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HP gets exact on bills for on-demand computing

New metering and billing systems from Hewlett-Packard will enable the company to charge its On Demand Solutions customers for the exact percentage of a CPU they are using, according to HP.

The systems support a new billing option for customers of its On Demand Solutions service. Called "Pay Per Use Percent CPU",  the new pricing plan accurately tracks a customer's consumption of processing power for each CPU on its high-end Superdome Unix servers, billing them only for what they use. 

HP deploys specially configured ProLiant servers running the new metering software in customer datacentres to support the new billing plan, according to Irv Rothman, president and chief executive officer of HP financial services.  

Customers' exact CPU utilisation is collected, encrypted, and transmitted to a new back-end billing system maintained by HP. This calculates the percentage of CPU capacity used to perform a particular task at a point in time. That information is aggregated by HP and sent to customers in a bill each week, Rothman said.

Under existing pricing plans, HP customers might pay a flat monthly fee, or pay a figure based on whether one or more Superdome processors were used to complete a task. Those plans do not bill based on how much processing power was used, Rothman said

In contrast, the Pay Per Use Percent CPU plan bills customers for using processing power in the same way the electric company bills them for using electricity, according to Rothman.


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