Information regarding Microsoft Windows and 3rd party VM technology

Thanks to Dave Webb for digging this up for me. I’m posting it, as I end up having to refer to it on occasion…

Microsoft allows you to use the same VM licensing with any VM platform, even bare metal VM platforms like ESX. The same licensing that applies to the MS VM’s applies to all VM technology.

  • Windows 2003 Standard – 1 instance VM or Physical
  • Windows 2008 Standard – 1 Physical + Virtual
  • Windows Server Enterprise 2003-2008 – 1 Physical + 4 VM
  • Windows Datacenter 2003 -2008 – 1 Physical Unlimited VM

Here is an article in PC World Magazine that explains:

Here is the actual Calculator from Microsoft to calculate how many licenses you need to buy for virtualization. It allows you to choose MS Virtualization technologies or 3rd party (VMWARE ESX) products in the wizard.

This is fairly definitive.