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New RoadMap and Licensing Windows Server 2016

12/26/2016

After the release of Windows Server 2016 received several questions about the future (roadmap) and the Windows Server licensing.

New Life cycle for Windows Server

As an example, the Windows 10 was released on build 1511, upgraded to 1606 and other builds are already available for those who are part of the program Windows Insider.

The same concept will be adopted with Windows Server, which guaranteed 10 years of useful life with updates, but with two options:

  1. Windows Server 2016 Desktop Experience (installation pradrão) and Server Core – in this version the lifetime will be of 10 years. This model is the same 10 Windows called LTSB (Long Term Service Branch).
  2. Windows Server Nano -in this version the lifetime is 10 years and the updates are for build and Windows 10. This model of updates is called CBB (Current Branch for Business) and complies with the “Modern Lifecycle Policy”.

Reference: https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/windowsserver/2016/07/12/windows-server-2016-new-current-branch-for-business-servicing-option/ and https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/lifecycle/search?alpha=windows%20server%202016

We will better understand what it means and how it is different from the current model.

In Windows 2012 new features were always added in R2 and Service Packs, IE, it was necessary to wait up to two years to get the new features of the OS.

For installations of Windows Server 2016 Full and Server Core updates will be sent for update rollups, like a Service Pack. The most current for Windows 10 and Windows 2016 is the Anniversary Update. New features will be sent along with these packages.

In the Windows Server 2016 Nano updates carry new features, namely a new feature released in Windows will be sent to the servers as an optional package of 3 to 4 times a year. There is no need to wait for the update rollup to have access to new features.

In short, we have a Windows updated for 10 years. If you use the Full version will need to wait for the annual cumulative updates for new features. If you use the Nano version can access very quickly when new features stay available.

Licensing

Already known in SQL Server licensing for 2012 CORE becomes the default for Windows Server.

The change has a very simple reason, the number of processors (sockets) to a low and medium profile (e.g. Xeon E3 and E4) began to slow and the number of CORE (stacking) increase with the increased miniaturization of components.

In times past it was common for a machine to 4 Sockets (processors) each with 4 or 8 CORE. Today is much more common 2 Sockets and 48 machines. For example, the Xeon E5-2650 has 10 CORE and the E7-8890 has 24 CORE.

Based on that, manufacturers are changing the charging SOCKET for CORE and imposing a minimum CORE for each server.

To better understand how if earning before a server and what now, taking into account that each license is purchased for 2 or 2 CORE Processors:

SO Procs COREs Total Licensing Licenses Needed
W2012R2 1 2 PROC 1 license 2 Socket(Proc)
W2012R2 1 10 PROC 1 license 2 Socket(Proc)
W2012R2 2 8 PROC 1 license 2 Socket(Proc)
W2012R2 3 24 PROC 2 license 2 Socket(Proc)
W2016 1 2 CORE 8 license 2 CORE (Minimum)
W2016 1 10 CORE 8 license 2 CORE (Minimum)
W2016 2 8 CORE 8 license 2 CORE (Minimum)
W2016 3 24 CORE 12 license 2 CORE

That is, all the physical servers that you have will need to be licensed to at least 16 CORE even if he only has 4 CORE (Xeon E2).

But don’t be alarmed, the value that it paid for a 2-processor license is equivalent to that paid by 8 2 CORE licenses. That is, financially for common servers there will be no difference.

And how are the licenses that already own per processor?

This is the most common question and the answer is simple: for each current license of 2 processors/Socket (Lic2Proc) Microsoft will automatically convert and consider how 8 CORE licenses (Lic2CORE).

But what if I currently have a server with 2 processors and CORE 24, I’m going to have to buy 8 CORE (2 Lic2CORE licenses)?

In this case it is important that you run a SAM (Software Asset Management) before renewing your contract or immediately before changing your server to document that there was this situation.

Once SAM filed and documented, you can count on the 24 CORE licenses on another server, but require attention:

  1. Currently own a 24 CORE server and buy another of 36 CORE: Need to buy 6 licenses (Lic2CORE) to complement
  2. I buy two new servers with 12 CORE each: You will not be able to “break” the 12 licenses, as they are converted to a server and not independent licenses
CONCLUSION

Run a SAM immediately to document the situation of your current servers.

Remember, you only need to pay if you don’t document!!

For further reading and conversion examples, download the licensing document: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/licensing/product-licensing/windows-server-2016.aspx#tab=2

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