Microsoft SBS 2011 Licensing Changes

Microsoft have now released the new version of Small Business Server, SBS 2011 and as well as product improvements, they’ve also made some changes to the licensing.

In SBS 2008, you chose either SBS Standard OR SBS Premium and then purchased Standard CALs AND Premium CALs (for those users accessing the extra features).

However, with SBS 2011 even the server licences have a layered licensing model. This means you purchase:

  • SBS 2011 Std

and then, if you need the Premium functionality of a 2nd Windows Server and SQL, you must purchase ON TOP of the standard licence:

  • SBS 2011 Premium Add-on.

This is quite a change and one which was not communicated very well at all.


They have also introduced a new edition:

  • SBS 2011 Essentials

“a new, easy-to-use, first-server solution designed and priced especially for small businesses (up to 25 users) that can seamlessly integrate into online services such as Office 365, cloud backup and cloud management solutions. It is expected to release in the first half of 2011. “

Users don’t need CALs for the Essentials edition but it is hard locked at a maximum of 25 users.

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