Anticipating Price Hikes with Microsoft Windows Server 2012

Spend Matters welcomes another guest post from NPI, a spend management consultancy, focused on delivering savings in the areas of IT, telecom and transportation.

In July 2012, Microsoft revealed the new Windows Server 2012 (formerly Windows Server 8), which captures the rich virtualization capabilities Microsoft has developed over the last few years. The vendor also introduced a new per-processor licensing model with two processors offered per license.

So, what do these changes mean for enterprise users?

Well, for Datacenter edition users, not much has changed, as this edition has always been licensed per processor. However, Standard edition users that have purely physical or minimally virtualized environments will see a drastic and negative impact on costs.

The Standard edition of Windows Server 2012 costs 20 percent more than its predecessor, Windows Server 2008 R2. Under the current pricing, the Standard edition is at $1172 under Select Level A List Price for a two-processor single license, compared to $964 for Windows Server 2008 R2. Physical servers without virtualization will see the most significant increases. A four-processor Windows Server will cost $2344 under the new pricing model, compared to $964. This represents nearly a 250 percent price increase.

These licensing and pricing changes will go into effect in October. If you're purchasing or renewing Microsoft Windows Server, now is the time to conduct an immediate analysis of your server environment to determine how these changes will impact your current server costs, and to pre-empt Microsoft's changes through contract optimization and renegotiation. Anticipating these changes now can be the difference between saving and overspending.

- Jeff Muscarella, EVP of IT, NPI

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