Software Monetization Featured Article

Best Practices for Platform Virtualization and Software Monetization

July 01, 2013

The term “virtualization” is ubiquitous in the IT industry, and is especially important to independent software vendors (ISVs) that face challenges in terms of licensing compliance. The term virtualization is used universally, and can refer to platforms, applications, networks, storage, memory, and other areas.

Virtualization is a hot topic today because of the many benefits it brings to organizations, including: reduced capital and operational costs; further reduced costs and environmental impact through green IT; more efficient testing/development and security; improved scalability and deployment agility; and high availability/redundancy.

While virtualization has many far-reaching implications, the area of platform virtualization is of particular concern to ISVs because of how it affects software licensing and automated software license enforcement, according to a recent SafeNet whitepaper. In the world of software vendors, virtualization can create a conflict when considering the interests of the software vendor, according to Amy Konary, research director for IDC (News - Alert).

“Software publishers that have not already begun addressing how to manage the licensing of their applications in virtual environments are behind the curve. The strategy should not only include support for licensing in virtual environments but also the ability to enforce license terms once the application is deployed on a virtual machine,” Konary said in the whitepaper. “Without enforcement, the software publisher has no control over the license and therefore their revenue.”

Clearly, licensing applications in a virtualized environment involves a different approach. Working with a software licensing and management technology vendor such as SafeNet (News - Alert) offers software vendors both hardware- and software-based options for licensing applications in any virtualized environment.

“Successful management of software requires not only support for licensing in virtual environments, but also the ability to enforce license terms once the application is deployed on a virtual machine,” according to the whitepaper.

SafeNet’s options for licensing applications in a virtualized environment allow you to:

  • Protect revenue by preventing copy/duplication of applications in virtual environments; 
  • Reduce churn, secure new business, and improve competitive position by supporting use of your application(s) within virtual environments; 
  • Increase profit with licensing and pricing models for virtual environments.

SafeNet offers Sentinel Cloud, a software monetization service which enables software publishers to deploy their applications within completely virtualized environments without any fear of duplication or misuse. Sentinel Cloud frees software vendors from the headaches and a loophole associated with node locking-based solutions and allows them control:

  • How many instances can concurrently be running inside a virtualized network
  • How many uses of an application feature can be used across multiple virtualized instances of your application
  • How many users can simultaneously be accessing any number of virtualized instances of the application.

In addition to virtualization, cloud computing has introduced a new set of complexities for businesses to manage, with more specific sets of challenges for different segments of the IT industry. Cloud is forcing ISVs into several arduous business challenges, including how to deliver software as a service (SaaS (News - Alert)) and deal with the issues of licensing and monetizing SaaS services.

Read more about this era of IT evolution, and how cloud is changing how software is developed, bought, sold, paid for, and used, which is having a transformative affect on how ISVs conduct business by clicking here.

Edited by Peter Bernstein
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