Are Software IDs exciting?

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Also posted on: The Norfolk Punt

Well, I’m interested in governance, so the ISO/IEC 19770-2 standard for software IDs excites me. Basically, when businesses run on software, you can’t claim to be in control of your business unless you are in control of your software. This is more than just software licensing compliance.

In practice, auto-discovery and automated audit is the only way to keep on top of this – although an initial manual sanity check is needed and auto-discovery is necessary rather than sufficient – but if vendors call their software something different with every release, misspell their own names embedded in their code, and so on, auto discovery can be a nightmare. You can find the same software multiple times, miss installed software and so on, without effective (implemented) standards for software ids.

So, please take a look at and sign up to its newsletter, if keeping control of your software estate is important to you – and put support for the standard into your software acquisition requirements….

The DMTF Software Entitlement Working Group developing the standard is here; and there’s an incubator white paper.