Eine Zusammenfassung der wichtigsten Neuerungen gibt es unter vmware.com.

VMware vSphere 5.1 soll ab dem 11. September 2012 verfügbar sein.

Workstation Zealot: VMware Workstation 9 – Now Available World-Wide!

The Workstation team is thrilled to introduce VMware Workstation 9.  It’s been 12 years since Workstation first launched and dramatically changed the way technical professionals worked with virtual machines.   Since then the team has worked to bring bring innovation with each new release.  We feel Workstation 9 continues this tradition.

Workstation 9 builds on its broad operating system support, rich user experience, and comprehensive feature set to bring you best-in-class Windows 8 support, all new Web interface, restricted virtual machines and much more.  Not only does Workstation 9 change the way you work with virtual machines whether they reside on your PC or in the datacenter, it allows you to work when and where you want.

Let’s take a look at what Workstation 9 can do:

Best in Class Windows 8 Support


(click images to zoom)

To help you and your organization evaluate Windows 8, master the Metro UI and test your applications, VMware Workstation 9 is optimized for running Windows 8 virtual machines and running on Windows 8 PCs. Easy Install simplifies the task of creating Windows 8 virtual machines, Unity mode will intelligently scale to handle applications formerly known as Metro and multi-touch support will ensure you get the true Windows 8 experience in a virtual machine.

Access from Almost any Device

Workstation’s new web interface allows you to access your virtual machines running in Workstation or vSphere from a tablet, smart phone, PC or any device with a modern browser.  No plugins necessary. Now you can power on, off, or suspend your virtual machines and interact with them from almost anywhere.

Restricted Virtual Machines

Create virtual machines that require a runtime password, and another password to change virtual machine settings. Once set, send the virtual machine with restrictions to anyone to run on their Mac, Windows, or Linux machines by using Workstation 9, VMware Fusion 5, VMware Fusion 5 Professional, or VMware Player 5.

Download from vSphere

In Workstation 8 we introduced the ability to upload a virtual machine from your PC to vSphere. Workstation 9 takes the next step and allows you to drag and drop a virtual machine from vSphere to your PC. It’s the easiest way to move virtual machines between your PC and your internal cloud.

Better 3D Graphics

Workstation 9 includes support for the new Windows Metro interface, significant performance and rendering improvements to better support professional graphical applications such as AutoCAD and SolidWorks, Anti-Aliasing, OpenGL 2.1 for Linux operating systems and even an improved graphics driver for Windows XP.

Read the VMware Workstation 9 release notes for a complete list of new features.

What if I just bought VMware Workstation 8?

If you purchased VMware Workstation 8 (Full license or upgrade) between 08/01/2012 and 09/30/2012 you are eligible for a complimentary electronic upgrade under the VMware Workstation 9 Technology Guarantee Program (TGP).  To learn how to get your complimentary upgrade click here.

If you cannot wait to for your complimentary upgrade to VMware Workstation 8, we suggest you make the most of our free 30-day trial offer.

Availability and pricing

VMware Workstation 9 is immediately available for purchase from the VMware online store for $249 (US) and upgrades from VMware Workstation 7.x and 8.x are available for $119 (US). VMware Workstation can also be purchased through VMware’s network of resellers and distributors.

Buy Workstation 9
Upgrade to Workstation 9

Customers with an active support and subscription (“SnS”) contract are eligible to upgrade to Workstation 9 for free in the My VMware portal.  If you are not familiar with My VMware, check out this KB Article with video.

We hope you enjoy using VMware Workstation 9 as much as we enjoyed creating it.

The VMware Workstation Team

If you would like to discuss Workstation 9 in more detail, please join us in the VMware Workstation community.

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Workstation 9 und Fusion 5: VMware unterstützt Windows 8 und Mountain Lion

VMware hat seine Desktop-Virtualisierungs-Lösungen für Windows und Mac in neuen Versionen veröffentlicht. VMware Workstation 9 und Fusion 5 unterstützen beide Windows 8 und sollen deutlich schneller sein als ihre Vorgänger.

VMware Workstation 9 unterstützt von Haus aus Windows 8, einschließlich Multitouch und Unity-Modus für einzelne Applikationen. Zudem hat VMware die virtuellen Maschinen nach eigenen Angaben deutlich verbessert: Sie sollen schneller starten, unterstützen USB 3.0 in virtuellen Maschinen, die unter Windows 8 laufen, sind an Intels Ivy-Bridge-Prozessoren angepasst und unterstützen OpenGL 2.1 unter Linux. Auch die 3D-Leistung der Gastsysteme soll deutlich besser sein als beim Vorgänger.

Ein neues Webinterface gewährt auf Tablets und Smartphones Zugriff auf virtuelle Maschinen, die unter VMware Workstation oder vSphere laufen. Das Ganze funktioniert ohne Flash oder anderen Browser-Plugins.

Neu ist auch die Möglichkeit, eingeschränkte virtuelle Maschinen anzulegen (Restricted Virtual Machines). Administratoren können so verhindern, dass Nutzer Dateien zwischen dem virtuellen und physischen Desktop per Drag-and-Drop austauschen, Geräte anschließen oder die Einstellungen der virtuellen Maschine verändern. Mit solchen Einstellungen versehene virtuelle Maschinen können zudem verschlüsselt und verteilt werden. Sie laufen unter Windows, Linux und Mac OS X mit VMware Workstation 9, Fusion 5 oder dem VMware Player 5.

VMware Workstation 9 ist ab sofort für 249 US-Dollar erhältlich, Upgrades kosten 119 US-Dollar. Wer VMware Workstation 8 seit dem 1. August 2012 erworben hat, erhält ein kostenloses Upgrade. Außerdem steht eine kostenlose Testversion zum Download bereit.

Fusion 5 für Mac OS X

VMware Fusion 5 ist für Mac OS X 10.8 alias Mountain Lion angepasst und nutzt einige der Neuerungen von Apples aktuellem Betriebssystem. Windows-Programme können damit vom Launchpad aus gestartet und mit Airplay-Mirroring auf einem Apple TV gestreamt werden. Auch das Benachrichtigungssystem von Mountain Lion wird unterstützt. Zudem ist die Software für Retina-Displays angepasst, unterstützt USB 3.0 und Windwos 8 als Gastsystem.

Dabei soll Fusion 5 bis zu 40 Prozent schneller sein, für längere Akkulaufzeiten sorgen und mehr 3D-Leistung bieten als der Vorgänger. Das Umschalten zwischen Mac und Windows soll dank 1-Klick-Snapshots einfach und schnell funktionieren.

Die Professional-Variante von Fusion 5 soll darüber hinaus mehr Betriebssysteme unterstützen und wie die Workstation 9 die Erstellung eingeschränkter virtueller Maschinen erlauben. Sie enthält darüber hinaus Lizenzen für den VMware Player 5.

VMware Fusion 5 und VMware Fusion 5 Professional sind ab sofort für 49,99 beziehungsweise 99,99 US-Dollar erhältlich. Wer VMware Fusion 4 nach dem 25. Juli 2012 gekauft hat, erhält ein kostenloses Upgrade.

VMworld 2012 Hands on Labs Online

The VMware Hands on Labs Online Beta will go live after VMworld US, you can register for the public beta and Join the hands-on labs community. The VMware Hands-on Labs Online - Public Beta gives you access to Hands-on Labs developed by VMware, their partners and community members.

VMware will be opening their Public Beta for:
  • Hands-on Labs in your browser – Explore the latest VMware products at your fingertip
  • Access to the Public Beta platform using the latest VMware Cloud Infrastructure products
  • If you would like to test out VMware's new portal please register to be on the list.


The Hands-on Labs Online portal will enter the Public Beta stage shortly and will steadily add users following VMworld. VMware is looking for brave volunteers to take labs, exercise the user interface and share your experiences.


VMworld 2012 Hands on Labs Overview

VMware Hands on Labs Online – Beta

New Book – The Official VCP5 Certification Guide

Trust the bestselling Official Cert Guide series from VMware Press to help you learn, prepare, and practice for VCP5 exam success. They are the only VMware authorized self-study books and are built with the objective of providing assessment, review, and practice to help ensure you are fully prepared for your certification exam.

The Official VCP5 Certification Guide presents you with an organized test preparation routine through the use of proven series elements and techniques. “Do I Know This Already?” quizzes open each chapter and enable you to decide how much time you need to spend on each section. Exam topic lists make referencing easy. Chapter-ending Exam Preparation Tasks help you drill on key concepts you must know thoroughly.


  • Master VMware VCP510 exam topics
  • Assess your knowledge with chapter-opening quizzes
  • Review key concepts with exam preparation tasks
  • Practice with realistic exam questions on the DVD
The Official VCP5 Certification Guide focuses specifically on the objectives for the VCP510 VMware Certified Professional on vSphere 5. VMware Certified Instructor (VCI) Bill Ferguson shares preparation hints and test-taking tips, helping you identify areas of weakness and improve both your conceptual knowledge and hands-on skills. Material is presented in a concise manner, focusing on increasing your understanding and retention of exam topics.

The companion DVD contains a powerful Pearson IT Certification Practice Test engine that enables you to focus on individual topic areas or take a complete, timed exam. The assessment engine also tracks your performance and provides feedback on a module-by-module basis, laying out a complete assessment of your knowledge to help you focus your study where it is needed most. 

Well-regarded for its level of detail, assessment features, comprehensive design scenarios, and challenging review questions and exercises, this official study guide helps you master the concepts and techniques that will enable you to succeed on the exam the first time.

The official study guide helps you master all the topics on the VCP510 exam, including:


  • Understanding how virtualization can best be integrated into today's real-world IT environments
  • Recognizing what to change, and what to leave alone
  • Planning, installing, configuring, and upgrading vCenter Server and VMware ESXi Planning and configuring vSphere networking and storage
  • Deploying and Administering Virtual Machines and vApps
  • Establishing and Maintaining Service Levels
  • Performing basic troubleshooting
  • Monitoring vSphere implementations
  • Managing vCenter Server alarms
  • Preparing for the future of VMware virtualization
The Official VCP5 Certification Guide is part of a recommended learning path from VMware that includes simulation and hands-on training from authorized VMware instructors and self-study products from VMware Press. To find out more about instructor-led training, e-learning, and hands-on instruction offered worldwide, please visit www.vmware.com/training.

VMware vSphere Blog: vSphere HA isolation response… which to use when?

By Duncan Epping, Principal Architect.

A while back I wrote this article about a split brain scenario with vSphere HA. Although we have multiple techniques to mitigate these scenarios it is always better to prevent. I had already blogged about this before but I figured it wouldn’t hurt to get this out again and elaborate on it a bit more.

First some basics…

What is an “Isolation Response”?

The isolation response refers to the action that vSphere HA takes when the heartbeat network is isolated. The heartbeat network is usually the management network of an ESXi host. When a host does not receive any heartbeats it will trigger the response after an X number of seconds. So when exactly? Well that depends if the host is a slave or a master. This is the timeline:

Isolation of a slave

  • T0 – Isolation of the host (slave)
  • T10s – Slave enters “election state”
  • T25s – Slave elects itself as master
  • T25s – Slave pings “isolation addresses”
  • T30s – Slave declares itself isolated and “triggers” isolation response

Isolation of a master

  • T0 – Isolation of the host (master)
  • T0 – Master pings “isolation addresses”
  • T5s – Master declares itself isolated and “triggers” isolation response

What are my options?

Today there are three options for the isolation response. The responses is what the host will do for the virtual machines running on that host when it has validated it is isolated.

  1. Power off – When a network isolation occurs all VMs are powered off. It is a hard stop.
  2. Shut down – When a network isolation occurs all VMs running on that host are shut down via VMware Tools. If this is not successful within 5 minutes a “power off” will be executed.
  3. Leave powered on – When a network isolation occurs on the host the state of the VMs remains unchanged.

Now that we know what the options are. Which one should you use? Well this depends on your environment. Are you using iSCSI/NAS? Do you have a converged network infrastructure? We’ve put the most common scenarios in a table.

Likelihood that host will retain access to VM datastores Likelihood that host will retain access to VM network Recommended Isolation policy Explanation
Likely Likely Leave Powered On VM is running fine so why power it off?
Likely Unlikely Either Leave Powered On or Shutdown Choose shutdown to allow HA to restart VMs on hosts that are not isolated and hence are likely to have access to storage
Unlikely Likely Power Off Use Power Off to avoid having two instances of the same VM on the VM network
Unlikely Unlikely Leave Powered On or Power Off Leave Powered on if the VM can recover from the network/datastore outage if it is not restarted because of the isolation, and Power Off if it likely can’t.

But why is it important…. Well just imagine you pick “leave powered on” and you have a converged network environment and are using iSCSI storage, chances are fairly big that when the host management network is isolated… so is the virtual machine network and the storage for your virtual machine. In that case, having the virtual machine restarted will reduce the amount of “downtime” from an “application / service” perspective.

I hope this helps making the right decision for the vSphere HA isolation response. Although it is just a small part of what vSphere HA does, it is important to understand the impact a wrong decision can have.

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VMware vSphere Blog: Some useful vmkfstools ‘hidden’ options

I was recently playing around with vmkfstools, checking out a few things for one of our storage partners. I noticed that I was using some undocumented options to look at a few things, and thought I would share them with you here.

 

1. Display hosts which are actively using a volume

~ # vmkfstools –activehosts /vmfs/volumes/VNX-20
Found 1 actively heartbeating hosts on volume '/vmfs/volumes/VNX-20'
(1): MAC address 98:4b:e1:0a:24:d8

This option will show the management interface MAC address of any hosts which is actively using a datastore. This is exactly what vSphere HA uses to see if a host is still active. It walks through the heartbeat records on the VMFS and checks which are active. This might take a few moments to run as it has to wait for the heartbeat record to age and refresh. It then it displays the MAC address of the owner.

 

2. Display File Metadata, including Lock Information

~ # vmkfstools -D /vmfs/volumes/VNX-20/COR-XP-PRO/COR-XP-PRO.vmdk
Lock [type 10c00001 offset 236560384 v 44, hb offset 4091904
gen 6155, mode 0, owner 00000000-00000000-0000-000000000000 mtime 23668 nHld 0 n Ovf 0]
Addr <4, 558, 4>, gen 6, links 1, type reg, flags 0, uid 0, gid 0, mode 600
len 492, nb 0 tbz 0, cow 0, newSinceEpoch 0, zla 4305, bs 8192

Note that when you run this command, the information is also captured in the vmkernel.log. In fact, the vm-support log utility will run this command to capture this information in the log bundle:

~ # tail -f /var/log/vmkernel.log
2012-07-31T10:05:00.366Z cpu6:5140275)FS3: 171: <START COR-XP-PRO.vmdk>
2012-07-31T10:05:00.366Z cpu6:5140275)Lock [type 10c00001 offset 236560384 v 44, hb offset 4091904 gen 6155, mode 0, owner 00000000-00000000-0000-000000000000 mtime 23668 nHld 0 nOvf 0]
2012-07-31T10:05:00.366Z cpu6:5140275)Addr <4, 558, 4>, gen 6, links 1, type reg, flags 0×0, uid 0, gid 0, mode 600 len 492, nb 0 tbz 0, cow 0, newSinceEpoch 0 zla 4305, bs 8192
2012-07-31T10:05:00.366Z cpu6:5140275)FS3: 173: <END COR-XP-PRO.vmdk>

The owner field would again display the MAC address of the lock owner. All 0's in the owner field implies that the host which ran the vmkfstools command owns the lock. The mtime field gives you an indication on whether the lock is getting updated or not.

 

3. VMDK Block Mappings

This command is very useful for displaying the mappings of VMFS file blocks to a VMDK. It can also be used to display the layout of a VMDK if you are concerned that a thin provisioned VMDK might be fragmented from a block allocation perspective.

~ # vmkfstools -t0 /vmfs/volumes/VNX-20/COR-XP-PRO/COR-XP-PRO.vmdk
Mapping for file /vmfs/volumes/VNX-20/COR-XP-PRO/COR-XP-PRO.vmdk (21474836480 bytes in size):
[0:   157286400] –> [VMFS -- LVID:4f438ba4-a4d98058-16d5-984be10a24d8/4f438ba3-53edb654-b1b1-984be10a24d8/1:(33206304768 -->  33363591168)]
[157286400:    51380224] –> [VMFS -- LVID:4f438ba4-a4d98058-16d5-984be10a24d8/4f438ba3-53edb654-b1b1-984be10a24d8/1:(33153875968 -->  33205256192)]
[208666624: 21266169856] –> [VMFS -- LVID:4f438ba4-a4d98058-16d5-984be10a24d8/4f438ba3-53edb654-b1b1-984be10a24d8/1:(33363591168 -->  54629761024)]

The first set of numbers are the VMDK block mappings, and the second set of numbers at the end of the line are VMFS block mappings. In my setup, even though the range of VMFS blocks seem contiguous, they map to the VMDK in a different order:

  • VMDK chunk 0 -> VMFS chunk 1 (150MB)
  • VMDK chunk 1 -> VMFS chunk 0 (49MB)
  • VMDK chunk 2 -> VMFS chunk 2 (~2TB)

The double dashes between the VMFS & LVID  represent features of the VMDK. For example, an upper-case Z represents a lazy zeroed VMDK chunk, and an R would represent a read-only chunk. The long numbers following LVID represent the Device UUID and the VMFS UUID respectively. The /1 is the snapshot ID and is incremented when the volume is resignatured.

The VMFS UUIID can also be observed using the esxcli storage vmfs extent list command which shows both the VMFS UUID and NAA ID (SCSI identifier).

The -t0 option can only be pointed at VMDK files. To look at attributes of other files on a VMFS volume, the -p0 option can be used.

4. Display VMFS File Block Details

~ # vmkfstools -P -v10 /vmfs/volumes/VNX-20
VMFS-5.54 file system spanning 1 partitions.
File system label (if any): VNX-20
Mode: public
Capacity 209648091136 (199936 file blocks * 1048576), 88965382144 (84844 blocks) avail
Volume Creation Time: Tue Feb 21 12:18:44 2012
Files (max/free): 130000/129954
Ptr Blocks (max/free): 64512/64379
Sub Blocks (max/free): 32000/31994
Secondary Ptr Blocks (max/free): 256/256
File Blocks (overcommit/used/overcommit %): 0/115092/0
Ptr Blocks  (overcommit/used/overcommit %): 0/133/0
Sub Blocks  (overcommit/used/overcommit %): 0/6/0
UUID: 4f438ba4-018084e0-11a1-984be10a24d8
Partitions spanned (on "lvm"):
        naa.6006048cb898fa77617c749e6aef2e5b:1
DISKLIB-LIB   : Getting VAAI support status for /vmfs/volumes/VNX-20
Is Native Snapshot Capable: NO
~ #

This is a useful command to see how many file, pointer and sub-blocks on a VMFS are available and consumed. It is also a nice way to get VMFS version and extent count information as well as the file block size. Although this is now 1MB (1048576) in newly created VMFS-5, it could be 1,2,4 or 8MB in VMFS-3 or VMFS-5 upgraded from VMFS-3.

Useful options – I'm not sure why we hide them.

 

Get notification of these blogs postings and more VMware Storage information by following me on Twitter: Twitter @VMwareStorage

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Release: VMware WSX July Tech Preview

VMware Offers vCloud “Test-Drive” with New Evaluation Service

August 17th, 2012

On August 15th, vCloud, the cloud computing initiative from VMware announced to offer a vCloud Service Evaluation which allows customers to “test-drive” a cloud built on the VMware platform.
The…

Release: VMware vCenter Server 5.0 Update 1b

August 17th, 2012

Yesterday VMware announced the availability of a new update for vCenter Server 5.0 just about a month after the release of the update 1a.
This is mainly a patch release…

Microsoft adds Windows Server 2012 to its Windows Azure Virtual Machine Gallery

August 17th, 2012

While Developers and IT Pro’s are eagerly waiting for Windows Server 2012 to appear on Microsoft MSDN or Technet, Microsoft yesterday announced that it already has added Windows Server 2012…

Microsoft releases Beta of Virtual Machine Converter plug-in for vSphere Client

August 17th, 2012

Microsoft has announced that a beta version of its Microsoft Virtual Machine Converter Plug-in for VMware vSphere Client version 1.0 is available on Microsoft Connect.
The tool which is a…

Release: oVirt 3.1

August 16th, 2012

On August 8th oVirt announced release 3.1, this is the second official release of this free platform.
The oVirt project provides a fully featured management platform for virtual machines hosted…

Fedora 18 introduces online disk snapshots

August 13th, 2012

Today Linux-KVM published a post that shows the basics of a new feature coming with Fedora 18, the ability to take online snapshots of virtual disks with no downtime….

Release: Microsoft Virtual Machine Servicing Tool 2012

August 13th, 2012

Microsoft has released a new version of its Virtual Machine Servicing Tool (VSMT) solution accelerator. This tool is the next version of the VSMT 3.0 which was released in September…

Microsoft announces support for FreeBSD on Hyper-V

August 10th, 2012

Microsoft yesterday announced that it now officially supports running FreeBSD version 8.2 as a guest OS in a Hyper-V Virtual Machine running on top of Windows Server 2008 R2. Microsoft…

Microsoft publishes online virtualization comparison tool targeting VMware

August 9th, 2012

Microsoft has released an online virtualization comparison tool, targeted directly against VMware. The website hosting the Microsoft Server Virtualization Tool compares the software acquisition and support costs between Windows Server…

VMware acquires Log Insight

August 8th, 2012

Yesterday Pattern Insight, a company located in Mountain View, CA and specialized in data mining and search platforms, announced to have reached an agreement with VMware to sell its Log…

Paper: Performance Tuning Guidelines for Windows Server 2012

August 8th, 2012

Microsoft has released a paper titled: Performance Tuning Guidelines for Windows Server 2012. The paper which contains 150 pages is very comprehensive and contains performance recommendations for Server Hardware and…

Release: vOPS Server Explorer 5.1

August 7th, 2012

vOPS Server Explorer (formerly VKernel vScope Explorer) is a suite composed of three free utilities: vScope Explorer, SearchMyVM Explorer and the brand new Environment Explorer.
The new entry, Environment Explorer…

Release: Symantec Workspace Virtualization and Workspace Streaming 7.5 Beta

August 6th, 2012

Last week Symantec announced the Beta Version of Symantec Workspace Virtualization and Workspace Streaming 7.5.
Symantec Workspace Virtualization and Workspace Streaming are applications created to improve management and control over…

EMC partners with Lenovo

August 3rd, 2012

Lenovo, the largest PC company in China and the world’s second-largest PC vendor, has signed an agreement with EMC to promote the sale of equipment storage and server devices for…

 
Monthly Archive

Cloud Player: Amazon startet Konkurrenz für iTunes Match

Amazon erweitert sein Musikangebot Cloud Player um "Scan and Match", eine Funktion, die an iTunes Match erinnert. Nutzer können so ihre Musiksammlung aus der Cloud nutzen, ohne sie erst hochladen zu müssen.

Amazon hat für seinen Cloud Player Verträge mit den großen Plattenfirmen Sony, EMI, Universal und Warner sowie 150 weiteren kleineren Distributoren, Aggregatoren und Musikverlagen geschlossen. Die Verträge erlauben Amazon die Einführung von "Scan and Match", einer neuen Funktion, die ähnlich wie iTunes Match die Musiksammlung des Nutzers durchsucht und sämtliche Titel, die auch in Amazons Katalog mit 20 Millionen Musikstücken vorhanden sind, in der Cloud verfügbar macht. Nutzer des Cloud Player können so von überall auf ihre Musiksammlung zugreifen, ohne sie zuvor bei Amazon hochladen zu müssen.

Weiterhin gilt: Bei Amazon MP3 gekaufte Musik landet automatisch im Cloud Player, das gilt auch rückwirkend. Durchsucht wird die in iTunes und dem Windows Media Player gespeicherte Musik, so dass auch bei iTunes gekaufte Titel über Amazons Dienst zur Verfügung stehen. Dabei werden alle Musikstücke in einer Qualität von 256 KBit/s zur Verfügung gestellt.

Der Zugriff auf die über Cloud Player verfügbare Musik ist über den Browser, aber auch über diverse Geräte wie Kindle Fire, iPhone, iPod touch und Android-Geräte möglich. Zudem sollen demnächst die Player von Roku und Sonos unterstützt werden.

Angeboten wird Cloud Player in einer kostenlosen und in einer kostenpflichtigen Variante: Nutzer der kostenlosen Version Cloud Player Free können dort ihre bei Amazon MP3 gekaufte Musik speichern und zusätzlich 250 Titel importieren. Nutzer des Cloud Player Premium zahlen 24,99 US-Dollar im Jahr und können bis zu 250.000 Songs speichern. Bei Amazon MP3 gekaufte Titel zählen nicht mit.

Bislang steht der Amazon Cloud Player allerdings in Deutschland nicht zur Verfügung.

Nachtrag vom 1. August 2012, 16:30 Uhr

In den USA hat Amazon zudem die iPad-App "Amazon Instant Video" vorgestellt, mit der das Video-on-Demand-Programm für Prime-Abonnenten auf dem Apple-Tablet angesehen werden kann. Die App ist derzeit nur im US-Appstore von Apple erhältlich und bietet Zugriff auf Filme und Serien von Amazon Prime Instant Video.

Das Filmmaterial kann zum Offlinegebrauch auf das iPad heruntergeladen werden. Über Whispersync soll sichergestellt werden, dass die Wiedergabe nahtlos an der gleichen Stelle fortgesetzt werden kann. Das soll über alle verbundenen Geräte möglich sein, die Zugriff auf Amazon Prime Instant Video haben. Mit der Watchlist-Funktion in der iPad-App können Videos zum späteren Anschauen in einer Liste gespeichert werden, die ebenfalls über Gerätegrenzen hinweg synchronisiert wird. Wer einen sogenannten Season-Pass für eine Serie besitzt, kann die jeweilige Folge damit einen Tag nach der Fernsehausstrahlung auf dem iPad sehen, das den Zuschauer automatisch daran erinnert.

Nachtrag vom 1. August 2012, 14:40 Uhr:

Der Preis für den Cloud Player liegt bei 24,99 US-Dollar im Jahr, nicht im Monat.