Window server 2016 License

YaYangTeah
YaYangTeah used Ask the Experts™
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We would like to buy new server for our application but not too sure how the license works

OS:window server 2016 standard
Processor : 2 x 16(cores)
VM Host :Window server 2016
VM guest: 4 x window server 2016
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Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
Never take forum advice when it comes to licensing. Never.

Call Microsoft.

"I got this advice from the internet" is never going to get you out of trouble in an audit. And audits happen regularly.

2016 is licensed per core and you buy "core packs." with those processors and that many VMs, you'll be buying a quite a few.  32*2-core packs by my math. But that's napkin math at best and not meant to replace a call into MS.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
How many processors and cores in your host server ? (new physical server)

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Commented:
we have 2 processor and each processor is 16 cores.
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Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
Its core based licensing
Do not count hyper threaded cores, to fully license windows server 2016 you need to license all physical cores
count actual cores, so I believe each processor has 8 cores so it would be 16 cores for two processors, in that case to fully license windows server 2016, you need 2 cores x 8 standard licenses as licenses comes in pack of 2 cores
If each processor has 16 cores, then it will be total 32 cores for two processors and then you need 2 cores x 16 licenses to fully license the server
U can find actual cores in task manager performance tab \ CPU
2016 standard server full license allows you to run 2 VMs free, to run next 2 VMs, you need to license all physical cores again
If you really have 32 cores (64 logical processors along with 2 physical CPUs), contact Microsoft to clarify
WS2016LicensingDatasheet.pdf
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017
Commented:
If you have a Dual Processor Host and each Processor has 16 Cores.

This is what you need to purchase

A Total of 32 cores need to be licensed

1 x Windows Server® 2016 Standard (16 core) Base License
1 x Windows Server® 2016 Standard Additional License APOS (16 core)

2 VM's are included when all cores are licensed

You need an additonal 2 VMs

Additional cores required to license additional VM's      32 additional cores need to be licensed

2 x Windows Server® 2016 Standard Additional License APOS (16 core)      Additional Core Licenses

So in Summary you need to purchase

1 x Windows Server® 2016 Standard (16 core) Base License
1 x Windows Server® 2016 Standard Additional License APOS (16 core)
2 x Windows Server® 2016 Standard Additional License APOS (16 core)      Additional Core Licenses

You can check that with Microsoft.
MaheshArchitect
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
@Andrew:

as per attached PDF file from Microsoft, they are saying, we need to license all physical cores on server again if we need to run additional VMs apart from 2 free VMs with base license

If base license need 2 cores x 16 licenses since we have 32 CPU cores, do we need to invest again 2 cores x 16 licenses for next two VMs
OR
ifs fine if we simply get 2 cores x 8 licenses over base licenses to run another 2 instance of VMs?

The question is servers having two physical CPUs with 8 cores each (total 16 cores) would only need 2 cores x 16 licenses to run 4 VMs as opposed to above?
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017

Commented:
My calculations above are based on the OPS

we have 2 processor and each processor is 16 cores.

      Total of 32 cores need to be licensed (this gives you 2 VMs).

2 VMs needs another 32 cores to be licensed.
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
Andrew's math basically comes up emaa mine did in my first comment. 32*2-core, due to the additional VMs.
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process Advisor
Most Valuable Expert 2013

Commented:
One server with 2 processors, each with 16 cores, requires 16x2core packs = 32 cores.  For ONE license which provides TWO VMs.  If you want 4 VMs, then you need to DOUBLE that.  32x2core packs (Volume doesn't have a basic SKU for a license, 8 2xcore packs = 1 Full Server License.

If you only need 4 VMs, you probably over-provisioned the server.  Odds are, especially since all VMs should START with no more than 2 vCPU, a single 16 core processor would have been sufficient.  I'm not familiar with the requirements of pulling the processor, but if you can and if you do, you can probably save yourself close to $2000.

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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.  (For example, at least one major nation's laws allow OEM licenses to be transferred to new hardware). "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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