Microsoft SESP Licensing – The reality

I read through all the Becta and Microsoft schpeil on their new licensing model (SESP) and how it is the best thing since sliced bread for education so I wanted to put it through its paces.

The first Edular I worked with refused point blank to quote me on SESP as it wasn’t in their system etc. They knew nothing about SESP – even its existence was a shock to them.

I went back to my MS licensing contact at Microsoft via Twitter and asked him if he had a recommendation on another Edular to try.. I also recommended he managed communication and training better with future education licensing models, he agreed.

The second Edular admitted they knew nothing but said they would investigate. A few days later after hearing nothing I rang them back to ask for an update, they sent me through a Select quote but not a SESP one so I emailed and rang back requesting SESP, 4 days later, still no quote….. On the 5th day I vented my frustration online and a third Edular (I didn’t know so many existed…) got in touch via twitter saying they can help and dropped me through ane email asking what I was looking for so I sent them an email with my requirements.

On the 7th day I was told by the Edular they were having some problems getting the actual pricing from Microsoft.

12 days later I still didn’t have a quote so I wrote a few tweets online which were picked up by some Microsoft people who then scurried away to ask the licensing team why Edulars couldn’t provide a quote.

14 days later I eventually have a price, thanks to Richard from Bechtle for all their hard work in helping me obtain these prices.

One of the things that’s different between Select and SESP if that you need to know the total amount of devices, amount of pupils and teachers inside of the school – as far as I’m aware with select licensing you just need machine count.

Lets compare the old vs the new pricing model

I have requested 2 pricing structures: Select & SESP.

For this experiment I’m supplying the Edular with machine and pupil counts for an average size 2 form entry Primary School in Bradford (480 pupils – 28 staff members) and requested the following licensing:

  • 2x server 2k8 standard licenses
  • 30x office 2k7 standard
  • 90x XP desktop cals

Basically in this model it works out at 5 pupils to 1 device. At this point in the article I think we should consider the value of this licensing prior to reading on to find out the actual costs..

Please take a few moments to think to yourself what you would pay for these licenses…

If you are like me you will want to pay about £30 per office license, £100 per server and £1 per CAL so a total of £1190. You will also take into consideration that in 3/5 years time your school may need to spend this level of money again to relicense newer versions.

With the SESP licensing you must annually renew each license.

The pricing I recieved was (rounded up/down):

£50 per standard server license

£13 per Office Enterprice license

£1.15 per CAL

So my total costs were:

£100 on servers per year

£390 on office per year

£103.5 on desktop cals

Total annual cost of a school licensing model (excluding any oem licenses) is £593.50.

These licenses include software assurance which is basically spin for receive the latest version free.

To summarize

Over a 5 year period schools under a SESP agreement will be paying £3,000 on licensing where as before they were paying between £1200-£1600.

Hopefully someone has made an error on pricing and I can update this article…

UPDATE: 06/12/2010  this article was never updated because MS sat on it and didn’t do jack ish.  They now have a new licensing model out.

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