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Educational Software Thread, The Licensing FAQ in Technical; I can't remember the exact rules on this so forgive me, but, from my dark past of being a copier/printer ...
  1. #76
    Duds's Avatar
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    I can't remember the exact rules on this so forgive me, but, from my dark past of being a copier/printer engineer.

    Yes, a network printer does require a CAL, this was certainly true with NT4 and W2K.

    Printers have come with Windows embedded controllers before, quite a few Ricoh (amoungst others) printer controllers were run on NT4. They were very unreliable and started to be a little better when they went to Unix.

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    Quote Originally Posted by User3204 View Post
    Nah. Not unless you have printers with windows installed on it.
    A CAL is for any device that uses services from the server. A (network) printer uses server services.

    As far as I know, it has nothing to do with having Windows, or any other operating system on the device itself (if a Linux/Mac machine used services from a Windows server it would still need a CAL - the CAL licences the device to use the server's services, it isn't licensing the device itself).

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    A much better explanation from SteveLaw there.

    As said, you do need a CAL for a network printer.

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    A printer is not a Client.

    It doesn't: attach to a server; download files; browse the internet;

    You do not need a CAL for a printer, you may, if you had windows installed on it, need a CAL to attach TO the printer, but this would be covered by whatever CAL you have for your real clients (IE DELL, HP, Linux, Windows XP). There MAY be some photocopiers that have the ability to store documents on a hard disk within the copier, and assuming it were on the network, it would still be a SERVER, not a CLIENT.

    CAL = Client Access License, the clue is the C in the acronym....

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    I suppose the difficulty is in deciding how the communication takes place. You do not need to have a CAL if a device is connected via parallel, serial or USB, but if you have a printer attached to a local machine which is then shared via a print server then the CAL is between the client machine and the server ... this is the example of a machine with an embedded OS I suppose (which may cover a number of printers with a MS based embedded OS on them that require joining to the domain and picking up settings from a server).

    The Server CAL is defined by MS but covers devices which access resources on the server ... not when information is sent from server to client in a blind format.

    Of course, there is a simple way to solve the matter ... Steve, can you email one of the LARs (Pugh, Ramesys, RM, etc) and see what they say?

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    DMcCoy's Avatar
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    Another interesting thought to add, the printer is not an authenticated device though, and it's the *server* that is connecting to the printer.

    However, as my printers are now authenticted to AD for their port authentication, they are using user accounts so I can see that I shall have to remember them when my renewal comes up.

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    So the real question to ask is 'does a connection from the server to a network attached device require a server CAL if no authentication takes place?'

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMcCoy View Post
    However, as my printers are now authenticted to AD for their port authentication, they are using user accounts so I can see that I shall have to remember them when my renewal comes up.
    Some of our printers email me when they run out of toner, so I guess those are using server-based resources and therefore need licences. The others are presumably okay though, since they are just taking files from the server and not using any resources as such?

    Here's a thought - my NAS box which is using AD authentication to control user permissions also needs a CAL, presumably. Also, does an Internet gateway router which is using the server for DNS need a licence?

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    SteveLaw's Avatar
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    Any networked printers are using at the very least the server's print spooler service, which is part of the server software, which is the requirement for a CAL. (Have emailed Ramesys)
    Last edited by SteveLaw; 15th December 2008 at 12:12 PM.

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    Rigghtt.. That's not good. I'm worried now, that all makes sense.

    I could understand having to license the Print server as a client towards the Printers, because, as far as I'm concerned, the printer is a server.
    If you use printer authentication.. hmmm... then this just confuses matters. I know for fact I have no CALs for any of my printers, I suspect very few people do. There's something within the CAL that refers to authentication/anonymous, so web sites don't need CALs per web user, I would assume if you didn't use authentication to the printer, then this would follow too.

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    I'm not sure what you mean specifically by "printer authentication" but if you are sharing a printer from the server than it will have some kind of authentication surely?

    Could I print from your printer from another network? If not, then isn't that the difference to the way web access works and therefore why web servers are exempt from CALs (and why printers possibly aren't)?

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    Except you can print across the internet via IIS (using IPP).

    The more we discuss this the less I think that a CAL should be required ('should be' and 'is' are different things remember!) I think we need to go back to defining what is client server technology.

    If we take the journey of a print job it should open a few things for discussion.

    A job sent from a desktop direct to the printer requires no CAL, no matter whether the printer is connected directly via parallel or USB or over the network. The printer is acting as the 'server'.

    When you connect add a printer to the 2003 server you add it in the same way ... the 2003 box (let's call it that to make it easier) is the client connecting to the printer as a server.

    You then share this printer ... but that does not change how the 2003 box talks to the printer.

    An XP client sends a job to the 2003 box ... it then spools the job and sends it to the printer ... it is almost two transactions ... client to server, client to server. The printer at no point requests a CAL requiring service from the 2003 box.

    So ... it is a bit strange really as to whether the printer is connecting to the server as a client device and so deserves a CAL. If someone can explain what service a printer would use on the 2003 box I would be interest ... remembering that authentication (permission to use the share on the 2003 box) is a connection between the XP box and the 2003 box, the printer does not care about authentication ... it will accept any job sent to it.

    Any ideas?

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    SteveLaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GrumbleDook View Post
    Except you can print across the internet via IIS (using IPP).
    I didn't mean to imply that it wasn't possible, just that the way most of us have our printers/print servers set-up they don't work the same, anonymous, non-domain, way that web servers work. Therefore an analogy with web servers isn't necessarily relevant.

    But despite all of the convoluted ways we can argue why it may or may not be required, the question was - "is a CAL required for a networked printer?", and NOT "do you think it should be?"

    I'm still waiting to hear from Ramesys, but then of course, I'm not a customer yet (although I was planning to be soon). Maybe someone else can try them, or RM? (Or are you all too scared to know the truth? )

    But if you want theoretical discussions on it, then ask this: Why would anyone prefer to use a server to share printers from and not just the nearest client? Why do we buy print-servers when we could just use a USB/parallel cable and the nearest client machine to network it? Does the server's software really make no difference to the operation of the printer across the network?
    Last edited by SteveLaw; 17th December 2008 at 11:02 PM.

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    Client Access Licensing
    Microsoft offers flexible, cost-effective options for licensing the Windows Server™ 2003 family of products. Similar to previous Windows Server licensing models, one server license is required for each copy of the server software installed. In addition, a Windows Server 2003 Client Access License (CAL) is required for each user or device (or combination of both) that accesses or uses the server software.

    Client Access Licensing Requirements
    Client access licensing requirements have been updated for Windows Server 2003. In previous Windows Server licensing models, Windows CALs were automatically triggered when particular server services were invoked. With Windows Server 2003, CALs are no longer triggered but are instead based on access and use. In other words, Windows CALs are required when accessing or using the server software. This holds true for all editions of Windows Server 2003, except Web Edition. Windows CALs are not required for Web Edition.

    Note the following general exception to Windows CAL requirements: Windows CALs are not required when access to the server software is unauthenticated and conducted through the Internet. Authenticated access is defined as an exchange of user or application credentials between the server software and a user or device. An example of this exception would be if unidentified users browsed your public Web site. Windows CALs would not be required for those users.


    Now, a print server will not usually request any services from a server, it is the Windows server itself that initiates all the communication with the printer.

    "A separate Windows CAL (of either type) is required for each user or device that accesses or uses the server software on any of your servers."

    Now, I for example will have to count my print servers but only because they are port authenticated by the switches which will be using IAS to authenticate the device.

    I really can't see how you can count a print server as a client if it isn't requesting any services from the server. Otherwise you are paying to use the printer twice, the windows client already has a license to access the print services on the server. The job is just spooled to the printer via tcp/ip rather than a usb/parallel cable.

  15. #90
    SteveLaw's Avatar
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    Okay, this answers it for SBS.

    Q. Does my printer or multi-function device require a CAL to connect to the Windows Small Business Server network?

    A. In most cases, no, your printer or multi-function device will not require the acquisition of a CAL. However, if your device authenticates to the domain it will require a CAL. The most common scenario where you would need a CAL is when you have a multi-function device that uploads scanned images, such as a pdf, to a server share using authentication.

    http://www.microsoft.com/sbs/en/us/licensing-faq.aspx

    But then I also found this:

    "A printer connected directly to the server does not require a license to print data from the server "

    http://download.microsoft.com/downlo...ltiplexing.doc

    Is "connected directly" opposed to "connected through the network"? Does that mean that while one doesn't need a license, the other does? Wishful interpretation and semantics again, no use to anyone. Also note that the same document defines the CAL requirement more widely -

    "Any user or device that accesses the server, files, or data or content provided by the server that is made available through an automated process requires a CAL."

    Again I'm not trying to argue the requirements, just find out. (BTW though, paying twice to use something is what CALs are all about...)
    Last edited by SteveLaw; 18th December 2008 at 07:24 AM.

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