Licensing Windows Server 2012

Jungle Camp

Transition Licensing for Migrations

Microsoft is adopting a friendly approach to customers with a Software Assurance contract. Companies that currently run the Enterprise Edition of Windows Server 2008 R2 can deploy two licenses with the Standard Edition. This licensing offer grants companies an additional Windows Server 2012 Standard edition. Customers retain the right to use an existing license of Windows Server HPC edition, Microsoft HPC Pack Enterprise, or Web Server edition.

Companies with Windows Server HPC edition and Microsoft HPC Pack Enterprise will receive Windows Server 2012 Standard at a ratio of 2:1. Companies who use Windows Server 2008 R2 can round up to the next whole number to determine their entitlements. You can install older versions, for example, Windows Server/2008 R2 with Windows Server 2012.

Overview of Windows 8 Editions

Microsoft is also changing many things in Windows 8. The editions here are Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro, and Windows 8 Enterprise. Companies who run Active Directory domains must use Pro or Enterprise. Additionally, 32-bit and 64-bit versions are still available. Only the Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro editions are available on the retail market, with Windows 8 targeting private households.

If you need functions like Windows To Go or other scenarios, you need Windows 8 Enterprise. Windows RT for tablets is also available, but this edition does not allow you to connect to Active Directory domains or support enterprise features, such as Group Policy. Windows 8 Pro inherits the features of Windows 7 Ultimate and is thus the version that contains more or less all of the features of Windows 8, except the features for large enterprises. This edition can connect to domains and boot via a virtual hard disk (VHD).

The Author

Thomas Joos is a freelance IT consultant and has been working in IT for more than 20 years. In addition to his projects he also writes hands-on books and papers on Windows and other Microsoft topics. Online you can meet him at

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