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Multiple SQL Standard Instances on 4 Processor/32-core Server Expand / Collapse
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Posted Tuesday, July 2, 2013 4:27 AM
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We have a large 4 processor/32-core server with 192GB of memory available in the data center and over twenty small SQL Standard databases to consolidate. They are a mix of SQL 2012 and 2008 R2 for 3rd-party apps.

Is there any issue with simply installing two instances of SQL Standard on the server - one for 2012 and one for 2008 R2 ? Each instance will use up to 64GB out of the 192GB and 16 cores. If we did this with Enterprise, the licensing would be a fortune and the Enterprise features are not needed.

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Posted Tuesday, July 2, 2013 4:51 AM


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Assuming you're talking about running on physical infrastructure on the same host, I'm fairly sure you'd need to license all of the physical cores on the box for Enterprise Edition regardless.

Processor affinity has nothing to do with licensing requirements. You'd need to virtualise the environment and assign virtual cores to two different hosts in order to license them individually.
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Posted Tuesday, July 2, 2013 4:56 AM


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Sorry, re-reading, I think I slightly misunderstood. You may be able to fully license the server for SQL 2012 Standard Edition (32 cores) and run both 2012 Standard Edition and 2008 R2 Standard Edition on the same box.

You just can't mix Standard and Enterprise Edition on the same host without fully licensing for Enterprise Edition.
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Posted Tuesday, July 2, 2013 5:04 AM
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Thanks. If SQL Standard is installed on a 32-core server, how exactly does SQL Standard limit itself to 16 cores ? I am wondering if there would be any performance or other issues in running two instances of Standard side by side considering they are doing something to limit themselves to a certain number of cores.

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Posted Tuesday, July 2, 2013 5:15 AM


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tharwood 94756 (7/2/2013)
Thanks. If SQL Standard is installed on a 32-core server, how exactly does SQL Standard limit itself to 16 cores ? I am wondering if there would be any performance or other issues in running two instances of Standard side by side considering they are doing something to limit themselves to a certain number of cores.



SQL Standard Edition will only ever use 16 cores per instance (and it does physically limit it), but you can run as many instances as you want, as long as you've licensed them.


You can set processor affinity for each instance to a different 16 cores each (e.g. 0-15 for Instance1 and 16-31 for Instance2), so they're not contending for the same CPU threads. AFAIK, there are no particular performance issues with doing this, assuming all your shared resources are not in contention (Disk, Network etc.).
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