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Protection of terms for bundled products by installer controller

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000241559D
Publication Date: 2015-May-11
Document File: 2 page(s) / 24K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Vendors frequently sell their products in bundles – it is particularly true for large vendors with big middleware software portfolio. E.g. client buying monitoring software receives free for use copies of application server and database software. Such bundles have number of described limitations – e.g. with software release 7.5 only database version 9.1 or 9.5 can be legally used (free of charge). The problem is when customer upgrades a product which is bundles, quite frequently bundle terms are violated without a warning.

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Protection of terms for bundled products by installer controller

Vendors frequently sell their products in bundles - it is particularly true for large vendors

with big middleware software portfolio. E.g. client buying monitoring software receives free for use copies of application server and database software. Such bundles have number of described limitations - e.g. with software release 7.5 only database version
9.1 or 9.5 can be legally used (free of charge).

The problem is when customer upgrades a product which is bundles, quite frequently bundle terms are violated without a warning.

Current solution, which is un-bundle the two products into two charged separately products by Software/Licensing Management Tool is not perfect:
- the damage is already done - customer has to pay for the upgraded product or negotiate exception
- The downgrade of the product (so it still can make a valid bundle) is typically troublesome as new version of the products typically introduces new version of data format and downgrade is rarely supported and restoring data from backup is always data loss.

All the above limitation can be addressed with the proposed solution.

Software is commonly installed or upgraded by installation packages. The installation programs has deployment methods popular for common software.

Operations invoked by installer are well-defined and can be:

Monitored by catching each invocation of installer process


1.

Controlled by suspending or stopping the execution.


2.

In presented idea, each installer invocation is monitored and controlled to provide mechanism for preventing upgrades of bundled products that would violate bundling defined in SAM (Software Asset Management Tool). First the product will receive information that it is bundled and the product must receive list of valid version for current bundle.

In response to bundling action (marking products as bundles) SAM prepares a bundle marker to be sent to bundled product. This bundle marker contains:
- Name of the bundle (name of main product in the bundle)

- List of allowed versions of the bundled product

SAM propagates bundle maker to bundled product using SAM agent and installation path of software on target computer.

The bundle marker is uploaded t...