Microsoft Licensing on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure

This topic provides information about the licensing requirements to use Microsoft products on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Moving Microsoft Licenses to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure: Microsoft License Mobility

Microsoft Volume Licensing customers can move eligible Microsoft server application licenses purchased under a Volume Licensing agreement to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. To do this, you must enroll in the License Mobility through Microsoft Software Assurance benefit. This benefit is included with an active Software Assurance contract. You don't need to purchase additional Microsoft software licenses, and there are no associated mobility fees.

For more information about this Microsoft benefit, see Microsoft License Mobility through Software Assurance.

Eligibility Requirements

To enroll in Microsoft License Mobility through Software Assurance, you must be a Microsoft Volume License customer with eligible server application products. The following are key requirements:

  • Windows Server operating systems, desktop client operating systems, and desktop applications such as Microsoft Office are not eligible under License Mobility through Software Assurance.
  • Active Software Assurance coverage is required on eligible licenses migrated to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.
  • All licenses that are used to run and access your licensed software require active Software Assurance coverage. This includes server licenses, processor licenses, Client Access Licenses (CALs), External Connector (EC) licenses, and server management licenses. Your rights to run licensed software and manage instances on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure expire with the expiration of the Software Assurance coverage on those licenses.
  • Eligible Volume Licensing programs include the Microsoft Enterprise Agreement, Microsoft Enterprise Subscription Agreement, and Microsoft Open Value agreement, where Software Assurance is included, and other Volume Licensing programs where Software Assurance is an option, such as the Microsoft Open License agreement and the Microsoft Select Plus agreement.
  • You may move Microsoft licenses from on-premises or another cloud services provider only after more than 90 days have passed since the last license move.
  • Eligible Microsoft licenses on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure must be maintained for a minimum period of 90 days in a specific Oracle Cloud Infrastructure region. After the 90-day period, you may move the licensed software to a shared host in another Oracle Cloud Infrastructure region.
  • Any Microsoft Server licenses permitted on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure must be eligible according to the latest Microsoft Product Terms. It is your responsibility to verify that the licenses you bring to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure are eligible according to the latest Microsoft Product Terms.

Enrolling in License Mobility through Software Assurance

All customers using License Mobility through Software Assurance must complete a license verification process. Microsoft verifies that you have eligible licenses with active Software Assurance and sends confirmation when the verification process is complete.

You can deploy your application server software before completing the verification process, but you must submit the license verification form within 10 days of deployment.

You are responsible for managing true ups and renewals as required under your Volume Licensing agreement.

You must submit a new form each time that you deploy additional licenses, when you renew your agreement, and when you deploy any previously unverified products.

To enroll in License Mobility through Software Assurance:

  1. Verify that you are a Microsoft Volume Licensing customer with eligible application server licenses that are covered by active Software Assurance.
  2. Download the license verification form:

    1. Go to the Microsoft Product Licensing search page.
    2. In the Document Type area, select License Verification.
    3. Filter the results by language, region, and business sector. Note that the verification form is not available in the WW (World Wide) region.

    4. Download the LicenseMobilityVerif document.
  3. Complete the license verification form. To specify Oracle as the Authorized Mobility Partner, provide the following information:

    • Authorized Mobility Partner Name: Oracle America, Inc.
    • Authorized Mobility Partner Website URL: http://www.oracle.com/
    • Authorized Mobility Partner Email Address: microsoftlm_us_grp@oracle.com

    For instructions to complete the form, see the Microsoft License Mobility Verification Guide (PDF).

  4. Submit the completed verification form to both Microsoft and Oracle:

    • Microsoft: Submit the form through your Microsoft reseller or directly to the email address in the form.
    • Oracle: Send the form to microsoftlm_us_grp@oracle.com.

    Microsoft and Oracle verify that the product licenses for the workloads you deploy to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure are eligible according to the terms of your License Mobility through Software Assurance benefit. Microsoft will communicate your verification status to you and to Oracle as an Authorized Mobility Partner.

Using Microsoft Windows on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure: FAQ

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure is licensed to provide Microsoft software offerings, including being a Microsoft Authorized License Mobility Partner.

For the latest Microsoft licensing requirements, refer to the Microsoft Product Terms.

If you can't find the answer to your question here, or you need more assistance running Microsoft products on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, contact Oracle Support.

General Questions

What OS editions of Microsoft Windows Server are supported?

Oracle-provided images

These Windows versions are available for Oracle-provided images:

  • Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard, Datacenter
  • Windows Server 2016 Standard, Datacenter
  • Windows Server 2019 Standard, Datacenter

Bring Your Own Image (BYOI)

These Windows versions support custom image import:

  • Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard, Enterprise, Datacenter
  • Windows Server 2012 Standard, Datacenter
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard, Datacenter
  • Windows Server 2016 Standard, Datacenter
  • Windows Server 2019 Standard, Datacenter

If you don't need to migrate your Windows OS licenses, you can use the Bring Your Own Image process to migrate your Windows image to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Is Windows Server 2019 available as a Bring Your Own Image (BYOI) image?

Yes, you can import your own Windows Server 2019 image for virtual machines only. For source image requirements and steps to import an image, see Importing Custom Windows Images.

What VM and bare metal options are available for Windows Server operating systems?

The following table shows support for Microsoft Windows Server operating systems on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Use Case Bare Metal Machines Virtual Machines (VMs) License
Use an Oracle-provided Windows Server operating system image for Windows Server 2012 R2 and later versions. Supported Supported Volume license issued by Oracle Cloud Infrastructure
Bring your own virtual machine image. You can import your own custom virtual machine Windows Server OS image. Not supported Supported Volume license issued by Oracle Cloud Infrastructure
Bring your own Windows Server ISO image. Not supported Not supported Customer-owned license
Bring your own hypervisor. You can use a Windows Server 2016 or Windows Server 2019 Datacenter hypervisor host provided by Oracle Cloud Infrastructure and import your own VM images. Supported Not supported Volume license issued by Oracle Cloud Infrastructure
Does Oracle Cloud Infrastructure support Bring Your Own Image (BYOI) for Windows Server?

Yes, you are permitted to import your own generalized custom image of Windows Server.

When you create an instance with an imported image on a VM or a shared bare metal machine, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure licenses the instance. For more information about imported images, see Creating Windows Custom Images.

If you want to use your own license, BYOI is supported only for bare metal machines on a dedicated host.

How am I charged for Windows Server on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure?

The cost of a Microsoft Windows Server license is an additional cost, on top of the underlying Compute instance price. You pay separately for the Compute instance and the Windows Server license. For more information about Microsoft Windows Server pricing, see Compute Pricing.

Billing for the Windows Server license is based on per-OCPU, per-second usage. Billing starts when an instance is in the "running" state and ends when you terminate (delete) the instance.

When an instance is stopped, billing for the Windows Server license depends on the shape that was used to create the instance. Billing pauses for instances that use a Standard shape. Billing continues for instances that use a Dense I/O shape, GPU shape, or HPC shape. Depending on the shape, you might also be billed for the underlying Compute instance when the instance is stopped.

How does Windows Server get updated with the latest patches?

You must update your VCN's security list to enable egress traffic for port 80 (HTTP) and port 443 (HTTPS) to install patches from Microsoft. Oracle Cloud Infrastructure enables automatic updates for Microsoft Windows Server and uses the default settings for applying Windows Server patches.

Can I take a snapshot image after customizing a running Window Server instance?

Yes, there are several options available on both bare metal and virtual machines:

  • Create a custom image: Creates a custom image that you can use to launch other instances. Instances that you launch from your image include the customizations, configuration, and software installed when you created the image.
  • Clone a boot volume: Makes a copy of an existing boot volume without needing to go through the backup and restore process. A boot volume clone is a point-in-time direct disk-to-disk deep copy of the source boot volume, so all the data that is in the source boot volume when the clone is created is copied to the boot volume clone.
  • Back up a block volume: Makes a point-in-time backup of data on a block volume. You can restore a backup to a new volume either immediately after a backup or at a later time that you choose.
  • Back up a boot volume: Makes a backup of a boot volume. Boot volume backup capabilities are the same as block volume backup capabilities and are in-region only. Windows boot volume backups cannot be copied across regions.
Can I export a custom Windows Server image?

Yes, exporting custom Windows Server operating system images is supported. For steps, see Image Import/Export.

Licensing - Windows Server

What is BYOL?

BYOL stands for "bring your own license." BYOL lets you use software licenses that you already own to deploy software on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, without any additional licensing fees. This process uses the License Mobility through Microsoft Software Assurance benefit provided by Microsoft. You must have active Software Assurance with Microsoft to bring your licenses to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

What is Microsoft License Mobility?

License Mobility through Software Assurance is a Microsoft benefit that permits you to move your eligible Microsoft licenses to cloud services providers such as Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. Oracle is an Authorized Mobility Partner for License Mobility.

With License Mobility through Software Assurance, you can deploy eligible application servers on bare metal hosts or virtual shared hardware in Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. An example of an application eligible for License Mobility through Software Assurance is Microsoft SQL. Windows Server operating systems are not eligible.

You may move Microsoft licenses from on-premises or another Authorized Mobility Partner only after more than 90 days have passed since the last license move.

For more information about this Microsoft benefit, see Microsoft License Mobility through Software Assurance. For steps to move your Microsoft licenses to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, see Moving Microsoft Licenses to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure: Microsoft License Mobility.

Is Oracle a Microsoft Authorized Mobility Partner?

Yes, Oracle is an Authorized Mobility Partner for the Microsoft License Mobility through Software Assurance benefit.

Can I bring my own license for Microsoft Windows Server to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure?

Yes. You can bring your own license (BYOL) for Microsoft Windows Server, subject to the Microsoft Product Terms. You are responsible for managing your own licenses to maintain compliance with Microsoft licensing terms.

The following table shows the BYOL requirements for Microsoft licenses on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Microsoft License Bare Metal Machines and Dedicated Virtual Machine Hosts Virtual Machines (Multi-Tenant Shared Host)
Windows Server

BYOL on a bare metal dedicated host is only supported when using a KVM hypervisor if the licenses were purchased before October 1, 2019. BYOL is not supported for Microsoft Windows Server using Oracle-provided images or when importing your own Microsoft Windows Server image. Any licenses that were purchased or upgraded on or after October 1, 2019 for use on a dedicated host are not permitted on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Not supported.

Shared hosts must use Oracle-provided images that include the Microsoft license.

SQL Server

Subject to the Microsoft Product Terms

Supported.

You must have License Mobility through Software Assurance.

Supported.

You must have License Mobility through Software Assurance and use an Oracle-provided image.

MSDN

Supported.

Non-production use only.

Not supported.
Microsoft Office

Not supported.

Not supported.
Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10

Not supported.

Not supported.
Other Microsoft applications

Supported.

Subject to the Microsoft Product Terms.

Supported.

You must have License Mobility through Software Assurance and use an Oracle-provided image.

Application licenses require License Mobility through Software Assurance when running on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure VM instances.

Questions about your licensing rights should be directed to Microsoft or your Microsoft reseller.

Can I use virtual machines and bring my own license for Microsoft Windows Server to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure?

You cannot migrate your Windows Server OS licenses when using Oracle Cloud Infrastructure virtual machines.

However, you can bring your own hypervisor (KVM) to run a Windows Server VM with your own Windows Server OS license.

The following restrictions apply:

  • You can use VMs with their own license only if you use bring your own hypervisor on a dedicated bare metal host.
  • BYOL of Microsoft Windows Server is not supported for VMs running on a shared host. Oracle Cloud Infrastructure-provided VMs offer Windows Server.

    • You can use a bare metal instance under bring your own hypervisor.
    • You must install and manage a hypervisor (KVM or Hyper-V) and launch your own VMs. This will ensure isolation, because all Oracle VMs are running on a dedicated bare metal server. The VMs can run Windows Server if they are licensed through MSDN (development use only).
  • BYOL on a dedicated host (KVM hypervisor only) is permitted for Microsoft Windows Server only if the licenses were purchased before October 1, 2019. Any licenses that were purchased or upgraded on or after October 1, 2019 for use on a dedicated host are not permitted on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Licensing - Other Microsoft Software

What other Microsoft applications can I bring to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure?

Any Microsoft Server licenses permitted on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure must be eligible according to the latest Microsoft Product Terms. It is your responsibility to verify that the licenses you bring to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure are eligible according to the latest Microsoft Product Terms. All products that are currently eligible for License Mobility and covered by Software Assurance are eligible for BYOL.

Can I bring my own SQL Server license to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure?

Yes, you can bring your own SQL Server license using License Mobility through Active Software Assurance. The following restrictions apply:

  • When you move your Microsoft SQL license using the license mobility process, the Microsoft Windows Server license is not included. Microsoft Windows Server licenses are not permitted to be moved under License Mobility. Windows Server operating systems must use the license issued by Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.
  • Perpetual licenses can be moved from on-premises or other cloud providers only after more than 90 days have passed since the last license move.
  • End-of-support versions are not supported on shared host virtual machines on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Follow the license mobility process to move your SQL Server license to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Can I use my MSDN license on Microsoft Windows Server on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure?

Yes, you can use your MSDN license on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure if you use the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure bare metal offering.

You can use virtual machines with your own MSDN license only if you bring your own hypervisor (KVM). You cannot use your MSDN license when using virtual machines on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Can I buy an MSDN subscription from Oracle Cloud Infrastructure?

No, Oracle does not sell MSDN subscriptions. Contact Microsoft or your Microsoft reseller.

Can I use an MSDN license for a production environment?

No, MSDN subscription licenses are for development, testing, or demonstration purposes only.

How can I remote access to a Windows Server instance on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure?

Follow the steps to connect to a Windows instance. Windows operating systems permit remote access for a maximum of two users using Remote Desktop Services (RDS) for Administration purposes.

RDS Client Access Licenses (CALs) are required for each user or device using Remote Desktop.

Does Oracle Cloud Infrastructure offer additional Remote Desktop Services licenses for applications running on Windows VMs?

No, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure does not offer Microsoft RDS (Remote Desktop Server) Subscriber Access Licenses (SALs). You can bring your own license (BYOL) and use your RDS Client Access Licenses (CALs) on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure bare metal or virtual machines only if you have active Software Assurance coverage and move those licenses using the license mobility process.

Can I bring my own RDS CALs if I want more than two users to access my Windows Server instance?

Yes, you can use your Remote Desktop Services (RDS) Client Access Licenses (CALs) on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure if you use the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure bare metal offering. In addition, you can use virtual machines with their own MSDN license if you bring your own hypervisor (KVM).

You can use your RDS CAL licenses on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure virtual machines only if you have active Software Assurance coverage and move your CALs using the license mobility process.

Can I bring my own System Center Management Licenses to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure?

You can bring Microsoft System Center server Management Licenses (server MLs) using the license mobility process. There are minimums to take into consideration with System Center Management License 2-core licenses and 16-core licenses. A virtual machine requires a minimum of 16 core licenses to be assigned to it, and more if the VM has more than 16 virtual cores.

System Center client Management Licenses (client MLs) are not eligible for license mobility and cannot be moved to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Other Windows Server Questions

Are there user data capabilities when launching Windows Server images?

Yes, Oracle-provided Windows images include cloudbase-init installed by default. You can use cloudbase-init to run PowerShell scripts, batch scripts, or other user data content on instance launch. Cloudbase-init is the equivalent of cloud-init on Linux-based images.

Can I use Windows Remote Management on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure?

Yes, Microsoft Windows Remote Management (WinRM) is enabled by default on Oracle-provided Windows images. WinRM enables you to remotely manage the operating system.

What is Microsoft end of support?

Microsoft establishes the support lifecycle policy for its products. When a product reaches the end of its support lifecycle, Microsoft no longer provides security updates for the product. You should upgrade to the latest version to remain secure.

Can I use Windows Server 2008 R2 even though it's past the end-of-support date?

Windows Server 2008 R2 reached the end of its support lifecycle on January 14, 2020. Although you can continue to import your own Windows 2008 R2 images and run your existing instances, you are at a higher risk of security issues, incompatibility, or failures. Oracle does not provide any operating system support for end-of-support operating systems.

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure does not provide platform images after the end-of-support date. However, you can import your own image and launch it on a shared host VM.

There are no restrictions to running end-of-support operating systems on bare metal machines on a dedicated host. You may bring your own image (BYOI) of a Windows Server 2008 R2 image, but you must import a custom OS image and run the image on a dedicated host.

Can I purchase Microsoft Extended Security Updates for end-of-support Windows OSs?

Yes, you can purchase Extended Security Updates (ESUs) from Microsoft for use on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

For VMs on shared infrastructure, you must have an enterprise agreement in place with Microsoft. With that agreement in place, you can purchase ESUs per virtual core matching the number of OCPUs per VM instance, with a minimum requirement of 16 virtual core licenses per VM instance.

For bare metal machines, you must have an enterprise agreement in place with Microsoft. With that agreement in place, you can purchase ESUs per physical core of the dedicated bare metal host.

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure cannot purchase ESUs on your behalf.

You are fully responsible for purchasing the correct number of ESUs for your instances. Oracle Cloud Infrastructure does not keep track of whether you have enough ESUs.