New product tackles chargebacks

Unisys is introducing a software suite that, among other things, automates the process of billing departments for computing time in a virtual environment.

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Unisys is introducing a software suite that, among other things, automates the process of billing departments for computing time in a virtual environment.

One feature of the new Unisys Enterprise Virtualisation software suite, called "Real-Time Chargeback," calculates how to bill different departments of an enterprise when various applications are running simultaneously on the same physical server, said Alan Bender, vice president of Real-Time Infrastructure Solutions at Unisys.

"If you have 50, 60, 70 and maybe even greater than 100 (virtual) machines going on one platform, being able to provide the resource consumption data so that you can charge back those departments that are consuming the resources becomes very important," Bender said.

Before virtualisation came along, an application used by the marketing department was installed on one server, another for finance was run on another server, and a third for human resources was run on yet another. Billing was relatively simple. But virtualization, though intended to make more efficient use of IT resources, has complicated chargebacks, said Julie Giera, an analyst at Forrester Research.

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