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Licensing applications to run on employee devices

Licensing applications to run on employee devices

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By Vicky Lea

In a previous blog I discussed how the licensing of Windows 8 works at home. As a natural follow on to that we now need to think about how applications are also licensed to run on employee’s own devices, so that is what I am going to cover in this blog.

When we think about Office nowadays we need to consider Office 2013 and Office 365 ProPlus. I am going to start with Office 2013, the on-premises licensing option for the new Office.

Office 2013 is licensed Per Device. This means every device that runs Office 2013 needs a licence to do so, irrelevant of whether Office 2013 is installed locally on that device, or whether Office 2013 is being delivered to that device in another manner, such as via RDS or VDI. So for any device that is on the corporate premises accessing Office 2013 you would need to purchase an Office 2013 licence. However, it could be that you want access Office 2013 from a home computer, how do we make sure that home computer is licensed for Office 2013?

Well, there are a number of ways to tackle this:

First of all we could make use of the Office Roaming Use Rights Software Assurance benefit. When you purchase Office 2013 with Software Assurance you receive a number of benefits. One of these is the Office Roaming Use Rights which by definition (from the PUR) allows the primary user of the device licensed with Office SA to:

· remotely access the software running on your servers (e.g., in your datacenter) from a Qualifying Third Party Device,

· run the software in a virtual OSE on a Qualifying Third Party Device, and

· install and use the software on an USB drive on a Qualifying Third Party Device.

· When the primary user is on your or your affiliates’ premises, Roaming Use Rights are not applicable.

· You may not run the software in the physical OSE on the third party device under the Roaming Use Rights.

We can see from the definition then that Roaming Use Rights will allow Office to be delivered to an employee’s computer in a virtual OSE, via RDS or VDI for instance, whilst outside of the corporate premises. However, what happens if we would like Office 2013 to be installed locally on the employee’s device rather than virtualised onto that device?

Well here we could make use instead of the Home Use Program. This is another Software Assurance benefit that you receive when covering Office 2013 with SA. The Product List states:

Under the Home Use Program, customers’ employees, who are users of the licensed qualifying applications, may acquire a single license for the corresponding Home Use Program software, to be installed on one home computer. The license terms for that software permit the primary user of the home computer to install and use another copy on a portable device.

So with the Home Use Program an employee can purchase the Office 2013 Professional Plus media and then install the software on their own computer for use whilst they are an employee of the organisation and Software Assurance has been maintained on the underlying Office 2013 licence.

Another alternative is to license Office 2013 via the Work at Home rights received with some volume licensing agreements. Select Plus and Enterprise Agreement customers receive Work at Home rights for Office 2013. The Work at Home right allows the organisation to acquire a Work at Home licence for use on the employee’s home computer, but this licence must correspond to a licence purchased for the same product that has been deployed on an “at work computer”.

The above options all relate to licensing Office 2013, the on-premises offering of Office, but as I mentioned before there is another way in which to license the new Office. And that is via an Office 365 subscription. Office 365 is Microsoft’s cloud offering of their user productivity products, including amongst other things Office 365 ProPlus, Exchange Online, SharePoint Online and Lync Online. Office 365 is licensed via a USL (User Subscription Licence), meaning that you license each user, on a subscription basis, to access the services provided through Office 365.

Office 365 ProPlus provides the licensed user access to an always-up-to-date Office experience, with the licensed user being able to install Office on up to 5 PCs, as is confirmed in the PUR:

· Each user to whom you assign a User SL may activate the software for local or remote use on up to five concurrent OSEs.

These 5 devices can include home owned computers as well as corporate ones, which means that you can easily license your users to access Office 365 ProPlus on home owned devices just via their Office 365 subscription.

The last area I wish to discuss today, and then I will leave you in peace, is the licensing of Office 2013 on a Windows RT device. When you purchase a Windows RT device it comes with a copy of Office Home and Student 2013 RT preinstalled. This suite includes Word RT, Excel RT, PowerPoint RT and OneNote RT. There is one very important factor you need to be aware of with Office Home and Student 2013 RT, and that is the fact that the default usage rights of the product do not allow it to be used for commercial purposes.

This obviously has an impact when you need to use the copy of Office preinstalled on a Windows RT device for commercial purposes, but it is possible to acquire commercial usage rights for Office Home and Student 2013 RT. This can be done in a couple of ways:

Firstly the commercial usage rights for Office Home and Student 2013 RT can be accessed via Office 2013 or Office 365 ProPlus. When you license a PC for Office 2013, or a user for Office 365 ProPlus, the primary user of the device licensed with Office 2013, or the user licensed for Office 365 ProPlus is then provided with commercial use rights for Office Home and Student 2013 RT that can be applied to their Windows RT device and the copy of Office that comes with it.

Alternatively, it is possible to purchase Office Home and Student 2013 RT Commercial Use Rights. These are purchased per device and will remove the non-commercial usage restriction from the licensed Windows RT device, as detailed in the PUR:

1. You must assign each license to a single device.

2. This license modifies your right to use the software under a separately acquired Office Home & Student 2013 RT license, by waiving the prohibition against commercial use of the software.

I have covered a number of areas here, and just as a reminder, if you want to check out any of the detail referred to in this blog the Product Use Rights and Product List documents are a good place to look!

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Comments
  • As an independant  Computer Consultant of over 35 years, what a joke licensing is now. Who understands it? 5 coffees and peer-to-peer discussions later, totally confused. OK the Office365 license is fairly consistant, who doesnt take work home, so no commercial use; but the on premises - Home use poicy license will not be understood by 95% of your licensees. This will lead to widespread "abuse", no small court would take your side. Please get real.

  • Hi Bill,

    I'm sorry to hear that you are still confused.  We do have a couple of Licensing Q & A sessions included as part of TechDays Online 2013 on Day 2.  If you are interested in putting your queries to our licensing expert then we'd be happy for you to do so at that event.  You will find all the details here: www.microsoft.com/.../techdays-online-2013

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