Best Use Of SWID Tags Contest

Certified SWID Tags integration with CPE names V2.0 Best-use-of-tagsThe ITAM Review and, joint sponsors of the ‘Best Use of Tags 2010’ contest, are pleased to announce the contest’s winner. The contest was tightly contested with entries from four software vendors: Aspera, CA, Sassafras Software and Symantec.

The contest aimed to identify those SAM tool vendors who have recognized the necessity of using software identification (SWID) tags already deployed by Adobe Systems Inc. as well as tags that fully conform to the ISO/IEC 19770-2:2009 standard.

(Adobe’s tags in production versions of CS 4 were developed before the ISO/IEC 19770-2:2009 standard was finalized. Although they are not fully compliant with the standard, the information provided in the software tag can be utilized to clearly differentiate between a product that was installed as a stand-alone product, and one that was installed as part of a suite. Information about Adobe’s SWID tags was provided to contestants.)

Full Disclosure: is a non-profit program of IEEE-ISTO and is managed by a board of directors currently made up of the founding members. CA and Symantec are founding members and have provided funding to support the program. Sassafras Software is currently an Adopter member in and Aspera is not currently a member. Neither Aspera, nor Sassafras Software have provided any financial support to and though both companies are welcomed to either join the program or increase their membership level, there is no requirement or expectation placed on either organization based on their involvement in the contest.

Judging of the contest was done by Steve Klos of and Martin Thompson of ITAM Review. The winners of the contest were chosen based solely on the demonstrations provided to both judges and the judging was done based on review of issues identified for the contest scenario as well as the technical merits of the product demonstration, without membership, or financial issues being considered. The order of the winning products/companies was unanimous and without contention.

Contestants were provided with a set of tags prior to a presentation interview. They also received a scenario that provided context for their data analysis and reporting. The scenario was around a marketing organisation that used a combination of Adobe CS 4 products, installed both individually and as part of a suite, across both Windows and Macintosh computers. The sample data set included trial versions of software, as well as retail products with duplicate serial numbers.

Contestants were given one hour to present their solution to a judging panel comprising Martin Thompson, Editor of The ITAM Review and Steve Klos, Executive Director of

Contestants were (in alphabetical order):

  • Aspera (Germany) with SmartTrack
  • CA (USA) with CA IT Client Manager and CA IT Asset Manager
  • Sassafras Software (USA) with K2 KeyAuditor and KeyServer
  • Symantec (USA) with Altiris Inventory Solution

The judges were impressed with the high caliber of entries, and Executive Director Steve Klos has compiled and narrated a video with more details about each contestant’s entry, including screenshots and explanations of particular strengths and technical findings.


Watch the contest summary video


Learn more about the winners