VMware Cloud Provider VMware vCloud Usage Meter

Understanding vSAN Metering and Reporting


Usage metering plays an important role for partners who wish to utilize VMware products on a pay-as-you-grow basis.  It is an important part of the VCCP program because it gives providers visibility on their VMware product usage, which helps them plan their infrastructure spending and growth strategy. The metering of the main VMware products that are part of the program is automated and facilitated by the Usage Meter virtual appliance.

One of these VMware products is vSAN. VMware vSAN is a software-defined, enterprise storage solution that supports hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) systems. vSAN aggregates local or direct-attached data storage devices to create a single storage pool shared across all hosts in a vSAN cluster.

Figure 1: vSAN Datastore

How is vSAN usage metered?

When a vCenter server is added for metering in the Usage Meter web application, Usage Meter automatically detects a cluster with enabled vSAN. The metering of vSAN starts immediately after the vCenter product certificate is accepted in the Usage Meter web application.

Figure 2: vCloud Usage Meter 4.5 Web Application

vSAN usage is metered on a cluster level. Usage Meter collects data every 1 hour for the used storage capacity and checks which vSAN features are used on a vSAN cluster level.

If a vSAN feature is detected to be used by a VM part of the vSAN cluster, then the whole vSAN cluster is considered using this feature.

Which vSAN versions are compatible with Usage Meter?

With the latest Usage Meter 4.5, we aim to catch up with metering the vSAN features that are available today. The list of features available for metering today corresponds to vSAN 7.0 Update 1. Here is the list of all vSAN editions that Usage Meter 4.4 and 4.5 are compatible with:

vCloud Usage Meter 4.4vCloud Usage Meter 4.5
VMware vSAN™ 7.0.3CompatibleCompatible
VMware vSAN™ 7.0.2CompatibleCompatible
VMware vSAN™ 7.0.1CompatibleCompatible
VMware vSAN™ 7.0CompatibleCompatible
VMware vSAN™ 6.7.3CompatibleCompatible
VMware vSAN™ 6.7.2CompatibleCompatible
VMware vSAN™ 6.7.1CompatibleCompatible
VMware vSAN™ 6.7CompatibleCompatible
VMware vSAN™
VMware vSAN™ 6.6.1CompatibleCompatible
Table 1: Usage Meter 4.4 and 4.5 Compatibility with vSAN

Note: Even though Usage Meter 4.4 and 4.5 are compatible with vSAN 7.0 Update 2 and 7.0 Update 3, they do not meter all the vSAN features available in these versions.

The following list shows which vSAN features are metered by Usage Meter 4.4 and 4.5:

vSAN FeaturesUsage Meter 4.4Usage Meter 4.5
Stretched ClusterXX
Raid 5/6 Erasure CodingXX
File ServicesXX
Deduplication and CompressionXX
Data-at-rest EncryptionXX
vSphere distribution switchXX
Software ChecksumXX
Rack AwarenessXX
All-Flash supportXX
iSCI Target serviceXX
QoS- IOPS limitsXX
HTML5 User InterfaceXX
HCI Mesh X
Shared Witness X
Data in Transit Encryption X
Cloud Native Storage X
Table 2: vSAN Features Automatically Detected by Usage Meter 4.4 and 4.5

Manual reporting of vSAN usage

The reported license of the vSAN cluster that uses features that cannot be automatically metered (as seen in the above list) must be manually adjusted in VMware Commerce Portal MBO at the end of the reporting month if that features will change the reported license.

Usage Meter automatically detects the used storage capacity per vSAN cluster, but it does not automatically meter all available vSAN features. The vSAN features used by a VM part of a vSAN cluster can be seen in vSphere.

To see the corresponding vSAN license edition to each vSAN feature, your vSAN cluster uses, check the latest VCPP Product Usage Guide.

How is vSAN usage reported?

vSAN used storage capacity is reported against the license edition with which are associated the features used by the VMs in the vSAN cluster.

Even though the enabled license edition for the cluster could be higher, e.g., vSAN Enterprise, the license that will be reported will be the one that corresponds to the detected by Usage Meter vSAN features. That could be vSAN Standard if all the detected features for the reporting period fall into that license edition.

If vSAN features are present in several editions, Usage Meter will take the lowest license edition. For example, if you have a cluster using only Deduplication and Compression for the reporting period, then the used storage capacity of that cluster will be reported against the vSAN Advanced license.

How is vSAN usage calculated?

vSAN usage is calculated based on the average consumed storage capacity per vSAN license edition throughout the month in GB.

“Used Capacity” means the storage capacity consumed by vSAN Overhead (deduplication and compression metadata reservation) and all VM Objects (like VMDK, SWAP files, VMX, Snapshots, etc.) and not available for new allocations.

The consumed storage capacity for the month is aggregated representation of the data available in the vSAN Cluster History Report. The vSAN Cluster history report’s consumed storage is MB per cluster and time interval. To compare it with the consumed storage capacity in the Monthly Usage Report, calculate the average used storage capacity for the month and turn it from MB to GB. You will also need to round down the calculated average vSAN consumed storage capacity to a whole number.

vSAN usage in the Monthly Usage Report

In Usage Insight, there a usage reports that help you track your aggregated usage.

The aggregated usage is shown under Usage & Commerce in the Cloud Partner Navigator portal and shows the vSAN usage per license at the moment of reference. You can also check your usage per month, which is a snapshot of the usage for that month.

Figure 3: vCloud Usage Insight Monthly Usage Report

vSAN Cluster History Report

The vSAN Cluster history report, as the name suggests, is a history report only for vSAN clusters. It includes detailed information on the storage capacity that has been used by a cluster for a particular time interval. It also shows the type of vSAN license enabled per vSAN cluster and the int sum of the vSAN features used for that cluster (shown in the vSANFint column).

Note: The applied vSAN license for a cluster may not be reported by Usage Meter as it compares the detected features against the vSAN edition with which they are associated. This means that if you are not using all features included in your vSAN license, then Usage Meter will only report the consumed storage capacity against the license to which belong the detected features.

Figure 4: vSAN Cluster History Report

How is vSAN usage billed?

vSAN usage is billed based on average consumed storage capacity in GB multiplied by the points given for the license edition to which all detected vSAN features for the month belong. Currently, there are three vSAN license editions available: vSAN Standard, Advanced, and Enterprise.

Each vSAN license edition has a different VCPP point applied to the used storage capacity in GB.

Here is a glimpse of the points for each vSAN license edition. They are multiplied by the average storage capacity for the month in GB.

Figure 5: vSAN Server Points per GB Consumed Storage Capacity per License
Figure 6: vSAN Usage in VMware Commerce Portal


  1. VCPP Product Usage Guide
  1. Usage Meter 4.5 Product Detection Guide
  1. VMware Interoperability Matrix

Have more questions?

Reach out to us at usagemeter@vmware.com.


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