In January VMware released a new product for SMBs called GO: a hosted web-based console that can be used to manage on-premises vSphere Hypervisor (formerly ESXi) hosts and their virtual machines.

Go allows to initialize and patch ESXi hosts, create and operate virtual machines, check the VMs patching level connecting to the Shavlik Technologies service.
The company made the product available for free but customers have to grant to VMware the privilege to analyze the way they use the console.

Last week, at VMworld Europe (read virtualization.info live coverage) announced a new edition of Go, simply called Go Pro.

There are two additional key capabilities: Go Pro introduces software licensing management and patch deployment (rather than just scanning).

The software licensing management part is probably the most appealing for small companies that don’t have resources to dedicate to software inventory.
Go Pro scans physical and virtual machines by names, domain or IP ranges for software titles. For each one it allows administrators to define the number of licenses, license key, purchase date and expiration date.
The license management report matches the quantity of licenses entered in the license description with the number of instances of the software title found during the software scan. If  the instances of the software title is greater than the number of  licenses (i.e. if Crystal Reports was found on 7 machines during the  scan, but you only have 5 licenses for it) then this software title is  marked as non-compliant. Software that hasn’t been assigned a license is also considered non-compliant.

The patch deployment component instead uses Shavlik NetChk to deploy patches to all or selected at risk machines and specify reboot options if appropriate.

VMware_Go_Comparison.png

The new edition won’t come for free as the previous one. The product, currently in public beta, is expected to hit GA status later this quarter. So far VMware didn’t disclose the planned pricing.

http://virtualization.info/en/news/2010/10/vmware-starts-go-pro-beta-program.html