Windows server 2012R2 with essentials role vs. Windows Server Essentials 2012R2

There's 2 ways to get to a server running essentials 2012R2, right?

server with the essentials role vs. the essentials SKU?

What are the differences between them>

server with essentials can do 1+2 virtualization vs. essentials SKU is 1+1?
Server with essentials can do 100 users vs. essentials SKU is 25?

Does the server version need CALs?  The Essentials SKU doesn't right?  That's a big price difference then?
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David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
you seem to have got the pricing model right. Going to 26 users is a $1,662 price jump and the essentials interface will only support 75 users/devices

A very good post on the subject is @

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BeGentleWithMe-INeedHelpAuthor Commented:
Thanks. I have to read that article, but when you have less than 25 users, there's still a big price jump, right?

That 26th person necessitates server with the essentials role (you don't have the choice to use the essentials SKU?). When talking about, say, 10 users, you have the 2 options, but there's still a similar cost jump?

take care!
David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
Unless you NEED functions that Essentials doesn't offer i.e. Hyper-V replica,  trust relationships with other domains
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Windows Server 2012

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