Table of Contents
What is Bring Your Own License?
At its core, bring your own license (BYOL) is a licensing model that lets companies use their licenses flexibly, whether on-premise, or in the cloud. A platform for BYOL license management may also have the capacity for detailed usage reporting on things like license validity and user base efficiency.
The key features of BYOL
- Greater flexibility: With true license mobility, businesses are able to migrate to and from services with ease – without having to worry about managing multiple licenses for the same product across multiple platforms and services.
- Reduction/Removal of Upfront Cost: When upscaling use of software, being able to share and migrate your license means saving huge costs upfront. Concurrent licenses across multiple services can increase expenses by a large margin; BYOL lets companies avoid that issue.
- Increased Freedom of Use: Within the license terms, businesses have much more flexibility over how they want to use a service.
- In-Depth Tracking and Reporting: Because everything is managed in the cloud, and copies of licenses are no longer needed, it’s much simpler to keep track of license validity and usage.
For example, when migrating to Azure, Microsoft has enabled users to bring their current Windows Server licenses into cloud servers managed in Azure. This feature follows additional capabilities already in place, like migration from a SQL Server or SharePoint.
Another major cloud provider, Amazon, doesn’t issue its own BYOL licenses, but is dealing with BYOL compatibility by providing a new way to use Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud instances, dedicating them to specific workloads. That means licensees can bring their software over to AWS without voiding their licenses.
Benefits of BYOL
The issue with many traditional software licenses is their restrictive policies. A license, often, is tied to a specific server or to a specific type of server (e.g. on-premise), so it can’t be re-used when deployments happen in the cloud without violating the licensing agreement.
BYOL licenses let users allocate their licenses more flexibly; e.g. on an actual physical server (the dedicated host) with containers or multiple virtual machines. The user can then target and reuse specific physical servers while staying within the confines of their existing software licenses.