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software & hardware inventories and liscensing

Posted on 2011-09-29
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Do you maintain software and hardware inventories?

If so how is the inventory documented and where do you pull your stats from?

If you have a 3rd party IT support in place do they manage your inventory for you or do you manage it?

WHat about software liscencing - how do you self audit that?

And what do you feel are the risks in not having up to date software/hardware inventories?

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Question by:pma111
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Brian B earned 500 total points
ID: 36814737
We use Microsoft System Centre Configuration Manager to keep track of our systems, although with smaller companies I have also done a manual audit and then set up a spreadsheet. Once you do that, it isn't that hard to maintain the list, becuase once you have a good inventory, all you have to do is track the changes.

For software licenses, there are free tools you can get from Microsoft to help get you a correct inventory.

The risk in not having inventory is that when you need to find something, you won't know where it is. Worse yet, there may be requirements for your accountants to track inventory depreciation and they won't be able to do that properly. So the company might lose a chance to write off some inventory.

Software, well, obviously if you aren't keeping track of your software you might not be in compliance. So there could be legal problems, or your software might decide to stop working becuase it has been registered too many times.
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by:pma111
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Thanks.

What are the free MS inventory tools?

Also - can you go into more detail on:

Worse yet, there may be requirements for your accountants to track inventory depreciation and they won't be able to do that properly. So the company might lose a chance to write off some inventory.

In laymans terms?
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by:Brian B
ID: 36817564
I see it has been renamed the Microsoft Assement and Planning kit:
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/solutionaccelerators/dd537566.aspx

As for your question about accounting... Several companies I have done work for were able to make more profit because they could use depreciating values of the computer equipment as a tax write-off. Of course, to make that work you ahve to be able to prove when you bought the equipment.
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