Top Reporting Errors

26 Sep

Here’s a list of common mistakes service providers make when reporting SPLA.  Don’t say we didn’t warn you!

  1. Reporting only (1) 2 core pack (must report a minimum of 4 cores)
  2. Office without RDS
  3. CRM without SQL
  4. SharePoint without SQL
  5. Reporting SharePoint Enterprise without reporting Standard
  6. Miss combination of Windows and SQL
  7. Agreement without Windows Server
  8. Reporting SQL processors on a recently signed agreement
  9. Using SQL Web to support a line of business application
  10. Reporting less than $100 on a recently signed agreement.

I understand there are many more, but this is a list you can control month end and month out.  More difficult licensing errors to correct include: hosting SPLA on servers that are also consumed internally; installing SPLA software on hardware you don’t control or have access; and using System Center to manage both internal and external facing applications.

Correct it now before it’s too late.

Thanks for reading,



Posted by on September 26, 2014 in Compliance


7 responses to “Top Reporting Errors

  1. Richard Maynard

    September 26, 2014 at 1:31 pm

    Point 1 has spoiled my day!

  2. Evan Ross

    September 29, 2014 at 11:49 am

    Hi Brett,

    We are running a SaaS app in a shared model on Azure IaaS. We are currently using SQL BI Edition via SPLA and we are paying for Windows via our Azure EA. As we expand our offering, we are planning on switching from SQL BI Edition from SPLA to SQL Enterprise via EA and adding SharePoint via SPLA. Is this going to get us into hot water in regards to point 4? My reading of the SPUR shows it should be fine.



    • splaman

      October 21, 2014 at 8:14 am

      Hi Evan,

      Sorry for the delayed response. I don’t “think” this is applicable and here’s why:
      When you use your own VL licenses it is for your own internal consumption – not for third party access; thus, the reason for SPLA. There is a self hosted option but SharePoint does not qualify for Self Hosted. Page 35 of the PUR reads “Self-Hosting of Applications Allowed: No”

      I will confirm the above, there seems to be a lot of moving parts as of late with Datacenter Outsourcing. If I was a betting man, I would say I am correct. Stay tuned.

  3. Nathaniel

    December 14, 2014 at 7:43 am

    Hi SPLAman aka Brett,

    Sorry for commenting on an old post, I just came across your blog today. It has been helpful in answering some of my questions, but I have some about licensing Office and RDS.

    1) What if you have a server (e.g. back of house) that doesn’t have any users logging in (other than the system administrators). Would you still need an RDS CALs for this server?

    2) Could you setup a RDS license server for the client so they have a single RDS licensing system for the users across all machines.
    – Example: 2 RDS servers (no office installed), 3 with office + RDS; 80 users; say 25% use all the RDS servers all the others use a single RDS server.
    – From what I understand of the VL model, if userA has a RDS CAL (user based CAL) attached to them they can log onto all the servers at once.
    – How would I as a service provider offer something like this to the end user? Or would the end user have to pay for 160 RDS CALs?

    3) Can you have more RDS CALs than you have Office licenses (E.g. in the example above where you have a server with no office but with RDS enabled)?

    • splaman

      December 15, 2014 at 8:45 pm

      Thank you for reading.

      1. You can have up to 20 users per datacenter to provide maintenance. These users would not need to be reported.

      2. RDS is licensed by user – which means 1 users can access multiple servers. If you wanted to offering something similar, you would have to report/license each user that HAS access to the software. Is that what you are asking?

      3. Yes, you can have more RDS users than Office. You can’t (in most cases anyways) have more Office licenses than RDS.

      • Nathaniel

        December 15, 2014 at 10:27 pm


        Thanks for your answers. Maybe a picture might help with clarifying my questions. The picture ( is a sample network map for a hypothetical client of mine that uses O365 for their email.

        * Helpdesk <– this is a server that runs the helpdesk software and some scripts that obtain license information for the client and emails them out (the script itself requires Excel, no other application on the server needs Office). No one logs into the server except for maintenance purposes
        * Lic Srv #1 <– This server would act as a central licensing server for all their software (E.g. Remote Desktop Services).
        * RDS #1-2 <– These 2 publish an application that doesn't require Office and Office is not installed on the 2 servers
        * RDS #3-5 <– These 3 publish applications including the installed Office
        * All the other servers are your standard windows servers

        So for the questions & responses

        1) The "helpdesk" server, would it be okay to use SPLA to license this server for 1 Office installation even although no user will be directly or indirectly (except through an email that is mailed to the helpdesk system)?

        2) This one more relies on if we have 6 users (A through to F), and user A accesses all 5 RDS, while B to F only ever access their assigned server. Do I need to purchase 6 licenses (1 for each user) or 10 (2 for each server)?

        3) Awesome

        4) How do these support users work?

        5) (Just thought of this one). Do you need Windows CALs when you deploy a Windows SPLA installation (like a traditional VL/Retail version)?

      • splaman

        December 16, 2014 at 6:39 am

        Hi Nathaniel,

        Please email me at and I can answer your questions.


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