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Windows Server Datacenter Licenses applied to non-host installations of Standard

We are seeing Windows Server Datacenter licenses (created using a Microsoft SKU) being applied to physical non-host servers that have a Windows Server Standard Operating System.

We believe this is due to the down-edition rights of the Datacenter license being set to 'Any edition'. If we remove this down-edition right, then we see the Datacenter license not being applied to physical hosts with virtual guests with Standard installed.

Another solution we've considered is setting the down-edition rights to 'none' then adding Windows Server Standard as a secondary application. We've not had success there either.

Is there a way to restrict Windows Server Datacenter license to only apply to 'VM Hosts' and 'Virtual machines'? We would remove 'Computers' as a possible 'Inventory Device Type.'

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3 Replies
Flexera Alumni

One way to address this scenario is to "Allocate" your bare metal/physical servers that are running Windows Server Standard to your Windows Server Standard license.  By doing this allocation, they will not be consumed against your Datacenter license.

That would require us to manually allocate hundreds of machines and keep it up over time as new machines come in.

If we're supposed to put in that level of manual effort, we might as well export all of the inventory data, calculate a compliance position in Excel, and enter the compliance position as a single number.

Is there no logic built into the PURL that says "only apply Datacenter licenses to physical non-host servers when Datacenter installed"? Or even an option to only apply Datacenter licenses to hosts?

Agreed, manual allocations are no viable option in large environments.

If you're running FNMS on-prem, you can create a Business Import to make that allocation in regular intervals. That should technically also be possible in FNMS Cloud / Flexera One, but it is more complicated.

Softline Group is Europe's leading independent expert in Software Asset Management.