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How do you check that the software at your site is licensed? Have you come up with any tips to minimize effort?

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closed as primarily opinion-based by HopelessN00b Dec 5 '14 at 9:55

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Start by expecting the worst (ugh)...

You obviously need to have a full inventory of everything you SHOULD have in order to (in)validate what you actually DO have. This means having copies of all license certificates / agreements / etc. on hand. Good license management is soooo worth the time in order to maintain your business integrity in this area!

Depending on how anal you want to get, a good software inventory package will help you immensely. Something like what Altiris (now owned by Symantec) offers. CONFIGURE IT WELL before running your inventory or your inventory will be garbage.

Know what you're going to do with any violations that you find during the audit and communicate that clearly to the organization PRIOR to starting the audit. Many violations will magically disappear when this happens and you won't have to inventory them :)

Be prepared to shell out some cash to come into compliance when you find violations.

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Don't run software that has per-seat or per-installation licences. Simplifies life immensely.

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