Microsoft Windows Server 2012 Licensing Changes

Monday 24th September 2012

Microsoft have just confirmed the Windows Server 2012 new product line-up and licensing model which could be released as early as September. Here are the key facts…

New Product Line-Up

The current Enterprise, Web Server, Small Business Server (SBS) and HPC editions will retire in favour of a streamlined four product line-up:• Datacenter edition for highly-virtualised private cloud environments• Standard edition for non-virtualised or lightly virtualised environments • Essentials edition for small businesses with up to 25 users running on servers with up to two processors • Foundation edition for small businesses with up to 15 users running on single processor servers

Selecting The Right Edition

With feature parity between Datacenter and Standard editions, virtualisation rights become the only differentiator between editions - Standard edition allows for two virtual instances and Datacenter edition allows for unlimited virtualisation. If you are running a highly virtualised environment and management is a requirement, we would suggest you also consider bothWindows Server2012and Windows System Center 2012together in the Core Infrastructure Suite (CIS), which is available inside or outside ofthe Enrollment for Core Infrastructure (ECI) agreement.

Licensing Changes

Windows Server 2012 is moving to a processor model which creates a consistency across Microsoft infrastructure products including System Center 2012 and the Core Infrastructure Server (CIS).The key changes are as follows:Windows Server 2012 Datacenter edition and Windows Server 2012 Standard edition has been updated: • Two editions differentiated only by virtualisation rights – two virtual instances for Standard edition and unlimited virtual instances for Datacenter edition• A consistent processor-based licensing model that covers up to two physical processors on a serverWindows Server 2012 Essentials edition and Windows Server 2012 Foundation edition remain unchanged. • Server-based licensing model – Foundation is for single processor servers and Essentials is for either one or two processor servers• CALs not required for access – Foundation comes with 15 user accounts and Essentials comes with 25 user accounts

For general information on Microsoft Licensing schemes click here

Transitioning to Windows Server 2012

Those with Software Assurance on their current Windows Server Licenses at the time of general availability of Windows Server 2012 will receive the following migration rights to the new editions:

Next Steps

To discuss the best way to plan your businesses transition to Windows Server 2012 and the potential license grants available, please contact your Bytes account manager.For further reading, there is also useful FAQ's here and information on the Microsoft website here.

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