Specify the Terminal Services Licensing Mode

Applies To: Windows Server 2008

The Terminal Services licensing mode determines the type of Terminal Services client access licenses (TS CALs) that a terminal server will request from a license server on behalf of a client connecting to the terminal server.


The Terminal Services licensing mode configured on a terminal server must match the type of TS CALs available on the license server.

There are two types of TS CALs:

  • TS Per Device CAL, which permits one device (used by any user) to connect to a terminal server.

  • TS Per User CAL, which gives one user the right to access terminal servers from an unlimited number of client computers or devices.

The Terminal Services licensing mode for the terminal server can be set in the following ways:

  • During the installation of the Terminal Server role service in Server Manager, on the Specify Licensing Mode page in the Add Roles Wizard.

    On the Specify Licensing Mode page, you can select Configure later if you are unsure during the installation whether to select Per Device or Per User. If you select Configure later, each time you log on to the terminal server, a message will appear in the lower-right corner of the desktop reminding you that you need to configure the licensing mode for the terminal server.

  • By configuring the Terminal Services licensing mode for the terminal server by using the Terminal Services Configuration tool.

    If the Specify the Terminal Services licensing mode choices are dimmed and you cannot make a selection, the Set Terminal Services licensing mode Group Policy setting has been enabled and has been applied to the terminal server.

  • By applying the Set Terminal Services licensing mode Group Policy setting.

    This Group Policy setting is located in Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Terminal Services\Terminal Server\Licensing and can be configured by using either the Local Group Policy Editor or the Group Policy Management Console (GPMC). Note that the Group Policy setting will take precedence over the setting configured in Terminal Services Configuration.

To be alerted to possible licensing configuration issues, use Licensing Diagnosis in Terminal Services Configuration. For more information about Licensing Diagnosis, see Identify Possible Licensing Problems for the Terminal Server.

For more information about TS CALs and configuring TS Licensing, see the Terminal Services page on the Windows Server 2008 TechCenter (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=73931).

For more information about Group Policy settings for Terminal Services, see the Terminal Services Technical Reference (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?Linkid=89673).

Additional references