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Across the company, we are working to better organize and simplify complex documents, many of these changes having benefited Volume Licensing customers - such as the Enterprise Agreement that was simplified last year and updated to include online services, the recently refreshed PUR that emphasizes plain English, and recent changes to Windows 8 licensing under Software Assurance.
In this vein, we’re also updating the “Microsoft Services Agreement.” This agreement applies to many of our consumer online services such as Outlook, SkyDrive, Messenger, Hotmail, Bing and more. You can see the updated agreement here.
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.
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.
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.
Now that we’re well into 2011 and kicking off Microsoft’s new 2012 fiscal year with the Worldwide Partner Conference, we continue to hear that for many companies, this is the year they’ve resolved to move some or all of their applications to the cloud. As the General Manager of Microsoft’s Worldwide Licensing Programs, my ‘what the cloud means to me’ story looks slightly different from my Microsoft engineering or marketing colleagues.