IBM is to accept sub-capacity reporting from Flexera Software’s FlexNet Manager in place of ILMT, TADd and SUA.
Whilst we’ve heard of this being acceptable on a deal by deal basis in the past, this is the first time IBM has publicly recognised a SAM tool for meeting their compliance reporting standards.
IBM allows customers to use soft-partitioning with their software, but only if measured using IBM’s tools to assess consumption (see http://www-01.ibm.com/software/passportadvantage/subcapfaqov.html#1).
We delved into the complexities of IBM and key risks in a recent podcast with Eric Chiu and Koen Dingjan see https://www.itassetmanagement.net/2014/10/03/podcast-started-ibm-licensing/
When audited, customers without IBM measurement in place are charged the full capacity of the underlying hardware. Recent research with the Campaign for Clear Licensing (CCL) suggests ILMT to be difficult to implement with some respondents suggesting it does not work at all on certain platforms.
“IBM customers can save big using subcapacity pricing, but with it comes the requirements to install IBM’s reporting tools, which can be a huge undertaking with ongoing overhead. Plus the availability of a new version 9 of ILMT will require customers to install new data collection agents and redeploy ILMT.
This announcement gives Flexera customers an option that other SAM tool providers don’t have. To date IBM compliance has steadfastly refused to allow most customers waivers on using ILMT, but this announcement (sources verify IBM’s head of software compliance informed the group) marks an abrupt departure and could pave the way for other tool vendors to join the ranks of IBM-approved compliance reporting tools.”
- Steven Russman, reporting from IBM Interconnect in Las Vegas.
Desperate Times, Desperate Measures
No public statement from IBM yet (please let me know otherwise). Our advice is to get this blessing in writing, ideally in the contract, for measurement.
IBM is having a tough time in the market and is becoming increasingly aggressive around contracts and auditing.
Fisher IT Asset Consulting tweeted:
— FIAC (@auditdefence) January 26, 2015
Other ITAM Review readers have agreed with this sentiment in a recent LinkedIn discussion:
“This clause was something where end users had a chance to bypass/delay the audit.Now IBM’s message is very clear. They want the customers to respect their IP and remain compliant” said Vicky Makhija
These were added to the PAA for all “new business” back in August last year… they’re now catching up the “old business” this year. In addition to the two items already mentioned, they’ve also allowed for broader audit scope to include all data “reasonably necessary for IBM and its independent auditor to verify Client’s compliance with this Agreement. Send in the lawyers…” Mark A. Johnson
Knowledge is Power
Discuss this topic and learn from your peers at our free IBM and SAP Workshop in London or New York:
- IBM and SAP Seminar, 28th April, LONDON: https://www.itassetmanagement.net/2015/02/09/event-listing-ibm-and-sap-london/
- IBM and SAP Seminar, 14th May, NEW YORK: https://www.itassetmanagement.net/2015/02/23/event-listing-ibm-and-sap-ny/
- Full events calendar: https://www.itassetmanagement.net/events/
- IBM Licence Metric Tool (ILMT) – IBM’s free tool for Passport Advantage customers for measuring Processor Value Units (PVU). IBM allows customers to use soft partitioning of their software – but only if ILMT is being used to measure consumption. Without measurement customers will be charged for full consumption without partitioning. See https://www.ibm.com/developerworks/community/wikis/home?lang=en#!/wiki/IBM+License+Metric+Tool
- Tivoli Asset Discovery for distributed environments (TADd) is IBM’s commercial offering for network discovery See http://www-03.ibm.com/software/products/en/tivoassedist
- IBM EndPoint Manager for Software Use Analysis (SUA) – formerly BigFix, for “discovering all licensed and unlicensed software with in-depth granularity across all devices” See http://www-03.ibm.com/software/products/en/endpoint-software-use-analysis
About Martin Thompson
Martin is also author of the book "Practical ITAM - The essential guide for IT Asset Managers", a book that describes how to get started and make a difference in the field of IT Asset Management.
On a voluntary basis Martin is a contributor to ISO WG21 which develops the ITAM International Standard ISO/IEC 19770.
Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter or LinkedIn.