201602.24
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Is Hosting Microsoft Products via Third Parties a Good Option?

Most providers of hosted software solutions traditionally have delivered those solutions over the Internet from their own servers. However, an increasing number of businesses are interested in outsourcing not only their internal-use IT infrastructure but also the systems used to host their client-facing solutions. Doing so may allow a business to focus more on product…

201602.24
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Non-SPLA Licensing for Hosted Microsoft Software

Most businesses seeking to license Microsoft software for the purpose of delivering hosted software solutions over the Internet turn first to the company’s Services Provider License Agreement (SPLA). SPLA is Microsoft’s flagship licensing model for commercial hosting services, and it offers the primary benefit of permitting a licensed hosting company to pay on a month-to-month…

201602.24
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Which is Better: Microsoft SPLA or Microsoft Self-Hosted Applications?

Many businesses that identify a need to acquire “commercial hosting rights” in connection with hosted solutions incorporating Microsoft software have two options for acquiring them: through a Services Provider License Agreement (SPLA) with Microsoft or through the Self-Hosted Application (SHA) benefit that is included with Software Assurance under an Enterprise Agreement or other volume-licensing agreement….

201602.24
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Licensing Non-Employees to Access Microsoft Products on Your Servers

Many businesses have teams of third-party vendors to assist with their business operations or to provide independent services – like software development or website design – that require access to company servers. For Microsoft products like Windows Server that require additive licensing (usually, Client Access Licenses, or CALs) to support all such client access, the…

201602.24
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Microsoft Enterprise Agreements May Be a Poor Choice for Many Companies

Microsoft Enterprise Agreements may represent attractive licensing options for larger companies with dynamic IT environments for which steady growth can be projected over a three-year term. However, smaller or mid-size companies with relatively static IT environments may experience more burdens than benefits under an EA, with increased costs and audit risks being significant disadvantages to…

201602.24
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Avoid Mixed-Mode Microsoft Licensing Whenever Possible

Most Microsoft software products – especially server products – can be licensed under multiple different models and metrics. SQL Server probably is the best example of a product that presents companies with multiple decision layers when analyzing new use cases: • Commercial Hosting or Volume Licensing? Companies need to determine whether a particular use case requires…

201602.24
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Consider Microsoft’s Enterprise Cloud Suite with Eyes Wide Open

Companies licensing Microsoft software under Enterprise Agreements (EAs) likely have familiarity with the default requirement to true up EA Enterprise Products based on any increase either in the number of “Qualified Devices” (generally, workstations capable of running or accessing the licensed Microsoft products) or in the number of “Qualified Users” (employees who use Qualified Devices)….

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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Customer Access Under Microsoft MSDN Developer Licenses

Microsoft’s MSDN subscription licenses often create license compliance problems.  These problems arise because it is extremely easy to over deploy Microsoft software using MSDN media because it includes a vast array of Microsoft products with limited deployment controls.  In addition, the licensing rules related to MSDN are often misunderstood.  One often overlooked aspect of Microsoft…

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
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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
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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…