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Can you help me with my software licensing question?

I'm currently evaluating SharePoint 2007 using my MSDN license. So far,I've not seen anything about licensing. How does the licensing work? Is there a license server that looks after the SharePoint standard CALS?

Thanks, Rob.


A few pointers from our rollout of SharePoint:

  • If you are going to use the Standard version of SharePoint, then you will need to purchase Standard CALs.

  • If you are going to use the Enterprise version of SharePoint, then you will need to purchase both the Standard and Enterprise CALs. You can not use the Enterprise CALs without the Standard CALs.

Also, if you are using SharePoint for Internet facing sites then you can either use CALs or the internet license. If you decide to use CALs then the site must offer some sort of authentication mechanism, however using CALs for a high number of users can become extremely expensive. If you wish to offer the site to a high number of users then the internet license may be worthwhile, although you will need a license per web front end facing the internet.

Edit - Rob, I have just reread your question:

In terms of the managing your licenses, you simply have to enter your standard/enterprise license key (done in Central Admin) and thats it. There is no "Licence Manager" like Terminal Services has to track the number of CALs in use etc. I guess Microsoft are basing this on trust, they trust that you will purchase the required number of CALs for your implementation.

Hope this helps,



Here are some official Microsoft links:

Depending on your needs (client/server mode, internet mode, ...) there are different offerings and license types:

  • Server License
  • Client Access License (CAL), Standard Edition
  • Client Access License (CAL), Enterprise Edition
  • for Internet sites
  • for Search (Enterprise Edition), Server License
  • Microsoft Forms Server 2007, Server License
  • Microsoft Office Forms Server 2007 Client Access License (CAL)
  • Microsoft Forms Server 2007 for Internet sites

A MSDN license of Sharepoint Server can be used for so-called "Pre-publishing environments" used for development, authoring, testing, and staging.

  • I wasn't asking what the license options were as such but how the licensing mechanism is implemented. Jul 28 '09 at 10:03

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