Vole’ claims that its move will make it simpler for customers to use the software in hybrid cloud scenarios.
But it seems that customers that use virtualisation will have to either buy more Windows Server Standard licences or upgrade to the pricier Datacenter edition.
Microsoft is also switching to per-core licensing for System Center 2016, which the vendor said it also expects to release in the third calendar quarter of 2016.
Partners are muttering that the move will add complexity to a Microsoft licensing scheme which needs more red tape like a hole in the head. Organisations will have to make sure that all of their processor cores are properly licensed, or face a visit from Microsoft auditors.
Vole so far has not made any comment about whether the new rules will result in higher costs for some customers, but it is hard to see how customers with heavily virtualised environments will not face price hikes.
Under Windows Server 2012 licensing rules, a server with four processors, each with four cores, will need two Standard licences to host up to four virtual operating system instances. Each Standard license, with a mandatory client access license (CAL), costs $882.
Under the new Windows Server 2016 rules the same server will require eight per-core licences for Windows Server Standard.
What might happen is that customers will upgrade to the more expensive Windows Server Data center version which costs $6,155 and can run an unlimited number of virtual OS instances.