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Doug's Mailbag: Microsoft's Licensing Confusion

Here are a couple more responses to Redmond's licensing requirements and procedure:

Just thought I'd chime in about Microsoft Licensing. It is a mess.

We recently signed on for an enterprise agreement. Prior to this, we paid for each CAL and Office license individually, which was cumbersome, but was very easy to know what we were licensed for. With the enterprise agreement, the biggest problem I have is when it comes time to buy something that is not covered explicitly. Often MSFT will give us a discount on items not covered by the agreement, but it seems hit or miss. Also, there are times when the deal through our agreement is not as good as one of the options available outside of our agreement. I cannot make a purchase of a license anymore without calling a licensing specialist.

With regards to Live @EDU / BPOS / Office 365, I was aware of the 'per user, per month' pricing model and have been told that no firm details on what the prices will truly be will be made available for a few months. I do know that they plan to charge the education market for tools that other 'big-name competitors' are offering free of charge. My organization was looking very closely at our options, but it appears as though our mind will be made up for us. I'd rather invest a bit in training on a free tool than pay for a tool and not get any training on it. Either way, I am anxious to see the pricing scheme, but have no plans to pay for this service at this time.
- Chris

The fact that there is a market for a Microsoft Licensing Boot Camp to run multiple times a year says it all...

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Posted by Doug Barney on 04/04/2011 at 1:18 PM


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