Core licenses verse Cal licenses for Microsoft SQL Server

  • 23 March 2021
  • 2 replies

Userlevel 2

Does anyone have a recommendation toward when to license Microsoft SQL Server per Cal verse per Core for a PCS Acumatica system.  This customer would only be hosting the Acumatica database so I would think that one Cal per instance of Acumatica would be all that is needed.  This assumes that users connect to the Acumatica web server and the server consumes one Cal as it connects to SQL.  Can someone confirm this theory or make a recommendation.  What other factors should we concider.




Best answer by stevenhouglum 23 March 2021, 22:15

View original

2 replies

Userlevel 2


First of all let’s be sure we’re on the same page to reason out an answer for you. 

What is the difference between per core and server Cal?

Core means you license all the cores on the box/VM but gives you unlimited usersServer/CAL means you have a license for every user/device connecting and using resources.

To be clear, there is NO multiplexing so though it appears like one connection by the webserver to the dB, ALL users connecting through the web server need a Cal for both Windows and SQL Server. (see attached document from Microsoft.)

With that definition in mind from Microsoft, it would make the most sense to license per Core for a PCS system. Especially since Acumatica doesn’t license per user but per transaction volumes. Also, you can slice and dice a physical server using VMs and assign the Cores to the VM that is sized to customers transaction volume. This way the customers' cost is proportional to their transactions and the license from Acumatica and Microsoft is also since Microsoft will want a license based on the Cores being used in the VM, Cores determined by Acumatica’s needs to service the transaction volume.

A Per Cal approach is possible, but you would need to track users and API connections and that creates a big administrative burden. The ONLY reason I would even consider this is if the pricing was overall less by a substantial margin and that the expectation for the number of users is flat. There are third-party resources out there to assist in admin.

In Summary, I would choose per Core because it mirrors the Acumatica model (not per user) and can be sized (cores) to the Acumatica requirements to handle the expected transaction volume. It’s a done and out decision until the customer needs to size up in which both the license for Acumatica and Microsoft would need to be revisited.



Userlevel 2

Thanks for the quick response this is exactly what I need.


About Acumatica ERP system
Acumatica Cloud ERP provides the best business management solution for transforming your company to thrive in the new digital economy. Built on a future-proof platform with open architecture for rapid integrations, scalability, and ease of use, Acumatica delivers unparalleled value to small and midmarket organizations. Connected Business. Delivered.
© 2008 — 2024  Acumatica, Inc. All rights reserved