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How to set up the automatic creation of license requirements

Overview

All your software deployments should be entitled by valid licenses. Accordingly, it is important to understand how the respective software is currently deployed. This includes answers to the following possible questions:

  • Are there local installations on computers?
  • Are there hosted copies that are accessed over the network (e.g., XenApp, Terminal Services)?
  • Are there any other provisioning technologies (e.g., ThinApp, App-V)?
  • Does the software provide a Web browser interface that should be entitled somehow?
  • Are there any deployments for specific purposes (e.g., Test, Training) that need special consideration?
  • Is technical software recognition complete and accurate?

Foundations for generating license requirements automatically

We recommend that you establish a way to automatically derive license requirements from appropriate data sources. There are several technical foundations that the system can use to create and maintain license requirements:

  1. Installations: By using assigned fingerprints from local installations.
  2. Group memberships: By using assigned groups (e.g., imported from Active Directory) with respective members.
  3. Remote use tracking: By using actual remote execution of assigned applications or remote access to application hosts that are equipped with assigned software products.
  4. Collateral requirements: By using license requirements for other assigned software products.
  5. Catalog services: By using approved requests for assigned services.

You may use several options at the same time. The system will ensure that there is still only one license requirement record per consumer.

You can switch off the automatic creation of license requirements from installations of a specific software product by selecting the corresponding checkbox on the License Requirements > Fingerprints tab of the software product dialog.

Example:

  • Application X is locally installed on many computers (Installation/Fingerprint)
  • Application X is also deployed on a Remote Desktop (Remote Use Tracking/Executable)

At this point it might be also appropriate to verify both authorization and actual need for existing deployments. Contact the end users or respective managers to get either confirmation for user's demand or approval to remove the deployment. This activity will not only help you reduce financial risks from being non-compliant, but will also save costs in the future.

Life cycle

License requirements are created and deleted automatically by the system for relevant consumers based on relevant scenarios (foundations). Relevant scenarios are displayed on the Foundations page of the license requirement dialog. Every license requirement that is managed automatically by the system needs to have at least one foundation. If the last foundation record is removed, the license requirement will be deleted as well.

The relevance of a consumer is based on the status of the respective record.

Consumer Condition of relevance
User (person) Status is Active
Device (asset) The current asset status value of the device is included in the Asset Status Values Relevant for License Compliance list in the global system settings (Licenses application > Settings) and – for devices of the Server computer role – the value of the Power Status field is Powered On.

The relevance of a scenario is based on meeting the conditions of this scenario for the corresponding software product.

Scenario/foundation Condition Technical configuration for the foundation
Local installation Application is installed Tracked fingerprint is assigned to the relevant software product
Remote usage Remote usage is tracked Executable has been configured for the relevant software product
Group membership Consumer is a member of the group This group is assigned to the relevant software product
Collateral requirement A primary license requirement for the relevant software product exists A collateral requirement rule has been configured
Service booking An approved service booking exists A service is assigned to the relevant software product

It is important to understand the system behaviour if the consumer or the configuration or the condition of a license requirement becomes irrelevant.

Irrelevance of Examples System behaviour
Consumer
  • Status of an asset changes to irrelevant.
  • Status of a person changes to Inactive.
Foundation record is immediately removed since the minimum entitlement period does not apply to irrelevant consumers.
Technical configuration Fingerprint, AD group, executable, service or collateral requirement rule has been deleted or is not assigned to the software product anymore. Foundation record is immediately removed since the minimum entitlement period does not apply to irrelevant scenarios.
Condition
  • Local installation was removed.
  • Remote usage record does not exist anymore.
  • Consumer is not a member of an AD group anymore.
  • Service booking is not approved anymore or has been deleted.
  • Dependent license requirement does not exist anymore.
Foundation record is removed only when the minimum entitlement period has elapsed.

The minimum entitlement period is the time that a consumer needs to hold the license before it returns to the license pool. This is a licensing term used by some vendors, e.g., Microsoft, to prevent abusive use, such as floating entitlements for different devices or users. The minimum entitlement period is defined for each software product in its dialog.

Using the confirmation mode

It is recommended that license requirements that are created automatically by the system should be confirmed by a responsible user. By default the system is set up this way.

Only confirmed license requirements are effective in terms of license compliance, consolidation, and entitlement.

There are two principal reasons why the confirmation mode has been introduced:

  • Being informed about unconfirmed license requirements helps you review corresponding deployments just in time and manage possible unauthorized occurrences.
  • Confirmation prior to entitlement gives you an opportunity to select the most suitable license model in case of several licensing options (e.g., Server + CAL vs. CPU).

However, you can adjust this setting in the Licenses application > Settings by clearing the Enable license requirement confirmation mode checkbox. If you do so, all automatically created requirements will be effective by default.

You can find all license requirements that have not been confirmed yet under the Required Licenses > Confirmation required navigation item. This search page also contains invalid license requirements for which an eligible consumer could not be found.

Alternatively, you can see all unconfirmed requirements for a particular software product under Open Confirmations on its preview.

Confirming and rejecting license requirements

The Confirm action allows confirming and rejecting license requirements. As a result, the system considers these license requirements as either effective or ignored. You can run the action for one or multiple record(s). A confirmation wizard opens.

  1. Choose from the following options:
  • Confirm the requirement and make it eligible for possible consolidation or entitlement.
  • Reject and exclude from further processing. This option usually applies to occurrences when underlying information (e.g., installation, group membership, etc.) is supposed to be incorrect. It may also apply if you find out that the deployment was not authorized and will be redeemed.
  • Revoke the previous decision and set the status to Confirmation missing. If the confirmation mode of the respective software product is set to automatic, the selected records will be confirmed and processed by the system. Otherwise, you should decide about confirmation at a later point in time.
  1. If appropriate, provide a comment and click Confirm.

Setting automatic or manual confirmation for specific software products

You may automate confirmation for selected software products by using the Set Confirmation Mode action. In this case the system will automatically process the corresponding records. We recommend that you choose this option only if you are sure that the automatically created license requirements are accurate, especially in terms of license model. You can also use this action to set confirmation mode to manual.

The confirmation mode setting of a specific software product overrides the confirmation mode set under Licenses > Settings for this product.

To set the confirmation mode for a software product:

  1. Go to Software Compliance > All and select the required software product.
  2. Click the Set Confirmation Mode action.
  3. Choose the required option.
  4. If you are switching from automatic to manual, you can update existing license requirements for this software by setting their status to Confirmation missing.
  5. Finish the wizard.

 

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