Wednesday, February 07, 2007

The Long Road

For the last few months I have been examining and scheming with my Manager about the future, and when you sketch out your long term plans it seems so reasonable and doable, but man when you look down the road at all the work you just agreed to do sometimes it makes me just want to put my head down on my desk and cry.

I am starting all of this off with a license audit, port documentation, and switch upgrade. Not too hard right?


Damn Microsoft has to to and make my life challenging with licensing. So far I get with SQL you license per processor for unlimited use or you purchase CALs (Client Access Licenses), sort of makes sense, but didn't I buy the software why isn't access built into the purchase price? Now if I want to use it for anything I have to pay you for every person that accesses SQL? That seems a little out there, but ok cost of doing business I guess. Up next Desktop Licensing, pretty straight forward, I need a license for every physical machine. Got it, what about virtual machines? Ok I need a licesnse for every one of those that I run. Wow (Caveat being that you could run in a testing environment with an MSDN subscription or run the as demo's that expire every 30days). Not too bad mostly makes sense.

Move to servers, I have to buy the os for the server, but say I use it as a File Server how does that work? I have to buy CALs for each client that accesses it for a File Server. OK, what about if the print server also lives on that server? Do I have to buy a CAL for each access of the File Server and one for each access of the Print Server? I would if I had the print server on a different machine right? Does that mean that consolidated would have to have 2 CALs for every client? It seemed so easy at first, but doesn't scale well for the complex scenarios. What abut a Print Server/File Server/ AV Server? What about if that sever also hosts a Intranet site?

I am not trying to muddy the waters, but does having a piece of software running on a server that utilizes a website how do you license that? Isn't the burden on the software developer to keep track of how many people are accessing the software, so I know how many CALs I need? Are CALs concurrent licenses or do I have to have one for each client?

Any how I find it annoying that they employ such complicated licensing that I have to call someone to tell me if I am following the rules.

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