Help with SBS 2011 w/Premium Add-On License Requirements

Posted on 2012-03-14
Last Modified: 2012-03-15
I need help in deciphering the license requirements for an upgrade to a small business network. Currently we use 1 four year old server (Server 2003), 12 computers (variation of XP, Vista and Win7, home and pro versions) and 3 printers running under a workgroup. The server is used for files and as a MS SQL database for law firm software.  It’s past time to upgrade/secure the network, server and client computers, plus upgrade to a newer version of the law firm software requiring  Sequel 2008,

My plan, as of now, is to purchase a new server with SBS 2011 with the Premium Add-on to use as the DC (once all client computers are off the home versions) and primary file server. The current server will run the Sequel 2008 software dedicated to the law firm software. Am I correct in the number of device licenses of 30, 15 for windows server and 12 (minus the 3 printers) for the Sequel server?  Longer term plans will be remote access and exchange, but first things first. Any help and suggestions are greatly appreciated.
Question by:Raptorfixer
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Expert Comment

ID: 37720592
LVL 96

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 37721501
1. How many USERS? (Not user accounts - HUMANS who log in as ANY account, shared or individual).
2. How many of the users use SQL Server?
LVL 96

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 37721579
First, I'm going to say if you've never done this kind of setup before, you should.  In my opinion, implementing exchange "later" when using SBS is never a good idea. Exchange is a major INTEGRATED component of SBS.  I usually have better analogies, but I think the one I'll go with is that setting up exchange later is like buying a car and refusing to adjust the driver's seat because you need to get used to how the pedals work first.  Both are necessary for a comfortable experience.

So you need to either learn this - setup a test environment install everything, learn how they work... then remove the test environment and do it a SECOND time.  Then, PREFERABLY, a third time.

Or hire someone who routinely does this sort of thing so you get it done right the first time.

Basically, if you're job is going to be to do these migrations on a regular basis, learn it and do it yourself - no problem.  If your job is maintain this company's network and ONLY this company's network (maybe you're home network and your friend as well), then don't waste the time doing something that inexperience will likely cause you to mess up and then require an even more costly consultant to fix.

As for licensing, assuming all your users currently (or will in the future) use remote access and remote e-mail, then you DO NOT want device licenses.  You want to license by user.  (Even if the users won't, unless you have more users than devices, you should be licensing by User for most if not all your licenses).  

Something that's not clear to me what you plan to purchase for the server.  The SBS Premium Add-on is an Add-on requiring an SBS 2011 or SBS 2008 to exist in the domain already (or to be installed at essentially the same time (think at most, days apart)).  This means at least two server installations.  So to minimize costs, I would strongly recommend going virtual with Hyper-V or VMWare ESXi.  

I'm going to assume 12 users - one per workstation - all needing access to SQL. What I would get:
1 Copy SBS 2011 Standard, Volume License (NOT OEM)
1 Copy SBS 2011 Premium Add-on, Volume License
7 SBS 2011 Standard CALs (SBS Standard should come with 5 CALs)
12 SBS 2011 Premium CALs (ONLY needed for each user who accesses the SQL database)

That said, you should talk to Microsoft to confirm license counts and scenarios.  "They told me on Experts-Exchange" will not be a valid argument in a software audit.
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Author Comment

ID: 37721697
innocentdevil: thanks for the link, but It's one of the sites that make it difficult. For instance, the license adviser doesn't list SBS 2011 as a option. If I substitute Win2008 Standard in it's place, open license for 15, the cost is over $10,000, which seems very high. A well configured server built from the Dell website with 15 SBS 2011 Standard Device Cals and 15 SBS 2011 Premium Add-On Device Cals lists out about $7,000.

leew: Sorry, could have been a little clearer. 12 users on 12 individual machines accessing the SQL during office hours. I'm leaning towards device cals since the bosses have considered adding a few employees to work at night doing data entry. If that happens, we'll have 14 users on 12 machines, but the most at one time will be 12.
LVL 96

Accepted Solution

Lee W, MVP earned 500 total points
ID: 37721787
Be careful about Device licenses.  You can mix licenses without issue, so if you have 2 users at night doing data entry, you can get two device licenses.  BUT, consider this, anything that authenticates on behalf of a human being needs a device license if the user doesn't have one.

So if all 12 of those users have a cell phone they get their mail on or if they remote in from home or a laptop on the road or have a laptop and a desktop, then each of those devices requires a CAL.  It's usually much cheaper - including ADMINISTRATIVE COSTS - especially for an environment your size - to just go with user CALs.

Also, you might want to consider SBS 2011 Essentials if you don't plan on growing the company beyond 25 users.  SBS 2011 doesn't use CALs and you can still add the premium Add-On (which still would require CALs).  Essentials does NOT have Exchange - you're expected to use a third party for e-mail (and preferred to use Offfice 365, but not required).  Essentials will also provide workstation backups (which standard does not).

This is another reason why hiring a pro to come in, look over your network and provide recommendations is going to be a good idea.

Given your description, I would expect licensing to run you $5000 +/- $1000.
LVL 96

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 37721791
And of that $5K, about 50% is because of SQL, maybe more

Author Closing Comment

ID: 37724466
leew; thank you, excellent advice. My experience is mainly with Server 2003 and older exchange versions and I haven't done any SBS software setups, so appreciate the help on how Exchange is so tightly integrated. I'll re-think the type of CALs as like you said, a user CAL will be more appropriate if and when people want to remote in. And...I will confirm with Microsoft about the numbers. I'll re-look at Essentials and build some various proposals for the boss and go from there.

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