Thinking to drop some Oracle product from maintenance to save some funds?
... think again.
You'd of course think that dropping product from your annual maintenance renewals would be treated as a simple removal of the line item and its associated cost - why wouldn't it be - you're keeping those remaining as-is so what's the problem?
Now this gem of a policy states: In the event that a subset of licenses on a single order is terminated or if the level of support is reduced, support for the remaining licenses on that license order will be priced at Oracle's list price for support in effect at the time of termination or reduction minus the applicable standard discount.
Wait? ... What??
Yep, just because you were so brash as to drop maintenance on product you no longer needed, whatever you're retaining on that order is going to be repriced - and by reprice they of course don't mean down!
Oh but the good news is in the next sentence: Such support price will not exceed the previous support fees paid for both the remaining licenses and the licenses being terminated or unsupported, and will not be reduced below the previous support fees paid for the licenses continuing to be supported.
So rest assured loyal Oracle customer - any repricing will not exceed what you were already paying, it'll just match it. So those dollar savings that you put forward saying 'we're gonna drop product x, y, and z from the next renewal and save bucket-loads' is probably the opposite - depending on whats left you might end up paying exactly what you were before!
So, what has the uptake of Java SE Subscriptions been like?
There have been regular communications from Oracle promoting the value of their Java SE subscription service since version 8 went end-of-public-update (EoPU) in January 2019, but what has the uptake actually been like?
The latest (July 2020) statistics have been published as below, with 57 vulnerabilities reported since the EoPU of Java 11, with 7 attaining a CVSS (Common Vulnerability Scoring System) of 7 or more (reflected below). The question being, is that enough of a concern to pick up the phone and make the call to your Java Business Rep?
A reasonable question, and one for which we don't have a definite answer. Anecdotally, the view would be not generally, however this is unsubstantiated so we'd be keen to get a view from the industry - please take the time to complete our quick 2 question poll below:
Thanks for taking the time to contribute - we'll publish the results soon!
An innocuous Announcement Letter may be more telling than it seems ...
While discounts will remain for hybrid and cloud platforms, as of 1st July these will no longer apply to your on-premise installations. With statements such as:
"where we will continue to focus our investment and innovation"
"it is recommended that your company evaluate and plan a transition to the equivalent, cloud- and/or hybrid cloud-based offering"
The message seems pretty clear that the future as IBM sees it is all in the Cloud, certainly if you're looking for discounts on your next purchase of PA software. It will be interesting to see what might follow in IBM's plans to further 'encourage' cloud migration, and how others might adopt similar strategies.
Data Recovery Environments using Copying, Synchronizing or Mirroring Standby and Remote Mirroring are commonly used terms to describe these methods of deploying Data Recovery environments. In these Data Recovery deployments, the data, and optionally the Oracle binaries, are copied to another storage device. In these Data Recovery deployments all Oracle programs that are installed and/or running must be licensed per standard policies documented in the Oracle Licensing and Services Agreement (OLSA). This includes installing Oracle programs on the DR server(s) to test the DR scenario. Licensing metrics and program options on Production and Data Recovery/Secondary servers must match.
Servers – Disaster Recovery Rights: For each Instance of eligible server software Customer runs in a Physical OSE or Virtual OSE on a Licensed Server, it may temporarily run a backup Instance in a Physical OSE or Virtual OSE on either, another one of its Servers dedicated to disaster recovery, or, for Instances of eligible software other than Windows Server, on Microsoft Azure Services, provided the backup Instance is managed by Azure Site Recovery to Azure. The License Terms for the software and limitations apply to Customer’s use of the backup Instance.
If its not specifically called out in the VMware Product Guide it will need licensing, and that means everything other than Continuent and vRelaise for Log Insight. Surprisingly, VMware deem an install to be 'use' of the software - yep - just binaries sitting on a disk.
RHEL Linux Subscription Guide: Cold backups: The server has software installed and configured, but it is turned off until the disaster occurs or for periodic disaster recovery procedure tests. For Red Hat Enterprise Linux, this means that the customer is allowed to preload the bits as a courtesy. However, Red Hat Content Delivery Network cannot be used to update the system until the disaster happens. Then, the paid subscription on the failed machine transfers to the cold backup sever. In this case, a customer does not need two subscriptions. The customer will consume only one subscription at any point in time. Red Hat will allow the customer to pre-provision the software bits onto the cold backup machine as a courtesy. If a customer is found to be running more units of Red Hat Enterprise Linux than the customer has subscribed for because the customer has found a use for these pre-provisioned servers other than this cold backup use case, the customer is obligated to pay Red Hat.
Backup Use Defined: For programs running or resident on backup machines, IBM defines 3 types of situations: “cold”; “warm”; and “hot”. In the “cold” and “warm” situations, a separate license for the backup copy is normally not required, no additional charge applies, and IBM does not need to be notified. In a “hot” backup situation, the customer needs to acquire another license. All programs running in backup mode must be under the customer’s control, even if running at another enterprise’s location.
All might not be as it seems - check this list of ILMT gotcha's
Here are out top five tips for trimming your PVU sub-capacity report counts:
1. Incomplete Vitualisation - the 'TVM' predicament
If your ILMT configuration is not fully or properly implemented you're likely to find incomplete virtualisation heirarchies in your VM Manager connections, which result in every affected VM being treated as a stand-alone physical machine at the highest PVU rating of 120 PVUs per core). This can quickly add up where you might otherwise be entitled to the likes of 70 PVUs per core.
2. Missing Software Classifications
Central to the accuracy of ILMT reporting is the much dreaded 'Software Classification' process. If you choose to ignore this painstaking requirement you can be sure you'll pay the price either in real terms or in time-draining dispute at your next audit. Essentially, every exempt PVU count in your environment needs to be catagorised as such, meaning instances that are to be excluded from PVU counts (which depending on the License Terms are likely Developer, DR, or Test installs) need to be individually identified as such via this (ongoing) activity.
3. Unrecognised Bundling
As a follow-on to the Software Classification issue above, you'll then likely notice that where you have installed Supporting Programs on a different server - where entitled to do so under the License Terms - the program will magically form part of the PVU count, ie. bundling is not recognised across servers. So once again you'll need to identify these instances and exclude them from the relevant count, making sure you add comments to qualify the classification.
4. Reallocation High-Water Marks
So you dutifully maintain your vCPU's to your level of entitlement, which, as you're permitted to do, includes the occasional reallocation across servers to match processing and performance needs. Given you've balanced the core counts out all is good - right? Well ... no, ILMT will track the high-water mark for each server in the 90-day reporting period, so for example a taking a core from a 4 vCPU server to assign to a 3 vCPU server will see both reporting as 4 vCPU servers for that period.
To be in a position to challenge this make sure you have or take - and keep - separate records that evidence the reassignment of cores to negate any double counting.
5. Ghost Decommissioning
Similar to the above, you might think that decommissioning one server to deploy another would be quite within your rights as long as you (as always) don't exceed your level of entitlements. Well ... no, the decommissioned server will also report within the same 90-day period as the new server - potentially a bigger problem than the issue with high-water marks. So again you'll need to either classify the server accordingly, or ensure you have the right artefacts to contest any double recognition, or both.
... a lot of overhead right?
And that's where a secondary source of truth can prove essential ...
The world is certainly a different place than it was just weeks ago. From what was a normal days work to stay-at-home advisories, self-isolation and lock-downs, business and workers face enormous challenges.
In such adverse times it's not possible to predict what the landscape will look like in the months ahead, but with the unfortunate loss of jobs and closure of businesses all we can know is that it will be a dramatically different place.
Those that can and do keep operating are an imperative for the economy, both now and through recovery, and whilst it would be reprehensible of vendors to audit companies when the corner is turned, there are those that inevitably will still do so.
So while there is much to contemplate and deal with in just keeping your business running, a quick check on some basic principles could avert some later issues. Consider some of the most common licensing pitfalls with typical BCP scenario's:
Working From Home
Working from Home means mobility - if you are allocating laptops and notebooks be wary of installation or device based licenses, all of which might be overlooked with the rapid deployment of SOE's and new devices. There may even be restrictions on what category of device the software can be installed on, or even where physically it can be used (eg. designated offices or specific geographic locations). Where applicable, check you mobility rights cater for your intended use, and are current (eg. Microsoft SA Benefits).
Remote access can be another minefield where in the rush to get staff connected controls that would normally be in place might get overlooked. While solutions like an F5 BIG-IP Edge Gateway provide user based licensing to their own resources via secure VPN, other storefront and virtualisation products such as Citrix Gateway with VDI if not properly administered can be at greater risk of exposing applications unintentionally - make sure your access controls eg. AD Groups etc) are aligned to your licensing, and any additions to those secure groups have corresponding entitlements.
If you are in the position of having to invoke your DR (or partial DR) things will undoubtedly be more complicated. License transfer rights, powering servers up, or moving capacity from cold to hot can easily lead to over use. Migrating (or worse, extending) production workload to DR will certainly have conditions and constraints that if over-looked will leave you visibly non-compliant at a later date via audit trails such as SCRT or license server logs. Keep appropriate records that will help to mitigate any action you needed to take, and make sure you enable/track license migration alongside any workload you move.
While we'd like to think some leniency would be afforded through these difficult times, keeping a good handle on your compliance position just makes good business sense.
So stay compliant, but mostly, stay well, and stay safe.
Software Compliance partners with Digital Resilience
Deployment Planning Services
FastTrack is now Microsoft's primary implementation support offering applicable to Azure, Microsoft 365, and Dynamics 365 engagements. All on-premises Deployment Planning Services offerings and the respective engagements will be available until January 2022 and you can continue to redeem your deployment planning days through the current process from qualified partners or Microsoft Consulting Services to help you plan your deployment—whether on-premises or in hybrid environments.
Training vouchers can still be used until January 2022 with the exception of Azure training, which will be removed from the Software Assurance course catalog in February 2020. The Training Vouchers benefit will be fully retired on January 1, 2022.
The right to access training vouchers expires with your Software Assurance coverage. If you create a training voucher before the expiration of your Software Assurance coverage, the voucher remains valid for 180 days after the date it was created.
Software Assurance E-Learning was replaced with Microsoft Learn on November 1st 2018, which offers a free-of-charge way to learn about Microsoft products and services. Instructor-led training is available, and Microsoft are introducing role-based courses and advanced workload courseware, along with new certifications.
24x7 Problem Resolution Support
Customers will no longer earn a limited number of support incidents based on spend, agreement type, and product(s) but instead will get as-needed support with a Software Assurance spend of $250,000 or more annually.
Starting in February 2021, customers that spend more than US$250,000 per year on Software Assurance will get as-needed basic phone support for Severity A and online support during business hours for Severity B and C with a 24-hour response time. Customers will also have the option to upgrade to Microsoft Unified Support.
Customers that spend less than US$250,000 per year on Software Assurance with no enterprise support agreement (Premier/Unified) will be directed to a partner for support or purchase Professional Support incidents from Microsoft.
Check out this October announcement - It could save You Thousands!
- Failover servers for high availability – Allows customers to install and run passive SQL Server instances in a separate operating system environment (OSE) or server for high availability on-premises in anticipation of a failover event. Today, Software Assurance customers have one free passive instance for either high availability or DR
- Failover servers for disaster recovery NEW – Allows customers to install and run passive SQL Server instances in a separate OSE or server on-premises for disaster recovery in anticipation of a failover event
- Failover servers for disaster recovery in Azure NEW – Allows customers to install and run passive SQL Server instances in a separate OSE or server for disaster recovery in Azure in anticipation of a failover event
Answer for Q1: Yes. The benefit applies to all supported releases of SQL Server.
For each of its Primary Workloads, Customer is entitled to:
- One Fail-over OSE for any purpose, including high availability, on any Server dedicated to Customer’s use (subject to their new Outsourcing Software Management clause); and
- Two Fail-over OSEs specifically for disaster recovery purposes:
- one on any Server dedicated to Customer’s use (subject to their new Outsourcing Software Management clause) and
- one on Microsoft Azure servers
Lets Straighten out On-Premise Rights Included with M365
But we all know that relying on commentary - even on the Microsoft site - is not enough ...
... so where to?
The Product Terms of course.
The definitive descriptor of Microsoft's Software licensing terms.
IBM Announces its new "Authorised SAM Provider" Offering (IASP)
OKAY, SO WHAT's THE OBJECTIVE?
HOW ABOUT the APPROACH?
... And THE Benefits?
As with many IT functions companies are finding that they need help - they just don't have the in-house skills to perform every role, task and responsibility they need to cover.
... nor should they have to.
While the IASP program from IBM targets large, specially invited customers with just 4 select partners, our purpose is to assist all organisations - small, medium or large - with the same goal:
Provide the skills, tools, knowledge and process to solve your software licensing issues.
terms related to outsourcing rights and dedicated hosted cloud services Change 1-Oct.
- On-premises licenses purchased without Software Assurance and mobility rights cannot be deployed with dedicated hosted cloud services offered by “Listed Providers” being Microsoft, Alibaba, Amazon (including VMware Cloud on AWS), and Google (the changes don't apply to any other providers - yet - and if/when they do you'll get 12 months to get compliant).
- Microsoft licenses with License Mobility through Software Assurance can now be used on dedicated hosted cloud services with any Listed Provider who is also an Authorized Mobility Partner.
- Microsoft licenses with Software Assurance can be used with the updated Azure Hybrid Benefit, including on the newly launched Azure Dedicated Host.
Do the updates to the Outsourcing Software Management clause affect my rights to deploy licenses with an Authorized Mobility Partner? License Mobility through Software Assurance rights will be expanded to permit deployment of licenses with License Mobility coverage with Listed Providers’ dedicated hosted cloud services for those Listed Providers who are Authorized Mobility Partners. (and importantly) Rights to deploy licenses on Authorized Mobility Partners’ shared servers are not impacted by the outsourcing update.
- Use of Windows Enterprise licenses with Listed Providers dedicated hosted cloud services will require Windows VDA E3/E5 user licenses, so if you’re in this situation but have existing SA coverage or E3/E5 subscriptions you’ll have until October 1, 2020 to migrate away from the Listed Provider if you want to avoid having to buy these additional licenses.
- A number of products do not have License Mobility through Software Assurance and are therefore not permitted to be run with Listed Providers’ dedicated hosted cloud services, such as:
- the option to license by virtual machine (Datacenter or Standard), or to license by physical host, but allocate core licenses only for the number of cores available to you (Datacenter only)
- use is governed by the Online Services Terms (OST) and therefore does not require base CALs
- permits you to host solutions on Azure for access by your customers
- equivalent of on-premises fail-over rights for SQL Server, and in the case of SQL Server Enterprise Core licensed at the host level, the equivalent of onpremises unlimited virtualization rights
- Both SQL Server and Windows Server are eligible for Disaster Recovery Rights and new version rights
- Run your licensed software and manage its OSEs on shared servers under the terms of your volume licensing agreement;
- Deploy your Licenses only with Microsoft Azure Services or qualified License Mobility through Software Assurance Partners; and
- Complete and submit the License Mobility Validation form with each License Mobility through Software Assurance Partner who will run the licensed software on their shared servers.
NOW INCLUDING CLOUD CONSUMPTION REPORTING
- Microsoft Azure and O365 (AAD)
- Oracle Cloud (OC)
- IBM Cloud Platform (ICP)
- Google Cloud Platform (GCP)
- Amazon Web Services (AWS)
A New And WeLcome Direction in Consolidated, Direct, Licensing Information
Could the Change to IBM's PVU Core Table Signal a Refreshing SHIFT in Sub-Capacity Licensing?
- When sockets on a 2 socket server with 6 cores per socket are connected to sockets on another 2 socket server with 6 cores per socket, this becomes an SMP server with a maximum of 4 sockets per server and 24 cores, and requires 2400 PVUs (100 per core x 24 cores).
All might not be what You think - It's time to Check
You might think there's no need to - nothings changed, configurations haven't been updated - well, consider setting selections during those updates and upgrades - perhaps revised defaults came into play (depending on version, database options and management packs are installed and many are enabled automatically!)
- Oracle Database option and Oracle management pack usage
- Features used by each option and management pack
Could You Be At Risk From Covert LICENSING TERMS?
Micro Focus End User License AgreemenT
- MICRO FOCUS® ENTERPRISE DEVELOPER, MICRO FOCUS ENTERPRISE SERVER, MICRO FOCUS ENTERPRISE SERVER FOR .NET, MICRO FOCUS ENTERPRISE TEST SERVER, MICRO FOCUS ENTERPRISE TEST SERVER PREMIUM, VISUAL COBOL® , COBOL SERVER, DATABASE CONNECTORS
OPEN TEXT – ECD Central Processing Unit (“CPU”) ModeL
IT SEEMS AUDIT SEASON HAS STARTED EARLY ...
- The innocuous supply of current state to the vendor (or partner) to scope and price a new project or programme of work;
- A Vendor (or partner) who has been involved in one of your projects with access to your systems identifying and reporting a non-compliant situation;
- An aggrieved employee aware of compliance issues who has recently left the organisation with a grudge to bare;
- Failing to submit a required usage report;
- An unfortunate listing with the BSA as a result of failing another recent audit;
- Or perhaps just a naive and blissfully unaware employee contacting a vendor to ask for your own contracts or license information because "we don't have a copy".
"the account have known it was like this for years",
"it was the licensing sold to us", etc etc.
So - what to do:
- Be cautious and restrict the information you provide to your vendors (and partners) - vet it carefully before releasing data that might expose you to further scrutiny;
- Similarly, if you're letting the vendor gain access to your estate make sure they're only going to get what they need, and even go as far as to add contractual terms that ensure they only use the information they gain for a specific, permitted purpose, not to go back to the office and gleefully expose any failings they may have found;
- If you have an employee leave on disagreeable terms it would be prudent to delve into their area of ownership and review your license position - resolve any compliance issues as a priority, just in case;
- Always keep on top of your reporting obligations and ensure usage reports are delivered in full, and on time;
- And lastly, remind your teams that interaction with your vendors is not something that just happens, nor is it a mandate or the responsibility of all. Instead, it is a specific role for those who are appropriately experienced and are vendor savvy. All communication should traverse this one path to be vetted accordingly, and lets just say that any unauthorised 'open invite to audit' emails to a vendor should be subject to appropriate 'education' (and repeat offenders - reprimands).
With a New Year ahead it's a good time to reflect on your IT Licensing status and Compliance Position - Are you confident that it's all under control?
While the costs of non-compliance are well documented companies continue to relegate software licensing and compliance to a 'will get to' task sometime in the future. With 2019 now upon us, is it time to perhaps resolve this once and for all?
Start by considering the reasons it's not been addressed as yet, or do you believe it is under control? Ask by whom - the respective teams who manage their software domain? Rarely do we see operational teams have an in-depth and expert understanding of the actual licensing requirements let alone an accurate deployment record. Unfortunately the only time this tends to become apparent is when the auditors roll in and put it to the test.
effective January 2019 ORACLE HAS ANNOUNCED THAT Java SE 8 public updates will no longer be available for "Business, Commercial or Production use" without a commercial license.
... For Commercial Users (being those "entities other than Oracle Customers that use Java SE for free for business, commercial or production purposes as part of a Java application delivered by a third party or developed internally" Oracle will not post further updates of Java SE 8 to its public download sites after January 2019. If you need continued access to critical bug fixes and security fixes as well as general maintenance for Java SE 8 or previous versions you'll need a long term support subscription through Oracle Java SE Advanced Desktop, or Oracle Java SE Suite.
- If you're comfortable with rolling through six-monthly updates you can do so for free - there will be no additional requirement;
- but if you're not, you're going to need to purchase a subscription.
- what do I have deployed?
- whats covered by Oracle or other third-party product licensing?
- what do I need to do with those installations that aren't?
READY TO WORK WITH US?
Software Compliance IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS!
Software Compliance is EXCITED to Announce Its PArt in the 2019 CIO FORUM IN SYDNEY, MARCH 13-14 as an Associate Sponsor.
The 2018 event was well attended with 136 delegates from over 100 different companies, so make sure you register at an early bird rate now ...
- Backroom to Boardroom: Resilient Leadership for Dynamic Times
- Market Momentum: Unlocking the Power of Customer Insights
- Smarter, Bigger, Better Data: Tapping Potential, Adding Value
- Security Under Scrutiny: Fortifying Information & Reputation
- A Threat Detected is a Crisis Averted: Updating and Maintaining Cyber Security Strategy
- The Art of Analytics: Tapping Potential, Adding Value
- People at the Core: Empowering Teams, Powering Change
- The Right Speed for the Need: Investing in Agile IT Infrastructure
- Survival of the Fittest: Keeping IT Future-Focused
Extended Support for SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2 will end on July 9, 2019.
Extended Support for Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 will end on January 14, 2020.
- If you are an Azure customer, Extended Security Updates will be available for free in Azure for 2008 and 2008 R2 versions of SQL Server and Windows Server to help secure your workloads for three more years after the end of support deadline.
- If you run on-premise installations, you will be able to purchase Extended Security Updates for three more years as long as you have Software Assurance or Subscription licenses under an Enterprise Agreement enrollment.
LAWSuit CITES MISREPRESENTATION OF CLOUD SALES DRIVERS
Oracles share price fell 9.4 percent on March 20 after forecasting slowing cloud sales.
BCP & DR