Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm new to the cloud and EC2 and am wondering how licensing of operating systems works. Specifically, i spent some time looking at amazon machine images (ami's) and some contain windows and sql server. My question is how does the licensing work:

a) Do I install my own licenses once the boxes are available? b) Are these licenses covered by my Amazon bill c) what are any costs associated with this software?

Thank in advance,


share|improve this question
up vote 7 down vote accepted

Your license fees are included in the hourly run-time charge from Amazon. It's a data center license, so you do not need to (nor are you ALLOWED to) install any license you may already own. As for terminal server/remote desktop service CALs, these can be purchased or installed. The server can be made part of your existing AD domain and contact your existing licensing server, or you can run it in workgroup mode and activate licensing service on the AWS EC2 server itself.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.