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Can you help me with my software licensing question?

i been trying to find information about what would be the most suitable edition of sql server for a developing and testing server. The first one will be accessed by a group of 10-20 developers, and the second one by a few dozen people plus developers.

I understand that Developer edition is licensed by developer so should i put Developer edition in the developing server and standard in the testing one.

This is the first time i dive into all this licensing stuff so i don't have much idea what could be the best set up.



http://www.microsoftvolumelicensing.com/userights/pur.aspx <-- extensive general licensing. This has a reprint of the verbage below.

Here is info on the developer version.

You must acquire a license for each user you permit to access or use the software.

Business users and manual test users can access without license.

I wouldn't say that since the db accepts ten connections that you would let 10 developers use it. Also, it would be extremely annoying when someone opens up 2 connections and one person cannot work. BUT, I don't believe that there is a limitiation on connections - it has all features, but is just licensed differently.

I would assume a developer might want sql server management studio tools, or BIDS for reporting services/SSIS. You would need separate licenses to install on multiple machines.

I was just trying to figure this same issue out. All of our developers are msdn licensed and we have licenses for development servers - I felt we were safe getting rid of the licenses and installing enterprise from msdn.

  • +1 - that top link in your answer spells it all out very clear. II.a. says "User Testing. Your end users may access the software to perform acceptance tests on your programs."
    – Scott Ivey
    Sep 24 '09 at 13:14

Development version is incredibly cheap, it's like $50 or something, and permits 10 concurrent connections and provides enterprise level features.

So, if you have < 10 developers, and your application is well behaved (i.e. it only uses one connection), then you'll be fine with that. If your application is not well behaved (or sometimes there are legitimate reasons for this) and opens multiple connections for each session, then 10 concurrent connections will run out quick smart.

If your databses are small (< 4gb), you might be better of with SQL Express, which is the free version of SQL server. You can check the limitations of it here. If you're happy to live with these limitations, just deploy it on your development and testing environments.

  • 1
    The developer edition does not have any connection limits - it's functionally identical to Enterprise. If you've found documentation that says otherwise, please post it. If not, this answer sounds misleading.
    – Scott Ivey
    Sep 24 '09 at 13:03

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