SA is not a carrot

On December 27, 2007, in Rants, by

So I’m reading this article.. and I’m thinking …hmmmm this has potential… a Microsoft version of Spiceworks possibly…..

Larger organizations typically have resources and tools in place to manage software. These tools are often large-scale, multipurpose solutions that not only track hardware and software inventory but also manage software delivery to the desktop and monitor performance, along with other operational functions. Where does that leave organizations where such solutions are not viable or where resources and expertise to implement and manage such complex solutions are not available?

Meeting the needs of business both large and small is one of the driving influences behind the concept of software as a service (SaaS). The Microsoft “Software plus Services” strategy encompasses efforts to develop service-based solutions to assist customers in managing software assets effectively.

Sounds interesting.. let’s keep reading….in the sidebar it reads…

Fostering an Online Community

Asset Inventory Service and the System Center Online service are furthering the development of a strong community of users who could influence the evolution of online services. The software catalog is an excellent example of something that a user community could provide input on (in true wiki fashion), and the users of the service could provide suggestions, corrections, and guidance.

In the future, the catalog itself may also be a valuable source of information to end users when they are researching potential software purchases. Aggregate anonymous statistics can be collected from the entire service to determine adoption rates for software and hardware products, and will provide useful data to end users involved in these activities.

The community will also be the voice that guides the overall direction of the service by contributing feedback on what areas should be prioritized to meet specific business needs.

Oooh that sounds good to as that just solidifies what we do already.  And then I read the thing that brings it to a full stop:

One of the first of these services, Microsoft® Asset Inventory Service, is being released to Software Assurance customers as part of the Desktop Optimization Pack for Software Assurance later this year.

Yeah… as one of the representatives of the rounding error of Software Assurance customers in the small business space, while I do purchase Software Assurance for my server, I don’t for my desktop.  I just cannot justify SA on desktops.  I honestly have some SA licenses, but that was only a limited about to ensure that I would be able to get a few BitLocker licenses.  And quite frankly I’m buying Vista Ultimates anyway, so the reason I was doing it is not relevant anymore.

Software as a Service isn’t a Software Assurance carrot.  You won’t get more SA licenses sold because of that.  Not down here in this OEM desktop world. 

So here’s my first user input for you guys from a member of a SBS community:.

Remove it from Software Assurance and allow software as a service to be uncoupled from that.  Because down here in the “small” space…we ain’t buying.


2 Responses to SA is not a carrot

  1. Chris Knight says:

    It becomes an interesting proposition when you look at all the goodies bundled in with MDOP for SA – SoftGrid, Desktop Error Monitoring, Asset Inventory, Diagnostics + Recovery Toolset, AGPM.

    But as you said, you’d be getting MDOP for the MDOP features, not for desktop SA.

    Just think of desktop SA as a purchase of MDOP…

  2. Jon says:

    Right on! I have quite a few SBS clients with less the 10 desktops and no one is buying SA. In fact, I work for a company that has had as many as 300 workstations and it still did not make sense for us. AIS is a nice feature that is going to benefit the small and medium business who cannot afford the SMS packages which the big guys are already running.

    Way to hit the target market Microsoft, we are still not buying SA.