David Berlind of ZDNet with a nice little post and video on the complexities of software licensing with virtualization. Actually "little" is the operative word here, because although the whiteboard ends up appropriately messy by the end, he spends the first 3 minutes explaining (hosted) virtualization, leaving only about a minute at the end to talk about licensing. Still may be a good video for a newbie in your organization. Link: » Video: Virtualization vs. standard software licensing practices | Berlind’s Testbed | ZDNet.com.
Some of the same confusion exists around application software. One
fear software companies have is that people will use virtual machine
technology to build little multi-user mainframes (sort of like Citrix)
where anybody can use the built-in remote access technology to simply
take control of a VM on a computer and run their software remotely,
that way. If XYZ software company says it’s OK for me to copy its
software to as many VMs as I want, but only one one system,
technically, I could let lots of users access that one system remotely
and abuse the license.