Everything you want to know about Visual Studio ALM and Farming
Brian Harry is a Microsoft Technical Fellow working as the Product Unit Manager for Team Foundation Server. Learn more about Brian.
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When you purchase Software Assurance along with your software purchases from Microsoft, you get Deployment Planning Services“ credits. These credits can be spent on deployment planning training/consulting on all manner of Microsoft software. This is nothing new. It’s been in place for a while. I don’t think it’s well understood but it’s not new.
What’s new is that we now have some developer tools offerings that you can spend your credits on. These offerings are primarily designed for enterprises undertaking large scale or involved deployments (high availability, broad feature set, migration from other tools, etc). They are a safety net to make sure you have easy access to resources to ensure you know how to be successful with the transition. We’ve recently rolled out 3 offerings:
**UPDATE** Check out http://www.microsoft.com/licensing/software-assurance/planning-services-overview.aspx#tab=2 for more info on how to cash in on your points.
In a comment I was asked about credits for VS + MSDN and I posted a chart which didn't render very well. At the same time I wondered how many points the various assessments cost. So I go that information and have provided it here too:
Here's the number of points you get for some of the VS SKUs:
Points per License
Visual Studio Ultimate + MSDN
Visual Studio Premium + MSDN
Visual Studio Pro + MSDN
And here's what the assessments cost (in points). Remember though, you can use points from any of your SA agreements (not just VS ones):
Deployment Points Needed
TFS Deployment Assessment
Visual SourceSafe Migration Assessment
Visual Studio Quality Tools Assessment
If you find yourself in the situation of needing this kind of support, check with your Microsoft sales rep and see how you can use this.