6 Replies Latest reply on Apr 23, 2009 2:16 AM by phoffmann

    How to manage separate licenses for single application and suites


      We are coming into a problem with SLM where it cannot differentiate between an installation of a single applicaiton versus a suite that the single application can be a part of (but is not).  For example, We have separate licensing for Adobe Acrobat 8 Professional, and separate licensing for Adobe Creative Suite CS3.  An installation of the single Acrobat Pro license goes against both the single Acrobat Pro licensing and the Adobe Creative Suite CS3 licensing.  How can we deal with this in SLM?




        • 1. Re: How to manage separate licenses for single application and suites
          phoffmann SupportEmployee

          I'm assuming you're using custom products to determine this in SLM?


          You'll want to work with "match all files" // "not in product" in these situations. Here's an example I've scribbled up a fair few years ago (to convey the concept) ...


          In general, the following is the difference between Standard Office and Professional Office:


          Office Professional
          Office Premium


          STEP 1:


              The trick in this one is to define the software groups as follows. You need to group the files in the respective SCM-groups you wish them to be in (i.e.: "Office 2000 Professional", "Office 2000 Premium" and so on) - and include all the files from the respective suite.


          STEP 2:


          Then, tick the "Match All Files" option. This is very important. Otherwise your licensing count will be skewed. What the "Match All Files" option does, is that it requires that all of the listed files be present in order to increase the license count.


          So, if you had for instance defined "1.exe", "2.exe" and "3.exe" as part of "MySuite", and had not ticked "Match All Files", any occurance of either of these files would add to the license count.


          If the option is tagged, only when *ALL* of these files were to be found together on one PC, would the license count increase.


          Step 3:
          In the case of Office Premium vs. Office Professional, you will need to go into the Office Professional packs and mark MS ACCESS as a "NOT IN PRODUCT" file. This is important for the following reason:


          If you would "only" define Office Pro as consisting only of "Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook" this would mean that EVERY copy of Office Premium would also register as a copy of Office Pro - because Office Premium includes those files as well (and Access on top). The key difference is that one contains Access - the other does not. Thus, this needs to be reflected.


          So in Office Pro => "ACCESS"-files need to be marked as "NOT IN PRODUCT".


          In short - make sure you are aware that you may need a list of negatives as much as you need a list of positives, to distinguish between product nuances.





          Does this help you with your problem? The biggest trick in SLM is in understanding its logic I tend to find - with the tricky part being using the details I described correctly .


          Paul Hoffmann

          LANDesk EMEA Technical Lead

          • 2. Re: How to manage separate licenses for single application and suites

            Hi Paul,


            I have receive a even "harder" question from users. Let's use Office Professional and Office Premium as examples again.


            User A install all the components of Office Professional, so that we detected Word, Excel, PPT and Outlook.

            User B install only some of the components of Office Premium, again the components are Word, Excel, PPT and Outlook, Access is not installed. (I know it is a "waste" not to use the whole suite, but this is the real case. -_-)


            Now user wants to know if we can tell what product license are in use.


            The best approach I can think of is asking users to scan for the product ID of each suite. As from MS site, the Product ID should represent some infomation of the edition of the product installed. (But without full detail, not sure if the "Office Family ID" gives any hints.....)




            Any idea?


            Thanks and regards,


            • 3. Re: How to manage separate licenses for single application and suites

              To correct what I typed... it is the "Product ID" flag that should identify the Office Suite instead of the Product Family ID.


              However, since the registry key containing the "Product ID" changes from different installation media, seems we couldn't use wildcard to scan it at the moment.


              Thanks and regards,


              • 4. Re: How to manage separate licenses for single application and suites
                phoffmann SupportEmployee

                So a couple of things here:


                1 - If you want to run SLM properly, you *MUST* have control over who installs what. Having (for instance - a worst case scenario) everyone have access to the install shares and being able to install what they want, how they want, means you have zero control, and not the best SLM tool will help you fight that mess.


                2 - Once you've established control, you must homogonise ... if people "only use" Office Pro-functions, yet have installed the binaries from 3 different distributions, that needs to be cleaned up (it's part of being "in control").


                3 - AutoProduct discovery will generally tell you what's been installed, (i.e. Pro vs Premium), but not necessarily what binaries are down (i.e. - it won't know that "Premium without Access == Pro") ... so this is where combinining Auto product discovery with Custom products helps. Again, however, you *DO* need control here - this needs to be centrally managed, and follow procedure.


                4 - Also, the example I've given here (in regards to "Premium without access == a Pro license") doesn't necessarily hold true all the time. Microsoft's licensing laws change pretty often, and (from what I seem to recall) potentially even country to country. And that's just Microsoft ... there's a plethora of other vendors out there, and each have their own licensing model. This is why you need dedicated people to work on SLM (and pretty much nothing but SLM) - since they need to know and understand what rules apply to which software, and then figure out how to best track things with LANDesk accordingly (and again - if they have no control, they can pretty much throw that idea to the wind).


                Control is an absolute requirement of SLM.




                People cannot (and should not have the mindset) just install SLM and hope it answers all their questions for them. There's a LOT of environmental factors which can throw the spanners in the works here.


                Do NOT expect technology to be able to fix a social problem. If the policies simply are not in place, you're going to be chasing your tail ... and SLM is NOT something you do half-heartedly. You either need to be dedicated to do it, or you should leave it alone, pretty much - as "doing it half way" will not serve anything really.


                I hope that this answers your question wishes - you should not always look for the tech to fix a problem. Sometimes it *IS* a political/social problem that we need to point out and say "until this is fixed, you will not stand a chance, no matter what product you use" ... because it's simply the truth. Let me know if anything needs more explanation.


                Paul Hoffmann

                LANDesk EMEA Technical Lead


                Message was edited by: Paul Hoffmann -- added some clarification.

                • 5. Re: How to manage separate licenses for single application and suites

                  Hi Paul,


                  I agree what you said. It is the users who always expect everything is "perfect".


                  Will try to explain that this is the best technology we could offer, should be fine as long as the users do not find other teams or brands doing better......

                  • 6. Re: How to manage separate licenses for single application and suites
                    phoffmann SupportEmployee

                    Regardless of which product is used, there's only so much technology can realistically do here. Some product may fare better here and there, or even overall, but if the true problems are organisational and structural - thus "by design" as it were, the best product in the world will only be able to do so much.


                    The question is not "which is better/worse" in terms of software used, the question simply is "do you want to do SLM seriously?".


                    Paul Hoffmann

                    LANDesk EMEA Technical Lead.