Many terms used to describe Software Asset Management practices have so many different meanings that it is difficult to infer the correct definition within each context. In the user interface and documentation for K2 we have tried to be both consistent and precise in how we use certain words, but in the wider context of "common usage" there is often no consistency at all. This glossary is an attempt to clarify our usage of common but ambiguous words, specialized words, and special phrases that we may use with some very precise meaning.

Client computers are audited to discover installed executable files (.exe on Windows, .app on Mac ). The audit data is uploaded to the KeyServer and inserted into the audit database along with a hardware profile inserted into the computers table. Audit reports summarize the software application files found on all computers that are configured to be audited. Incremental audit information is uploaded from clients to the KeyServer periodically according to a specified refresh interval. For us, an audit report does not include software usage tracking, nor entitlement documentation. The much broader phrase, "software compliance audit", implies not only the audit of installed software but also a reconciliation with purchase records, product activations and management policies.


Authentication refers to name and password verification, usually against an enterprise directory service. K2 can be configured to require authentication of client computers or users so that access to certain programs is only authorized for certain users. The administrative accounts that control management access to KeyServer configuration can also be maintained in an enterprize directory service instead of locally in KeyServer itself.


Computers that have the K2 client software, KeyAccess, installed and that have connected to the KeyServer at least once will appear in the Computers window.


A software license entitles usage and/or installation of the software subject to certain rights and conditions. Typically the software purchase specifies a fixed number of entitlements – a limit on the number devices or users that are entitled to run the software. In the case of a 'site license', the number of entitlements is not limited but the license rights and conditions still govern where the entitlements can be issued.


KeyServer data is stored in proprietary databases. It can be accessed directly through KeyConfigure. There is also an ODBC driver for querying KeyServer data named ksODBC. However, data can also be exported to a third party database if necessary.


A policy is a set of rules that control how a software product can be used on computers managed by KeyServer. Examples include policies that restrict usage to specific computers (enforcing a node lock license) or that restrict usage to a maximum number of simultaneous uses (enforcing a concurrent use license). Group restrictions, authentication requirements, scheduled access, etc., can also be specified thus extending the policy beyond the minimum legal requirements in order to achieve particular management goals such as cost control.


The KeyServer product database is focused on software products. Each software product is comprised of one or more component programs often including both the primary application program(s) and secondary utility programs. For each major version of a product on each platform the Products window will require a distinct product record. Different product versions often share a similar name but are distinguished by one (or more) of the included programs being a different variant. For example, the products Photoshop CS vs. Photoshop CS 2 for Macintosh are distinguished by the inclusion of distinct Photoshop program variants, 8.x vs. 9.x.

Suite products may also have similar names but be distinguish by inclusion of a somewhat different set of primary application programs rather than by distinct variants of the same programs. For example, the programs comprising the product 'Microsoft Office 2000 Standard' for Windows is subset of the programs comprising 'Microsoft Office 2000 Premium'. In any case, it is important to realize that license rights, purchases, and policies apply directly to products but only indirectly to the underlying programs.


PRS, Product Recognition Service
PRS, is a cloud based Product Recognition Service that automatically imports relevant product definitions into the KeyConfigure Products window based on software installed at your organization. Product footprints submitted anonymously by multiple customers is used to help keep the PRS catalogue up to date with the new product definitions.


A Windows program is just an executable file with file extension ".exe". On Macintosh, a program is actually an 'application bundle' (i.e. a file directory) which has the extension ".app". In either case, programs are discovered on client computers through the audit process, information is uploaded to KeyServer, and then program records are created in the programs database for any new discoveries. The programs database actually maintains complete version information for all discoveries, but the display in the programs window suppresses minor version differences among the family members in order to list just the major program variants. For example, there may be a program variant listed for Excel 10.x and another for Excel 11.x but distinctions based on additional version digits will not be displayed.

For a simple program, the Products window may include a record with same name that is comprised of just the one program. But in our terminology, it is the product that is purchased and licensed for use, not the program. More generally, a product record will define an aggregation of several programs, including both applications and utilities, that make up the product. Product usage reports depend on tracking the launches and quits of the product's underlying application programs while ignoring the utilities.


The KeyServer purchase database is focused mainly on purchase records for software. Generally each purchase record corresponds to an individual line item from a purchase order. Various fields are available to accurately document both monetary and licensing details. The PO number coupled with the individual item number uniquely identifies each purchase record and this pair can be used as a link field to an external order entry system. The Purchases window lists individual line items from all purchase orders – if a particular purchase order includes multiple line items, each will be listed individually. Note: when double-clicking to bring up the Purchase Details window for a particular item, other items on the same purchase order (if any) can be seen by exposing the left column of the details window.


When an upgrade purchase is dependent on a prior purchases, it may be necessary to recapture prior entitlements from the previous purchases – perhaps reconciling the final entitlement position based on the complete purchase history. A second use of the word reconcile is concerned with the comparison of "entitlement position" (summarizing purchased) to "policy position" summarizing management policies. The Tasks menu includes a Reconcile task that addresses both of uses of the word.