Microsoft Flexible Virtualization Benefit – What you need to know

In Oct 2022, Microsoft revamped its licensing policies by integrating new options for outsourcing software management under the Flexible Virtualization Benefit (FVB). This feature expands the rights to deploy software on Authorized Outsourcers’ servers, whether shared or dedicated, as long as the customer holds subscription licenses or active Software Assurance. As per the terms governing software use in the customer’s data center, the same applies to software deployed through FVB.

An Authorized Outsourcer refers to an outsourcing entity that is not a Listed Provider or utilizing a Listed Provider as a data center provider. The FVB permits deployment to shared servers in the cloud, unlike License Mobility through Software Assurance, and encompasses all software, including products like Windows Server and desktop software, that License Mobility doesn’t cover. It also grants access to a broader customer base through multiple cloud providers, eliminating the requirement for the License Mobility Form.

Under the FVB, customers who license or deploy software by virtual machine can reassign licenses to different servers in the same server farm at any time. This license reassignment right applies to both on-premises and outsourced environments. Additionally, customers have access to disaster recovery rights and other rights granted through subscription licenses and Software Assurance coverage under the same conditions as the on-premises deployment.

Customers outsourcing to shared servers through Authorized Outsourcers are still accountable for ensuring compliance with the terms and conditions of their agreements with Microsoft. The license terms for outsourcing through FVB are documented in the Universal License Terms for all Software in the Product Terms, while hardware allocation and pricing are determined between the outsourcer and the customer.

Flexible Virtualization Benefit applied to SQL Server

Deployment of SQL Server on Authorized Outsourcers’ servers through FVB is subject to the same terms and conditions as an on-premises deployment, including the requirement to license by virtual machine.

With the FVB, customers can opt for shared or dedicated servers provided by an Authorized Outsourcer. The FVB enables seamless virtualization, granting the same rights and conditions as an on-premises deployment, allowing customers to optimize their IT infrastructure per their needs.

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Flexible Virtualization Benefit applied to Windows Server

The deployment of Windows Server on Authorized Outsourcers’ servers through FVB adheres to the same terms and conditions as an on-premises deployment, including the obligation to license by virtual machine.

The FVB allows customers to select between shared or dedicated servers offered by Authorized Outsourcers, facilitating virtualization and granting equivalent rights and terms as the on-premises deployment. Customers can optimize their IT infrastructure as per their needs with the FVB’s flexible virtualization capabilities.

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