Consistant Connections Policy?

Posted on 2009-02-10
Last Modified: 2012-05-06
My customer (a terminal services) user is constantly taking advantage of microsofts concurrent connections licensing loophole.
I would like to create a policy on the server to dissallow users from opening software based on the number of times it is already open?

For exmple, my customer has paid for 5 Microsoft Office Professional Plus Volume licenses now installed on the server. I would like to create a policy so no more than 5 users on the terminal server can open any of the office applications.

I was thinking of taking advantage of the Shared Folder settings "Allow this number of users" option. Would this be sufficient to stop users opening software beyond the figure we set?

Any other suggestions?
Thanks in advance,

Question by:vitsolutions
    LVL 82

    Accepted Solution

    Not sufficient to fulfill the EULA. Microsoft's desktop applications are licensed "Per Device" accessing the software at *any* time (*not* concurrently), full stop.
    Clients with a local Office installed can use the local Office license *only* if the edition, language, *and* version on the desktop are the same as on the terminal server.
    The licensing is described in detail, including examples, in this document:

    From the FAQ in this document:
    Q: How do the license terms for Microsoft applications (e.g., the Volume Licensing Product Use Rights (PUR)) address use in a Terminal Services environment (where the application runs on the server and not on the client desktop)?
    A: Microsoft licenses its desktop applications, like Microsoft Office, on a per-device basis. Device-based licensing means a license must be obtained for each desktop on or from which the product is used or accessed. You may not share a license for the product with another desktop or assign it to different desktops. Therefore, in a Terminal Services environment, you must acquire a license for all desktops that access the product running on the server. Note: With the 2007 release, generally only licenses obtained through the Microsoft Volume Licensing Program can be deployed to a network server for remote access.

    Author Comment

    forgive my ignorance!
    does this mean my customer needs only 1 licence per terminal server?
    customer has no desktops with local version of installed.

    LVL 82

    Assisted Solution

    No; terminal services are no means to save on licensing costs.
    It means that your customer needs one Office license per client device accessing the terminal server: "[...]  Device-based licensing means a license must be obtained for each desktop [...] from which the product is [...] accessed. You may not share a license for the product with another desktop or assign it to different desktops. [...]".
    The term "desktop" here includes Thin Clients, MACs, Linux clients, whatever client device it is that is accessing the terminal server.

    Author Comment

    Thanks oBda i used the incorrect terminology earler when i reffered to licence per user. I now understand the per device convention.

    This does not however auto restrict users from opening Microsoft Office 2007 on Terminal services when the number of per device licences have been exceeded.
    This i assume is either a loophole with the microsoft licence product or they didnt feel it neccessary to put a number of connections detector in with the build.

    At present, any terminal server 2003 installation with Office 2007 you can have as many terminal server users opening microsoft office 2007 as you like while only purchasing the minimum 5 devices CAL.

    What i am trying to achieve is restrict my customers from abusing this, in turn forcing them to consider upgrading the number of licences.
    Do you have any suggestions for this?

    LVL 82

    Assisted Solution

    If he's determined not to pay for enough licenses to fulfill the EULA, then only Microsoft or the BSA can come down on him, but there's nothing to stop him from misusing his volume licensing.
    Citrix can do this by default, and there are third-party monitoring products as well; but I doubt that your customer is willing to pay for these if he doesn't want to pay for Office ...

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