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SQL Client Access Licence requirements Expand / Collapse
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Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 5:17 AM


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LutzM (2/14/2012)

J Livingston: I'm sorry if this post looks like hijacking. It's not meant to be. I'll move it to a separate thread if required...


No problems Lutz...happy to keep it on the same thread,,,,,was going to ask something very similar...so I dont need to bother now


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Post #1252422
Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 5:59 AM


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@lutz

Your scenario 1 most certainly requires an unlimited CAL license if you cannot account for all devices. This is one of those "indirect" scenarios that should have a socket license with unlimited CALs. Microsoft is basically saying, if your application of SQL Server has no way to be counted down to individual users/services, we offer you an unlimited license. Most cases, even in small companies, that is the more cost efficient option. If you are only using SQL Server for something like MS Great Plains (I use this because I have experience) where only 3 people access it, a license that comes with the 5 CALs is appropriate.

I didn't have time to sort through your second question this morning

@Steve... The problem with contacting Microsoft is that they can only explain the EULA to the best of their knowledge, but you are typically not talking to one of their attorneys. It is a great place to start of course, but at some point you either have to take a risk that your interpretation is right (hopefully lying on the conservative side) or get a lawyer that can help. At that point, you should just buy the socket license before the lawyer sucks you dry


Thanks,

Jared
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Post #1252439
Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 2:27 PM


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Steve Jones - SSC Editor (2/14/2012)
Short answer: contact MS. Ultimately they have the final say since they can sue you for non-compliance.

Longer answer: My reading, and understanding, would be that accessing SQL Server through any means in real time is what the CAL meets. If you email a report to people, no CAL is required. I say this because there are companies that email reports to business partners from SQL Server and I'm sure they are not licensing each recipient. They might be in per-socket licensing, but I wouldn't count on that for many companies.

Creating a flat file and leaving it somewhere for people to access via SMB (file sharing), no CAL required.

IANAL


Steve...after much debate and deliberation, I think we have come to a similar conclusion as you.

We have trawled the net for ages looking for some form of guidance.
From what we have seen of MS licensing docs on this topic...a cynic could possibly construe that they are deliberately vague ............



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Post #1252751
Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 3:24 PM


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Good luck.

MS licensing can only give you an (non-legal) interpretation, which Jared mentioned. However their reading of the EULA for your case, could be legally binding either way.








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Post #1252791
Posted Wednesday, April 24, 2013 11:48 AM
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SQLKnowItAll (2/15/2012)
@lutz

Your scenario 1 most certainly requires an unlimited CAL license if you cannot account for all devices. This is one of those "indirect" scenarios that should have a socket license with unlimited CALs. Microsoft is basically saying, if your application of SQL Server has no way to be counted down to individual users/services, we offer you an unlimited license. Most cases, even in small companies, that is the more cost efficient option. If you are only using SQL Server for something like MS Great Plains (I use this because I have experience) where only 3 people access it, a license that comes with the 5 CALs is appropriate.

I didn't have time to sort through your second question this morning

@Steve... The problem with contacting Microsoft is that they can only explain the EULA to the best of their knowledge, but you are typically not talking to one of their attorneys. It is a great place to start of course, but at some point you either have to take a risk that your interpretation is right (hopefully lying on the conservative side) or get a lawyer that can help. At that point, you should just buy the socket license before the lawyer sucks you dry


Hi I believe if you send reports to external users via email you will need either a call for those user or license per processor or core,

My question now is, if we sell/charge for these reports do we need to license than via spla?

Post #1446150
Posted Wednesday, April 24, 2013 1:47 PM


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rdeheld-535532 (4/24/2013)
SQLKnowItAll (2/15/2012)
@lutz

Your scenario 1 most certainly requires an unlimited CAL license if you cannot account for all devices. This is one of those "indirect" scenarios that should have a socket license with unlimited CALs. Microsoft is basically saying, if your application of SQL Server has no way to be counted down to individual users/services, we offer you an unlimited license. Most cases, even in small companies, that is the more cost efficient option. If you are only using SQL Server for something like MS Great Plains (I use this because I have experience) where only 3 people access it, a license that comes with the 5 CALs is appropriate.

I didn't have time to sort through your second question this morning

@Steve... The problem with contacting Microsoft is that they can only explain the EULA to the best of their knowledge, but you are typically not talking to one of their attorneys. It is a great place to start of course, but at some point you either have to take a risk that your interpretation is right (hopefully lying on the conservative side) or get a lawyer that can help. At that point, you should just buy the socket license before the lawyer sucks you dry


Hi I believe if you send reports to external users via email you will need either a call for those user or license per processor or core,

My question now is, if we sell/charge for these reports do we need to license than via spla?

Not sure that emailed reports need unlimited CAL or a CAL for each report. Again, these "people" are not "users." They do not touch the server directly or indirectly through an app. They are only receiving the email. I am pretty sure that you do NOT need unlimited CALs or a cal for each recipient for that. Again, check with an attorney or MS.


Thanks,

Jared
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How to post data/code on a forum to get the best help - Jeff Moden
Post #1446214
Posted Wednesday, April 24, 2013 3:03 PM
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Yes It does require license
Read Multiplexing:

"The number of tiers of hardware or software between the SQL Server and the user or devices that ultimately use its data, services, or functionality does
not affect the number of CALs required:"

Only when some one manualy forwards the emaill containing the report, Then its not required
Post #1446241
Posted Thursday, April 25, 2013 6:02 AM


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rdeheld-535532 (4/24/2013)
Yes It does require license
Read Multiplexing:

"The number of tiers of hardware or software between the SQL Server and the user or devices that ultimately use its data, services, or functionality does
not affect the number of CALs required:"

Only when some one manualy forwards the emaill containing the report, Then its not required
That may be true, however I have seen different interpretations of this. Nevertheless, I am not an expert and cannot say for certain. My "interpretaion" based on Microsoft's example is different from yours. Their examples continue to show user1 (requires a CAL) accessing data and then emailing it to user2 (no CAL required). They do NOT ever mention the server emailing it directly to someone. My interpretation is that the server itself is doing the emailing and is acting as user1 who then emails a report to user2 (who does not require a CAL). Again, interpretation best left to people who can argue it in front of a judge.


Thanks,

Jared
SQL Know-It-All

How to post data/code on a forum to get the best help - Jeff Moden
Post #1446441
Posted Monday, April 29, 2013 2:52 AM
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If you buy your licenses via a Microsoft licensed reseller, then talk to them. Their advice should be free as part of their service to you.

They may not always give you the right advice. However, if you do take their advice and it is wrong at least you have plausible denyabilty. If your reseller is a Microsoft Gold artner then Microsoft accept full liability for any advice they give.

If you work things out for your self and this does not comply with advice given by your reseller, then do not expect much leeway when you have your Microsoft audit.


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Post #1447407
Posted Monday, April 29, 2013 4:01 AM


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rdeheld-535532 (4/24/2013)
Yes It does require license
Read Multiplexing:

"The number of tiers of hardware or software between the SQL Server and the user or devices that ultimately use its data, services, or functionality does
not affect the number of CALs required:"

Only when some one manualy forwards the emaill containing the report, Then its not required


If the emailed report is static (the data for the report is included in the report) and does not need any direct (or indirect) access to SQL Server, then it isn't multiplexing and no license is required.

If the report requires access to SQL Server to render the report, then yes the user of that report needs a license (CAL) for SQL Server.



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