December Top Licensing FAQs

Q) Do I need a product key for all Volume Licensing products?
A) No. Not all products need a product key. Click here for a guide to Volume Licence Keys.

Q) What licences do I need if I am going to deploy Terminal Services within a Windows Server 2003 based environment?
A) Terminal Services functionality is included in the Windows Server licence. You need a server licence for every running instance of the server software. On top of the server licence, you also need a Windows Server Client Access Licence (CAL) for each user or device. If you want to run a Windows session, a Terminal Server Client Access Licence (TS CAL) is needed too. A Windows session is defined as a session during which the server software hosts a graphical user interface on a device. For Windows sessions, you need a TS CAL for each user or device.

Note Operating system equivalency in Terminal Server no longer applies with Windows Server 2008, and you need a TS 2008 CAL for each device or user using Terminal Server functionality, irrespective of which desktop operating system is running on the device.

Q) Can I get Software Assurance coverage on pre-installed or boxed software that’s not the latest version of a product, but that’s still available in the channel?
A) No - only licences for the latest version of a product are eligible, and the Software Assurance must be bought within 90 days from the date the licences were purchased. For more information, click here.

Q) Do I need an extra Microsoft Windows licence if I have installed a second copy of Windows on another hard drive partition?
A) Yes, but as an exception to this rule, if you have attached Software Assurance through Volume Licensing you can install and use a second copy of the software in a separate hard-drive partition on the device. You can choose to run Windows Vista Business, Windows Vista Enterprise, Windows Vista Ultimate or a prior version in place of the second copy in the hard-drive partition. For more information click here.

Q) Are there 32 and 64 bit Windows Server 2008 Client Access Licences (CALs)?A) No. There are only two types of CALs. User CALs and Device CALs. Both are platform- independent, which means you can access servers running either 32bit or 64bit versions of the server software. For more information click here.

Q) Can I downgrade Microsoft Windows Vista Business or Ultimate purchased pre-installed on a new PC?
A) As an end user you have the right to downgrade as set out in your Software Licence Terms.

Example: You’re buying a new computer system and it needs to run the same operating system as your existing 10 systems — Windows XP Professional. Pre-installed Windows Vista Business and Windows Vista Ultimate both include downgrade rights to Windows XP Professional.

You need to source your own media which should be a legally licensed version (bought as either boxed or pre-installed software, or through a Volume Licensing agreement). You don’t need to have one set of Windows XP Professional media for each PC you are downgrading because you have legitimate full operating system licences for Windows Vista Business/Ultimate, which gives you the right to downgrade. You can then run Windows XP Professional until you are ready to upgrade the system to Windows Vista Business/Ultimate—when you would already be licensed.

When you downgrade Windows Vista Business and Ultimate as set out in your Software Licence Terms and you use both Windows XP media and the associated product key that was previously activated you need to activate via the phone only, 0800 0188 354, Once confirmed that you have a valid Vista Business or Ultimate licence, the Customer Service Representative will help you activate your software.

Q) Can I use any version of Microsoft Office on my desktop if I am accessing Microsoft Office from a network device?
A) No. The edition of Microsoft Office that is installed on your desktop will need to be the same or higher than the version that is installed on the network. Please refer to the table in the appendix of the following document:

Licensing of Microsoft Desktop Application Software for Use with Windows Server Terminal Services

Q) How do I license Microsoft SQL Server 2008 in a virtual environment?

Server / CAL

Workgroup and Standard editions allow you to run any number of instances of the server software in one physical or virtual operating system environment on the licensed server at a time.  For Enterprise edition, for each server to which you assign a software licence, you can run, at any one time, any number of instances of the server software in one physical and any number of virtual operating system environments on that server.

Per Processor

For each server to which you have assigned the required number of per processor licences, you may run, at any one time, any number of instances of the server software in physical and virtual operating system environments on the licensed server. However, the total number of physical and virtual processors used by those operating system environments cannot exceed the number of software licences assigned to that server

For Enterprise edition there is an extended license right: if all physical processors in the server have been licensed, then you may run unlimited instances of SQL server 2008 in one physical and an unlimited number of virtual operating environments on that same machine.

For more information click here.

Q) Is Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 licensed for disaster recovery?
A) Yes. Provided your Microsoft Exchange Server licence and all corresponding Client Access Licences (CALs) have active Software Assurance coverage.For more information click here.

Q) Do I need to buy another licence for Microsoft SQL Server 2008 for failover?
A) No. A passive server does not need a licence, provided that the number of processors in the passive server is equal or less than those of the active server. The passive server can take the duties of the active server for a max of 30 days. After that, it must be licensed accordingly. Database mirroring and failover clustering is available for Standard and Enterprise editions of SQL Server 2008. For more information click here.

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