The Product List and Product Use Rights documents are perhaps the most important tools for managing your Volume Licensing acquisition from Microsoft®. The Product List is updated monthly and includes the following:
- Availability of new software and products offered through Microsoft® Volume Licensing
- Discontinuation of software and products offered through Microsoft® Volume Licensing
- Software and product designation regarding the Microsoft® Volume Licensing product pool
- The point value for each software and product technology
- Available promotions
- Migration paths from one version of software to another version of that same software
- Migration paths from discontinued software to new software versions
- Software Assurance benefits
- Other Notes and information specific to software and products
There is a tremendous amount of information in the Product List, and while it may read like a contract or license agreement in places, it is a valuable resource to determine available products and help to ensure compliance with the terms of your VL Agreement.
This article will not attempt to replicate the content of the Product List, but rather, serve as a brief synopsis of the document, intended to assist the reader in knowing where specific content may be in the Product List. To accomplish this, we will briefly summarize the sections in the order in which they appear.
How to use the Product List
The Product List begins with a Chart Key which is critical to understanding the available products and licensing programs for which they apply (Select, Open, Education, etc.). Since most of the headings are abbreviated, the document defines Column Headings and Column Values. One of the columns is “Date Available”. It’s worth noting that the Product List only contains products that are currently available. This is not a place to look for future release dates.
As the heading suggests, this is the core of the document and it requires a thorough understanding of the aforementioned Chart Key. The list is organized into three “pools”: The Applications Pool, Systems Pool, and Server Pool. Within each pool you will find every line item that is currently available including Client Access Licenses (CALs), bundles with other products or services, and MCP Exam Vouchers. This is also the source for Select/Select Plus and Open point values, Software Assurance (SA) eligibility, and whether the product may be obtained under Select/Select Plus, Open, Enterprise, perpetual or subscription agreements.
Product List changes over the past 12 months
Additions, Changes, and Deletions are shown under the month in which they were introduced. This section does not describe the changes, but merely identifies the line item as it appears in the Product List section above. The user must refer to the Product List section for details.
This section describes all active product promotions.
Volume Licensing Program Terms
This is a good point of reference for many VL terms and can often provide significant detail without having to access the Open, Select, or Enterprise Agreement. This section includes terms and information such as Order Requirements, Qualifying Device Definitions, Up to Date (UTD) Discount Products, and Updates to EA and Subscription Agreement Terms.
This section is not only a useful snapshot of VL Terms, but since the Product List is identified in the Open, Select, and Enterprise Agreements as a binding extension of those Agreements, this should be regularly reviewed to ensure compliance.
License Types and Fees
This section offers a very high level snapshot of the types and combinations of licenses available to VL customers. This includes product licenses, licenses with Software Assurance (SA), SA description and terms, SA eligibility and terms for Full Packaged Product (FPP) and products acquired from OEMs, Step-up Licenses, Subscriptions, Upgrades, Upgrades with SA, and Work at Home Licenses.
Online Services Pricing and Payment Terms
Online Services are products comprised of software with services which are available on a subscription basis as described in the Product Use Rights and delivered online. Some Volume License agreements direct customers to the Product List for a list of available “Online Services.”
This section addresses subscription terms, auto-renewals, cancellations, payment options, minimum purchase requirements, and regional availability. There is also a portion dedicated to Windows Azure™ Services.
Software Assurance (SA) Renewal Rules
The rules governing SA renewals vary, depending upon whether they are tied to an Open, Open Value, Select, Select Plus, or Enterprise enrollment. Terms are further differentiated if the renewal is intended to extend SA benefits to products with perpetual licenses. Finally, SA renewals associated with Enterprise Agreements from before 2011 are treated differently than more recent EAs. There is also a segment to address “cross-program renewals” for products which are not covered by a company-wide commitment.
Software Assurance (SA) Benefits and Online Services (OLS) Benefits
This section describes Microsoft’s® Premier Support Offerings, Windows Azure™ Support, and Enterprise Strategy Program Offerings, including customer responsibilities within the Strategy Program.
As previously noted, the Product List is identified in the master VL Agreements as a binding extension of those Agreements (along with the Product Use Rights (PUR) and Qualifying Government Entity Addendum). This section contains information on topics such as CALs and MLs, Export Restrictions, Platform Independent Licenses, and information about VL Product Keys.
If you refer back to the section entitled Product List you will find a column named “Product Notes”. Many products will have a number in this column. These numbers are linked to product specific terms contained in the Product Notes section.
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