RDS Use Rights for non-VL Office 365


We get mixed information from Microsoft and distributors.

Could you please inform me if there is any update on non-VL Office 365 rights to install/run on RDS?

We are using office365 now (through advisory model). We need to start using RDS.

And changing office365 to a VL-license forces us to completely rebuild our office365 environment.

That does seem a little over the top. Doesn't it?


There are really 2 discussions that have to happen – Licensing Compliancy and Technical Implementation:

Licensing Compliancy

There is a PUR Exception (Product Use Right) for Office 365 to use 1 of the 5 installs as an RDS/TS installation, however that is a Volume Licensing exception, so only if the client has purchased Office 365 via VL – Open or EA they get the exception, if they purchased via the Online portal that is an Online Agreement and it does not have a PUR. 

Technical Implementation

The second portion is how to do this technically, as the Office 365 bits will not run in a RDS/TS environment, which is why the customer needs 1 VL copy of Office Pro Plus, as these are the bits to be installed on the server.  You only need to purchase 1 copy, as it is a technical requirement not a licensing conversation. 

No known dates but At some point in the future, it is expected we will have the Office 365 bits session based, which will eliminate this issue completely, regardless of how it is purchase, and using the 365 bits for RDS/TS. 

I hope this answers your question.  There are a number of blog postings on the TS2 US SMB that cover RDS that you can review as well.

Happy Holidays

Kathleen Molosky 2013

Kathleen Molosky, PTS