SAMexpert logo

Visual Studio, MSDN, non-production hosting in SPLA

How to deploy your own licenses with an SPLA provider

When you rent a virtual machine from an SPLA provider on shared, multi-tenant hardware, you may deploy your own Microsoft licenses in that virtual machine as long as the following conditions are met:

You must also complete a License Verification Form and send it to Microsoft no later than ten days after deploying your licenses in a multi-tenant environment.

Visual Studio doesn't have License Mobility through Software Assurance rights.

No Microsoft Developer tools have License Mobility through Software Assurance. You may not deploy your own MSDN software in a multi-tenant environment. 

What are your options?

Visual Studio 

You must tell your services provider that you need Visual Studio. You may install it independently, but they will have to report it to Microsoft and bill you for it. 

There is a per-user license that is required for every authorised user. Please be careful with Active Directory security groups and keep the number of users authorised to access Visual Studio to an absolute minimum.

MSDN Software 

There is no discount for MSDN software in SPLA. Therefore, you may not deploy MSDN licenses in a multi-tenant environment.

It also means that if there are any "non-production" machines running in a multi-tenant environment, they require production licenses.

Providers beware

When you manage complex hosted infrastructure for your customers, it's easy to forget that hosted environments' rules differ from on-premises.

You may not simply replicate what they do on-premises in a shared, multi-tenant environment. You may not discount "non-production" workloads the same way it is done on-premises.

Sadly, we often see it when a SPLA compliance audit finds that some virtual machines weren't appropriately reported through SPLA because the provider considered them to be using MSDN licenses.

Your dev/test in SPLA is chargeable as a production workload.

Does it concern you? Please send us a message using the form below, and we'll contact you ASAP.