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11th Systems Administration Conference (LISA '97)

Monitoring Application Use with License Server Logs

Jon Finke
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute


One feature of our campus-wide UNIX service is the wide selection of scientific and engineering applications such as AutoCad, Pro/ENGINEER, Maple, etc. We currently have 32 ``major application packages'' site licensed, representing an annual cost of almost $300,000. A number of the licenses were based on concurrent usage, so around budget time, people started to ask if we had an appropriate number of licenses.

By adapting some previously developed software for tracking workstation use, we were able to determine who was using which applications, and concurrent usage information for these products and to reduce the number of concurrent users allowed to reflect actual use (plus some headroom). By applying these figures to just four applications, we were able to obtain a savings of $43,000 without cutting any service to our users.

This paper discusses the methods we used to collect, process, and display this information, as well as some of the problems we encountered.

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