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Licensing Questions Thread, Microsoft "ESS Licensing" - who is using it and why? in Technical; Hi all, Our school goes live under BSF in September 2012 and our outsourced ICT provider is Capita Systems. They ...
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    moriartythemundane's Avatar
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    Microsoft "ESS Licensing" - who is using it and why?

    Hi all,
    Our school goes live under BSF in September 2012 and our outsourced ICT provider is Capita Systems. They have asked us yesterday what licensing system do we wish to use? Do we want to go the MS ESS route or buy the licenses outright as we have always done.

    The model appears simple enough if I have been told correctly. That, under ESS the licenses are yearly paid, in three year blocks, based on the number of staff in school...NOT the number of pcs/applications etc. On top of that, upgrades are free during the three years.

    Simple maths tells us this is a considerable saving for us, however, what happens in three years time? Yes we could roll over for another three years but what happens if Microsoft change the ESS to something else or do away with it altogether. What happens come five years and possibly Capita are no longer our provider?
    The worry here is that the school could be faced with a huge licensing bill when we come into work one Monday morning in three years time!

    Sadly, Capita can advise us but they won't push us in any direction as, presumably, they do not want us to moan at them if it all goes wrong!!

    So, my question is what have others done recently? Have you gone the ESS route, or bought outright?
    Any advice would be gratefully received as we only have till Feb 2nd to make a decision (allegedly) and it was dropped on me late yesterday...

    Have a great day...
    Moriarty...

  2. #2

    plexer's Avatar
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    You don't have to pay 3 years at a time allthough you can do and get a bit better pricing I think.

    Ben

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    teejay's Avatar
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    The ESS route is much easier to manage and to keep your licencing legal, plus there are other benefits like Technet and finance much prefer it as there is a pretty set annual figure to budget against. We were on the Schools Agreement before ESS, they still do Schools Agreement as that and ESS tie in with the two licencing models thay offers businesses, so I very much doubt if they'll remove it anytime soon. Also, don't go for the 3 year option, go for the 1 year as you cannot remove items from the agreement for the term of the agreement, only add.

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    bladedanny's Avatar
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    We have gone down the EES route as we have far less FTE staff than we do computers so it was quite a large saving for us. It also meant that we could continue using our current OS (xp) and upgrade to windows 7 without much worrying about licensing.

    It also enables us to buy new machines, again without worrying about licensing.

    As to what happens at the end of the three years (you can also pay yearly) is one of three options. You can either renew your contract for another one or three years. Or 'Buy out' the licenses turning them into perpetual licenses (quite expensive but would be a one off payment) or you an stop the contract and stop using the software.

    That's my understanding of it anyway.

    Hope this helps,

    Dan

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    IrritableTech's Avatar
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    I deal with one high school and nine primary. Most are now on an EES agreement. Schools know where they stand with regard to costs, legality and upgrades.

    Within that three year agreement, I bet you you'll upgrade office. Look at the costs of this (per machine) and do the maths. Then you start looking at a move to w7? Then take a look at the other advantages - Security essentials and massively discounted MS System centre stuff.

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    timbo343's Avatar
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    We have gone down the EES route and its the best thing ive done in terms of MS licensing, everything is a hell of a lot simpilar. We saved a fortune by moving over to it too, as you only license the FTE staff who work more than 200 hours a year and have access to a computer, so we dont include our cleaners.

    As I understand from my reseller, you have a fixed price for 3 years therefore if the price of the licenses increases during the 3 years of your contract, you still get them at the original price.

    Edit: 20 hours per week changed to 200 hours per year.
    Last edited by timbo343; 12th January 2012 at 01:41 PM.

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    Duds's Avatar
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    ESS Desktop EDU Enterprise all the way.

    M/S certainly look to have their game sorted out at last, it's just a shame some re sellers still struggle.

    Our licensing costs drop dramatically whilst giving us much more, SCCM and Forefront being just two of them (save on your AV bill as well right there).

    I really can't understand why anyone would buy outright but there must be a reason that just doesn't ever raise it's head here.

    Windows O/S and Office upgrades all free, I dare not even start to work out how much that would cost us.

    Even adding on Server 2008 STD installation comes out at approx £25 per year, lets say it lasts 5 years before any upgrade that's £125, you just can't buy outright for that sort of money. Sure you then have to start paying the money towards the next O/S but by then you'd be buying it outright again anyway. You could say something similar for a SQL or Multipoint licence.

    Just make sure you work out your FTE correctly, as pointed out you don't add staff that are not PC users so that's cleaners, grounds and kitchen staff out of the picture straight away.

    At least get a couple of quotes and do some sums.

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    It depends entirely on your upgrade schedules.
    With each version of windows there is an increase in hardware demand.
    If you have a renewal schedule that matches (within reason) your operating system renewal then it might make sense for EES.
    Our hardware upgrade schedule is based on a six year renewal, but we'll have had XP for 8 years by the time it is replaced.
    I calculated EES is good for a four or five year renewal, but anything more than that then it is worth buying outright - this is especially true if you plan on running non-MS software or operating systems.


    Quote Originally Posted by Duds View Post
    Even adding on Server 2008 STD installation comes out at approx £25 per year, lets say it lasts 5 years before any upgrade that's £125, you just can't buy outright for that sort of money. .
    We paid £75 under a select license - so for a 5 year lifespan we paid nearly half the price for a perpetual license than you paid under EES.

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    Duds's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    We paid £75 under a select license.
    Worth me checking out for next year then. Thanks for the info. :-)

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by timbo343 View Post
    We saved a fortune by moving over to it too, as you only license the FTE staff who work more than 20 hours a week
    That's wrong @timbo343

    Part time staff work 200 hours or less PER YEAR. (Roughly 6 hours per week term time only) See here

    I was on 20 hours and counted as full time by Microsoft's definitions. EES works out very expensive for smaller schools, especially for those with many part-time staff to cover specialisms like independent prep schools.
    Last edited by elsiegee40; 12th January 2012 at 12:13 PM.

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    I thought it was only full time staff who used a computer for their job?

    Anyway, we went with EES for 2 secondaries and a primary and it's just easy. It also removes the headache of 'am i licensed properly?'.

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RTFM View Post
    I thought it was only full time staff who used a computer for their job?.
    Yes, but Microsoft's definition of Full Time (FTE) is somewhat different to common understanding.

    Every member of staff working 200 hours or more per year who uses a computer must be counted. (PoS equipment - canteen tills don't count)

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    3s-gtech's Avatar
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    Yes, they would be the staff who have PC access as part of their job - so don't count cleaners unless they need to use the PCs. Our caretakers do use PCs, our lunchtime supervisors do not etc etc

    We're on EES - used to spend the same amount each year buying licenses outright but it just didn't work as well - we had a horrible mix of XP and 7 with Office 2000, 2003, 2007 and then 2010 came along. We're now on one uniform Office suite, hopefully one desktop OS this Summer, and our SQL Server etc is all within it.

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    Quick question that I'm about to ask our supplier but does the EES cover Office for Mac as well?

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    3s-gtech's Avatar
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    Yup

  16. Thanks to 3s-gtech from:

    nadeem (12th January 2012)

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