Remote Desktop Services License question

Posted on 2012-08-21
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-08-23

This one should be easy, but I want a definite answer. Only if you have tested this in production only then reply

Question is -

We have got a Windows 2008 R2 OEM Server (Non DC). The client wants us to install Remote Desktop Services (Terminal Services) on this for 5 user access.
Now, everywhere I look I see the RDS User Licenses (product code 6VC-01164) are only available in Open License and not OEM.

The question is that can we install these RDS OLPs on our OEM server :~

Thanks in Advance
Question by:manav08
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LVL 97

Accepted Solution

Lee W, MVP earned 800 total points
ID: 38315767
Of course - a license is just that, a license. CALs don't need to match the type of OS installed (VL/OEM/Retail). But regardless of how certain anyone here may claim to be, the ONLY place you can get a "definite answer" is Microsoft.  Any other answer won't protect you (or the client) from a claim of license violation in a lawsuit.
LVL 11

Author Comment

ID: 38315770
So you are saying that you haven't tested this, but it should work?
Why would they not sell RDS as OEM anymore?
LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 38315771
Yes you can. If you don't upgrade your sever frequently you need to buy the OEM licence (cost effictive).

I know we had a question about this. The answer we got was that we could install RDS on it. With the CAL's required for it. But if the server (hardware) was not good enough to run the RDS then we had to buy a new server, because with OEM you're kinda hardware-bounded.

To make everything short, don't worry about it, you may/can do it.
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Author Comment

ID: 38315774
I did not understand what you are trying to say about hardware.
LVL 13

Assisted Solution

Xaelian earned 800 total points
ID: 38315786
When you buy an OEM licence. This licence is computer bound. If you replace the computer, you can't do anything with this licence.

If you installed Windows Server with an OEM licence on a computer that isn't good enough for your needs. You may not replace motherboards etc in it, if they aren't approved by Microsoft.

OEM licence = licence for only 1 computer forever.

To make everything short. You may install RDS on your server.
Als RDS is never sold as OEM, RDS is a role on your Windows Server. If you got the Standard version you can install it. You just need the CAL's. The only cheap way for buying CAL's is volume licencing, but you don't need that.
LVL 97

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 38315809
I've been in IT for 18 years... I've bought dozens if not hundreds of licenses, sold dozens of licenses, attended numerous seminars by vendors such as Microsoft and Ingram Micro on licensing, and been involved with projects for Microsoft involving licensing.  I know what I know and what I don't know.  You're welcome to judge as needed, but like I said, the ONLY place you can get a DEFINITIVE ANSWER, is Microsoft.  I don't know why you wouldn't call them.

What I can tell you is that CALs, when sold with the machine, are OEM.  OEM licenses are legally locked to the hardware they are first installed on - once installed, they can only be sold with the hardware they are installed on.  Volume Licenses are legally tied to the entity (company) who buys them - they can be transferred to ANY system with the same company but can never be resold.  Retail licenses are not tied to the machine OR the purchasing entity - they CAN be resold when uninstalled/retired from the machine they are installed on (but realistically, who trusts resold retail software?  I wouldn't).  

RDS CALs have historically been registered to a licensing server.  That licensing server governs who can use them (Device or User).  Understand something critically important that most people don't get - Microsoft DOES NOT license by concurrent user.  If your client has 10 people and only wants 5 to connect at any given time but wants them to be able to connect from ANYWHERE, then the client needs 10 CALs, not 5.  You license by HUMAN user (not user name in active directory or a local account database) OR you license by DEVICE that can connect - a specific computer, for example.  

LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 38315864
If you want to be 100% legally fine, then you need to contact MS for an answer on paper. Even when I'm sure about the licensing, I'll contact MS for an answer on paper, so I 100% covered legally.

I think that Leew does this also. This is something that we all do. With the information you provided I say yes, leew too in his first post. BUT we don't know everything about how you bought it with MS. So contact a MS spokesman for 100% closure.

Assisted Solution

BlueDiver earned 400 total points
ID: 38327120
The question is
    "can we install these RDS OLPs on our OEM server"


Have I done this
   "Yes - in organisation ranging from 10 users to 10, 000 users)

  use the customer's license agreement. You cannot use yours! If you want to use your agreement and use an 'arrangement' with the customer, then  you need to set yourself up as a SPLA provider

I am a Microsoft MCP, MCSE, MCDBA, MCITP, MCTS, and Licensing specialist. I have been working on Microsoft licenses for more years than I want to accept (still clinging to my forgotten youth)

Hope this helps

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