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Help Me Choose

Help Me Choose: Server Operating Systems

 
Windows Server 2012 R2 Foundation is an economical, general purpose server for physical computing environments only. It provides customers with a Windows Server experience for up to 15 users. The licensing for Foundation will continue to be a server model with no CAL requirements.

Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials is a cloud connected first server, ideal for small businesses with up to 25 users. It provides customers with the flexibility to have email in the cloud, run line of business applications, or run email on premises. The licensing for Essentials will continue to be a server model with no CAL requirements.

Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard is ideal for physical computing or lightly virtualized environments. It now provides customers with an additional virtual instance for a total of 2 virtual instances and all of the features, just like Datacenter edition. The licensing for Standard will change and adopt to the same model as Datacenter, of a processor plus CAL, where the license will cover up to two physical processors on a server.

Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter will continue to be the ideal edition for highly virtualized private and hybrid cloud environments. It provides customers with unlimited virtualization rights and all of the features of the product. The licensing for Datacenter will continue to follow a processor plus CAL model, however now, each license will cover up to two physical processors on a server.

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Basic solution that includes shared files, printers and remote access for 15 users or less.Windows Server 2012 R2 Foundation
A solution for small business environments for 25 users or less. Includes automatic daily backups, file and document access from anywhere, easy access to cloud-based services, and a simpler interface for easy management. No virtualization rights.Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials
Full Windows Server functionality with 2 virtual instances (or more with Additional Licenses) for an unlimited number of users. Ideal for low density or nonvirtualized environments.Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard
Full Windows Server functionality with unlimited virtual instances for an unlimited number of users. Ideal for highly virtualized private and hybrid cloud environments.Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter