Volume Licensing: Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012

Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 is the complete ERP solution for enterprises that provides a purpose-built foundation across five industries, along with comprehensive, core ERP functionality for financial, human resources, and operations management. It empowers your people to anticipate and embrace change so that your business can thrive. All of this is packaged in a single global solution, giving you rapid time to value. The content on this website provides an overview of your key licensing options.

Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012
What's newHow to buyBuyer's GuideFAQ

What's new in Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012

Microsoft is committed to continually delivering powerful, agile, easy-to-use solutions that add value across your organization, today and tomorrow. The release of Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 is a delivery on this commitment. With more than 1,000 new features and enhancements across core enterprise resource planning (ERP) and industry capabilities, Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 can help provide more business value faster, enable agility and insight in your organization, and help drive faster adoption, broader usage, and easier maintenance and upgrade through a continued emphasis on simplicity.

Couple this with a constant focus on pervasive interoperability—the natural interaction of ERP systems with Microsoft business productivity applications and IT infrastructure technology—and the release will help sharpen your competitive edge and empower your people to anticipate and embrace change.

For more information, please refer to the Dynamics AX Licensing brochure (PDF, 3.53 MB).

How to buy Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012

For qualifying customers, Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 is available to license under the familiar Server/Client Access License (CAL) model through the Enterprise Agreement or Enrollment for Education Solutions volume licensing programs. Under this model, the server(s) running the solution require a Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Server license, and users or devices accessing the server(s) require a CAL.

Server/Client Access License (CAL) licensing model

Licensing a server to run the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 solution

Before you run any instance of the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Server software under a Server license, you must assign that license to one of your servers. That server is the licensed server for that particular license. You may assign other Server licenses to the same server, but you may not assign the same license to more than one server. A hardware partition or blade is considered a separate server.

For each Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Server license that you assign, you may run, at any one time, one instance of the server software in one physical or virtual operating system environment (OSE) on the licensed server. The Server license includes one application object server. If you want additional application object servers or additional server instances, you may purchase additional Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Server licenses.

Licensing access to the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 solution

Access to the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 solution’s functionality is licensed through CALs. Any time a user directly or indirectly accesses the solution functionality, that user must be licensed by a User CAL (which licenses a specific user for access via multiple devices) or the device the user is using must be licensed by a Device CAL (which licenses access through the licensed device by any user).

There are four available CAL levels for Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012, each of which grants an increasingly wider spectrum of use rights, inclusive of the rights granted for any lower-level CAL. This gives customers the flexibility to license the solution based on how their users will use and derive value from the solution.

As you progress from the lowest level CAL (Self Serve) to the highest level (Enterprise), the user is licensed to use the solution in ways that will provide more value. Customers therefore have the flexibility to decide the level of investment to make based upon the functions that a certain group of users is performing on behalf of the organization.

Licensing Access to the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Solution

Access by external users

External (third-party) users do not require licenses. Third-party users are users who are not either (i) your or your affiliates’ employees, or (ii) your or your affiliates’ contractors or agents. In this sense, the definition of third-party users does not extend to onsite contractors, vendors, and users performing business processes on your behalf.


Multiplexing is the use of hardware or software to reduce the number of devices or individuals that access or use the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 solution by pooling connections. Multiplexing does not reduce the number of licenses required to access the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 solution. Any user that accesses the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012—whether directly or indirectly—must be properly licensed.

Note: 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.

Multiplexing does not reduce the number of licenses needed.

Licensing additional software

Licenses for additional software that may be required for the solution, such as Windows Server, Microsoft SQL Server, and Microsoft SharePoint Server and their corresponding CALs, are not included with the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 licenses. They must be acquired separately in accordance with licensing models for those products. These licenses may be purchased through traditional volume licensing channels.

Refer to the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R3 licensing guide (PDF, 2.33 MB) for details.

Licensing Additional Software