Flexera Software has announced an enhancement to FlexNet Producer Suite, its licensing, entitlement management, and delivery software solution. FlexNet Producer suite now empowers application producers to explore new licensing models that simplify their customers' experience by reducing or even eliminating the complexity of managing a local license server. It also provides a secure and "single source of truth" environment to address virtualization cloning in an enterprise environment, helping minimize software piracy.
"We know that enterprises are demanding that their producers simplify licensing while also supporting new licensing models that align with their business needs. Cloud licensing services can help achieve that goal by removing the need to set up local license servers, delivering true ‘licensing-as-a-service,'" said Amy Konary, research vice president — software licensing & provisioning, IDC. "This can accommodate producers' needs to monetize and protect their applications while satisfying enterprise needs for simplified licensing."
"Application producers want to focus their development resources on innovating business solutions for their customers — and not on figuring out how they're going to license their software in constantly changing technology environments," said Mathieu Baissac, vice president of product management at Flexera Software. "FlexNet Producer Suite is the most comprehensive solution available, making it easy for application producers to leverage any licensing model in any environment - while reducing licensing complexity for the end customer."
The cloud licensing service is compatible with all with all types of licensing models (e.g., perpetual, usage-based, etc.), and with applications running in all types of environments (e.g. on premises, virtual, cloud, etc.). Application producers can now offer the full spectrum of licensing models demanded by customers while eliminating the licensing complexity associated with setting up and managing a local license server.
For enterprises concerned about data security or managing high volumes of application usage, FlexNet Producer Suite's cloud licensing service also supports usage capture for on-premises software running within an enterprise firewall or datacenter. Producers now have the option of deploying an on-premises local license server and/or the cloud licensing service — both of which provide support for licensing enforcement, including support for concurrent, metered and utility modules.
"Application producers increasingly are getting complaints from their customers that software license management is simply too complex and time consuming. Leveraging the cloud licensing-as-a-service is a great way to eliminate complexity and increase satisfaction," said Baissac. "FlexNet Producer Suite now provides best-in-class automation that's simple, fast and effective — even for very large organizations and those with data protection concerns."
Ensuring Compliance & Preventing Revenue Leakage in Virtualized Environments
Virtualization adoption has led to more frequent application cloning within enterprises. However, IT professionals often are unaware of the software license compliance implications of running applications in a cloned virtual environment. As a result, software license compliance and revenue leakage are emerging as big problems- for application producers who are losing money because their applications don't have the ability to detect and prevent cloning, so they don't receive payment for virtualized application use. It also causes problems for enterprises that must pay vendors unbudgeted software license compliance true-up penalties when a software license audit reveals unauthorized application cloning. According to a recent Flexera Software/IDC Application Usage Management report, more than half of independent software vendors surveyed — 52% — report that customers are using their software in virtualized environments beyond what was paid for.
To address this costly problem, FlexNet Producer Suite now supports virtualization binding using Microsoft's Virtual Machine Generation ID to ensure enterprise customers stay in compliance when running application in a virtual environment. Today, FlexNet Producer Suite provides flexible options to detect and prevent applications from running in cloned virtual environments including support for virtual machine universal unique ID (UUID) (available on Windows, Linux and OS X platforms) and Microsoft's Virtual Machine Generation ID (available on Windows platform), enabling enterprises to fully leverage virtualization technologies while ensuring producers can enforce software compliance — even in a disconnected environment. As an alternative to detecting and preventing applications from running in virtual environments, FlexNet Producer Suite also provides robust usage tracking monetization models that allow enterprises to run applications in cloned virtual environments and application producers to charge customers for this usage.
"Enterprise IT professionals often are not aware of software license compliance risk when they virtualize applications and move them to different datacenters or to public/private clouds — and that use can result in significant revenue loss for producers unable to track non-compliant usage. FlexNet Producer Suite's new binding capabilities solve this problem by automatically detecting instances of non-compliant use and sending an enforcement notification to the application," said Baissac. "By leveraging FlexNet Producer Suite's end-to-end functionality - producers can move beyond compliance tracking and fully monetize customers' use of virtualized applications - effectively transforming virtualization risk into revenue."