Do you have SA with that?

22 Aug

I went to an electronic store about 10 years ago and purchased a DVD player.  The salesman asked if I would like to purchase a warranty with this product. Sure I thought, after all, if I spill water on it or my son stuffs a toy in it, this warranty will cover it.  Wow…I thought. I was sold.  I paid a few extra dollars and $100 DVD player was covered and on top of that, If I want to get my DVD player cleaned, there was no charge!

Fast forward 10 years.  My DVD player is still going strong.  Yeah I know, get with the times, but there are a few occasions when that DVD player comes in handy.  Secondly, I never once took it in to get it cleaned.  After all, who in there right mind would want to drive 10 minutes down the road, turn in the DVD player, and in a couple weeks get it back?  So you may ask yourself, was it worth buying the warranty SPLA Man?  Let’s just say it wasn’t my best decision.  Secondly, you may be asking what in the world does this have to do with SPLA?  It doesn’t.   But I will tell you that partners and customers still look at software assurance as a worthless warranty or gotcha when it comes to licensing.

Perhaps several years ago I would of told you if you don’t upgrade software often and really don’t need to be on the latest and greatest, don’t buy software assurance.  I probably would’ve told you a story about some guy and a DVD player.  But that was then, this is now.  Software Assurance is the #1 question you need to be asking your customers if they plan on moving licenses to your cloud.

I talked at length over the years about SAL for SA and license mobility.  If they don’t have software assurance, forget about it.  Think of it like the soup nazi in one of the Seinfeld episodes – No SA…No Cloud for you!   Here are just a few reasons your customers should consider software assurance.

  • License Mobility – Allows your customers to migrate certain applications in your cloud.  You dedicate a VM, you have a shared infrastructure.  You still report Windows under SPLA.
  • SAL for SA – your customer wants a hybrid environment for the same applications but already made the investment in SA, you can report the lower price SKU at a fraction of the cost.
  • Virtualization – they want to run unlimited SQL VMs with SQL Enterprise? Yep, they need SA.
  • DR Rights – they bought SA and would like to use your datacenter for DR? Yep, they can now do that with SA
  • Developed an application using Microsoft Technology and plan on using your own licenses to host it?  You better make sure you have active software assurance my friend.  They call this self-hosted software assurance benefit.
  • VDI – They want to run a VDI instance in your 100% Dedicated datacenter?  They need Windows Enterprise with SA to do that (or VDA license)

Note I have yet to mention “latest version rights” or “pay annually”  Yeah that’s important, but from a compliance perspective, understanding the real value of SA is much more important.  I can teach you more about it and the various products/scenarios – you can email me at to learn more.

It’s important to note that SA is not available for your actual SPLA licenses.  This is strictly for your end customers when they decide to purchase under a volume licensing agreement.  SPLA does include latest versions, SQL Enterprise unlimited virtualization rights, and mobility within server farms, but it does not include things such as support.  That’s on you my friend.

So let me ask you this; What should your sales reps be asking if they have customers that want to bring licenses into your datacenter?  Yep, “Do you have SA with that?”

Thanks for reading,


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Posted by on August 22, 2015 in Uncategorized


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