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Record software rights for a Microsoft Software Assurance

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Record software rights for a Microsoft Software Assurance

Define license details for Microsoft Software Assurance (SA) to manage your contracts start and end dates, software upgrades, and related software entitlements.

Before you begin

Role required: sam_user or sam_admin

About this task

Microsoft offers Software Assurance (SA) as a way to provide active maintenance to its users. It's important that software managers track the dates that are under active maintenance, along with licenses usage, rights, and user allocation.
For example, if you're covered under Microsoft Software Assurance, you can also upgrade, or step-up, a standard version of your software to an enterprise edition. Use the Software Entitlement form to link related versions of your software under active maintenance and your upgrades.
Note: You can step-up at any time if you have the Microsoft Open Value agreement with Software Assurance.

If you have the Microsoft SQL Server Enterprise edition with SA, for the license metric Per Core, you can run unlimited virtual machines on the host machine, irrespective of the number of physical cores that you have licenses for. For example, if you have a license for running only four physical cores on a host machine, you can run unlimited virtual machines on the host machine.

If a software entitlement is created while receiving a purchase order and if SA is activated on that entitlement, the entitlement is created with the following values:
  • License Type: Perpetual + Software Assurance
  • Start date: <the current date>
  • End date: Set this value to reflect the end date of the SA service.
Note: You cannot use SA entitlements to license your software, so SA entitlements are not counted during reconciliation. Reconciliation only considers perpetual license entitlements.


  1. Navigate to Software Asset > Licensing > Software Entitlements.
  2. Click New.
  3. On the Software Entitlement form, fill in the details about the software publisher rights that you've purchased and select SA in the License type field.

    For a detailed description of the fields related to all entitlements, see Record software rights and user allocations.

  4. Right-click the form header and select Save.
    An entitlement has been added to the Software Entitlement list.
    Note: If you create an SA entitlement and you don't use all the active rights, the entitlement is split and an entitlement containing the additional rights is created.
  5. To perform additional configuration, select your new software entitlement record in the Software Entitlements list.
    1. To link related perpetual and SA entitlements, select the SA software entitlement record in the Software Entitlements list, and click the Related Entitlements related list.
      To remove the relationship between the perpetual and SA entitlement, remove the entitlement from the Related Entitlements related list in the SA entitlement.

      If you delete either the perpetual or SA entitlement that is linked, the other entitlement is not deleted.

      The perpetual entitlement is not removed if the entitlement has split and you've deleted the SA entitlement.

    2. To link your software to a newer version as part of your maintenance contract, click the Upgraded Entitlements related list.
      Note: This related list is only available if you selected Step-up as the entitlement license type.
      If the Next Version field is populated on the software model, entitlements with active SA are updated to the new version of the software model.

      After you've linked your related entitlements, if there aren't enough SA rights to cover the perpetual entitlement rights, an error message displays.

    3. To view all related entitlements, click the Entitlement Histories related list.
      Note: Validation is run against the active rights of all related entitlements automatically. If there's an error with the calculation, a message with additional information on how to resolve the problem is displayed.
  6. Click Update.


After you've created an entitlement, you can begin viewing license usage.

Example: Record software rights for Microsoft Software Assurance

You have purchased 100 rights of Microsoft SQL Server 2016.

Software Entitlement form with a Perpetual License Type selected.

You have also purchased SA for your Microsoft SQL Server 2016 licenses.

Software Entitlement form with a Software Assurance License Type selected.

To accurately keep track of your licenses, associate your perpetual and SA entitlements.

Add the related SA software entitlement to the perpetual entitlement.

While you are under active maintenance, Microsoft releases SQL Server 2016 Datacenter. Step up from your current version to the new release by creating a new entitlement for your upgraded software and link the related entitlements.

Add the entitlement that is being upgraded to the new software entitlement you created.