Calculating PVU (Processor Value Unit) Cognos

Calculating PVU - How does this work?

IBM Cognos BI can be purchased as an authorized user or a Processor Value Unit (PVU) license.  Now we need to learn the ins and outs of Calculating PVU.

An Authorized User is a unique person given a login to IBM Cognos. Each Authorized User may have simultaneous access to any number of instances of the Program at one time (Test, Dev, Prod). An Authorized User license may not be shared nor may it be reassigned other than for the permanent transfer.

A BI PVU license is the server based license that grants access to unlimited number of users provided the system performance is acceptable. If too many users access the system, the client may want to add more cores and would need to purchase more PVU licenses. A Process Value Unit per core processor rating is assigned by IBM to specific hardware. The client purchases the PVU’s needed to license the number of core processors they will utilize. For example, if the hardware has a 70 per core PVU rating and the client is using 4 cores they must buy 280 PVUs of licenses.

PVUs are suitable for customers who do not want to count users for compliance or havea large casual community or extranet with the number of users unknown. BI PVU licensing requires the ILMT tool to be loaded if they are virtualizing their software pursuant to the IBM Passport Agreement/ Sub capacity terms.

When calculating the BI PVUs, you must count:

  • The Application tier (BI Server and Dynamic Cubes)
  • Web Server
  • The Gateway and content manager does not need to be counted.
Calculating PVU

If you have a mix of licenses, both PVU and Authorized user, you might consider leveraging the dispatcher and routing rules which is a topic for another blog. This will allow you to allocate work and allow your power users with authorized user licenses to use more core processors than your PVU users which saves you money.

If you update your hardware, it can lead to added cost if the PVU rating of the new processor is higher than the old processor. You can check the PVU Rating on the IBM website. To calculate your PVU in your specific environment, click THIS IBM LINK

You can also get more info on calculating PVU's by checking out this blog.

If you would like a review of your current license please contact or 813-415-2910.

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