About Microsoft Pricing

To help you with some of the terms used on this site, and in any in the price lists, a few terms are defined here:

Per Processor Server License

This is a way of licensing a server product that doesn't require Client Access Licenses (CALs), like a web server. The benefit is that any number of clients, user or device, may access the server software without purchasing a CAL. This type of license is expensive and may require a separate license for every processor running the server software, but is cost effective if a large number of users or devices need to access the server. Note that multiple cores in a single processor still count as a single processor. Two or more physically separate processors in a single computer count as multiple processors. If the server application is restricted to run only on a single processor in a multi-processor computer then only one per processor license is needed.

CAL

A Client Access License (CAL) is a client license that is required to legally connect a client to a server unless the server software is licensed on a "per processor" basis. The CAL must be for the type of server being accessed. For example, a SQL Server CAL is required for a client to access a SQL Server database. In many cases there are two types of CAL available: Device CALs and User CALs. CALs are client licenses and are not server software licenses.

Device CAL

A Device CAL, licenses any number of users (i.e., people) to connect to any number of servers running the server type the CAL is for, from a single client device. The client device could be a computer, a smart phone, or any other device that can connect to the licensed server. For example, a SQL Server Device CAL purchased for a specific desktop computer would allow any number of people to connect to all SQL Server installations licensed by SJSU from that specific computer.

User CAL

A User CAL, licenses a single user (i.e., person) clients to connect to any number of servers running the server type the CAL is for, from any number of devices. For example, a SQL Server User CAL purchased for a specific person by SJSU would allow that person to connect to all SQL Server installations licensed by SJSU from any device.

Step Up

Step Up allows you to upgrade a product that you have Software Assurance on to a more expensive version of that product. For example, you have a license for Windows Server 2008 Standard Edition with Software Assurance and need to replace it with Windows Server 2008 Enterprise Edition (Ent Ed) with Software Assurance. You no longer have to pay the full price of the Ent Ed w/ SA by purchasing the Step Up upgrade cost, which is actually the price difference of the Standard Edition license and the Ent Ed license.