Q&A: How to License Software Under Virtualization



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Many organizations have been struggling with the challenges of licensing software under server and desktop virtualization. The answers to frequent client questions from recent Gartner events and analyst inquiries are addressed, but there are no easy magic answers.

Table of Contents

  • Analysis
    • How can we run software licensed by hardware device, processor or core on virtual servers or virtual desktops?
    • What alternative licensing arrangements can I negotiate?
    • Is it safe to license by virtual processor or by virtual machine?
    • How can I reduce the cost of licensing under virtualization?
    • Is there a fairer way for customers to pay (and for vendors to earn) a fair price?
    • If we prove we're only using some of the software, then why do we have to pay for what's deployed?
    • I believe we have a strong moral case to pay only for what is used. Can we win a legal challenge against the vendor (or customer)?
    • Will vendors and their customers adopt dynamic usage metering?
    • Will vendors adopt the same method of usage metering?
    • Can vendors continue to hold customers responsible for license metering?
    • Are external service providers better placed to meter licenses?
  • Recommended Reading
© 2009 Gartner, Inc. and/or its Affiliates. All Rights Reserved. Reproduction and distribution of this publication in any form without prior written permission is forbidden. The information contained herein has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable. Gartner disclaims all warranties as to the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of such information. Although Gartners research may discuss legal issues related to the information technology business, Gartner does not provide legal advice or services and its research should not be construed or used as such. Gartner shall have no liability for errors, omissions or inadequacies in the information contained herein or for interpretations thereof. The opinions expressed herein are subject to change without notice.

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