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03: Why must I transition from LEGACY to UNIVERSAL licenses (and what are the differences?)

Starting in January 2021, PolicyPak will be transitioning the licensing model from “Legacy” to “Universal” licenses.
In 2022, the PolicyPak CSE (any version) will STOP honoring LEGACY licenses, so you must be transitioned to Universal licenses by 2022.
Additionally to take advantage of some features, like “Capabilities” (explained below) that can only be done with the latest CSEs and a Universal license.

Understanding Legacy Licenses

Legacy licenses take the form of multiple keys: one for each component.
Whenever we have a new component, we would issue your company a new legacy license for that component.

An individual legacy license XML looks like this and contains the product (component) and the scope of where it’s licensed to:

You then use the Group Policy editor to consume the license and the result would look something like this.

Additionally, if you wanted to use PolicyPak with an MDM service, we needed to cut a SECOND set of keys just for that scenario. That SECOND set of licenses is an.MSI which also contain the XMLs which enable PolicyPak to work with an MDM service. (Tip: You can use 7zip to open an MSI and see the licenses like this.)

Understanding Universal Licenses

Universal licenses solves a lot of problems around key generation. Here are the kinds of problems we have solved with Universal licenses:

  1. Instead of having one set for “Active Directory (GPO / SCCM or other on-prem” and another for MDM, we can generate one key which can be used in both places.
  2. Administrators may select which types of policies are honored (Group Policy-based, XML-files based, or coming from MDM).
  3. All components purchased can be in one XML file
  4. Some components which have “capabilities” may be specified with those capabilities. This is not available in Legacy license type.
  5. For MDM customers, we can specify EITHER Intune Company name or UPN name. https://kb.policypak.com/kb/article/1116-what-is-the-difference-if-i-license-my-mdm-machines%E2%80%99-cse-using-company-name-vs-upn-name/ This is not available for Legacy license type.
  6. Administrators may disable a specifically licensed component … without having to request PolicyPak support to re-cut the license. https://kb.policypak.com/kb/article/1099-how-do-i-specifically-exclude-or-prevent-a-component-from-performing-processing-by-modifying-the-license-file/
  7. The license may be wrapped up by the admin as a .MSI and re-deployed without contacting PolicyPak support to make a .MSI. https://kb.policypak.com/kb/article/1080-how-to-install-universal-licenses-for-new-customers-via-gpo-sccm-or-mdm/

    In the Group Policy editor you can consume the Universal license and it will look like this.

    And finally using PPUPDATE command on the endpoint you can see how you’re licensed like this.

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  • 19-May-2021
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