Which licenses are necessary to use Remote Desktop Services in Windows Server 2012 R2 Stardard

Hello Virtualization Experts,

I am putting together a new server, and I am finding it very difficult to understand what type of licenses I will need for 2 virtual machines running Windows 8.1. Here is the breakdown:

1) Physical machine will run Windows Server R2 Standard. (1 License $700)

2) Two virtual machines running Windows 8.1. Do I need 2 of these licenses ($90 each)?

3)  The office has no computers. We are planning to just have one server and 2 virtual machines. What about the Remote Desktop Services licenses? Is this what I need for my two users ($132 each)? Can I still have a third user using RDP to connect to the server? I would like to have three simultaneous users working at the same time. One connected to the physical machine and two connected to virtual machines.

4) Do I need any other license?
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David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
you need 1 x server 2 x windows 8 3x client cal packages
CompuHeroAuthor Commented:

Thank you for your answer. But can you be a little more specific. Are you saying that the type of licenses that I need are the ones that I included in the hyper links above? I am particularly curious about this Remote Desktop Services user licenses. Do I also need to buy the standard user cals and the remote desktop services ones? We will only have remote users.

Thank you for your help.
David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
you need both Server licenses for any user/device that accesses directly or indirectly with the server, and Remote Desktop Licenses for any user/device that accesses any remote desktop services including RemoteApp
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CompuHeroAuthor Commented:

I called Microsoft's licensing department. A lady on the phone told me that since we didn't have any local users all we needed were the Remote Desktop Services user licenses. But you are saying we need the standard user CALS and the Remote Desktop Services CALS, right?
David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
But you will have local users or they can't authenticate and use RDS

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CompuHeroAuthor Commented:
Thank you!
David is right. Every user connecting to RD server will have a username, so he will authenticate to that server (or domain) so that user (or device) needs a user (or device) CAL and RDS CAL (user or device).
But honestly I don't get what you intend to do. If you intend to RDP to windows 8.1 virtual hosts, you don't need RDP CALs. RDP CALs are needed for terminal server. But you will not be able to do with the windows 8.1 version you choose. It has to be pro version. Only Pro or enterprise versions can act as RD hosts. If user on windows 8.1 does not need server at all (authentificated connection) then you don't need server (user/device) CALs
Again, if you choose too use windows 2012 R2 std as hyper-v host, you are not allowed to install any other roles on that OS (RDP server). But with one W2012R2 license you can install two virtual W2012R2 guests.
If you need three machines to connect to you can also use free windows hyper-v 2012 server, on which you can install three windows 8.1 pro virtual machines...
(I hope windows hyper-v 2012 r2 is really free, need to check)
But as I said, I don't know what you want to get in the end.
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Windows Server 2012

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