Microsoft OEM Windows Server 2012 R2 Roadshow - Week 3 Q&A

Now that week 4 of the OEM Server roadshow has kicked off, it's time to cover some of the new questions that have been raised...lots of Essentials questions, so I'll keep that as the focus for today's post.

I understand the Windows Server 2012 R2 CAL requirements when I upgrade from Essentials to Standard, but what are the RDS CAL requirements?

When you use Windows Server Essentials 2012 R2, it includes licenses for up to 25 users, including those that utilise RDP to access internal clients running business versions of Microsoft client operating systems. When you move up to using Standard or Datacenter, you need an RDS CAL for each user who uses the Remote Desktop Gateway functionality, regardless of whether they are accessing an RDS Server or a client OS.

During the Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials Migration section, you mention joining the machines to the new server. Do you mean domain joining them?

No, the machines may already be domain joined, instead you are just installing the Essentials client capabilities for services such as backup.

I like the Office 365 integration in Essentials and understand that is a separate licensing conversation, but do I need to buy Azure Active Directory as well?

No, a free version of Azure Active Directory is available with your Office 365 subscription. If you want to take advantage of some of the advanced Azure Active Directory capabilities, such as Multi Factor Authentication, auditing, rights management etc, you can subscribe to the Azure Active Directory Premium offering.

What does the Microsoft Intune integration do?

This integration allows you to easily assign Intune user subscription licenses to individuals, and to see the number of free and used licenses that you have.

What does it mean when Essentials documentation discussed Exchange integration?

This one throws some people, but it means that it has the ability to integrate with your own Exchange Server, Exchange Online, or optionally with hosted Exchange providers. It does not mean that Exchange is included.

Can I add the Essentials role to an existing domain?

Yes, but bear in mind the 100 user supported limitation.

Can I run Windows Server Essentials 2012 R2 on top of the standalone Hyper-V Server 2012 R2?