From Ed Foster’s column today: “Microsoft’s Software Assurance licensing program has always stood out among software maintenance plans for the unique value proposition it offers customers. You pay nearly twice as much as other vendors charge for half of what other vendors give you, and that’s if you’re lucky.”
This is somewhere between “Would you like a service plan with that?” and your local mobster coming around to offer “insurance.” The quotes in the articles from irate IT customers, who paid 25% to 33% annually in licensing fees for essentially nothing, are priceless. Apparently, the “Vista Enterprise Version” will require an Assurance Plan, but that is something that only a few of the F500 should even be considering. If you’re that big, and really need 5-Nines reliability and want a 4-hour guaranteed response from their vendor, perhaps this is for you (note that is is a licensing payment plan, not a service contract). The rest of us would do better to hire a couple of qualified techs and keep them educated and up-to-date.