Windows 2008 R2 Enterprise software assurance upgrade to Windows Server Standard 2012

Posted on 2012-08-20
Last Modified: 2012-08-24
I recently bought Windows 2008 R2 Enterprise (2 copies) with SA right before Windows Server 2012 came out.

So now on my Volume Licensing Service Center site it says i have (4 copies) of Windows Server Standard 2012 which is right in line for what Microsoft says on one of there licenseing FAQs.

So before i install this i just want to make sure i have this correct.

Server 1 (2 Processors)
Windows Server 2012 Standard
Use 2 of my copies
The Physical server will have a normal full install and once installed only use Hyper-V
Install 4 Virtual Instances (DC, File Server, Print Server, Time Clock Server)

Server 2 will have the same setup and use the other 2 remaining copies of Windows Server 2012 Standard.

Will this setup be ok to use with the 4 licenses i have? Also i only have 2 keys. Do i use one of these for all copies?

Windows Srv 2012 DataCtr/Std KMS
Windows Srv 2012 Standard MAK B       0/45
Question by:AnthonyJK
    LVL 13

    Expert Comment


    Standard only supports 2 VM's.  You'd need to look at Datacenter if you wanted more.
    LVL 17

    Expert Comment

    by:Brad Bouchard
    You will need Datacenter version if you want to do what you're trying to do, and one key should be fine, once you've obtained it.  However one big thing to point out is, that no matter if you go with Datacenter, or Standard, you will need 2012 CALs.  Probably per user as for most businesses (I say most, because unless you have more computers than you have users it makes sense to do per user vs. per device) it makes more sense.  So say you have 60 employees utilizing/connecting to these servers for some function and in some fashion you will need 60 CALs.

    If you can't afford to upgrade then try combining server roles.  A VM in today's terms and great hardware could easily function as a file server, print server, and time clock server.  Then you could have a stand alone DC which would reach your 2 VM limit for Hyper V on the first server.

    Author Comment

    I dont think i need Datacenter. That only makes since if you are going to do over 10 VMs. It least it makes since math wise.

    I think i may have confused everyone.

    I had 2 copies of Windows Server 2008R2 Enterprise with Software Assurance but now since they do not have Enterprise Edition with Windows 2012 Microsoft bumped me up to 4 copies of Windows Server 2012 Standard

    I want to do the following with my licenses
    2 copies to Server 1 (Main Server)
    2 Copies to Server 2 (Backup Server)

    Server 1 (Main Server)
    Install Windows Server 2012 full version on physical server with only Hyper-V running. Then with Hyper-V install my 4 free VM's becasue i have 2 copies for this server.

    Server 2 (Backup Server)
    Same exact thing but with my last 2 copies of Windows Server 2012
    LVL 77

    Expert Comment

    by:David Johnson, CD, MVP
    I have opened up a support ticket but you should talk with your SA advisor.  
     I have been assured during a chat session that the S2K8 Cals are covered under SA, so you're good there..

    The question is S2K12 Standard is 1 physical and 2 Virtual (vice 4 virtual S2k8R2Ent).. you will probably be covered if you do the assessment as shown below.. to confirm talk to your SA advisor.

    In order to maintain full license coverage during the transition to Windows Server 2012, if you have server based licenses with Software Assurance you may be eligible for incremental license grants through the following process.

    ¿   Prior to renewing your agreement, conduct a self- inventory documenting any 8-processor servers running Windows Server Enterprise edition (eligible to receive two additional Windows Server 2012 Standard edition licenses), and any 4- processor servers running either Windows Server Standard edition or Windows Server HPC edition (eligible to receive one additional Windows Server 2012 Standard edition license).
    ¿   This self-inventory should be conducted using the Microsoft Assessment and Planning (MAP)  Toolkit or another inventory tool to accurately archive a time/date-stamped inventory of hardware  tied to Windows Server installations.
    ¿   This documentation will serve as proof of license for any incremental license grants beyond the normal transition grant.
    LVL 2

    Accepted Solution

    Quick answer - Yes

    Long answer -
    Your existing 2 copies of Windows Server 2008 R2 enterprise edition with valid SA where upgraded to 4 licenses of Windows Server 2012 Standard.

    Windows Server 2012 is licensed per processor and CAL. The standard edition is licensed for 1 physical processor and two virtual instances.

    If you want to license a physical platform with Windows Server 2012 standard edition, you will need 2 copies of Windows Server 2012 Standard (one for each processor). This gives you the ability to license up to 4 virtual machines.

    All straight-forward. here is the interesting bit...

    If you want to provision more than 4 virtual machines, you can either license the physical platofrm with an datacentre edition of Windows Server 2012 or purchase more standard edition.

    Question 7 of the attached FAQ outlines just this scenario. example, if you have 2  processors and want to install 8 virtual machines, then you can use 4 licenses of Windows Server 2012 Standard edition

    Hope this helps

    Author Comment

    Awesome and is exactly what i wanted to know / clarify.


    Featured Post

    What Security Threats Are You Missing?

    Enhance your security with threat intelligence from the web. Get trending threat insights on hackers, exploits, and suspicious IP addresses delivered to your inbox with our free Cyber Daily.

    Join & Write a Comment

    Every once-in-a-while, when you try to add a XenServer host to the System Center Virtual Machine Manager console, it will generate a certificate error, and the XenServer host will not be added to Virtual Machine Manager: If you are experiencing t…
    Introduction In one of my previous articles (, I explained how to create a native Windows 2012 Cluster.  The metho…
    This video Micro Tutorial explains how to clone a hard drive using a commercial software product for Windows systems called Casper from Future Systems Solutions (FSS). Cloning makes an exact, complete copy of one hard disk drive (HDD) onto another d…
    Windows 8 comes with a dramatically different user interface known as Metro. Notably missing from the new interface is a Start button and Start Menu. Many users do not like it, much preferring the interface of earlier versions — Windows 7, Windows X…

    755 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

    Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

    Join & Ask a Question

    Need Help in Real-Time?

    Connect with top rated Experts

    21 Experts available now in Live!

    Get 1:1 Help Now