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Server 2016 licensing

Posted on 2016-10-12
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Last Modified: 2016-12-09
I have to admit that I am totally confused about the per core licensing of server 2016 - maybe with your help based on real life example I will be able to understand it - so here it is:

1.  I have a a physical server with two six core processors - how many Server 2016 standard licenses I need to purchase for it.
2.  In the past I was able to install server OS on the physical box and install Hyper-V role and then use the same license for one VM - how does it work now?
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Question by:pyotrek
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Maclean earned 251 total points
ID: 41841206
Got this explanation straight from Microsoft when asking the same thing today.

Attached is a processor to core calculator for Win Svr 2016 which highlights how many core licenses are needed for a Windows Server 2016 when moving from Windows Server 2012/2012 R2.

Example scenario for calculator:
Customer ABC has a Standard Edition license for 2 processors with 4 cores per processor. How will the Licensing and pricing from processor to core change for customer ABC?
•      Since a minimum of 8 cores are required to be licensed for each physical processor in the server, and a minimum of 16 cores are required to be licensed for each server regardless of the number of processors, in this scenario customer ABC will require eight 2- core packs
•      There will be no price change from Standard Edition of the Windows Server 2012 R2 version.

There will also be No change in the rights for up to 2 OSE's or Hyper-V containers when all physical cores in the server are licensed. Multiple licenses can be assigned to the same cores for additional OSE's or Hyper-V containers.

Cores-Example
Based on your info, and the sheet's calculation attached, you need 8x 2 core license packs for 2016.
Windows-Server-2016-Core-Transition.xlsx
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by:pyotrek
ID: 41841213
OK - great - so for physical server with 2 processors 6 cores each - I will still need 16 core license (8x2core) as this is minimal requirement.
Going further - if I had a server with 4 processors 4 cores each - same licensing would apply.

Am I correct on the above?

The part that I do not get is If I am still entitled to install VM with server 2016 OS on the same server (configured as Hyper-V)
From the Microsoft answer above - I understand that I could install 2 VM's ("rights for up to 2 OSE's") with Server 2016 as OS
Is that correct?
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Assisted Solution

by:Cliff Galiher
Cliff Galiher earned 83 total points
ID: 41841217
First, the disclaimer: No licensing advice given by anyone here is legally binding. If you follow bad advice, the "I read it on the internet" advice won't get you out of the "get legal" fines the BSA tends to level on copyright infringing businesses. So you should always work with a qualified/certified licensing partner.

With that said, here is the official Microsoft licensing guide.

http://download.microsoft.com/download/7/2/9/7290EA05-DC56-4BED-9400-138C5701F174/WS2016LicensingDatasheet.pdf

8 2-core packs (the minimum possible) will cover your 12 cores, and hyper-v lice sing remains the same as 2012 R2. Choose between standard and datacenter based on the number of vm's you'll run.
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Assisted Solution

by:Lee W, MVP
Lee W, MVP earned 83 total points
ID: 41841219
Going further - if I had a server with 4 processors 4 cores each - same licensing would apply.

Am I correct on the above?


No.  As I understand it (and I feel rather confident in this though I'll add my own disclaimer below), think of it like this: you get 2 processors of UP TO 8 cores each.  Hyperthreading doesn't matter.  If you have 4 Processors, then you need TWO Server licenses (just as you did with 2012).

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.
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by:Maclean
ID: 41841222
When typing in 2 Physical processors & 6 physical cores, it shows 8x 2 core license packs required.
When typing in 4 physical processors with 4 physical cores, it shows 16x 2 core license packs required.
The logic surpasses me right now, so I am going to check this with our licensing expert. But at least the sheet shows you what is required. (Just not why)

The VMWare one I already asked about. Will post as soon as I hear back.
If others explain before me, then I'll compare that info with what I am getting.
It is coming from Microsoft btw. But how could I proof that haha :)
So yes, I guess there should be a disclaimer telling you to double check with your distributor.
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by:pyotrek
ID: 41841245
First of all thank you all guys for your responses.

So it seems to be as follows:
- 2 physical processors up to 8 cores each requires 8x2 core license,
- 4 physical processors up to 8 cores each requires 16x2 core license.

I think previous Macleans post confirms it, and thank you for attaching that calculator sheet.

Cliff Galiher says that the VM rights remain the same as they were in Server 2012 R2. That would mean that I can install up to 2 VM's (MS call's it OSE's with server 2016 Standard as their OS, any extra would need separate license. The Calculator Sheet attached by Macleans also calculates that. Another VM would require separate 2x8core license (but It would allow you to install up to 2 more VM's)

I think above sounds right.
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Assisted Solution

by:oBdA
oBdA earned 83 total points
ID: 41841454
The logic for the "4x4" is not that complicated:
"a minimum of 8 cores are required to be licensed for each physical processor in the server"
So 4 physical processors result in a minimum of 4*8=32 cores to be licensed.

For people who don't want to or can't use Excel, the required number of 2-core pack licenses can be calculated like this in Powershell:
[math]::Max(16, ($CPUs * ([math]::Max(8, $CoresPerCPU)))) / 2

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Based on this information from the licensing data sheet Cliff posted:
* A minimum of 16 core licenses is required for each server.
* A minimum of 8 core licenses is required for each physical processor.
* Core licenses will be sold in packs of two.

The usual disclaimer applies: "Powershell said so" is obviously not legally binding.
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by:pyotrek
ID: 41842424
Thank you for the explanations
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Author Closing Comment

by:pyotrek
ID: 41842425
Thank you
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Expert Comment

by:Akash Bansal
ID: 41874068
If I install Windows 2016 std with Hyper V service on physical server with Desktop experience & install two Windows server standard instance in virtual mode on it. Assuming quad core single socket processor.

What license I need.

I guess I would be needing: 8 nos of ( 2 Core Licences) that is 16 core license.
Please correct me if I am wrong.
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Expert Comment

by:Maclean
ID: 41876319
8 as far as I am aware. But always double check with your distributor. You don't want to be caught shorthanded during an audit.
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