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Seeking clarity for MSDN licence use RRS feed

  • Question

  • Somewhat like Simon S I too need some clarity around MSDN licensing.  I think the use I envisage is OK however our "Host" ICT department is disputing it (we are a separate unit to ICT). 

    I acquired 4 x MSDN VS Pro subscriptions for my staff and I have read the conditions around licence use and would appreciate clarification. 
     
    I manage a small in-house government software development unit where we develop a patient management system for services offered free to eligible patients (children, pensioners, health card holders).  We are non-profit / non-commercial and funded by state government (in Australia).
     
    When my programmers and analysts are testing, let's say on Win 7 fat client, they need all their usual testing & programming tools on the same machine - which I believe is OK under MSDN.  Where I'm unclear is where they may have a need to use MS Office tools including email for recording or distribution purposes associated with the build being tested and/or supported.  I understand that using these tools in a "production" environment is not covered by MSDN however our environment is solely a development & support lab i.e. we do not run the system we develop in "production" as that is up to the various health IT departments outside our realm.  Also because our system has to run alongside the usual MS Office apps I thought it's probably best-practice to test alongside the same apps.  
     
    Can you give me some clarity pls?

    Thursday, February 7, 2013 10:05 PM

Answers

  • Thanks Mike. 

    Yes, you're correct in that the use of Office tools is licensed under a separate volume agreement.  The more I research this topic the more I'm convinced that our intended use is perfectly OK.

    Since posting here, I have managed to identify a local account rep with whom I have had some dialogue in an effort to resolve.

    Thanks again

    Kevin

    Sunday, February 10, 2013 9:50 PM

All replies

  • Hey Kevin!

    Thanks for the question.  Hopefully Marc's response to Simon's question helps you understand some of the hesitation on our part to issue rulings on exactly what your use is (it was certainly helpful for me!).  Its really up to you and your legal team to review the terms, and decide what you think you could defend if Microsoft were to sue, and I'm employed by Microsoft, so we can't issue definitive guidance.   

    If you haven't searched through the Licensing Whitepaper, I really urge you to.  There is a clause on Page 12 that discusses production use of certain office applications.  

    If you purchased those subscriptions Retail, then Office is not included in your VS Professional skus (its only in Premium and Ultimate), so any use of Office by your staff would already be covered under a different license and MSDN wouldn't apply restrictions to its use.

    Marc's final comment I'll paste here.  

    "If you need more detailed guidance, my recommendation would be to reach out to your account or partner rep and ask them to put you in touch with Microsoft legal."  

    Looking forward to your response.  

    Thanks,
    Mike


    MSDN and TechNet Subscriptions Support
    Read the Subscriptions Blog!


    Friday, February 8, 2013 5:29 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks Mike. 

    Yes, you're correct in that the use of Office tools is licensed under a separate volume agreement.  The more I research this topic the more I'm convinced that our intended use is perfectly OK.

    Since posting here, I have managed to identify a local account rep with whom I have had some dialogue in an effort to resolve.

    Thanks again

    Kevin

    Sunday, February 10, 2013 9:50 PM
  • Sounds good!  I'll mark your post as the answer.  Feel free to unmark it and add a follow up if you still have questions.

    Thanks,
    Mike


    MSDN and TechNet Subscriptions Support
    Read the Subscriptions Blog!

    Monday, February 11, 2013 4:44 PM
    Moderator