Monthly Archives: March 2014

More SQL 2012 Questions…..ANSWERED

Q. “When am I supposed to report SQL core licenses?”

A. When you sign a new SPLA or you deploy SQL 2012 you will be forced to license by cores

Q. “If we leverage SQL Server Enterprise, are we able to launch multiple VM instances of database across the enterprise?”

A. SQL 2012 Enterprise allows unlimited virtual instances.  In order to this with the 2008 version you would of had to license Datacenter edition.  (way expensive btw).  SQL 2012 does allow license mobility within server farms as well.  Check out the SPUR for details.

Q. “Does SQL 2012 Enterprise edition allow for downgrade rights?  In other words, can I have 2008 SQL servers and 2012 SQL servers running virtualized on the same host?”

A. Yes, as long as you are reporting SQL 2012 cores, you can run 2008 and prior.  Keep in mind, it has to match version.  For example, if you license Standard, you cannot run Enterprise.  If you license Enterprise, you can run Enterprise or Standard. 

Q. Can I just license the virtual, not the physical machine?

Yes. SQL does allow you to license just the virtual machines.  You would report the number of cores you assign to the server. (minimum of 4 cores). 

Q.  Can I license SQL Enterprise by user?

A.  No. Unfortunately SQL Enterprise can only be licensed by core.  SQL Standard and SQL Business Intelligence SKU can be licensed by user.




Posted by on March 27, 2014 in Uncategorized


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If I received a dollar for every time I’m asked this question you and I can both retire!  Things are changing in the world of data center outsourcing, but for some reason this is still stuck in the mud.  Why no VDI today?

1) I have no idea

2) See answer 1

I wrote about this topic earlier, but my hunch is it has something to do with the OEM manufactures.  OEM is a big piece of Microsoft business, and they protect it.  (Although Surface kind of muddies that theory).  As an example of this, if you were to “lease” a desktop to an end customer, you would first need a OEM license pre-installed and use SPLA and/or volume licensing as an upgrade license.  So even under a rented desktop model, OEM is still a requirement.  If everyone used VDI and dummy terminals – OEM manufactures would be left out of the game.  (at least in volume)

The only thing that would change this model is if they received a very high number of requests to offer this through Azure.  Look at what happened with Remote Desktop Services (RDS).  RDS was never part of license mobility.  Azure comes along and before you know it- RDS has mobility rights! Check it out here

That being said, Microsoft can make the rules of their own game, and even know Microsoft can do it does not mean the service provider/partner community can do it.  Office 365 is a prime example of this.  Under O365, you can take Office and install it on up to 5 PCs. Try that under SPLA and you have to license every PC with a separate Office license, use Windows 7/8 upgrade license, have a OEM on the machine that you own, and sign a rental addendum.  That’s why I wrote “office needs mobility rights”

One new capability in the latest SPLA agreement is you can install software on customer owned hardware.  BUT guess what?  That does not apply to PCs.

I’m not sure if this will ever change.  Every conference that I’ve attended the past 10 years partners ask the same question – “Can I provide VDI under SPLA?” I don’t like the word “no” but unfortunately, the answer is “no.”

Would love to hear about your thoughts on the topic.  Have you tried Windows server and RDS as an alternative?  What about dedicated environments for VDI?

Thanks for reading,



Posted by on March 26, 2014 in VDI


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New VMWare Products for VSPP

VMware announced March 20th a new product lineup for the VSPP program.  You can read the full article here.  You can also check out the product use rights

Here’s what’s new (courtesy of VMware)

  • vCloud Automation Center — vCloud Automation Center gives your business the agility it needs with the control your IT requires thanks to a flexible solution automating the delivery of IT services.
  • vCenter Operations Management Suite — vCenter Operations Management Suite automates operations management with its patented analytics, working alongside an integrated approach to performance, capacity and configuration management.
  • vCenter Log Insight — vCenter Log Insight delivers automated log management through aggregation, analytics and search while providing operational intelligence and enterprise-wide visibility in dynamic hybrid cloud environments.
  • IT Business Management — IT Business Management Suite gives CIOs the transparency they need to make the right decisions when transforming, and aligning, IT with the business.
  • vSphere Data Protection Advanced — vSphere Data Protection Advanced is a fast, reliable backup and recovery solution featuring built-in backup data replication for virtual machines and mission-critical applications within a simple, integrated management system.
  • Horizon DaaS Platform — Designed for Service Providers, the new Horizon DaaS Platform delivers Windows desktops and applications as a cloud service to any user, anywhere on any device.

You can reach out to to learn more!



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Posted by on March 21, 2014 in VM Ware VSPP


Hosting Summit Recap

Here are a few highlights and announcements from this year’s hosting summit.

Thanks for reading!


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Posted by on March 21, 2014 in In My Opinion


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New April 2014 SPUR

Check it out –


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Posted by on March 3, 2014 in Uncategorized


Don’t be Dave – Hosting SharePoint 2013

I wrote an earlier blog post about the generalities of SharePoint (you can check it out here)  but thought I would review further by providing an example. Here’s a fictitious story about SharePoint, and why I think there is so much confusion.

Dave worked for an insurance software company XYZ. They were in a pickle to say the least.  His focus was developing software, not licensing it.  He used a SharePoint site to host a line of business application that he charged a fee for customers to consume.  I will save you the details of the application, but hopefully you will get my point.

This application went out to the insurance broker community as well as the broker’s customers.  That being said, not all the information accessed was the same.  Every broker (non employees of the insurance software company; not affiliated in any way) had access to their own unique information through their own credentials.  Every end customer (the broker’s customer) had access to their own individual information as well. Dave decided that the number of users would be in the thousands, surely a processor based license would do the trick.

He went ahead and used SPLA because he knew his company was hosting and providing a commercial service. (he also read page 9 of the PUR for volume licensing “prohibit commercial hosting”) For two years he licensed by processor that covered all the users.  Secondly, he never reported SQL. SQL is not being accessed directly, just used to collect the data. He also licensed Windows via SPLA.

One day Dave stumbled upon my blog.  After doing a little research, he found a blurb “need a SPLA license for direct or indirect access.”  He wondered if SQL would be considered “indirect.”  While contemplating whether he should have licensed SQL, he thought of his solution in its entirety. If he removed the SQL server from SharePoint, would it still work? Of course it wouldn’t, which is why he needed a SQL SPLA license too. Now his heart was really pumping. Dave almost had a stroke. Then one night he was having a difficult time sleeping, and decided to check out the SPUR. After all, the SPUR surely would put him to sleep pretty quickly!  Before his tired eyes closed for the night he happened to read “Hosting SharePoint 2013.”  Curious what this was all about, he poured a cup of coffee and sat down only to find what he was doing was completely wrong.  Here’s the blurb he read aloud, waking not only his dog, but his wife as well.  Ouch.

All content, information, and applications accessible by internal users must also be accessible to external users. Access to servers that provide content, information, and applications that are limited to internal users, must be licensed under SharePoint Server 2013 SALs. “External users” means users that are not either (i) your customer’s employees, or (ii) your customer’s onsite contractors or agents. All other users are “internal users.”

The first sentence almost put him over the edge “ALL content, information, and applications by internal must also be accessible to external” He called SPLA 911 and got help.  He owed two years of SQL and SharePoint user licenses, not processor.  Why?  All content was different for each individual user.  No content was the same; user license would apply.  If the company had a public site with the same information, and everyone sees the same thing, he could have used the processor license to cover everything.

Poor Dave…he lost his job, his company owed thousands of dollars in underreported licenses, and his dog and wife were still upset with him from waking them up in the middle of the night.

Moral of the story –

1. Service Providers (and resellers) get mixed up by the definition of “external user.” External user under SPLA is not your customer, but your customer’s customer. (the end customer). All information must be accessible by the external user and your customer. SPLA is not always the same as volume licensing.

2. Never…under any circumstance…wake your wife up in the middle of the night.

Don’t be Dave…

Thanks for reading,



Posted by on March 2, 2014 in SharePoint



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