Optimizing Software Requirements, Inventory and Usage

Vector’s PC Software Compliance and Optimization solution combines license requirements planning, accurate software inventory and usage measurement. Web-based drill-down reporting provides decision support in achieving maximum use of application software while ensuring license compliance. The solution has all the functionality needed to support a strategy of pro-active Software Asset Optimization. The solution can be bundled with the Web-based License Manager Pro solution.

Solution Deliverables

This solution is a sub-set of Asset Manager Pro, focused on providing visibility of the deployment and exploitation of your software assets. It contains functionality important to organisations seeking to follow ISO 19770-1 guidelines for software asset management, and it delivers:

  • Accurate software inventory, providing visibility and clarity of your software license compliance.
  • Measurement and profiling of application usage to support:
    • optimized application deployment
    • elimination of license wastage
    • minimized application software costs
    • usage-based charge-back,
    • targeting of user training,
    • Identification of applications particularly appropriate for migration to streamed provision.
    A best practice process for achieving these key software asset management goals is outlined in our white paper on Software Asset Optimization.
  • Decision support for software asset management projects such as desktop asset valuation, application maintenance cost analysis and application and OS upgrade planning and budgeting.
  • Web-accessible software asset information for use by support staff.

Solution Highlights

  • Automated, scheduled, PC discovery.
  • Automated, scheduled software inventory with unique ‘Triple Pass’ technology, using file-based identification rules, VersionInfo header information and Add/Remove Programs registry information.
  • Granular application software usage monitoring, featuring active window sampling to give true usage patterns.
  • Policy-driven application software requirements planning. Policies facilitate accurate assessment and regular refresh of application license requirements. Create a policy to associate a specific application or set of applications with any system groups such as Departments, Active Directory OUs, and individual systems. On a policy-by-policy basis, define specific applications as mandatory, authorized or prohibited. View exception reports to identify any PCs not complying with relevant policies, to locate any unauthorized application installs, and to locate any incorrect application versions.
  • Drill-down, Web-based reports, organized in sets around your business needs. The reports – which include the special Microsoft Windows OS and Applications Audit Report set – provide operational and strategic decision support information, and answer a wide range of practical and commercial software inventory-related questions. Examples:
    • What software do we have installed?
    • Do we have sufficient licenses for all our Microsoft/Oracle/Adobe/etc software?
    • Are all the installed copies of our expensive accounting/marketing/business intelligence/etc packages regularly used?
    • How many copies of each application package in our portfolio do we really need? Do my installed copies match our assessment of what we need?
    • What reductions can we make in our annual software maintenance costs?
    • Do the patterns of use of the MS Office component programs justify my current annual costs? How many copies of Office Pro could be downgraded to Standard?
    • Are all my installed copies of Application X of precisely the same version?
    • When was Application X last updated on the PCs in a particular department?
    • Based on patterns of use, are there some applications we should consider moving to a server or to streamed provision?
  • Supports LAN-connected and remote Web-connected PCs.
  • One-shot audit mode for inventory only.

Solution Components in Vector Software License Compliance and Optimization

Follow these links to discover more about the power of Vector’s IT Asset Management solutions.

Complementary Solutions

The most commonly requested complementary solution is the Asset Discovery and Mapping solution, which will discover and interrogate all your PC and network hardware assets. It also provides extensions to the asset database which facilitate definition and recording of any asset types you require; there are some 30+ default asset types, such as scanners, printers, monitors. Software License Compliance and Optimization is tightly integrated with Asset Discovery and Mapping in Vector's Asset Manager Pro solution. Integration with License Manager Pro will ease the burden of software license management and make it easier to achieve compliance without over-licensing. If efficient (re)deployment of applications and application updates is a separate problem, then we invite you to evaluate the combination of conventional software distribution and advanced application streaming in Vector's Software Provisioning Pro solution.

Further Information and Resources

Boardroom Bullet-points
These discussion points may help position Software License Compliance and Optimization to your boardroom colleagues.
  • Software Inventory has in the past often been regarded as a time-consuming and non-productive overhead activity. Today however, Software License Compliance has climbed the agenda of the CIO, driven by lurid stories of massive fines and adverse publicity for organizations found to be lacking in their application license coverage.
  • A knee-jerk response involving additional license purchases to cover every installed application instance is almost always going to be expensive and wasteful.
  • By taking a broader objective of re-aligning application licensing to a refreshed and accurate assessment of requirements, validated by continuous feedback of application usage, compliance is achieved within an overall program of Software Asset Optimization.
  • A program of Software Asset Optimization is more likely to achieve savings than create additional licensing costs (see Gartner and others).
  • While accurate Software Inventory is a cornerstone of Software Asset Optimization, tools for assessing software needs and gaining a deep understanding of software usage are also essential.
  • Vector’s Compliance and Optimization solution provides a policy-based tool that takes out the guesswork and allows organizations to progressively define and refine their requirements for application software licenses.
  • Accurate usage information is achieved by monitoring the active Window. This delivers far more valid and usable information than just tracking application start and stop times. It can be a revelation how much time some users spend in Internet Explorer!

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