Press "Enter" to skip to content

Category: Licensing

High Availability Announcements from Microsoft

Allan Hirt looks at a couple announcements from Microsoft:

I’m going to discuss what I feel are the biggest game changers. I knew licensing was changing as I had conversations with Microsoft around this months ago. I was not sure what the final result was going to be, but I’m fairly pleased. Is it perfect? No, but it’s much better than it was.

You’ll definitely want to read Allan’s thoughts on Microsoft’s SQL Server licensing changes, as well as a private preview of Azure Shared Disks.

Leave a Comment

Licensing for SQL Server Big Data Clusters

Mohammad Darab tackles the licensing question for Big Data Clusters:

One of the biggest questions I had when I first started diving into Big Data Clusters was, “What about licensing….how will that work?” With so many different instances running on the storage pool, data pool and compute pool nodes will licensing cost too much? The answer I got from Microsoft was that it will “be competitive”.

Well, with the general availability of SQL Server as of this week, Microsoft is making it way more financially attractive than I thought. Below is a summation of the SQL Server 2019 Licensing Guide for Big Data Clusters.

Click through for the explanation. It really is pretty simple, all things considered.

Leave a Comment

Enhanced HA/DR Benefits for SQL Server

Amit Banerjee has just made a bunch of DBAs happy:

Starting Nov 1st, every Software Assurance customer of SQL Server will be able to use three enhanced benefits for any SQL Server release that is still supported by Microsoft:

Failover servers for high availability – Allows customers to install and run passive SQL Server instances in a separate operating system environment (OSE) or server for high availability on-premises in anticipation of a failover event. Today, Software Assurance customers have one free passive instance for either high availability or DR
Failover servers for disaster recovery NEW – Allows customers to install and run passive SQL Server instances in a separate OSE or server on-premises for disaster recovery in anticipation of a failover event
Failover servers for disaster recovery in Azure NEW – Allows customers to install and run passive SQL Server instances in a separate OSE or server for disaster recovery in Azure in anticipation of a failover event

You still need to pay if you’re using the servers (as read-only replicas, for example), but this can substantially reduce your SQL Server licensing costs.

2 Comments

More On Confluent’s Licensing Change

Alex Woodie has an article covering Confluent’s recent licensing change:

Confluent this month became the latest commercial open source software company to restrict the use of its software in the cloud. The move prevents cloud companies from using parts of the Confluent Platform, such as the KSQL component that uses SQL to process streaming data, as standalone software as a service (SaaS) offerings.
Jay Kreps, the co-creator of Apache Kafka and the CEO of Confluent, explained the significance of switching the Confluent Platform from the Apache 2.0 license to the new Confluent Community License.

Over at Aiven, CTO Heikki Nousiainen shares his thoughts:

The new Confluent Community License is a proprietary software license, specifically excluding “making available any software-as-a-service, platform-as-a-service, infrastructure-as-a-service or other similar online service that competes with Confluent products or services that provide the Software.”
While the license change does apply to all future versions of the specific software, it doesn’t alter the licensing status of the components in the versions that have been released and utilized by Aiven.

I believe it would be best to read the latter article looking for the significant silences.

Comments closed

Power Platform Licensing And Pricing

Wolfgang Strasser explains how you can get started with the Microsoft Power Platform:

This blog post is part of my Power Platform blog series.

Maybe you’ve already heard about the Microsoft Power Platform (which consists three tools Power BI, PowerApps and Microsoft Flow) and now is the time to start testing it?

The first questions that arise are: What do I need? Do I need to pay if I only want to try it out?

Licensing can get tricky, so it’s good to get a clear explanation of pricing and what you can do with the products.

Comments closed

Reserved Capacity With Azure SQL Database

Chris Seferlis explains the concept of Azure SQL Database Reserved Capacity:

Last week I posted about the Azure Reserve VM Instance where you could save some money in Azure. Another similar way to save is with Azure SQL Database Reserved Capacity. With this you can save 33% compared to license included pricing by pre-buying SQL Database pre-cores for a 1- or 3-year term.

This can be applied to a single subscription or shared across your enrollments, so you can control how many subscriptions can use the benefit, as well as how the reservation is applied to the specific subscriptions you choose.

The reservation scope to a single subscription allows you to apply it to that SQL Database resource(s) within the selected subscription. A reservation with a shared scope can be shared across subscriptions in the enrollment and there’s some flexibility involved like Managed Instances where you can scale up/down.

Read on for more.  AWS had been offering discounts for reserved capacity for a while, but now we’re seeing Microsoft play the game too.

Comments closed

All About Power BI Licensing

Reza Rad has a guide for the perplexed when it comes to licensing Power BI:

The pricing table above may scare you off and you may immediately think of not going through the embedded path. However, I need to let you know that there are some scenarios which Power BI Embedded can be a much more cost-effective option than Pro. Here is an example:

Assume that you have 100 users for your Power BI solution. And your users are not connecting all at the same time to use Power BI reports. You may have the maximum of 300 page renders per hour for them if you use embedded. In such case, embedded for that scenario would cost you about $700 USD per month, where the Power BI Pro for 100 users would be $1000 USD per month. This means saving of $3,600 USD per year. This is an example scenario that Power BI Embedded can be more cost-effective than Pro.

Give this a careful reading if you’re looking to implement Power BI in your environment.

Comments closed

Changes To SQL Server’s Servicing Model

Pedro Lopes announces changes to SQL Server’s servicing model:

Starting with SQL Server 2017, we are adopting a simplified, predictable mainstream servicing lifecycle:

  • SPs will no longer be made available. Only CUs, and GDRs when needed.
  • CUs will now accommodate localized content, allowing new feature completeness and supportability enhancements to be delivered faster.
  • CUs will be delivered more often at first and then less frequently. Every month for the first 12 months, and every quarter for the remainder 4 years of the full 5-year mainstream lifecycle.
  • CUs are delivered on the same week of the month: week of 3rd Tuesday.

Note: the Modern Servicing Model (MSM) only applies to SQL Server 2017 and future versions.

If you’re the type who waits for SP1 to drop, you’ll be waiting for Godot.  Who should be here any minute now.

Comments closed

Automated Edition Downgrade For SQL Server

Jana Sattainathan shows how to automate downgrade of SQL Server Enterprise to Standard:

Standard edition is limited to lesser of 4 sockets or 24 cores with a maximum memory of 128 GB plus a few truly Enterprise level features like Compression, Availability Groups, Partitioning etc are off limits. I would say most places would fall under this threshold for “Standard” but feel inferior to say they run “Standard”! I don’t, especially when money matters.

But, all kidding aside, most shops don’t even realize that they do not use any Enterprise features on 90% of their instances but pay Enterprise price anyway! If you don’t trust me, go check for yourself at your place – we did, on hundred’s of SQL Server instances! I painfully built the infrastructure to do this type of thing using PowerShell in seconds  if not a few minutes, for scanning hundreds of servers/instances.

There’s a lot here, so if you’re thinking about downgrading in a post-2016 SP1 world, Jana’s post is a must-read.  But even with the new features, there are still quite a few enterprise-level features that make it so I don’t want to live without Enterprise Edition.

Comments closed

Power BI Free Is The Problem

Matt Allington shares his thoughts on the recent Power BI licensing changes:

I think the existence of the Power BI Free product has been the root of the problem here.  The fact that you could do so much for free (including some sharing) really muddied the waters and has taken the focus away from acknowledging that there needs to be a two tier pricing model for users (free is not a pricing tier). Microsoft is addressing one part of the problem by making it clear that Power BI Free is for personal (non sharing) use. However it has not addressed the second part of the problem being the need for a lower priced offering for users that just consume data in a way I would describe as “low involvement”. Microsoft has taken away the “proxy for a low priced sharing tier” without providing a genuine low priced replacement – this had just made the situation worse, not better and it has upset a lot of people.  Power BI Free has been a great product to “try before you buy” but unfortunately its existence prevented Microsoft from realising it was missing a price tier for 2 years!  Power BI Free for personal use (no sharing) is an incredibly generous offering from Microsoft.  It is a shame that it will need a backlash to fill the real gap – a lower priced tier.

Check out the comments as well.  I think Matt has a good point, and my guess is that the Power BI team will make it easier for small to medium sized businesses to use Power BI, but they first wanted to focus on the problem with big customers.

Comments closed