Link to home
Start Free TrialLog in
Avatar of bankwest
bankwestFlag for United States of America

asked on

MS Office licenses

I always get a bit confused with MS licensing.     Here is my scenario:

We have a total of 24 actual PEOPLE.       We run 2 terminal servers that users can access applications.   We have 41 devices that are connected to our network.   29 workstations and 12 thin clients.

I have 40 licenses on open licensing and is listed as OLP SNGL Office STD 2013 NL  VLIC

We have installed Office on both terminal servers that can be accessed by all 24 people.

BUT, some of our departments have office installed locally on their PC so they can use Outlook.  (Long story short, the other users access with thin clients and are older models and we cant run outlook this way)

So are these licenses by device or by user????    If by device, I am one over.   If by user I am fine.

In case it matters, we have 50 device cals and 50 remote desktop device cals
Avatar of Pavel Celba
Pavel Celba
Flag of Czechia image

Link to home
This solution is only available to members.
To access this solution, you must be a member of Experts Exchange.
Start Free Trial
Avatar of bankwest


Sorry, but we would still have 41 devices if I uninstall from one device.

Office is only actually installed on the 2 terminal servers and then locally on 21 workstations
40 licenses are eligible for 40 devices no matter which 40 from yours 41 (or 100 or 1000) you select... Of course to suppress one of 12 TS clients is not easily possible (you must work with rights) so you have to select one desktop PC and uninstall the office on it.

The exact term says: "You must acquire a license for each device that is using the software (locally or remotely over a network)". So if you uninstall the Office from one desktop then this desktop cannot use it and you don't need to buy it.

BTW, Open Office is compatible enough to MS Office but it is free...
Sorry again......but that device could still access Office thru the terminal server.      So I would still have 41 devices wouldn't I?

Technically, ALL my devices can access Office through terminal server.      Even tho, realistically only about 24 users do.    But as you said, it's per device.

Am I still off base and not understanding?

Appreciate your help.
So if your environment allows TS access to MS Office for 41 devices then you need 41 Office licenses. But you still may disable the whole TS access for one desktop and the problem is gone (

Do you really need 41 devices for 24 people? Do all of them need TS access?
Does sound like over kill doesn't it.   LOL

All our other applications are accessed through TS access, but those are non-Microsoft.    And they are applications that ALL users do need.    The KINK is that in order for the officers and managers to use Outlook 2013, it has to be installed locally.    It doesn't work thru TS.     Or if it does, I don't know how to do it.
Overkill is 29 workstations + 12 thin clients for 24 users...

The TS session should load user profile into Outlook as if it were running on the workstation... Just ask your admin to setup it for you.
My understanding is that VL licenses you for RDS servers and one workstation per user.  In addition, you only need RDS CALs per user so you have too many (nothing wrong with that other than you've wasted money.

The problem is you're asking this question here.  Please understand:
Licensing Disclaimer
License information provided here is "best efforts".  The comments of the respondents are based on interpretation of the license agreements and their knowledge of the particular laws and regulations in their geographic location.  Laws in your location may invalidate certain aspects of the license and/or licenses can change.  "They told me on Experts-Exchange" will not be a valid excuse in an audit.  You need to contact the license granting authority to confirm any advice offered here.
Lee W, why do you think the Microsoft's Volume Licensing Reference Guide is bad resource to understand licensing? Or do you think the link to this official Microsoft document provided at EE is less valuable than exactly same link provided by Microsoft itself?

What Office VL license is derived for RDS Server? The simple RDS CAL does not legalize any Office installation.
Link to home
This solution is only available to members.
To access this solution, you must be a member of Experts Exchange.
Start Free Trial
You are right licensing is complex matter... Thus to use Open office is risk free in many cases...

Microsoft is transparent in licensing over the world. Developer tools are licensed per user, SQL Server per CAL or number of cores, End user apps in VL (e.g. Office) per device. I don't know local exception from this rule. I suppose we are talking about commercial licenses.

The PDF document is copyrighted 2014 so I don't suppose obsolete information inside. There is also a contact info at the end so to call (800) 426-9400 in the United States, or visit and find the nearest local dealer could also help.

BTW, you have a good article about consulting rates.
All information was excellent