Is this the correct amount of licenses for Server 2016 and SQL 2017?

tom_szabo
tom_szabo used Ask the Experts™
on
Ok so I want to be sure that this is correct.

So the setup is going to be a Windows 2016 Standard VM assigned with 4 Cores running SQL 2017 Standard

So if I buy a Server 2016 Standard ($882) then purchase 30 CALS for it, then buy 2x SQL 2017 Standard 2 Core packs (so 4 Cores total licensed)

Then I can have 30 users access the SQL server and be in compliance with Microsoft licensing?
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Tarik M. ZwainIndependent IT and Microsoft Specialist

Commented:
I believe you are overdoing it a bit.  After reading this:
Standard
Limited to lesser of 4 sockets or 24 cores
from the MS page - Editions and supported features of SQL Server 2017
it looks like you only need to purchase one SQL Server license instead of two.
Russ SuterSenior Software Developer

Commented:
You don't need to buy CALs AND core licenses. SQL Server is licensed either by CAL or by core.

Author

Commented:
You don't need to buy CALs AND core licenses. SQL Server is licensed either by CAL or by core.

The CALS are for Server 2016, as I understand, you require a CAL for every user connecting to the server, then you need will need an aditional SQL CAL for each user connecting to the SQL database on that same Server. But in this case it was cheaper to go for core based licensing on SQL rather than SQL CALS.

Or do I have this completely wrong?
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Joseph HornseyPresident and Janitor

Commented:
Tom,

Actually, I think you've got it right.  You have to worry about two licenses here.  One for Windows Server and one for SQL Server.

On the Windows Server side, you need a license for the Server OS itself, and you need CALs for the users or devices.  Keep in mind that you can also look into Windows Server 2016 Essentials if you have less than 50 users accessing the server.  You're limited to a single OSE (Operating System Environment), so you can either have a VM or run the physical server itself as the SQL server.

For the SQL Server, you're right about that, too.  You can either purchase the server license and CALs or you can purchase the cores.  The core licenses are sold in 2-packs and you have to cover all of your cores.

Licensing guide for Windows Server - https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/cloud-platform/windows-server-pricing.
Licensing guide for SQL Server -  https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/sql-server/sql-server-2017-pricing.

Let me know what you think.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
What you've not stated is HOW MANY CORES in the Physical Host, because all CORES in the HOST must be licensed!

So how many cores and processors in the HOST server ?
ste5anSenior Developer

Commented:
Important question: What is the use-case scenario for this server?

If it is only for hosting SQL Server, then you either need SQL Server CAL's or SQL Server Core licenses. And imho you need only to license virtual cores. Not physical one.

Author

Commented:
Well this thread really goes to show how vauge and misleading Microsoft licensing rules are, everyone seems to have interpretted the rules differently...
Joseph HornseyPresident and Janitor

Commented:
It's not that bad, LOL.  There are just multiple scenarios.

The links I sent are correct.  The question is, how are you using your server?
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
@Tom,

you've still not answered....


What you've not stated is HOW MANY CORES in the Physical Host, because all CORES in the HOST must be licensed!

So how many cores and processors in the HOST server ?
ste5anSenior Developer

Commented:
@Andrew: Sure? Cause this is the actual cheat sheet; and also what our local dealer says:

SQL Server 2017  Licensing Datasheet

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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
So the setup is going to be a Windows 2016 Standard VM assigned with 4 Cores running SQL 2017 Standard

It states Windows 2016 VM..... so it's a virtual machine on a Host... what is the host and and how many cores and processors ?

Licenses required are Windows OS and SQL ?

I'm referring to Windows OS licenses ? from what I've read above nobody seems to have mentioned ALL Cores in Host MUST be licensed for Windows 2016

*All physical cores on the server must be licensed, subject to a minimum of 8 core licenses per physical processor and a minimum of 16 core licenses per server.

Source
https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/licensing/product-licensing/windows-server-2016.aspx

Author

Commented:
Ok so we got another quote for the licenses and we have decided to go with CALS for both Server and SQL.

So:
2016 Server Standard + 30 CALS
2017 SQL Standard + 30 CALS

This should take the "Cores" out of the equation I assume?

The physical host has 16 real cores, but we will still only assign proboubly 4 or 8 cores to this VM.
Independent IT and Microsoft Specialist
Commented:
Just make sure the OS part of the quote is for 8 x 2-core packs of licenses to cover all cores.  As the other contributors have pointed out, as well as the excerpt below, Microsoft's 2016 license model requires that all cores per physical server must be licensed (with a minimum of 16), which will provide you with up to two VM licenses, and you'll need to build only one virtual server for your SQL installation.

Excerpt from Microsoft's Server 2016 licensing datasheet WS2016LicensingDatasheet.pdf:

Windows Server 2016 licensing model

The business model for Standard and Datacenter editions transitioned from
processor-based to core-based licensing in October 2016 with the general
availability of Windows Server 2016 (all other editions of Windows Server 2016
continue to be on the processor-based licensing model). Core-based licensing
provides a more consistent licensing metric across environments, enabling multicloud
environments, improving workload portability for Windows Server through
benefits like Azure Hybrid Benefit, and helping remove friction across different
licensing models.

Customers with Software Assurance will transition to core-based licensing at their
first renewal after the general availability of Windows Server 2016, although they
can deploy Windows Server 2016 at any time.

The Windows Server 2016 licensing model includes both Cores + Client Access
Licenses (CALs). Each user and/or device accessing a licensed Windows Server
Standard, Datacenter, or Multipoint edition requires a Windows Server CAL or
Windows Server and Remote Desktop Services CAL. A Windows Server CAL gives
a user or device the right to access any edition of Windows Server of the same
or earlier version. Each Window Server CAL allows access to multiple licenses of
Windows Server.

Edition Licensing model CAL requirements
Datacenter Core-based* Windows Server CAL**
Standard Core-based* Windows Server CAL**
Essentials Specialty server No CAL required

** All physical cores on the server must be licensed, subject to a minimum of 8 core licenses per physical
processor and a minimum of 16 core licenses per server.

** CALs are required for every user or device accessing a server. See the Product Terms for details.
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter: Core-based licensing

Core-based licensing requires all physical cores in the server to be licensed.

Servers are licensed based on the number of processor cores in the physical server.

• A minimum of 8 core licenses is required for each physical processor and a
minimum of 16 core licenses is required for each server.

• Core licenses are sold in packs of two.*

• Standard Edition provides rights for up to 2 Operating System Environments or
Windows Servers containers with Hyper-V isolation when all physical cores in
the server are licensed. For each additional 1 or 2 VMs, all the physical cores
in the server must be licensed again.

• The price of a set of 16 core licenses (for a 2-processor server) for Windows
Server 2016 Datacenter and Standard editions is the same price** as the
2-processor license of the corresponding edition of Windows Server 2012 R2.

** 8 two-core packs will be the minimum required to license each physical server. The two-core pack for
each edition is 1/8th the price of a license for a 2-processor server for corresponding Windows Server
2012 R2 editions.
 
** Rounding may result in slight variations in the final price of eight 2-pack core SKUs relative to the price
of one Windows Server 2012 R2 processor SKU.

Author

Commented:
So the quote is as follows

1x      MW 228-11135      SQL Server 2017 - STANDARD Ed License (Requires CALs)
35x      MW 359-06557      SQL Server 2017 - CAL - USER
               
1x      MW 9EM-00118      Windows Server STANDARD Ed 2016 (Core Lic)OLP 16L NO LEVEL CORE
35x      MW R18-05123      Windows Server CAL 2016 (OLP) USER CAL

The server license 9EM-00118 seems to cover 16 cores, so should be all good then?
Tarik M. ZwainIndependent IT and Microsoft Specialist

Commented:
Yes, that looks correct.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
If you have a single processor with 16 Cores, then the following is needed...

1 x Base License Required - Windows Server® 2016 Standard (16 core)

Which is correct, which entitles you to run up to a maximum of 2 VMs.

Author

Commented:
Thanks

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