A Microsoft Licensing Guide to Prevent Mistakes in a Virtualized Environment

In our latest white paper, we talk about Microsoft licensing and how a virtualized environment can reprovision an organization’s hardware resource both rapidly, and cost effectively. But in order to properly manage the software licensing on virtual machines, an understanding of Microsoft license mobility through Microsoft Software Assurance is essential.

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Virtualization allows multiple computing environments to be run through a single physical server. These virtual machines exist when a pool of computer resources is split into separate systems that behave as if each were a complete computer server. This encourages both efficiency and flexibility in working, but the potential for unplanned costs and increased risk.

License Mobility through Software Assurance

Described as a Volume Licensing Software Assurance benefit, the conditions for employing Microsoft License Mobility are complicated and differ depending on where your Exchange server is hosted – Software Assurance must be maintained on all software licenses, even server licenses, processor licenses, and CALs.

The white paper goes into detail about how unless the provider uses fully dedicated hardware for the hosting, Microsoft License Mobility doesn’t apply to Windows Server licenses. Otherwise the underlying Windows Server operating system will need to be licensed through an SPLA agreement. Also, as of October 2019, product terms for on-premise will change meaning Software Assurance and mobility rights can’t be deployed through certain dedicated hosted cloud services.

The 90 day time constraints in Microsoft License Mobility

It is not possible to assign licenses between different hardware devices more frequently than every 90 days, but our white paper describes the differences between license mobility through SA and license mobility in a server farm. This is especially relevant to global organizations with multiple data centres that might be looking to move licenses across different countries.

This 90 day assignment rule brings about a necessity for organizations to fully understand the minimum licensing quantity needed. All physical cores on all physical hosts must be licensed with the Windows Server per core license, with the host ready to license all the hosted VMs in the Datacentre Edition.

Using the Azure Hybrid benefit

Learn about how the Azure Hybrid benefit (AHB) for Windows Server allows the movement of licenses for use in Azure in a BYOL scenario (Bring Your Own Licence), and how with active Software Assurance, allows licensing for either an on-premise server or an Azure VM.

Download 10 potential mistakes to avoid when licensing the data centre with Microsoft software

Our free white paper is available to download now. Access the guide, or contact License Dashboard to discuss how we can assist in your understanding of Microsoft Mobility Licensing, Software Assurance, and Microsoft licensing as a whole.

Ben Murden

Ben Murden

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