Licensing the Cloud with Microsoft.

To subscribe to the Cloud directly is easy, is a simple transaction based on consumption, however the co-existence of old traditional Volume licensing, or Service Provider licensing programs with the new Cloud subscriptions is not that easy. In fact to make sure that new benefits for the Cloud enablement like the Software Assurance Mobility Rights are properly used requires attention to the licenses allocated to the servers on Windows Azure, for example. Understanding the real rights and possibilities is another variable to contemplate when measuring compliance.

Hosted providers do not offer much guidance with respect of what their clients can allocate on licensing into the Cloud environments, and is often a conflict of responsibilities when the vendor audits the hosted provider or the end-user client.

In the Microsoft Product Use Rights for example we can observe the limitations of the licenses covered by SA with respect to their Cloud options with the Mobility Rights: (see table below)

Understanding the right coverage of the license is important in order to maintain not only compliance but also to predict Cloud budgets.

Clients with an Azure consumption negotiated on their Enterprise Agreement can use any of the services and increase without difficulty, and as they evolve using the Cloud services will be important to understand the ROI of the existing licenses versus the newly consume and fully subscribed licenses. In a way Cloud has enable transitions of existing licensing investments however at the same time is creating a conflict:

Is the Cloud subscription directly on Microsoft Azure a better option than the SA Mobility Rights?

As prices vary, the Cloud footprint extends and upgrade cycles arrive, the SA renewal will be confronted by the commitment to Azure subscriptions in a way that customers will choose one or the other.

For Microsoft clients using other third-party hosted providers the question is:

Have I allocated the compliant rights of use on the Cloud? and if I consume SPLA, is my hosted provider compliant? Am I compliant? Or am I at risk due to hosted provider error?

I can confidently say that Software Asset Management has become more relevant in the Cloud era.

(SAM Mobility Rights table as per PUR July 2014)

PRODUCT LICENSINGMODEL PRODUCT OR PRODUCT TYPE LICENSE PERMITTED NUMBER OF OSES PERLICENSE/PERMITTED NUMBER OF

CORES PER LICENSE

Server/CAL External Connector Licenses Each External Connector license with active Software Assurance coverage 1 OSE per license
Server/CAL SQL Server Each Server license with active Software Assurance coverage 1 OSE per license
Per-Processor All eligible Products Each Processor license with active Software Assurance coverage 1 OSE with up to 4 virtual processors per license
Per-Core All eligible Products Each Core license with active Software Assurance coverage One virtual core (subject to the Product Use Rights including the requirement of a minimum of 4 cores per OSE)
Management Servers System Center ServerManagement Licenses

(versions prior to System

Center 2012)

Each Server Management license with active Software Assurance coverage 1 Managed OSE per license
Management Servers System Center Server Management Suites Each SMSE or SMSDlicense with active Software Assurance coverage 4 Managed OSEs per License
Management Servers System Center 2012 R2 Standard Each System Center 2012R2 Standard Server Management license with active Software Assurance coverage 2 Managed OSEs per license
Management Servers System Center 2012 R2 Datacenter Each System Center 2012R2 Datacenter Server Management license with active Software Assurance coverage 8 Managed OSEs per license
Management Servers Visual Studio Deployment 2013 Standard Each Visual StudioDeployment 2013

Standard Server

Management license with active Software Assurance coverage

2 Managed OSEs per license
Management Servers Visual Studio Deployment 2013 Datacenter Each Visual StudioDeployment 2013

Datacenter Server Management license with active Software Assurance coverage

8 Managed OSEs per license
Specialty Servers HPC Pack Enterprise Each Server license with active Software Assurance coverage 1 OSE per license

 

“The Guru” joins AMTRA Solutions

AMTRA SOLUTIONS appoints Josef Hans Lara as Director of SAM & CLOUDAMTRALogoFinal_FullColor (1)

“The Licensing & Cloud Guru” new addition to the AMTRA team.

Calgary, AB, March 7, 2014– Amtra Solutions appoints Josef Hans Lara as Director of SAM & Cloud. Josef, also known for his online presence as the “Licensing & Cloud Guru” through his publications, speaking engagements and social media presence will direct the Amtra SAM efforts bringing an innovative way to offer AMTRA clients the best of Software Asset Management and Cloud transformation.

Josef depth of experience started in Europe leading the marketing and sales efforts on hardware and software licensing channel and solution sales in Europe. Continued building his career in North America becoming a builder of award winning Large Account Resellers, SAM consulting services and an evangelist for Cloud Computing.

Josef vision on SAM goes beyond the standards and provides synergies between application management, IT infrastructure transitions like Cloud computing, and a full understanding of compliance for multiple software vendors. Josef’s work has given him presence and reputation in the IT industry as a leader, helping multiple industry and public sector organizations across Canada, USA and Europe to achieve compliance and embrace models to adopt new technologies, truly approaching Business Intelligence to IT SAM compliance models.

Currently is a member of the Ingram Micro Services Advisory Council North America, IAMCP Canada National Executive, SRC Technology Group BC, and serves as a volunteer economic development commissioner in Maple Ridge, BC.

About AMTRA

AMTRA Solutions is a North American leader on Application Management and IT Innovation. Our consultants are highly seasoned application packagers, developers and deployment & operations experts – each with several years of experience. They have all worked within strict and demanding environments such as Petrochemicals, Energy, Banking, Finance and the Pharmaceutical industries. We understands the importance of adherence to standards and industry regulations

AMTRA is the North American distributor of all ATEA software and services. Products include Application Manager, JumpStart, AppMarket and Service Market. ATEA is known for their high-end, high capacity client management and application packaging factory which is the largest of its kind in Europe.

If you would like more information about this topic, please contact 1-855-326-0533.

Office 365 on EA, the transition…

Office 365 is offered to Microsoft customers with an Enterprise Agreement (EA) as a subscription add-on, now offering the ability to use a “bridge CAL” to transition the use of Microsoft Cloud.

The complexities of changes on the licensing Customer Price Sheet, amendments and exceptions is going to be a very significant subject for existing EAs. Customers need to carefully understand the service delivery of Cloud, security liability and data recovery protection, to build the terms and conditions appropriately.

One example could be the initiative to license Office Pro Plus for Office 365 on an EA. Today there is no information to validate the use of VLKs (Volume Licensing Keys) for product activation on Citrix or Remote Desktop Services environments. The rights of use are there but not how to deliver it.

Another careful consideration to add to terms and conditions is the Kiosk License, to also include shared mailbox features, to allow continuing practices by users while re-educating them to use SharePoint if necessary.

For the Enterprise it is necessary a careful consideration of terms, definition and delivery practices. It may be a good moment to adventure yourself into discussions with Microsoft to accommodate your EA needs to your use of the Cloud and build with Microsoft the necessary processes to effectively go Cloud.

Ultimately I am hoping Microsoft licensing will understand and accommodate real technical delivery soon in the Office 365 service delivery details to mitigate concerns.

 

Virtual environments licensing issues with Terminal Services (RDS)

Recently I have been asked several times for Virtual environments for contractors Terminal Services (RDS)

There is a critical distinction to make, virtualizing the OS or Applications has different issues.

to put in Q&A format:

  • Do any of the rights of the desktop Office 2010 license extend to the hosted environment?

Yes, If the computers accessing Office on the RDS server are owned by the company, you only need to use the license through volume licensing for Office for each desktop whether Office is run on the local desktop or from the RDS server.

  • What about remote access from home  or contractor PCs not owned by us?

you will need to get a license of Office for each desktop and a license through volume licensing for each RDS session. Unless you had SA because SA comes with Roaming Rights. (SA has MDOP – Microsoft Desktop Optimization Platform)

A contractor is not part of your organization so roaming rights ONLY apply for primary users of the company

  • What if we want to do a virtual image of the OS?

make sure the home PCs from primary users have its own valid Windows OEM, then by using VDA licenses if you did not purchase Software Assurance will be the subscription you need. If you own Software Assurance with MDOP subscription you are good to go.

Again roaming rights apply only to primary users

A valid option will be Office 365 for example for Office, it gives up to 5 installations to each user and the company can assign the licenses to the users they authenticate.

more info:

http://www.microsoft.com/licensing/software-assurance/office-roaming.aspx

 

Office 365 cannot be used as Remote Desktop Services (Terminal Services)

Office Pro Plus for office 365 does not have RDS rights

Office 365 cannot be used as Remote Desktop Services(Terminal Services)

According to Microsoft Office 365 does not grant the right to use Office Pro Plus images on a server eliminating the possibility to use Remote Desktop Services.Contrary to the software licensed under desktop application licenses for Microsoft Office, Office Professional Plus for Office 365 may not be deployed on a server or desktop and accessed remotely from another desktop. Customers may only use Office Professional Plus for Office 365 locally. Remote Use Rights are not available under Office Professional Plus for Office 365 licenses. Examples of remote access technology used under desktop application licenses for Microsoft Office, but not supported for Office Professional Plus for Office 365 include Remote Desktop Services (RDS) and Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI).

 

It is a common practice to create virtual devices for different purposes, and is a practice use more often today however seems to contradict the sale of the subscription license through Office 365 as the RDS is not allowed with the subscription.

See official document

 

Office Pro Plus for office 365 does not allow you to use Volume License Keys

Office Pro Plus for office 365 does not allow you to use Volume License Keys

Office Pro Plus for office 365 does not allow you to use Volume License Keys

Office Pro Plus for office 365 does not allow you to use Volume License Keys

Office 365 offers 5 installations of Office Professional plus on the E3 and E4 options.

According to Office 365 site you cannot deploy a volume license image using a KMS or MAK key in the same device, because the Volume License copy cannot co-exist:

“Office Professional Plus for Office 365 cannot be used on the same computer as a volume licensed version of Office 2010. To verify that the user has Office Professional Plus for Office 365, open an Office application, click File and then click Help. Under the version information, you should see the text ““Part of Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010 Subscription” displayed. If the version information does not contain the word Subscription, you must install Office Professional Plus for Office 365.”

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg702620

This means that while connectivity from on premise to the Cloud (Volume Licensing) can exist to Office 365, to enable the use of Volume License Keys KMS for multiple deployments at the same time, it cannot happen from the Cloud service to the on premise. It will not work.

This supposes a problem for those buying Office 365 instead of volume licensing and will have to go through each user account to deploy Office Pro Plus for Office 365 media and activate online instead of using one single order to deploy all images.

The reason may be because the Product Use rights changes the concept from device to user on the use of Office:

INSTALLATION AND USE RIGHTS

Each user to whom you assign an User SL may install and use one copy of the software per device on up to five devices at a time”

I imagine Microsoft is trying to still protect the advantages of Volume Licensing to sell more Office licenses besides provisioning them with Office 365. However it should change in order to make sure Office 365 is ready for the Enterprise world, if not this restriction of deployment looks more like a consumer product or retail.

So, if you own Office 365 for Software Assurance and you own Office Pro plus, deploy with your VLK not with Office 365 subscription if you need to dedicate your time to better things than going through all the devices you manage; if you are not license that way…patience.

Office 365, a new way to get CALs

English: M in blue square (similar to seen on )

Sometimes I am amazed about the changes on licensing that are coming thanks to the Cloud. It is obvious that Microsoft is putting its socks on to enable the transition to Cloud licensing faster and with agility.

Here is another example

Office 365 entitles you to us as CALs in your on premise infrastructure for the equivalent licenses you are using in the Cloud

This is an example for Lync, note that you can also see similar for SharePoint, Forefront, and Exchange etc.

Lync Server 2010 Enterprise

The license terms that apply to your use of this product are the Universal License Terms, the General License Terms for this Licensing Model, and the following:     

Self-Hosting of Applications Allowed: No   Additional Software: Yes

License Mobility Within Server Farms: Yes

Included Technologies: .NET Framework and/or Powershell Software (See Universal License Terms)

BASE CALs

You need:

•           Lync Server 2010 Standard CAL, or

•           Core CAL Suite3, or

•           Core CAL Bridge for Windows Intune3, or

•           Enterprise CAL Suite1, or

•           Enterprise CAL Bridge for Windows Intune2, or

•           Lync Plan 1 USL, or

•           Lync Plan 1G USL, or

•           Lync Plan 2 USL, or       

•           Office 365 Plan E1-E4 User SL, or

•           Office 365 Plan A3-A4 User SL,

 

ADDITIVE CALs

Additional Functionality:

•           Audio, Video and Web Conferencing

•           Desktop Sharing Required Additive CAL:

•           Lync Server 2010 Enterprise CAL, or

•           Enterprise CAL Suite1, or

•           Enterprise CAL Bridge for Windows Intune2, or

•           Lync Plan 2 User SL , or

•           Office 365 Plan E1-E4 User SL, or

•           Office 365 Plan A3-A4 User SL, or

•           Live Meeting Standard User SL, or

•           Live Meeting Professional User SL

1 with active Software Assurance coverage on December 1, 2010, or later

2 with active Software Assurance coverage on March 1, 2011, or later

 Additional Functionality:

•           Voice Telephony

•           Call Management            Required Additive CAL:

•           Lync Server 2010 Plus CAL, or

•           Lync Online Plan 3 User SL, or

•           Office 365 Plan E4 User SL

Some licenses will need the following:

Active Software Assurance coverage on December 1, 2010, or later

Active Software Assurance coverage on March 1, 2011, or later

Active Software Assurance coverage on August 1, 2011, or later

 

This is in my opinion a helpful way to transition from Volume Licensing to Cloud Licensing in this case with Office 365, helping the “mobility rights” not only from Software Assurance to the Cloud but from the Cloud back to the traditional infrastructure.

Source of information: Microsoft Product Use Rights