Software Inventory Licensing Aggregator

The most common question I have been asked, “How do we track Microsoft licenses in our environment?” From Service Providers who deploy Microsoft licensing on demand with the Microsoft SPLA program.

It is a common misunderstanding of what needs to be reported and more so how to track the consumption of the licenses.

In September 2015, Microsoft released Software Inventory Logging Aggregator. Software Inventory Logging Aggregator can be deployed in a data centre, to help track and manage Microsoft license consumption.

Whilst still in it’s infancy, the product relies on a Windows Feature, Software Inventory Logging, to upload the license data to the aggregator on a schedule.

Data is stored in a SQL database, and SILA (Software Inventory Logging Aggregator) is configured using Windows Powershell cmdlets. SIL (Software Inventory Logging) and the SIL Aggregator rely on SSL certificates for authenticated communication.

Data can be exported monthly to an excel spreadsheet, for reporting and/or compliance purposes.

Data SIL Collects Over Time

  • Unique Windows Server installs in your data center
  • FQDN
  • Identifying GUIDs
  • Number of physical processors and cores
  • Number of virtual processors (if a VM)
  • Model and Type of physical processors
  • If hyper threading is enabled on physical processors or not
  • Chassis serial number
  • High-water mark count, and identity, of simultaneously running Windows Server VMs (if a host running a hypervisor) on each host, over time
  • High-water mark count, and host name, of simultaneously running managed (System Center agent present) Windows Server VMs on each host, over time
  • Name of System Center agents installed on VMs counted in managed high-water mark
  • Count and location of SQL Server installations over time (only SKUs and editions that require a license)
  • Lists of software installed in Add/Remove Programs

I found SILA to be a useful tool to bring awareness and license tracking to data centre environments.

Deployment can be a little tedious with SSL certificates. Once configured correctly it is seamless to produce the required data for reporting/compliance purposes.