Army: Use our Microsoft stuff

Vendors must use the Army's inventory of Microsoft Corp. licensed products when providing service organizations with desktop and notebook computers and servers.

The new policy enforces the deal signed last year that consolidated all of the Army's buying power for Microsoft software. The service in June awarded a delivery order worth up to $450 million to Softmart, located in Downingtown, Pa., a small business and one of nine Microsoft resellers approved under the Defense Department's Enterprise Software Initiative. The militarywide project identifies, acquires, distributes and manages software common to an organization.

"Therefore, the Microsoft Enterprise License Agreement prohibits Army organizations from procuring Microsoft software from hardware vendors or any other source of Microsoft software," wrote Claude Bolton, the Army's top acquisition official, and Lt. Gen. Steve Boutelle, the service's chief information officer, in a Feb. 4 document.

All Army organizations must ensure that hardware vendors install Microsoft software provided by the service. This includes the active-duty Army, the Army National Guard and the Army Reserve, said the document posted March 18 on the Federal Register. The Government Printing Office Web site publishes new agency rules.

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