Monthly Archives: September 2015

Glimpse inside the world of Dynamics Hosting

So you are a Dynamics hoster right? (GP, NAV, AX, etc.)  What are the odds that you’ve received 5 different answers to the same question?  Guessing good to very good.  I’ll take that bet!  Here’s a list of things I’ve learned over the years when reviewing Dynamics scenarios.

  1. Dynamics is expensive.  No doubt about this one.  Most Dynamics deployments require SharePoint, Exchange, SQL, Windows, RDS, Office, and of course Dynamics.
  2. You have to be Dynamics authorized in order to host it.  Yep, that’s right.  You have to hold the credentials or partner with someone who does.
  3. Dynamics is NOT license mobility eligible.  I think that is actually good news for hoster’s.  In order for you to host a customer owned Dynamics license it must be 100% physically dedicated, something Azure does not offer.
  4. You can only downgrade to the previous version.  Unlike other SPLA products, Dynamics only allows you to downgrade from 2015 to let’s say 2013.  No, you cannot downgrade to 2010.  This is in the SPUR.
  5. You must complete the Dynamics registration process in order to retrieve license keys and media.
  6. Resellers do not have access to Partner Source.
  7. No one understands how Dynamics partners get recognition.
  8. You have to report twice – once to your reseller, the other to Microsoft Dynamics team.
  9. I am the only one on this planet that has a basic understanding of Dynamics and SPLA.
  10. Need more information?  Contact

Thanks for reading!


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Posted by on September 29, 2015 in Uncategorized


Asking for help…

Ugh…Someone is always asking for some sort of charity donation right? I went to the grocery store yesterday hoping to buy a couple of things and ended up spending 10 dollars on stale popcorn for a Cub Scout troop. 10 bucks!  It was a couple handfuls of popcorn and that was it!  In the end, the popcorn was ok, but the kid’s smile was priceless; he finally sold a bag!

So here’s my ask.  If you like and enjoy these articles, I would like to ask you for help.  It’s not for me, but for a young boy.  I don’t know him personally, but know his story. This boy has an inoperable brain tumor.  He’s 11. I remember when I was 11 all I thought about was playing and being a kid. Unfortunately, to no fault of his own, being a regular kid is tough.

He became associated with the make-a wish foundation.  This foundation grants kids who are seriously ill with one wish.  It could be whatever they want (It’s truly a remarkable organization).  99.9% of the time the wish is to meet a celebrity or a sports hero.  His wish was to be a priest for a day.  Again, I don’t know him, but going back to when I was a kid the last thing I would’ve wished for was to be a priest. I would’ve met George Brett! (baseball player)  I think this shows his maturity, his character, and the way his parents raised him.

One thing we can all agree, regardless of circumstance, religion, political views, or anything else, cancer affects us all.  Another thing  we can all agree is to treat cancer is not only draining for the patient, it is draining financially.

I feel for Brett’s parents and for any parent that has to witness their child go through such hardship.  The last thing a parent should worry about is the medical cost.

Here’s my ask, please go to and donate ten dollars.  300 of you go to a day to read my FREE articles.  I know you’re out there!  Just claim you went out and had coffee with SPLA Man and expense it.

Thank you for reading and thank you in advance for helping Brett.


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Posted by on September 21, 2015 in Uncategorized


Should I be licensed under SPLA (part 3 of 3)

This is continuation of part 1 and part 2 .

Mike woke up later that evening, head pounding from the swift kick the auditor laid upon him.  He hollered for his butler to provide him with a warm towel but no one answered.  He was alone.  He sat quietly for a moment, reflecting on the words the auditors told him…SPUR; Self-Hosted; Not-Eligble; 12.5 million.  His head felt like it was going to explode.

He walked outside to catch some air.  In the distance he couldn’t help but notice the sun as it quickly faded into the night leaving behind a beautiful sunset.  As pretty as it was, it couldn’t change how he felt, absolutely miserable.

He started to walk towards the end of the patio to go nowhere in particular.  He again looked up at the sky, but in doing so tripped over a can of gasoline that was left out from the gardener.  “Dammit Mr. Belvedere” Mike muttered under his breath.

Mike was very tense that evening, and nothing would calm his stress faster than a nice Cuban cigar.  He flicked his lighter and started puffing away.  He felt his stress level drop, his mood started to change.  Perhaps, he thought, he was too hard on the auditors.  Maybe there was truth into what they were saying.  Although he claimed he read the PUR, he actually just skimmed it.   “I should have licensed this under SPLA” Mike muttered.  “If I only would’ve asked for advice, if I only would’ve read my life would be totally different.”  Tomorrow, he thought, he would call the auditors to apologize, but not that night.  It was getting late, he had to get some sleep.  Mike tossed the cigar on the ground and went inside.

The billows of smoke could be seen for miles.  Neighbors called the fire department.  Smoke and fire started to roar throughout the mansion.  Mike, who was downstairs, noticed the flames first.  He yelled quickly for Rachel, but no one responded.  “She must be out shopping,” Mike shouted to himself.  He ran out of the house about the same time an explosion could be heard from the kitchen.  The smell of gas filled the air.  This was bad…real bad.

Mike ran as quickly as he could away from the house.   Meanwhile, the butler happened to be pulling in the driveway, and immediately stopped the car and started to run towards the house.  “Rachel!!!”  He shouted vociferously.  Mike hollered back “She’s out shopping you idiot!”   The butler turned around, glared at Mike for a moment with a stare of pure hatred, and continued to run inside the burning house.

Smoke was everywhere.  The butler tried to cover his mouth with the sleeve of his shirt to no avail.  He was hacking, and struggling for air but his will to find Rachel continued.  He ran through the living room, he ran through the family room, and continued up the stairs.  Finally, a body could be seen in the hallway, it was Rachel.

“Rachel!”  He shouted again.  There was no response.  He picked her up and quickly ran out of the house.  He laid her on her back and was about to perform CPR when her eyes opened, and met his.  “You’re ok”  He said softly.  She coughed briefly as she laid in his arms.  Her body limp, but she was coherent.

“You saved my life…Mr. Belvedere.”  She said through a smile.  The butler smiled back…”Please, call me SPLA Man.”

The End


“The jury finds Mr. Michael Torro …guilty on all charges.”  Mike started to cry.  Rachel, holding  her newborn daughter “Belvie” smiled from ear to ear.  Her husband, the butler, gave her a hug and a kiss.  “I’m glad it’s over.”

The morning newspaper featured the story “Local software developer found guilty on all insurance fraud charges.”   There was a picture of Mike being handcuffed.  It was determined that Mike set the fire on purpose in hopes of collecting an insurance check to pay off the auditors.  No Cloud EMR, no house, and no wife.  Mike was broke.

Rachel knew all along Mike was out of compliant, Mike was just too ignorant to notice.   She concluded the only way Mike would change was if he got audited.  Maybe Rachel was right, Mike did change, only it was too late.

Moral of the story?  Pay attention to the licensing…it can cost you.

Stay tuned for other stories from

Thanks for Reading

The Real – SPLA Man!

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Posted by on September 12, 2015 in Uncategorized


Should I be under SPLA? (Part 2 of 3)

In continuation to my previous post

Mike sighed as he looked at the envelope.  Surely, he thought, this must be some mistake.  He always kept up with the use rights of all the software his team deployed.

He purchased everything with software assurance.  Why would he do that?  Well, Mike happened to be a scholar when it came to licensing.  He purchased software assurance so it would give him the right to license hosted offerings under his Enterprise Agreement.  Secondly, he wasn’t at all nervous about auditors coming into his datacenter.  He licensed Windows Datacenter, SQL Enterprise (to take advantage of fail-over rights and unlimited virtualization), RDS external connector license, and he purchased a SharePoint Server license to cover all external users.  He also purchased SharePoint user licenses (both Standard and Enterprise as he knows they are additive licenses) for all his internal employees.  Mike was beyond compliant, he was Microsoft’s dream customer.  He actually looked forward the discussion with the auditors just to prove how great he is. (or was).  That time will come, but for now he had to get ready for the Electronic Medical Record Ball that evening where he hoped his “Cloud EMR” solution would win an award.  He tossed the envelope to the side, chuckled at the thought of an audit, and went on his way. Always the socialite, Mike wouldn’t miss this party for anything.

Mike’s wife looked breathtaking. Her dark brown hair curled to perfection as it gently rested against her shoulders.  Her dress; long, stylish, that fit perfectly against her body.  If looks could kill, she would be a wanted criminal.  The butler, who waited patiently at the bottom of the winding staircase was in his awe. Never before had his tired eyes witnessed such beauty.  He took her hand and gently slipped into his so she would not trip. “You look radiant Mrs. Torro.”  She paused and quietly whispered, “Please, call me Rachel.”

At the party, Mike chummed it up with other CEO’s while Rachel sat alone with wine, and wished she was somewhere else.  The wine flowed easily that evening, and after a couple glasses Rachel started to feel a bit more social.  A song came on that reminded her of a time not too long ago when they first me.  She went out on the dance floor, grabbed her husbands hand, and started to dance around in circles. Mike, who always had two left feet, was very uncomfortable.  “Please Rachel…you are embarrassing me.”  Mike threw his hands away from hers and started to walk away when Rachel confronted him once again.

“Why are you such a jerk”  She hollered.  People started to stare. Mike forcefully pulled her towards him and whispered in her ear. “The only jerk around here is you my dear.”   Rachel, who doesn’t back down very easily, shouted “You can take your Cloud EMR and stick it where the sun doesn’t shine!”  Tears started to roll down her cheek.  Her maschera started to smear.   She could not hold back any longer.   “Look at you!”  She said through her crying eyes.  “You think you are so clever. Do you honestly think you received that notification randomly?  I am the one that notified the auditors.  You hear that everyone?  Mike is getting audited! This ‘Cloud EMR’ is nothing but a joke!”  She continued her rage.  “Here’s a pop quiz for everyone here….”  She paused for a moment to make sure people were listening, and they were.   “How do you license a Windows Server when you are hosting it?”  The crowd was silent.  They looked dumfounded.  One man broke out a copy of the PUR out of his tuxedo pocket while another tried to look it up online via his phone.  “No need to look it up…”  Rachel shouted.  “Because’ here’s a hint…not the way HE’s doing it.”  She stopped, and pointed her fingers directly at Mike.  The crowd was in shock.

Perhaps it wasn’t Rachel who spoke that night, maybe it was the wine, but nonetheless her secret was out. The gasp from bystanders could be heard throughout the room.  Rachel ran out crying.  Mike stood there for a moment, and turned to the other socialites and said with a smile, “Well…as they say, wine is spelled w-h-i-n-e.”  No one had a clue what that meant.   Half of them were not listening.  A table of nerds were reading the PUR with a magnified glass while their wives chatted about how expensive SQL Server was.  Mike was fed up, he left the room and called a taxi.

The next day Rachel’s head was pounding.  The butler got a warm towel and gently put it on her forehead to ease the pain.  “Thank you” she whispered quietly.  The butler smiled.

That afternoon the auditors showed up.  A team of nerds with pocket protectors, glasses, and notepads.  Mike was prepared.  He greeted them at the door and offered a glass of bourbon to “break the ice”.  They politely declined.  “Well Mr. Torro, let’s review what we know.  You have an Enterprise Agreement that covers all Windows, SQL and RDS licenses.  You also have an array of CAL’s that covers all your employees who seem to have access to these servers.  You also purchased external connector licenses for all external users.  Is that correct?”  Mike smiled and answered confidently, “Yes, that is correct.  All external users are covered.  As you can see Gilbert (another from the past, this time the Revenge of the Nerds movie), I am well licensed.  According the Product Use Rights, also known as the P-U-R, I am 100% compliant.”

The auditor smiled and shook his head.  “My name is actually James.  I audit companies for a living, but on the weekends I compete in MMA matches.  That stands for Mixed-Martial-Arts. You call me Gilbert again and I will break you in half.”  Mike was taken aback.  “Are you threatening me Gilbert?  I will sue you faster than a fly could fly”  Again, no one had any idea what that meant.

“I am not threatening you Mr. Torro just telling you the truth. Speaking of truth, you should’ve read ALL the pages in the PUR, especially the section that talks about Self-Hosted.  Do you own the EMR application Mr. Torro?”  Mike went to answer but was interrupted by James, “No you do not.   Do you realize that all your server applications that you purchased because you barely read the PUR is not compliant?  Do you realize you should be under SPLA and the document you need to follow is called the SPUR?  Do you also realize that even if you did own the EMR application, the entire solution has to be Self-Hosted eligible?  Do you realize SharePoint is not? According to our calculations Mr. Torro, you owe over 3 years of licenses. The total comes to $12.5 million.”

Mike didn’t say a word.  James got up to leave with the rest of his team, when all of a sudden Mike threatened James with another lawsuit.  James laughed.  That infuriated Mike, and he threw a punch towards James but slipped and fell to the ground, missing terribly.  James calmly and without warning wound his body up and did an acrobatic leg kick, knocking him out cold.  The auditors left.

Stay tuned for Part 3

Questions to ponder –

What does “The entire solution must be self-hosted eligible mean?”

What is the difference between PUR and SPUR?

If your spouse dragged you out on the dance floor, would you dance?

Who is Gilbert from Revenge of the Nerds? C’mon.  It’s only one of the best movies from the 80’s.  It is also the first movie to introduce text messaging – 80’s style.  (1.40 into the clip)

Thanks for reading,


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Posted by on September 5, 2015 in Uncategorized

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