Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. Join them; it only takes a minute:

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

On the MSDN downloads I can see both:

  • Windows Server 2003 Web Edition with SP1 - VL
  • Windows Server 2003 Web Edition with SP1

What's that difference & which should I use?

share|improve this question
I believe if you look around that M$ website you will find the answer. – mdpc May 24 '14 at 21:07
In theory, but searching for VL was a little fruitless. – BanksySan May 25 '14 at 0:33
up vote 7 down vote accepted

VL stands for "Volume License", and you need if you have a VL key.

What you should use is "None". Win 2003 Server will be out of service in a year and it doesn't make any sense to start any project with this old piece of software.

share|improve this answer
Cheers SvW, I guess it makes no different which one then. I'm not developing anything new for it, just need to check new stuff is compatible with it as work has quite a few still in play. – BanksySan May 24 '14 at 20:52
More generally to the "should I use a VL version?" question: You should only use a VL version if you've paid for it. Although, my understanding (which may not be correct, so you should really ask your MSDN rep) is that if you have an MSDN account that gives you access to a VL of [product(s)] then you're allowed to use it/them as such. – derGral May 25 '14 at 1:08
@Ryan Correct, specifically purchasing MSDN on a volume licence agreement (this is worth it even with only a single subscription because it is cheaper than retail purchase of MSDN) gives you access to VL downloads and keys. However after XP/2003 things changed (to KMS based). – Richard May 25 '14 at 13:40

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.