System Center 2012 Licensing

Here is a PDF that details the System Center 2012 Licensing model which has been brought in line with Server 2012 Licensing.


Microsoft System Center 2012 is a comprehensive management platform that enables you to more easily and efficiently manage your IT environments, including your server infrastructure and client devices.

With System Center 2012, you get the most cost effective and flexible platform for managing your traditional datacenters, private and public clouds, and client computers and devices.

System Center 2012 is the only unified management platform where you can manage multiple hypervisors, physical resources, and applications in a single offering, versus multiple fragmented point solutions delivered by competitors.”

Key Points
Two editions Standard and Datacenter
Processor based license which covers two processors
All components included in both versions

Windows Server 2012 Licensing Datasheet

Here is another PDF I found very useful. It provides an edition overview, licensing overview, info on CALs and how to transition to the new licensing model.

Key points

Datacenter edition for highly virtualised private cloud environments
Stanard edition for non or very small virtualised environments
Essentials edition for small businesses up to 25 users on up to two processors
Foundation edition for small businesses up to 15 users on single processors

CALs are still required for every user or device accessing a server
Consistent processor-based license

If you are an Microsoft SA customer check your entitlement as you may already have access to Server 2012!

Windows Server 2012 Licensing & Pricing FAQ

Here is a PDF file I found very useful that details the new Server 2012 licensing and pricing model for Server 2012.

Key points

Four editions:
Standard and Datacenter for medium to large enterprises wanting virtualisation technologies
Essentials and Foundation for small to medium businesses
Single License that covers two physical processors
Virtualisation rights are the only difference between editions
Standard edition allows two virtual machines to be run on two processors
Datacenter edition allows unlimited virtual machines to be run on two processors
For more than two processors another server license is required