10 Ways to Ease the Pain of Managing Virtualized Applications

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10 Ways to Ease the Pain of Managing Virtualized Applications

by Chris Preimesberger

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Maintaining a Consistent License Monitoring Policy Is Essential

Consistently monitor application deployments and licensing agreements on a regular schedule to avoid having to suddenly perform a corporate-wide software license audit in a crisis situation.

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Gather Detailed Information

Collect complete, detailed information. Large applications are often deployed across multiple platforms and include a wide range of options, entitlements and utilities. Only detailed information provides sufficient visibility into the complete deployment and provides the accurate information negotiators need.

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Automation Is Good

Use a regularly scheduled, automated process to reduce the impact on staff, eliminate business disruption and ensure accuracy. A third-party "agentless" software solution is the best way to add this capability without adding additional management complexity.

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Maintain Control by Assessing Change

Align the license management process, IT and procurement teams to collectively control and assess change within the environment to reduce license compliance implications.

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Virtualization Changes the Picture

Many vendor virtualization policies are independent of the software agreement and can change without notice. When negotiating or renegotiating software licenses, enterprises should require software vendors to explicitly spell out their virtualization policies within the contracts to protect themselves against future costs. If this is not possible then the most effective way to ensure compliance is not to virtualize systems where licensing rules remain ambiguous.

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Check Cost Implications of Virtualization

IT Management and Procurement need to be confident that they understand the cost implications of vendors' virtualization policies.

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Understand Usage Rights

Procurement experts need to understand vendors' product usage rights and make sure they are clearly outlined in the contract as well as how usage will be measured in the event of an audit.

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Distribute Licensing Costs

By allocating costs back to groups based on their usage, teams will have the incentives to use their software more conservatively, making it available to more users and reducing the necessity for additional licenses.

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Use a Central Repository for Multiple Contracts

Managing multiple contracts in a central repository increases the visibility of all contract information including pricing, maintenance charges, purchase orders and other relevant financial data to ensure what is owned.

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Licensing Optimization Becomes a Trend

The SAM market is rapidly evolving. It is no longer sufficient to just count what you have; you need to be able to optimize your software assets. Enterprises should implement enterprise license optimization strategies that ultimately provide continuous license reconciliation between what was purchased and what was installed and used in both physical as well as virtual environments, across the desktop and data center.

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