Academic Licensing Brief: New Software Assurance Benefits for Microsoft® Academic Volume Licensing Customers

Segments: Education

Programs: Campus Agreement, School Agreement, Academic Select License, Academic Open License

Regions: Worldwide

Confidentiality: OK to distribute to partners and customers            



Microsoft executives recently introduced new benefits for customers with Software Assurance. This brief provides an overview of the Software Assurance benefits that will be available to education customers as of March 2006. It also reviews some unique programmatic benefits that education customers receive by participating in Microsoft Academic Volume Licensing programs.


Microsoft continually gathers feedback from customers in many ways, such as through an advisory council that includes education customers from around the world. We have learned that education customers face unique challenges when planning, acquiring, and deploying technology solutions. These challenges include meeting the needs of a diverse technology user base, managing software assets in decentralized environments, and—perhaps the biggest and most common challenge—funding the technology solutions.

Education customers have consistently communicated the need to strike a balance between providing valuable features and benefits through Microsoft Academic Volume Licensing programs and keeping the cost of the licenses as low as possible. This feedback plays an important role in determining which Software Assurance benefits are made available to education customers.

New Software Assurance Benefits*

The following new Software Assurance benefits will be available to qualifying Microsoft Academic Volume Licensing customers as of March 2006.

·         Microsoft Windows Vista™ Enterprise – For every Windows® client license covered by Software Assurance, customers will receive an upgrade license for Windows Vista Enterprise Edition upon its release.

·         Microsoft Virtual PC Express – For every Windows client license covered by Software Assurance, customers are entitled to one Virtual PC Express license.

·         Microsoft Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs – For every Windows client license covered under Software Assurance, Academic Select customers with Software Assurance Membership and Campus/School Agreement customers are entitled to install one copy of Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs as the Windows Client license.  

Continuing Software Assurance Benefits*

Depending upon their specific Microsoft Academic Volume Licensing agreement, customers will continue to be eligible for the following Software Assurance benefits.

Lifecycle Stage



Eligible Customers


New Version Rights

Automatically receive upgrades and updates of the software covered by Software Assurance.

Academic Open, Academic Select, Academic Select with Software Assurance Membership (SAM), Campus/School Agreement

Spread Payments

Make annual payments for greater flexibility in managing technology expenditures and better alignment with the yearly budget cycles of educational institutions.

Academic Select, Academic Select with SAM, Campus/School Agreement


Microsoft Windows Preinstallation Environment (WinPE)

Build custom solutions that speed up deployment through automation.

Academic Select with SAM, Campus/School Agreement



Get up to speed quickly on new products and technical information and keep moving forward with integration of current technology.

Academic Open, Academic Select, Academic Select with SAM, Campus/School Agreement


Corporate Error Reporting

Identify which systems are failing and why, map solutions to crashes, and connect to up-to-date knowledge and fixes.

Academic Select with SAM, Campus/School Agreement

Cold” Backups for Disaster Recovery

Receive complimentary “cold” backup server Licenses for the purpose of disaster recovery. A cold server is a server that is turned off until a disaster arises.

Academic Open, Academic Select, Academic Select with SAM, Campus/School Agreement

TechNet Online Concierge Chat

Quickly locate information needed to troubleshoot technology issues with one-on-one Web-based assisted search chat sessions between Microsoft online advisors and users.

Academic Select with SAM, Campus/School Agreement

TechNet Plus Subscription Media

For server licenses with Software Assurance, access to TechNet Plus Subscription Media including tools, utilities, and drivers.

Academic Select with SAM, Campus/School Agreement

TechNet Plus Managed Newsgroups

Access to technical assistance through online newsgroups facilitated by Microsoft Support Professionals.

Academic Select with SAM, Campus/School Agreement


Extended Lifecycle Hotfix Support

Request hotfixes for server products in the Extended Support Phase (the two years following the five-year Mainstream Support Phase) without signing an up-front contract. (Security fixes are automatically extended to customers.)

Academic Select with SAM, Campus/School Agreement


Unique Programmatic Benefits for Education*

In addition to receiving the best software at the best prices, education customers may also qualify to receive unique benefits by participating in a Microsoft Academic Volume Licensing program, including:

·         Learning Essentials for Microsoft Office – New and existing academic volume licensing customers who acquire or have already acquired licenses for Microsoft Office receive one complimentary Learning Essentials license for each Microsoft Office license.

·         Work at Home Rights – Depending upon the specific volume licensing agreement, academic licensing customers have the option of providing certain licensed software to faculty and staff members for work-related use at home.

·         Software Assurance Membership (SAM) – Software Assurance Membership is included with any Campus Agreement or School Agreement.

·         MSDN Academic Alliance (MSDNAA) or MSDNAA High School Membership – Customers participating in the Campus Agreement program receive one complimentary departmental MSDN Academic Alliance membership. School Agreement customers receive one complimentary school MSDNAA High School membership.


More Information

Microsoft Software Assurance for Education:

Microsoft Academic Volume Licensing:

Learning Essentials for Microsoft Office:

Work at Home Rights:

MSDN Academic Alliance:


*Offerings are subject to change. Actual offerings may vary by region and/or the specific volume licensing agreement.


© 2005 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.  Microsoft, Windows, and Windows Vista are either trademarks or registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries. This document is for informational purposes only. Microsoft makes no warranties, express or implied, in this document. 

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