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TS Licensing in 90 Words Or Less

Various aspects of TS Licensing are often misunderstood, so I set myself the goal of explaining it relatively clearly in under 90 words.
I cheated by using a picture, which is reputedly worth a thousand words, though I think that mainly applies to people with, what’s the word, skill.
TSLicensing90Words
Words From The Picture Retyped:
Clients connect directly to the Terminal Server using RDP.
The Terminal Server validates the client license, and talks to the TS Licensing Server (LS) if necessary:
  • to obtain a Temporary License token for an unlicensed client
  • to upgrade Temporary License tokens to Permanent
  • to renew Permanent License token within 7 days of expiry
Clients never connect to the LS directly.
The TS discovers the License Server automatically if the LS is a Domain Controller. If not, use DefaultLicenseServer value (Windows 2000) or LicenseServers subkeys (Windows Server 2003).
Enterprise LSs span domains within a site.
Domain LSs span sites within a domain.
Picture FAQ:
Yes, the user on the right is probably up to no good, but I can’t prove anything.
Windows Server 2003:
301932 Terminal Services Licensing Service Discovery
http://support.microsoft.com/?id=301932

Notes: You can specify a list of license servers, you create a subkey of LicenseServers for each LS you want to query.
Windows 2000:
239107 Establishing Preferred Windows 2000 Terminal Services License Server
http://support.microsoft.com/?id=239107
Notes: You can only specify a single default license server, a single REG_SZ registry value called DefaultLicenseServer.
Some history on TS Licensing Enhancements (short version: for Windows 2000, get SP3 or later, and put it on both the TSs and LS).
287687 Terminal Services Licensing Enhancements
http://support.microsoft.com/?id=287687
And the Terminal Services Licensing White Papers (if you want to know how it all works in detail, start here – there’s tons of excellent information).
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