One of the major benefits customers have seen from Microsoft’s Software Assurance (SA) is the ability to migrate from a lower to higher edition software without incurring full licensing costs for both editions by using what is called a Step-up license. In order to qualify for a step-up license you must be enrolled, with SA, in any of the following volume licensing programs: Open License Value, Select License, Select Plus, or Enterprise Agreement. There are also a few other stipulations (Gotta love those stipulations). On a renewal of your software licensing contract and with Open License Value, Select License, and Select Plus you will need to have three years remaining on your “SA Step-up” license for the higher level edition. On an Enterprise Agreement renewal, you must add an SA Step-up license for the higher level edition at signing.
When you have an existing agreement for any of the volume licensing programs you must have one, two or three years remaining on an SA Step-up license for the higher level edition.
Make sense? Yes, we know it’s confusing, but it can be really beneficial when you need to migrate. The Step-up License price is the difference between the License and Software Assurance (L&SA) price of the higher level and lower level editions of the software.