You often hear an “expert” talk or write about dual access rights for the cloud. What does this really mean? Am I really getting a two-for one deal when buying Office 365? In this article, we will review two deployment options – Partner Hosted scenario and an On-Premise scenario and explain what you will need to purchase.
The question of the day – can you leverage your Office 365 licenses on premise? Short answer…yes, but don’t forget about the server license! Let’s provide an example to illustrate how this will work.
In traditional licensing, a customer who owns an Exchange Server license must also buy a CAL (Client Access License) to access that Server. Let’s say their business expands and they add new employees. For the new employees, they decided to test the waters and move them to the cloud using Office 365 E3. For the Online Service, it doesn’t matter how they bought Office 365, it could be though CSP or another program, the use rights remain the same; the E3 licenses have the CAL equivalency to access their on premise Exchange Server. Secondly, in regard to the version of the server they can access with the CAL, the Product Terms states that users can access current OR previous versions of the Server. One last statement, make sure you have the right Office 365 User Server License equivalent. As an example, if you have Exchange Enterprise, the CAL equivalent is Exchange Plan 2. Here is a good chart from Technet highlighting the plan equivalent to an on-premise CAL.
If you decide to buy Office 365 (E3 as an example) and for whatever reason (security, etc) you decided to leverage another 3rd party service provider to host the solution on your behalf, you can still leverage your Office 365 USL licenses the same way as if you were deploying on-premise. In this scenario, you are not deploying in your own datacenter, but using a third-party. Let me provide an example:
You purchased Office 365 E3 for every user at your company. Your CEO has a good buddy who owns a small hosting company down the street. He decides he doesn’t want to use Microsoft’s data centers, he would rather give the business to his buddy. You realize that the USL licenses that you purchased have the equivalency of an on-premise CAL. All you need to do is buy the server licenses the same as if you were deploying out of your own datacenter. The hosting provider, can now deploy your solution from his datacenter in a shared hardware, dedicated VM environment. In other words, he can leverage License Mobility with Software Assurance benefit.
In either scenario, it does not matter how you buy Office 365, the key to remember is having a USL license by itself doesn’t grant you the dual access right, but owning a USL license and server does.
Thanks for reading,