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Publisher tool certifications and SAM tool selection

Oracle and IBM tool verification - a club nobody can join

Oracle and IBM tool verification – a club nobody can join

During my current review of 10 SAM Tools for large enterprises – the issue of publisher certification has been raised.

This is when a software publisher gives their blessing for the quality of data or output from a SAM tool. See the original call for participants here.

This article provides an independent opinion on the matter and perhaps some guidance for ITAM Review reader when selecting tools.

Question: Should I consider the Oracle LMS tool verification when selecting a SAM Tool?

Answer: No.

Oracle has verified seven tools that “provide the required data set to supplement a LMS engagement”. But the program has a few flaws. Namely, sources inside Oracle tell us the whole program is on ice with 50 tools in the queue waiting to be verified. It’s hardly fair to discount a technology that is not verified when it is not possible to be verified. So rather than a benchmark, it’s a special club. So it should be disregarded as a program. This is unfortunate as vendor blessings are good thing, Oracle should be congratulated for introducing the program but now needs to get off the fence and either develop it or junk it.

Question: How should I prove whether the SAM tool is fit for purpose for managing Oracle?

Get your prospective SAM tool to demonstrate it working and delivering value either as a POC or as a low cost project. Populating the Oracle worksheet using their data would be a good first hurdle. Showing compliance and optimization / re-architecture opportunities for high-risk titles would be even better.

See also:

Question: Should I consider IBM verification when selecting a SAM tool?

Answer: No.

We were pleased to see IBM potentially following Oracle in verifying tools.

Unfortunately

  • There is no program that we are aware of and….
  • There is no public record of the program or process.

Again, if nobody can join it’s not a good basis for tool selection and should be discounted.

ITAM Review readers tell us you can get approval to use Flexera in substitute of ILMT for measuring sub-capacity with permission from IBM. But I’ve also heard of ITAM Review readers getting permission for other tools. So unfortunately this program (if indeed it is a program), along with Oracle, has become a bit of a farce.

This is a shame because this sort of guidance, verification and standards setting from publishers would be most welcome.

So for this reason I won’t be using vendor verifications as a competitive differentiator to discriminate between tools. Stay tuned to The ITAM Review newsletter to be notified when the review of 10 tools for Enterprise SAM is published.

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About Martin Thompson

Martin is owner and founder of The ITAM Review, an online resource and community for worldwide ITAM professionals.

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 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.

5 Comments

  1. Olaf Diehl says:

    Good wrap up. Thanks for pointing out this marketing “fairy tale”.

    And another part of the same story has been told recently on a conference by one of the major SAM vendors. Intentionally – I believe – the presenter was mentioning this together with other stories in one long sentence, trying to pretend the existence of a vendors “certification” for his SAM technology. But even if some people want this so bad: An Oracle technical certification, e.g. required to get a specific partner status, has no impact on the applications’ SAM relevance at all. Neither for managing Oracle’s compliance nor the acceptance of any result by that vendor. And for me this is a “marketing statement” beyond the border as it might be the last little impression to let a prospect finally decide. For all the others that did not decide so far: Check carefully what is being said and what is meant and what is contractually guaranteed in writing.

    By the way: It is possible to achieve an individual review of process and technology leading to a potential acceptance that could be seen as a “temporary certification” by some vendors. And sometimes this status formally includes SAM process result acceptance plus it prevents from being audited after successfully passing it. But this is never caused by a specific tool, technology or any customer activity or process design alone. So always watch out if “incredible peace of mind” is promised as part of any offer.

  2. Kris says:

    Martin,

    Thanks for your views on this item. I cannot speak for Oracle but for Flexera, it is not that the tool is certified but rather that they ask for an addendum to the passport advantage license agreement. They change the clause associated with sub-capacity licensing and allow for a name 3rd party tool to be used.

    Just a point of clarification. It’s not that the tool is certified but rather you change the nature of your license grant and obligations for sub-cap.

  3. Thanks for the clarification Kris.

  4. To reiterate, check with IBM about using Flexera, or any other tool for sub-capacity, As of today, there is still no formal verification process or acknowledgement from IBM.

  5. From a reader:

    “Unless there is agreed contractually to use a non-ILMT alternative solution for sub-capacity reporting, the customer is always required to deploy and accurately report from ILMT in order to be eligible for sub-capacity licensing”

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