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Software Assurance (SA) is an offering available with Microsoft Volume Licensing programs that helps you get the most from your software. Software Assurance is a comprehensive maintenance program that can help you gain control of your technology strategy, improve IT staff skills, decrease support spending, and effectively plan for new software deployments. With Software Assurance, you can access training and deployment resources that enable employees to work more efficiently than ever. You also acquire tomorrow's technology at today's prices and have the ability to spread payments annually instead of upfront (or in two-year payments for the MOB and MOV programs).
1. Newly released updates and upgrades of your software (Note: SA entitles you to the rights to the new software, but you will still need to purchase software media packs via the Microsoft Licensing Fulfillment [MLF] program.)
2. Home use rights for MS Office applications covered under SA.
3. For owners of Server products only -- access to TechNet Managed Newsgroups and TechNet Plus subscription media, ensuring that IT staff have resources available to address their technical issues
4. For customers with at least 5 server licenses and with all related client licenses also covered by SA -- Problem Resolution Support, which provides Web-based support for Standard Editions, and phone-based support for Enterprise Editions
5. Cold Server Backups - For each server license for which a customer has active Software Assurance, the customer has the right to install the same software on a "cold" backup server for use in disaster recovery.
Other tools include Corporate Error Reporting (CEP) to help you analyze problems and distribute fixes, Enterprise Source Licensing (1,500 desktops or more) that lets you access Microsoft Windows source code for internal development and support, and the Windows Preinstallation Environment (Windows PE) for speeding up and automating deployment.