201602.24
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Innovative Solutions to Circumvent Burdensome SPLA Requirements

Many online service providers are well aware that Microsoft’s Services Provider License Agreement (SPLA) entails a licensing framework that can be difficult to manage. SPLA may be a great model for businesses seeking to “float” their license expenditures from month to month based on usage. However, what Microsoft considers “usage” and what most companies and…

201602.24
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Windows Desktop Licensing Can Be As Perilous As Any Other Microsoft Product

In any software audit, there are two over-arching categories of information that must be collected: data regarding what products are deployed on a business’ computers and records demonstrating the licenses that the business has acquired to use those products. With regard to the entitlements, some kinds of licenses often are relatively easy to document. For…

201602.24
0

Microsoft’s Auditors Are Not Infallible

Microsoft licensing is a complex, multi-faceted undertaking, with different rules and license metrics applying to different products. In the context of software audits initiated by Microsoft, it is important to keep in mind the fact that the auditors hired to perform those investigations are fallible human beings and that they can (and do) make mistakes…

201602.24
0

SQL Server Licensing Strategies for SPLA

Licensing Microsoft server products in any environment can be a challenging undertaking, given the complexity of some of Microsoft’s licensing rules. However, licensing Microsoft products for commercial hosting environments under a Services Provider License Agreement (SPLA) can be especially daunting, due to the different use rights and license metrics available under that model. Licensing SQL…

201602.23
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Microsoft SPLA Audit Look-Back Periods

In a typical Microsoft audit of software licensed under perpetual licenses, the auditors usually will compare installations of Microsoft products against licenses owned, and Microsoft will require the audited business to purchase additional licenses required to cover any gaps discovered by the auditors. An audit under a Services Provider License Agreement uses a similar framework,…

201602.23
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Microsoft Audit Roadmap

Microsoft offers an array of software licensing options for its business customers. However, during an audit, the timing and course of the project typically follows a fairly well-worn path: 1. Kickoff meeting At this step, Microsoft’s hired auditors (typically PriceWaterhouse Coopers, Deloitte & Touche, KPMG, Ernst & Young or Unified Logic) will schedule a meeting to discuss…

201602.23
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Changes for Microsoft Fail-Over and Disaster Recovery Rights

With the April 2014 versions of the Product Use Rights (PUR) (for volume licensees) and the Services Provider Use Rights (SPUR) (for services providers under SPLA), Microsoft has implemented significant changes to several usage rights associated with fail-over or disaster-recovery (DR) installations of its server products. As many IT professionals know, Microsoft’s fail-over rights always…

201602.23
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For Hosting Providers Running Microsoft Products, “Dedicated” Means “Dedicated”

As discussed previously, providers of software hosting services may deploy on their servers Microsoft products licensed by their customers under two different scenarios, one of those being where the hosting provider has dedicated a physical server for use by the customer providing the licenses. However, providers thinking of taking advantage of this option need to…

201602.23
0

Hosting Providers Have Two Options For Customer-Supplied Licenses

Like any good business, many providers of hosted IT solutions prefer to demonstrate flexibility in offering services to their customers. For example, a company that offers hosted Exchange services may want to allow their customers to use perpetual licenses the customers purchased to support deployments on the service provider’s servers. While Microsoft’s licensing rules permit…

201602.23
0

Avoid Ambiguity in Microsoft Licensing Agreements

CTOs who have read Microsoft’s volume license agreements and product use rights documentation know that Microsoft has a special place in its heart for contractual “grey area.” To some extent, that fact likely arises from the practical impossibility of trying to accurately capture all of the technical parameters that could affect license rights. Enterprise IT…