Software Licensing and Virtualization

I’ve just read through an article on this topic posted today by Tony Lock of Freeform Dynamics. It does a good job of highlighting areas that need to be considered by anyone already involved in, or contemplating, moving ahead with either server or desktop virtualization. In particular he points to the ease with which VMs can be created, and loaded with a set of applications. How are records kept of the installed instances of those applications? How frequently does your Software Asset Management (SAM) tool attempt to discover new systems on the network and update the reconciliation of applications installed versus licenses owned? This whole area of how the world of SAM works in highly dynamic virtualized – or part-virtualized – environments is a hot topic for us right now and we’d love to hear from you if you recognize your situation in these notes. At least we know our inventory and software usage monitoring solutions work on all the major virtualization platforms. Some of the comments back on Tony’s article advocate dumping your entire Windows investment and moving to Linux and opensource apps as a response.  In all seriousness, there is a need to make this all easier to live with for end-user organizations.