Windows Server 2019 downgrade rights

What are the Windows Server 2019 downgrade rights for Licensing

Windows Server has been released, and you are good to go upgrading to the new version of the Windows Server 2019. In fact, the support for Windows Server 2008 is ending quite soon. It is quite advisable to opt for Windows Server 2019 real quicker enough. But, what if you are not willing to upgrade to Windows Server 2019 as yet? Let us check the exact scenario when you want to do that.

What is Windows Server 2019 Downgrade Rights?

Almost every Microsoft software products come with the option of using an older version of the software. In essence, you will be permitted to use an older version of the operating system or software even when you have licensed to the latest version…

This is referred to as the Downgrade Rights. Besides, you also have the option of down edition rights. This will apply to the choice of running a lower edition than the one you are licensed to. The edition will refer to the version such standard, essentials, and datacentre.

You can combine both down edition and downgrade options. If you are looking for an example, let us say you have purchased a license for Windows Server 2019 Standard license. You can downgrade to Windows Server 2016 essentials edition.

Why downgrade or Down edition?

A valid question. Why do you need to downgrade or down edition? What benefits does it offer you? Now that you have licensed to a higher version of the operating system, why would you need to downgrade to a lower version?

Well, one of the best basic options here would be that it provides a simple functionality concerning the application migration needs. You can obtain a license for the higher level of the operating system, and then use the lower version until your system is ready for the new version. This can be quite helpful in those scenarios where your legacy applications have not been migrated to the latest technology standard.

Once your systems are ready for migration, you can easily migrate to the latest version. There is no need to purchase the license again.

The Eligibility Criteria for Downgrade Rights

The Downgrade and Down Edition options offered by the service can be summarised as here below. The tabled description should ideally provide a better understanding.

Windows Server 2019 DatacentreWindows Server 2019 Standard
Windows Server 2019Standard
Windows Server 2016Standard

Datacentre

Standard
Windows Server 2012 R2Standard

Datacentre

Standard

Microsoft has recently updated its Downgrade Commercial Licensing Brief. The document, however, does not provide you with an insight into the Windows Server 2019 options as yet. That should not mean the downgrade licensing options are not available for Windows Server 2019. The document is still to be updated, and we would assume the rules governing the downgrade options are similar to the previous versions.

The downgrade rights for the Windows Server versions are available for all your software options if you have obtained the licensing through the Commercial Licensing programs.

Please note that the licensing terms do not downgrade with your downgrade or down editions requests. We will explain it with an example.

Let us assume you have bought a licensing for Windows Server 2019 Datacentre. As can be seen from the above discussion, you are permitted to downgrade to the Windows Server 2016 Standard, Windows Server 2016 Essentials, and Windows Server 2016 Datacentre. You have the same downgrade options for Windows Server 2012 as well in accordance with the above table. But, that does not mean your licensing terms will conform to those in Windows Server 2016 or Windows Server 2012. The licensing terms will invariably be governed by the Windows Server 2019 itself.

Yet another essential point you would need to notice would include the compatibility of the Client Access License (CAL) or External Connector (EC). It should be noted that the CALs and EC will be applicable for the same version or one version below. This is referred to as N and N-1.

How to get the Downgrade Options for Windows Server 2019?

You can avail the downgrade or down edition options through the following options. Do note that your service provider may provide you with additional rights as well.

  • Along with the Server Purchase – If you are sure your applications are not yet ready for the migration to the latest version, you can consider asking downgrade rights when purchasing the server itself. Ideally speaking, the downgrade options will be made available through the installation disks in the form of a DVD or CD and a product key.
  • After the Server Purchase – You can also obtain a downgrade right after the server has been purchased. You can place a request to the vendor from where you received the server installation kit.

We assume that we should have provided you with a brief idea of the downgrade licensing options offered under the Widows Server 2019. Of course, the terms appear to be a little ambiguous and confusing. In any case, the ability to downgrade and down edition can be an excellent option.

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