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Currently I have a Hyper-v VPS with 2 (vCPU) processor. I would like to install SQL Server Express 2012 that has a limitation of 1 Socket or 4 Cores, whichever the lesser.

My Question: Are vCPU's counted as a single core, or as sockets? or something completely different?

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

Hyper-V presents one socket with multiple cores.

You can verify this with a tool such as CPU-Z. Here's a screenshot I took of a 2-vCPU Hyper-V guest I have:

enter image description here

For what it's worth, VMWare ESXi permits you to choose your mix of sockets/cores vCPUs.

I am not a lawyer, so stop reading now

Installing SQL Express on a machine that violates the license simply means (as far as I can tell) that the SQL instance will not utilise the extra power of the server. For example, it's limited to x gigs of ram, but if you install it in a server with 256Gb of RAM, it will just neglect to use the rest.

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Awesome Thanks, Didn't think to Run CPUZ. –  TravisK May 2 '12 at 1:21
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No worries. there are ways to query WMI to get the info manually, but CPU-Z is basically easier to use and understand. –  Mark Henderson May 2 '12 at 1:22
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