Back in November I asked the question, “Will Skype for Business have the same CAL structure Lync Server 2013 does?”
Turns out that yes, it will!
Now that Skype for Business Server 2015 is on its way out into the world, I decided to look at its licensing. Surely by now we’d know what kind of licensing you must use.
Skype for Business team here at Microsoft. Ask us Anything! – Reddit.com: An entire Reddit discussion with the Skype for Business team. Wherein they answered a lot of questions, from licensing to security to “Why does Skype not close when I click the X?”
The licensing topic itself is a little buried, so you can head to this link instead for that: Skype for Business Licensing: The Issues – Mirazon.com. A nicely-collected summary on licensing structure.
To make it even easier for our readers, here are all the details I’ve collected.
The Skype4B Licensing Details
For on-prem versions, Licensing for Skype for Business Server stays the same as Lync Server 2013.
- Each Front End server requires a server license.
- Each user (or device) requires a standard CAL.
- Add an Enterprise CAL for conferencing & desktop sharing, a Plus CAL for voice & call management, or both.
- Client licenses are required for using the Skype for Business client. (These are included in Office 2013 Professional Plus, too.)
- You’ll find a Licensing Guide on the Skype for Business IT Pros page.
Do you have Software Assurance? Then your licensing is taken care of. From Microsoft’s Skype for Business FAQs Page:
“How do current customers get Skype for Business?
Current Lync Server customers with Software Assurance will have rights to deploy Skype for Business. Office 365 customers with Lync Online will receive automatic updates as part of the subscription service.”
For Lync admins, this is good news. No huge licensing changes means a simpler upgrade path. Fewer hassles to deal with. Those of us with Software Assurance are in great shape too.
The Bad News
You knew it was coming. Fortunately, the bad news doesn’t have to do with licensing itself, but with license costs.
Pricing is still hard to obtain.
As anyone who’s worked with Microsoft software knows, nailing down pricing for licenses is a bit…challenging. (Okay, it’s like trying to keep 10 cats in a full bathtub.)
I’d planned to have pricing details available for you in this post. But I’m still chasing down the numbers, and I didn’t want to hold this licensing information back that long.
So now you know what we’ll blog about next week. Shhh, don’t tell…wait, no, tell everyone you know!
Have you installed Skype for Business Server 2015 yet? Testing or production, either way. I’d love to hear your experiences so far, with licensing and everything else. Please comment or email your thoughts.
And don’t forget to come back here next week!