SBS and Licensing/Shutdowns

Deep 7 posted asking why it is that SBS shuts down the server "without warning" when we detect that you are using SBS in violation of the licensing.

In general, because SBS is such a deal (I mean, really, Windows + Exchange for <$1000 USD is pretty good) we needed to make sure people didn't take advantage of our good nature and try to use SBS as a regular server for a good sized company. The restrictions can be found at the SBS FAQ (

What we do is if we detect an SBS server in violation we send a warning message to all PCs in the domain that the server is not in compliance, and that we will shut down the server in one hour if the problem is not rectified (we also log an event in the event log).

I can only infer from Deep 7's post that one of the service he/she shut down was the Messenger service, which would explain why you didn't get any warning until the server actually shut down. We try to be as accomodating as possible when putting in hard licensing enforcement, but if you're using SBS for something that's specifically prohibited, there's not a lot I can do to help you.


Comments (7)
  1. David says:

    Uh, isn’t the Messenger Service to be shut down with XP SP2 by default? Then you guys need to think of something else, right?

  2. Deep 7 says:

    Is a web facing standalone web server withtin the sbs 2003 accepted uses?

  3. David R. Hibbeln says:

    Q: If one gets the warning notice, what does one do to prevent ShutDown? I hope the answer is that one starts to log off users…. Does the warning message advise how many users to log off to stay in compliance or does one need to log all off, then reboot server and then log folks back in?

    I am thinking of situation where Consultant comes into shop with 5 users / 5 cals. Brings up laptop and hits limit. Does not know the license count is only 5, was told it was 10…

    Will this cause the server to shut down in one hour?

  4. Dutch Open says:

    (1) I have serious questions if this practice is justified. Especially since licensing cannot be monitored at all and the issue of per user/per device is rather diffuse according to numerous discussions on the topic.

    If it ever happens to one of my clients I would tempted to make claims on it.

    (2) Am also very interessed on answer of last question.

    (3) Wouldnt it be enough just to automatically deny all login on in violence of the license ????

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