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Microsoft Volume Licensing Enterprise Agreement Program Guide
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Microsoft Volume Licensing Enterprise Agreement Program Guide

A Program Guide for IT and Procurement Managers
This document provides an overview of the Microsoft® Enterprise Agreement program, the optimal Volume Licensing program for medium and large enterprise customers with 250 or more PCs, devices and/or users, and who want the option to standardize on one or several Microsoft Enterprise Products and cloud services, yet retain the flexibility to purchase software and cloud services for different user types. This guide explains the components of the Enterprise Agreement (EA) and is designed for anyone who has or is evaluating the EA from a purchasing, IT management or business decision perspective. This guide includes an overview of EA terms, in addition to pertinent information needed to utilize software and services that are included as part of the EA.

While this guide can help you understand the Microsoft Enterprise Agreement Volume Licensing program for commercial organizations, it is provided for informational purposes only. Your software use is governed by the terms of your Microsoft licensing agreement(s). In addition, the Microsoft Licensing Product Use Rights (PUR) document, which is updated regularly, provides details regarding current use rights for specific Microsoft products acquired through Volume Licensing programs. For a copy of the current PUR, please go to

  The Microsoft Enterprise Agreement

The Enterprise Agreement gives you the flexibility to choose among on-premises software and cloud services to best suit your users’ needs, and helps you optimize your technology spend as business priorities change.

The Microsoft Enterprise Agreement
The Microsoft Enterprise Agreement (EA) provides you with the best overall pricing based on your organization’s size, the benefits of Software Assurance, as well as simplified licensing management via your organization-wide agreement. And as more companies implement cloud services, the EA now provides a seamless way to license both on-premises software and cloud services all in the same agreement. With a single agreement, you will enjoy the flexibility of being able to choose software and cloud services for different user types, optimize your technology spend to fit your IT and user needs, and streamline software compliance and asset management across all of your Microsoft purchases.

How the Enterprise Agreement Works
The Enterprise Agreement is appropriate for your organization if you have more than 250 PCs, devices and/or users and want to license software and cloud services for your organization for a minimum, three-year period.
With the Enterprise Agreement you can decide whether you want to take advantage of various enrollments, the most well-known perhaps is the Enterprise Enrollment. With the Enterprise Enrollment, you can choose to run PC and device software and cloud services across your organization. Such organization-wide implementations help you reduce device and user management and support costs, and also provide additional pricing advantages above the standard volume pricing levels. You can also take advantage of other Enrollments that help you license, for example, application or infrastructure solutions.

For customers who have an Enterprise Enrollment, at the onset of your agreement pricing is based on a tiered volume discount structure, meaning the greater the size of your purchase commitment the less you’ll pay for an individual per-device or per-user license. Should you add additional devices or users during your agreement, the per-device or per-user licensing costs remain the same or may change given the program’s volume pricing levels.

The cost of your Enterprise Enrollment may be spread across three annual payments, helping you predict future budget requirements. Should you add new users or devices during your EA, you can equip them with software and cloud services you are already using and then account for these changes once a year through an annual reconciliation process.

The EA helps you simplify software licensing, budgeting, and administration with a single agreement through which you can manage all of your Microsoft software and cloud services. You decide which software and cloud services to run on-premises or have hosted by Microsoft, based on user requirements and what’s most cost-effective for your organization.

Additionally, all on-premises software purchases include Software Assurance benefits that you can use to plan deployments, ready your users for new software, and support Microsoft products and services without incurring additional costs.

Finally, you can choose to either purchase your software licenses via the EA’s various Enrollments or subscribe to licenses via optional Enterprise Subscription programs.

Enterprise Subscription Programs
In addition to the Enterprise Agreement, Microsoft offers optional Enterprise Subscription programs for companies that want to subscribe to, rather than purchase Microsoft products.

Enterprise Subscription programs provide similar advantages as the Enterprise Agreement Enrollments and give you a lower initial cost based on a three-year subscription, and the ability to increase or decrease subscription counts on an annual basis. This ability to grow or downsize subscription counts can be attractive, especially if you expect significant fluctuations in workforce size and IT requirements. However, unlike the Enterprise Agreement Enrollments where you retain perpetual use rights for the licenses you purchase, with these subscription programs you gain access to Microsoft software only for as long as you maintain your subscription. If you decide not to renew, you relinquish your rights to run the software, unless of course you choose to acquire your licenses through the program’s “buy out” option.

Software Assurance
The Enterprise Agreements include Software Assurance for on-premises software to help you boost productivity across your organization with new software versions, deployment planning, 24x7 phone and web support, training and unique technologies such as Windows 7 Enterprise Edition and the Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP). For more information see the Appendix B: A Summary of Software Assurance Benefits.
  Software and cloud services available through the Enterprise Agreement

Through your Enterprise Agreement you can choose to order software licenses and cloud services separately, or purchase groups of products such as the Enterprise Desktop Platform (described in the following section). You can also add Enrollments, which are designed to help your organization license Microsoft solutions, delivered via on-premises licenses and/or cloud services, to address common Enterprise IT concerns such as standardizing on PC and device technologies or building and maintaining secure datacenters. As your IT strategy evolves to include the many benefits of cloud computing, the Enterprise Agreement can help you extend the capabilities and functionality of your existing technology investments with cloud services (also referred to as online services). Finally, you may decide to add Microsoft Premier Support offerings to complement your product choices.

With the Enterprise Enrollment, you will also see a distinction made between Enterprise Products that are available with an organization-wide purchase commitment, versus Additional Products and Enterprise Online Services that usually do not require such a commitment.

Enterprise Products and Platforms
Enterprise Products include on-premises licenses for Microsoft core PC and device products, namely Windows 7 Enterprise, Office Professional Plus 2010 and applicable client access licenses in the form of CAL Suites. If you have an Enterprise Enrollment under your EA, Enterprise Products must be licensed on an organization-wide basis and may be ordered as separate products, or in groups of products known as Enterprise Platforms.

Desktop Platforms
The Enterprise Products included in the Professional Desktop Platform are:

  • Windows 7 Enterprise Edition upgrade, and
  • Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010, and
  • Microsoft Core Client Access License (CAL) Suite

The Enterprise Products included in the Enterprise Desktop Platform are:

  • Windows 7 Enterprise Edition upgrade, and
  • Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010, and
  • Microsoft Enterprise Core Access License CAL Suite

Licensing either platform through your EA can help your organization build both simplicity and flexibility into your IT infrastructure while enjoying an additional savings on top of your already discounted Enterprise Product licenses.

With either platform you may add the Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP) to help streamline deployment and device management. Available exclusively through your Software Assurance benefits as an add-on subscription, MDOP employs six innovative technologies to improve PC and device management, including application virtualization, asset management and device diagnostic tools. When purchased organization-wide additional volume discounts are applied.

Note: While MDOP is not eligible for the platform pricing advantage, when purchased organization-wide additional volume subscription discounts may apply.

Note: All Windows operating system licenses provided under the Enterprise Agreement are upgrade licenses. This means you’ll need a base Windows operating system (OS) license on those devices for which you plan to use a Windows 7 Enterprise Edition upgrade license.

The complete list of Enterprise Products is available on the Microsoft Product List.

Cloud Services
Keeping pace with the expanding array of Microsoft cloud services, the Enterprise Agreement gives you the flexibility to choose among cloud services as well as on-premises software to best suit your users’ needs and help you optimize your technology spend.

Microsoft delivers a comprehensive set of cloud services and enterprise applications for user productivity, customer management, communication services and custom business applications with the reliability, security, and global reach you should expect for your organization. Microsoft cloud services that are either available today or announced for availability in 2011 include Office 365, Windows Intune, and Dynamics CRM Online.

With respect to your Enterprise Agreement, cloud services will typically fall into two classes, Enterprise Online Services or additional online services. These may be added to your EA using the standard purchasing process or by transitioning users from Enterprise Products to comparable Enterprise Online Services.

Enterprise Online Services
These are products that are designated as Enterprise Online Services in the Microsoft Product List. These products typically fall inline with existing on-premises Enterprise Products so that the two may be thought of as equivalents when satisfying organization-wide licensing commitments and establishing volume pricing levels.

With the EA you can move your on-premises licenses to comparable cloud services over the life of the EA. In other words, your organization-wide commitment for Enterprise Products is satisfied by existing Enterprise Products and a selection of Office 365 and Windows Intune cloud services with comparable capabilities.

When you choose to transition users from Enterprise Products to comparable Enterprise Online Services, the Enterprise Enrollment’s annual reconciliation feature and Enterprise Online Services transition rules help assure that you don’t pay to equip the same users with both on-premises licensing and equivalent cloud services.

Finally, if at a future date you wish to move users back to on-premises software purchased via your Enterprise Enrollment, you may do so under the program’s guidelines.

Additional Products
A broad selection of Microsoft products and services are available as Additional Products. They may be added initially or at any point during the term of your Enterprise Agreement, allowing you to more easily build and maintain departments or divisions with specific needs and still enjoy volume pricing advantages and an annualized payment option. Additional Products may include device-based licenses, user-based licenses, cloud services, professional services and other licenses that support your IT environment such as Client Access Licenses (CALs). For more detailed information about CALs and their use in Enterprise IT environment, please see Appendix A: A Detailed Look at Client Access Licenses and Microsoft CAL Suites.

Examples of software products available as Additional Products include Microsoft® Visio 2010 Professional and Windows Server™ 2008 R2 Enterprise. You can see all available Additional Products on the current Microsoft Product List.

Microsoft extends the value of the Enterprise Agreement by offering Enrollments that help you license solution-focused technology suites of Microsoft’s most popular application and infrastructure products. They can be a very cost-effective way to purchase software and solutions to address key organizational objectives, like building a secure and well managed data center or helping your IT staff build, manage and maintain line-of-business applications. One such Enrollment, the Enterprise Enrollment, was previously discussed in the Enterprise Products and Platforms section of this guide. All Enrollments are considered optional under your EA, and are summarized below.

Enterprise Enrollment
Enhance manageability and cost savings by equipping your entire organization with Windows 7 Enterprise Edition, Office Professional Plus 2010 and/or Client Access Licenses that help you connect to Microsoft Server products, plus enterprise-class online services such as Office 365 and Windows Intune.

Enrollment for Application Platform (EAP)
Get flexible and cost-effective licensing for standardizing on the latest Microsoft Application Platform (SQL Server 2008 R2, Visual Studio 2010, BizTalk Server, SharePoint Server 2010).

Enrollment for Core Infrastructure (ECI)
Save money through volume licensing to build the foundation for a protected and well–managed datacenter (Windows Server 2008 R2, System Center, Forefront Endpoint Protection).

Enterprise Subscription
Lower initial cost based on a three-year subscription with the ability to increase or decrease counts annually, providing flexibility where future fluctuations in workforce size and IT requirements are expected. Unlike the Enterprise Enrollment, on-premises license rights expire via subscription, so renewal or buyout is required to maintain rights. (Available for Enterprise Enrollment and ECI)

Premier Support Services
The Enterprise Agreement (EA) allows you to add a variety of Microsoft Premier Support offerings to provide the optimum level of pro-active and reactive support for your Microsoft software environment. Microsoft’s Premier Support, in conjunction with your Enterprise Agreement, gives you the proactive planning, technical expertise and skills transfer that large enterprises can use to boost availability and reduce management and support costs. Premier Support complements your EA with support that maps to your licensing decisions and may be managed as part of your overall agreement.

  Enterprise Agreement Program Details

Basic Agreement Terms
The Enterprise Agreement (EA) is the optimal Volume Licensing program for medium and large enterprise customers with 250 or more PCs, devices and/or users. The EA gives the option to standardize on one or several Microsoft Enterprise Products and cloud services, yet retain the flexibility to purchase software and cloud services for different user types. Based on a three-year agreement term, with the ability to add and adjust products and services over time, it offers pricing advantages beyond standard license and subscription pricing and provides comprehensive Software Assurance benefits for on-premises licenses.

The sections following explain key elements of the Enterprise Agreement, available Enrollments and Subscription program options.

Volume-based Pricing Principles
This section describes how pricing is initially determined for an Enterprise Enrollment.
The annual price per device budgeting feature of the Enterprise Agreement is predictable, so you can forecast software technology costs up to three years in advance. A payment (based on the pre-established price per device and initial order) is due each year on the anniversary of the Enterprise Agreement enrollment. Should you add additional devices during your agreement, the per-device or per-user licensing costs remain the same or may change given the program’s volume pricing levels.

Pricing Levels and Platform Discounts
The Enterprise Enrollment has four price levels for each of the Enterprise Products and Enterprise Online Services depending upon the size of your organization. Additional Products are discounted as well, based on your Enterprise Products and Enterprise Online Service licensing volumes. Choosing to purchase all Enterprise Products as a Platform gives you an additional pricing advantage beyond the standard Enterprise Product price.

With the Enterprise Subscription program options, you receive an additional pricing advantage on Enterprise Products versus the Enterprise Agreement since you do not own the product licenses, but rather are subscribing to the rights to use the products for as long as you continue to maintain your subscription.

New Product Versions
Arguably one of the best known aspects of the EA are New Product Versions. With your EA, you automatically gain access to new software versions of licensed product as soon as they are released, and for no additional cost through your Software Assurance benefits.

Step-up Availability
With Step-ups, you can upgrade from a lower- to a higher-level edition, such as Windows Server Standard Edition to Windows Server Enterprise Edition, at a low cost. Rather than pay full cost for the higher-level software edition, Step-ups allows you to pay only the pricing difference and still take advantage of enhanced features and technologies with premium editions. Step-up pricing may also be available for Premier Support and cloud service offerings. Please contact your Microsoft account representative or preferred reseller to learn more.

Flexible Payments
Payments for products and services purchased at signing may be spread over three annual payments mapping to your three-year EA term. With some exceptions, purchases made during your agreement may be annualized over your remaining agreement years.

Extended Payment Terms for Enterprise Agreements
If you want additional flexibility in how you pay for your Enterprise Agreement enrollments and renewals, annual and additional product orders, you will find value in the Extended Payment Terms option from Microsoft. These terms go beyond the current upfront annual payment structure to provide a choice of monthly, quarterly, semi-annual or customized payment options such as deferred or ramped payments. Extended Payment Terms also simplify decision-making because it is integrated into the Enterprise Agreement by a simple, one-time amendment covering current as well as future purchases.

Microsoft Financing
Microsoft Financing can provide you with the added flexibility to acquire the technology you need by providing custom payment options which allows you to bundle software, services and hardware in a single investment.
Microsoft works with multiple Microsoft Financing partners around the world that work with you to define your technology-related business needs and objectives, set up a payment structure that can work with your budget, and help you maintain important cash flow.

On-premises Software Terms

Perpetual Licenses
Generally, your rights to use licensed products become permanent once your Enterprise Agreement Enrollment term is up for renewal. Meaning you may continue to use licenses for the number of devices, users or copies that you ordered during your Enterprise Agreement.

The Enterprise Subscription programs provide you with non-perpetual licenses and do not give you perpetual use rights unless you elect to purchase these through the program’s buyout option. Subscription licenses for products and cloud services are not perpetual under any circumstance unless specified otherwise in the Microsoft Product List and Product Use Rights documents.

Additional Software Use Rights
Commitment on Use Rights provides Enterprise Agreement customers the security of knowing exactly what the use rights are for the products they license under their Enterprise Agreement Enrollment(s). Microsoft agrees not to change Product Use Rights for any version of a product after it becomes available. Furthermore, we make a commitment that we will not change use rights for Enterprise Products during the term of an Enrollment to be more restrictive or to the customers’ detriment (this commitment does not relate to new features and functionality).

Training and Evaluation Licenses give you a limited number of complimentary training and evaluation copies of any product including:

  • 20 copies per software title for use in a dedicated training facility, and
  • 10 copies per software title for a 60-day evaluation

Downgrade Rights provides you with flexibility to standardize on the latest technology and where necessary run older versions of software to support legacy devices or line-of-business applications.

Re-Imaging Rights allow the use of certain software media for re-imaging to provide added convenience during product deployment and ongoing maintenance.

Windows 7 Enterprise Edition
Through your Software Assurance coverage you have the right to use Windows 7 Enterprise Edition on your devices. Available exclusively to Microsoft Software Assurance customers, Windows 7 Enterprise helps you boost productivity and drive cost efficiencies across your organization.

Additionally, on each device you can run up to four virtual instances of Windows 7 Professional or Windows 7 Enterprise, or any earlier versions or those products, which may enable you to better support legacy hardware and line-of-business applications.

Windows Virtual Desktop Access and Roaming Use Rights
Windows Virtual Desktop Access lets you access virtual desktop environments from Software Assurance-covered PCs, and allows the PC’s user to remotely access their virtual desktops from third-party devices such as personal PCs and hotel kiosks.

Office Roaming Use Rights
Roaming Use Rights for Office, Project and Visio allow users with Software Assurance on Office, Project, or Visio to remotely access their software on their virtual desktops from third-party devices such as home PCs and internet kiosks. For details on how these use rights apply to specific products, see details in the Microsoft Licensing Product Use Rights (PUR) document.

Home Use Program
The Home Use Program allows your employees to get the latest version of the Microsoft Office suite to use on their home computer through a low-cost download. When employees use the same software at home and work, they gain more skills which helps improve productivity.

Support for Multiple Languages
With Software Assurance on qualifying Office products, you can deploy and use any combination of 37 different Office user interface (UI) languages without having to purchase additional Office Language Packs. Windows 7 Enterprise includes the Multi-language User Interface (MUI) enabling you to rollout the same multi-language desktop image across your organization, and further standardize support for users with different language needs.

Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack
Available exclusively to Software Assurance customers as an add-on subscription, the Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP) employs six innovative technologies to improve PC and device management, including application virtualization, asset management, and desktop diagnostic tools.

A note about Software Assurance
Throughout this guide we’ve noted that the Enterprise Agreement includes Software Assurance (SA) or that you get a certain benefit like New Products Version (also known as ‘product upgrades’) through Software Assurance. For more information on these and other benefits available to you through Software Assurance, please see Appendix B: A Summary of Software Assurance Benefits.

Transferring and Reassigning Licenses
With some exceptions, you can reassign licenses internally from one user to another or from one device to another within your organization. This provision allows you to accommodate changes in workforce and equipment, but it is not intended to be used for temporary (less than 90 days) licensing of on-premises software. See details in the Microsoft Licensing Product Use Rights (PUR) document. While most allowable license transfers are internal, in cases of merger, consolidation or divestiture, it may be possible to transfer to third-parties. See the License Transfer Form on for more information. 

Cloud Service Terms
Microsoft’s cloud computing solutions provide more choice and flexibility through offerings such as a world-class public cloud option, comprehensive end-to-end management, and free cloud accelerator solutions with valuable out-of-box functionality. Because of the varied nature of these offerings, Microsoft cloud services may be subject to the unique terms set forth for the product or cloud service in the Product Use Rights, Microsoft Product List and Online Services Use Rights documentation.

Adding Products and Cloud Services
Throughout your Enterprise Agreement term you may adjust your Microsoft on-premises software and cloud services licenses in two ways:

  • If you add new users or devices, you can equip them with software and cloud services you are already using and then account for these changes at your next agreement anniversary through an annual reconciliation process.
  • If you want new products or cloud services, you can order these through your Microsoft Reseller at any time during your agreement.

Agreement Anniversary: Annual Reconciliation
Over the life of your EA, you can equip additional devices, PCs or users with software you’ve already licensed, and then account for these additions through an annual reconciliation process sometimes called “True Up.” If you have an Enrollment with an Enterprise Subscription program this process is known as an Annual Order, through which you can increase or decrease your license subscription counts.

Once a year, you are asked to reconcile your EA licenses to account for the total number of licenses you’ve added in the previous 12 months. This effort culminates in an order you place (or an Update Statement you submit) that reconciles all the qualified devices, users, and processors added to your organization over the course of the year. Your annual reconciliation order (or Update Statement) is due 30-days prior to your agreement anniversary so that Microsoft may take into account any license quantities you may have transitioned to equivalent cloud services during the preceding year, prior to issuing your annual invoice.

Note: Annual reconciliation orders are available for certain cloud services as permitted in the Microsoft Product List or Product Use Rights documents.

Transitioning Users to/from Cloud Services
Should your EA include Enterprise Online Services, you will enjoy added flexibility within the EA when it makes sense to transition your users from on-premises software to cloud services. Learn more in the Enterprise Online Services section in this guide.

Renewing Enrollments under the Enterprise Agreement
When it’s time to renew your EA, you will have a number of options for Enrollment renewal that can be customized to meet the specific needs of your organization. With changes in your organization, renewal is an important process to ensure you have access to the licensing program features you need.

Options for Renewing your Enterprise Enrollments
At the end of your three-year Enrollment term, you’ll have the option to renew for another three-year cycle. Beyond your initial three-year agreement, renewal pricing for on-premises software licenses is based on Software Assurance only – a moderate percentage of Enterprise pricing for on-premises licenses.

If you have an Enrollment with an Enterprise Subscription program this renewal differs in that renewal pricing for on-premises software licenses is based on License plus Software Assurance. Furthermore, a buyout option exists for customers who want to retain perpetual rights to previously licensed on-premises software.

As with the annual reconciliation process, it is important to work with your Microsoft Account Representative or Partner to submit your renewal order 30-days before your agreement term ends in order to avoid losing valuable licensing rights, continuity of cloud services and other benefits.

  How to Use the Enterprise Agreement

Software Asset Management
Smart licensing of software starts with knowing what you have, and determining what you really need. Software Asset Management (SAM) is an industry best practice that helps you control costs and optimize software investments across your organization. Administered through an ongoing plan, SAM makes it easier to identify what you have, where it's running, and whether redundancy may exist. A fully implemented SAM plan can help you cut costs, improve security and compliance, and anticipate future software and service needs.

We have several resources available that you may use to establish or improve your SAM practices. The Microsoft SAM site provides a SAM optimization kit, links to several SAM self-service tools to assist with deployment discovery and a list of Microsoft Certified SAM Partners whom you can contact directly, should you wish to have experts help you devise and implement a Software Asset Management plan.

Tracking CALs
The Microsoft Assessment Planning (MAP) Toolkit 5.0 features an IT-based Software Usage Tracker functionality which provides usage reports for the following server products: Microsoft Windows Server, Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft SharePoint Server, and Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager.
This automated software asset management-related functionality is designed to be used by Microsoft Volume Licensing customers. The Software Usage Tracker reports provide you with a view of your actual server usage. This information is valuable for comparing with your purchased CALs; it is also useful for licensing "True-up" and licensing agreement renewal discussions. Learn more about CALs in Appendix A: A Detailed Look at Client Access Licenses and Microsoft CAL Suites. Learn more about MAP Toolkit 5.0. at

Enterprise Agreement Structure
The structure of the Enterprise Agreement consists of three components: the Microsoft Business and Services Agreement (MBSA), Enterprise Agreement, and any Enterprise Agreement Enrollment(s). The MBSA covers multiple Microsoft Volume Licensing programs including the Enterprise Agreement and also Services terms. The Enterprise Agreement (and Enterprise Subscription Agreement) governs all enrollments signed under the EA. Each enrollment then contains terms which apply only to the specific offers available under that enrollment, as well as outlines ordering, billing and pricing terms. The purpose of this agreement structure is to simplify the license agreement process by allowing general governing contract terms to be signed once, without the need to re-negotiate terms when you choose to purchase additional licenses though your enrollments.

Agreement Components
A Microsoft Business and Services Agreement is required. This is a master agreement that defines contract terms common to Microsoft Volume Licensing and Services agreement. The MBSA needs to be signed only once with, or prior to the Enterprise Agreement.

The Enterprise Agreement defines the license terms which apply to all enrollments. The Enterprise Agreement Enrollments establish the basic information that your organization can use to buy product licenses under the Enterprise Agreement. They define purchasing requirements, ordering rules, billing options and pricing terms. Additionally, they define purchase details like the term of the licensing arrangement, products, and whether or not the enrollment requires an organization-wide purchase commitment (as with the Enterprise Enrollment). They also identify the Enrolled Affiliate, included Affiliates, specific Enrollment contacts, and the Enterprise Software Advisor (ESA) or Large Account Reseller (LAR).

New cloud service offerings available through the Enterprise Agreement give you the flexibility to choose among on-premises software and cloud services to best suit your users’ needs and help you optimize your technology spend.

Optional Premier Support Services can be added to any enrollment under the Enterprise Agreement. These add value by mapping to your software and cloud services decisions.

Additional Documents
The Microsoft Licensing Product Use Rights (PUR) document, which is updated regularly, has additional details regarding use rights for specific Microsoft licensed products acquired through Volume Licensing programs. Updated monthly, the Microsoft Product List for Volume Licensing provides information about Microsoft software and Online Services licensed through Microsoft Volume Licensing programs. For a copy of the current Products Use Rights or Microsoft Product List documents, please go to

Product Fulfillment VLSC
The Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC) is the primary location for Microsoft Volume Licensing customers to view licensing information, download Microsoft software and manage volume licensing benefits and subscriptions.

The VLSC licensing dashboard includes a notification area for site alerts, a Volume Licensing news and announcements section, and links to key tasks. VLSC helps you manage your Enterprise Agreement purchases with:

  • Licensing information composed of the Licensing Summary and the Relationship Summary.
    • Licensing Summary. You can use VLSC to view current and past Microsoft License Statements across programs and agreements—all in a simple format.
    • Relationship Summary. VLSC includes a report that shows all Volume Licensing agreements associated to a user’s profile. You can also view further details about offerings, contacts, licenses, and purchase orders. The Relationship Summary provides a consolidated summary of all Volume Licensing IDs associated with the user’s Windows Live ID when accessing VLSC.
  • Downloads. Accelerated download speeds and a simple, secure user interface make it easier and safer for you to use VLSC to find the right product, based on your licensing entitlements.
  • Product Keys. VLSC makes it easier for you to request product keys for the Windows operating system, enables retrieval of volume license keys for all Microsoft licensed products, and provides access to technical support.
  • Software Assurance Benefits Summary. You can view the Software Assurance benefits available across all agreements associated to a user’s profile. The Software Assurance Benefits Summary includes the total eligible quantity of benefits across all agreements, benefits that have not yet been used, and benefits that have not yet been activated.
  • Online Services. Access details about Microsoft Online Services subscriptions and how to manage them.
  • Subscriptions. Access details and management tools for Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) and TechNet subscriptions.
  • Help. Access information about the VLSC site, an FAQ, and contact details for the Support Center.

Managing Cloud Services
While management processing may be modified to accommodate future cloud service offerings, currently there are two ways to manage cloud services:

  • Through the Microsoft Online Administration Center (for Microsoft Online Subscription Program offerings like Microsoft® Office Live Meeting).
  • Use Microsoft System Center to manage both public and private Microsoft cloud implementations. System Center’s comprehensive management capabilities enable it to monitor and manage your entire IT infrastructure stack from traditional physical servers, virtualized servers, virtual machines, running workloads and all the way up to service-based cloud components.

Using Software Assurance
Whether you want to download the latest Windows 7 Enterprise software, get 24x7 Problem Resolution Support or give employees access to Office training, you will need to claim your benefits through the Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC).

Once you are signed into VLSC, you will follow different steps depending on the specific benefit you want to use. Instructions for claiming and using each benefit are posted on the Software Assurance Web site. Here you can also find the Maximize your SA Benefits Guide that offers key steps, tips, and practical advice to help you get the most value from your benefits. See additional descriptions in Appendix B: A Summary of Software Assurance Benefits.

Using Premier Support
Tailored to your company's specific business needs, Premier Support brings the knowledge of Microsoft experts directly to you, helping to identify and resolve IT issues proactively, while backing your business with direct Microsoft support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Choose from varying levels of Services to receive the end-to-end support your business requires. Each available Service is outlined in the Services section of the Volume Licensing Product List

Premier Support provides annually allocated support through the term of the purchase in line with the Enterprise Agreement enrollment. There is no concept of a True Up for Premier Support but rather the purchase of additional hours as needed to supplement the particular level of Service purchased.

Staying Informed about Program Changes and Updates
Throughout your Enterprise Agreement you can expect to receive regular communications and updates through our Enterprise Customer Care program, designed to remind you of important milestones and how to get the most value from your Enterprise Agreement. You also have the option to receive additional communications such as the Volume Licensing newsletter that provides updates on licensing changes and covers other topics of interest to enterprise organizations.


Online Management Tools and Information
Designated members of your organization gain access to the following online tools to use and manage aspects of your Enterprise Agreement.

  • Volume Licensing Service Center ( )
    Use the Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC) to download licensed products, access product keys, and manage your Volume Licensing agreements and license acquisition activity—all in one online location.
  • Software Assurance Benefits (
    Activating your organization's Software Assurance benefits is easy. Most benefits can be activated and accessed through the Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC). The Software Assurance Web site provides everything you need to know.
  • Managing Online Services (
    Customers who purchase Microsoft Online Services via their Volume License program can manage many of their services through the Microsoft Online Administration Center.

Buying, Renewing or Adding to the Enterprise Agreement
To buy, renew, or add products and services to your Enterprise Agreement, contact your Microsoft Authorized Enterprise Software Advisor (ESA) or Microsoft Authorized Large Account Reseller (LAR).

  • In the United States, call (800) 426-9400, or find an authorized reseller.
  • In Canada, call the Microsoft Resource Centre at (877) 568-2495.

Academic, Government and Charitable Organizations
If you are affiliated with an academic, government or charitable organization there are additional Volume Licensing programs available to you, which may include additional partner and pricing advantages. Visit the Microsoft Volume Licensing Web site for more information.

For information about Volume Licensing offerings available in your area, find the Microsoft Volume Licensing Web site for your country/region.

Where to Learn More
Microsoft Worldwide Volume Licensing
Microsoft Online Services
Software Assurance
Microsoft Volume Licensing Service Center
Microsoft Financing

  Appendix A: A Detailed Look at Client Access Licenses and Microsoft CAL Suites

Client Access Licenses (CALs)
A Client Access License (CAL) is a license granting access to certain Microsoft server software. CALs are used in conjunction with Microsoft Server software licenses to allow users and devices to access and utilize the services of that server software. For instance, a company looking to utilize Microsoft Windows Server would acquire a Microsoft Windows Server license in order to install and run the Windows Server software on the physical server itself. In order to provide the rights for users or devices to access the Windows Server software running on the server, CALs would need to be acquired for those users or devices.

There are three different options available for acquiring CALs depending on the needs of your organization and the server software for which you are acquiring CALs:

User CAL – A User CAL allows a single unique physical user to access Microsoft server software from many devices, such as a work computer, a home computer, a laptop, an Internet kiosk, or a personal digital assistant (PDA), without having to acquire CALs for each device.

Device CAL – A Device CAL allows any number of physical users to access Microsoft server software through a single device.

Processor License – A Processor License is available for some Microsoft Server products that provide access for an unlimited number of users to connect from either inside the local area network (LAN) or wide area network (WAN) or outside the firewall. You do not need to purchase additional server licenses, CALs, or Internet Connector Licenses. If utilizing Processor Licenses however, one license must be purchased for each physical processor.

Purchasing CALs
CALs may be licensed as part of Microsoft Enterprise Desktop or Professional Desktop Platform, or as Additional Products. Some other details to consider as you add or upgrade Microsoft Server products include:

Higher or Equal CAL Version Number: The version number of CALs used to access server software must be the same or higher than the version of the Server software itself. As an example, if you upgrade your Windows Exchange Server 2007 with Windows Exchange Server 2010, your Windows Exchange Server 2007 CALs would no longer have rights to access the server running Windows Exchange Server 2010. You would need to upgrade your 2007 CAL licenses using your Software Assurance benefits at no additional cost, or purchase new Exchange Server 2010 CALs.

Note: You can purchase newer CALs to access older server versions. For instance, a Windows Server 2008 CAL can be used to access a Windows 2003 server since the CAL version is newer than the Server version.

A CAL for Each Server Product: If you are running multiple Microsoft Server products, you need the appropriate CALs for each. For instance, if you are running Microsoft Windows Server and Microsoft Exchange Server, you need both a Microsoft Windows Server CAL and a Microsoft Exchange Server CAL to access these servers. An exception to this is when you deploy a Microsoft Server Product with available Processor License, such as SQL Server® 2008 R2 Datacenter 1.

Multiple Servers in a Domain: Microsoft server CALs can be used to access multiple servers of the same kind throughout your domain. For instance, if you have a Windows Server 2008 R2 Device CAL for a workstation, that Windows Server 2008 R2 Device CAL gives that workstation the rights to access any Windows Server 2008 R2 instance throughout your domain, not just a single server running the Server software.

Note: The Microsoft Assessment Planning (MAP) Toolkit 5.0 features an IT-based Software Usage Tracker functionality which reports usage for the following server products: Microsoft Windows Server, Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft SharePoint Server, and Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager.

Learn more at

Microsoft Core CAL and Enterprise CAL Suites

Microsoft offers two Client Access License (CAL) Suites, the Microsoft® Core CAL Suite and the Microsoft Enterprise CAL Suite, which provide access rights to a number of server products and online services. The Enterprise CAL Suite includes all of the components of the Core CAL Suite. This means customers interested in the components unique to the Enterprise CAL Suite do not need to license both the Core CAL Suite and the Enterprise CAL Suite. Customers can acquire the Enterprise CAL Suite upfront or as a step-up from the Core CAL Suite.

The figure below is a visual representation of the components being offered in the Core CAL Suite and Enterprise CAL Suite as of November 2010. Note that required server software licenses are not included in the CAL Suites and must be purchased separately.

  Appendix B: A Summary of Software Assurance Benefits
The table below offers a summary of available Software Assurance benefits for on-premises software organized by type: New Products, Deployment, Training, Support, and Specialized Benefits. These benefits can vary depending on the volume and type of licenses (e.g. Windows, Server, or Office) you have enrolled under your Enterprise Agreement.
Benefit Benefit Summary Eligibility Summary
New Products    
New Product Versions Provides new software version releases so you have access to the latest technology. Every license covered under Software Assurance may be upgraded to the newest version.
Step-Up Licensing Availability Enables you to migrate your software from a lower-level edition to a higher-level edition, such as Office Standard to Office Professional Plus, at a low cost. To get a Step-up license, you need a license for the qualifying, lower-level product. For current details, refer to the Microsoft Product List at
Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP) Provides a set of technologies to help manage PCs and improve application deployments. Includes application virtualization, asset and policy management, and diagnostic tools. You may purchase MDOP as an add-on subscription license when you have Software Assurance coverage on Windows.
Windows 7 Enterprise Helps organizations increase desktop productivity by enabling standardization, improved security features, and multi-language support. For every Windows license covered under Software Assurance, you are eligible for one Windows 7 Enterprise license.
Planning Services Provides structured planning services from Microsoft partners to enable efficient deployments, covering Desktop (Office and/or Windows), SharePoint, Exchange, and Business Value Planning Services. You receive a number of Planning Services Days based on the number of qualifying Office Application licenses, Core CAL suites and Enterprise CAL suites with Software Assurance coverage. (1)
TechNet Benefits through Software Assurance Gives IT staff access to experts, technical information, plus beta and final versions of products for testing and evaluation. For each eligible server product with Software Assurance one person within your organization gains access to TechNet’s Online Concierge and Managed Forums services. You also receive a single complimentary TechNet Professional Subscription.
Microsoft Office Multi-Language Pack Enables IT to deploy a single Office 2010 image with support for 37 languages. You may use the latest version of the Office Multi-Language Pack for the Office system products you have with Software Assurance.
Training Vouchers Provides in-depth technical classroom training for IT professionals and developers. You receive a number of Training Days based on the number of qualifying Office and/or Windows licenses covered with Software Assurance.
E-Learning Offers self-paced interactive training designed for end-users and IT professionals, delivered via Internet or Intranet. For every qualifying license (such as Office Word or Windows 7) covered by Software Assurance, one person in your organization may access E-Learning courses for that product.
Home Use Program Provides employees with the latest version of Microsoft Office for their home computer, via low cost download. For each Office Application you have covered with Software Assurance, a user of the licensed PC or device may acquire at low cost one copy of that product for use at home.
24x7 Problem Resolution Support Around-the-clock phone and Web incident support for Microsoft server and desktop products. The number of phone incidents available depends on your Software Assurance investment. When you have at least one Server license covered with Software Assurance you get a complimentary phone support incidence, plus unlimited Web support for all the Servers covered with SA. You are also eligible for an additional phone support incident for every US$200K spent on System and Application SA (2), and for every US$20K spent on Server and Client Access License (CAL) SA (3). Premier customers may transfer their SA incidents into their Premier Support contracts. (4)
Extended Hotfix Support Provides specific product fixes on a per customer incident basis, beyond the standard product support terms and releases. You must have SA for Systems product pool to qualify for Windows Extended Hotfix Support, and have SA for Applications product pool for Extended Hotfix support for older versions of Office. You must have SA for one Server product to qualify for Extended Hotfix Support for older server versions. While annual fees normally charged as part of an Extended Support agreement are waived during your SA coverage, you must have a Premier or Essential Support Agreement in place to receive this benefit.
Specialized Benefits    
Cold Backups for Disaster Recovery Provides licensing for servers used as offline (“cold”) backups for disaster recovery purposes. For each qualifying Server license you have with Software Assurance and related CALs, you may run one instance of the software on a “cold” server for disaster recovery purposes.
Windows® Fundamentals for Legacy PCs Allows continued use of old “legacy” PCs, while improving their management and security by providing a small-footprint Windows-based operating system solution, designed to work with the Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection client or third-party clients for application access. To receive this benefit you must have SA coverage for all of your purchases under the Systems product pool – also referred to as Software Assurance Membership (or SAM).
Enterprise Source Licensing Program Provides access to Microsoft Windows source code for internal development and support. To receive this benefit you must have SA coverage for all of your purchases under the Systems product pool – also referred to as Software Assurance Membership (or SAM), – and have at least 1500 desktops covered with SA.
Spread Payments Payment for License and Software Assurance may be spread across three equal, annual sums. Available on all Volume Licensing programs, except Open License.
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