Special Report: The new era of software licensing

Microsoft has weighed in with Software Assurance - its radical new software licensing policy. Novell, too, has introduced a new...

Microsoft has weighed in with Software Assurance - its radical new software licensing policy. Novell, too, has introduced a new user-based licensing scheme as an alternative to its existing mix of platform, server and CPU-based schemes. Meanwhile, open source supplier Red Hat is bringing in a licensing scheme for enterprise customers for the first time.

It's enough to make the poor user reach for the bottle. But is it all as bad as it may seem? The articles in our Special Report will help you understand the issues and make the most of the available options.

Seven ways to pay
What is the simplest and most cost-effective way to pay for software? This article helps you find the solution which best matches the needs of your organisation.
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What you should know about Microsoft's Software Assurance Programme
The questions you should ask Microsoft before you sign on the dotted line, together with an overview of common beliefs - some true, some false - about what the new regime means to the user.
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Microsoft: Why we need Software Assurance
Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer explains why he saw a need for the company's radical change in software licensing and what the company learned from trying to push through the new programme too quickly.
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Microsoft's licence to Bill
A detailed look at the steps users should take to protect themselves as the Software Assurance scheme takes effect, with some handy tips on upgrading.
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The hidden costs of usage-based licensing
The theory is the pay-for-what-you-use approach will save you unnecessary expense. Here AMR Research looks at whether such deals offer value in the real world.
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