Microsoft Volume Licensing
License Mobility information
The Official Microsoft Blog
STB News Bytes Blog
Windows for your Business Blog
MPN 'Get Licensing News' (for partners)
This is article four of a four part series of blog posts describing the many benefits of Software Assurance.
Following on our previous article about Software Assurance (SA), which described Microsoft’s more traditional SA benefits, we thought it would be a good timing to highlight one of the more specialized benefits within SA; the Spread Payment benefit.
Widely viewed as an essential ingredient for maximizing the value of Microsoft volume licensing, purchases Software Assurance has been a part of Microsoft’s licensing offerings since 2001. Over time the program has expanded significantly to encapsulate twenty different benefits. Complimentary to other categories of SA benefits such as new version rights, deployment planning, training and support, the Spread Payment option has been an important and integral part of Software Assurance from the initial roll out of the program.
Microsoft’s own “Lady Licensing,” Emma Healey, posted a blog entry today about System Center 2012 (SC 2012) simplifing its multi-SKU lineup to two editions (datacenter and standard) to provide an integrated solution to manage applications across private, public and hybrid cloud scenarios. She discusses how the updated licensing changes better align users with a hybrid cloud management design, which Microsoft continues to see as a prevalent trend in customer scenarios.
Together with Windows Server, System Center 2012 anchors Microsoft’s private cloud environment, helping make it possible for customers to build and manage the world of hybrid IT. We believe fewer SKUs and a simpler licensing construct make it easier for customers to choose Microsoft’s integrated private cloud solution leveraging the Windows Server platform and systems management solutions. It also creates a real opportunity to leverage the Enrollment for Core Infrastructure (ECI) offerings.
From the folks who brought you the Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit (MAP) Toolkit 6.5—one of this blog’s most popular posts—the Microsoft Solution Accelerator team now brings us the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2012 (MDT), available for download today.
The MDT is a solution accelerator for operating systems and application deployment. With the new version, users can now deploy Windows 7, Office 2010, Windows 8 Consumer Preview, Windows Server “8” Beta and Windows Server 2008 R2 with the new release. It is also the recommended process and toolset for automating Windows 7 and Office 365 deployments.
The Solution Accelerators Team added new features to MDT 2012 that include the ability for users to initiate and customize their own deployments using System Center Configuration Manager 2012, key enhancements in Windows 7 driver support, and much more.
From virtualization, device proliferation and the consumerization of IT, managing an enterprise’s IT inventory is becoming increasingly complex and time consuming. But it’s a task of significant importance, as organizations want to take advantage of every software license they hold, and manage the updates, support and service that are attendant. Getting an accurate count on software licenses and assets can be difficult. Inventory can consume people resources, time and budget, and even then it leaves many software procurement teams with an “educated guess” on what they need to buy or what they no longer need.
To that end, customers have asked us to help them lower the cost of managing their software licenses. We have responded by providing more robust SAM Services, in addition to free tools such as the Microsoft Assessment and Planning (MAP) Toolkit
Today, Microsoft is taking its efforts a step further by announcing plans to implement the ISO/IEC 19770-2:2009 standard for software identification tags. These SWID tags are simple XML files embedded in the software that provide a universal method for IT departments to track and manage the software running in their respective IT environments.
Microsoft Volume Licensing serves organizations worldwide of virtually all sizes, from those with just a few employees to those with tens of thousands dispersed across the globe. Seeing similarities between your organization’s needs and the success achieved by another company through a case study is a great way to help inform your choices.
With this in mind, the Microsoft Case Studies website serves as the go-to resource into how customers and partners utilize the various Microsoft Volume Licensing programs, from open value to the enterprise agreement, and numerous other options which provide the flexibility and cost efficiencies to the best technology solution.