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AD RMS RAC count - explanation needed RRS feed

  • Question

  • MS hotline in my country can't answer this, because they say this is a "functionality" question and not a licensing, though it looks like tightly related to me. So they propose to open a tech support ticket and pay ~200$ for such a question. Yeah, right..

    So, we have AD RMS single server on Windows Server 2008 Ent. We have 200 CALs, and the employees number is close to 200, but never reaching. I mean active users. People are coming and leaving, some of them are on a long vacation (those accounts are disabled), so there are more than 200 accounts in AD if that's important. Usage of the RMS itself is even less than that. I would say it is about 30-50% of active users. Yet, when i hit the statistics report in AD RMS console, it shows me the number of currently certified accounts and today it shows 247. And this number was growing since the installation for years and it never went lower, just adding and adding. I have tried to reduce RAC validity period from 365 to 180 days, but this doesn't change anything and the number keeps growing. Well, maybe it just counts the total number of ever issued RACs. That's fine, though not very useful, but what is confusing me, is the description in the report window:

    "A separate client access license (CAL) is required for each RAC. This report can help you determine the number of required CALs for this AD RMS cluster."

    So, should i be worried about this? As i said we don't have more than 200 active users and even less using RMS at any time, so can this help me determine anything at all? What this number means and why it is not reducing over the time? Is it possible to remove inactive RACs? If it is not supposed to reduce, then how can i determine the usage of RMS?

    Wednesday, July 27, 2011 11:48 AM

Answers

  • The count shown in the Statistics report is not designed for licensing purposes. It is incremental and it will show all the RACs ever issued by the server, not the currently valid ones.

    The only ways to get a count of the RACs used in a certain period (e.g. one year) would be to either write a custom report from the RMS logging database (the DB tables are documented at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd772686(v=WS.10).aspx), use IIS logs or use some software inventory tool to check which of your users are actually using AD RMS.


    Monday, July 2, 2012 8:29 AM

All replies

  • Hi wrootw

    Seems like a licensing query to me :)

    Not a licensing expert, but from my understanding both user and device CAL options are available for RMS and Windows Server 2008 as per the documentation. So depends on how your licensing agreement is structured.

    The total user count report in AD RMS console is basically a historical count of a list of Windows user identities, so nothing too much to worry about. So essentially the count never reduces and the table is maintained in the Configuration DB.


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    Wednesday, July 27, 2011 12:36 PM
  • We have 200 User CALs, as theoretically every user should be able to use RMS if needed, not depending on device being used.

    I see it as a total user count too. But the description in that report is wrong then. Wonder how can i determine what the current usage is (in the time span of RAC validity period) and how many CALs i need additionally.

    Wednesday, July 27, 2011 12:57 PM
  • The count shown in the Statistics report is not designed for licensing purposes. It is incremental and it will show all the RACs ever issued by the server, not the currently valid ones.

    The only ways to get a count of the RACs used in a certain period (e.g. one year) would be to either write a custom report from the RMS logging database (the DB tables are documented at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd772686(v=WS.10).aspx), use IIS logs or use some software inventory tool to check which of your users are actually using AD RMS.


    Monday, July 2, 2012 8:29 AM
  • So, the description on the RAC report page is wrong. It can't help you to determine how many CALs you need. Also, i don't see date or time in the Request User or any other tables to get only active users say for this year. Though i don't think a customer should be digging sql or logs to know how much should he pay for MS software CALs.. "some inventory tool" could be one of the System Center products or only third party software?
    Monday, July 2, 2012 10:18 AM
  • So, i have found IIS logs, took the June ones. Merged them into one txt file, imported it to Excel (delimited by \ so i can have users in the second column), with LEFT function truncated entries to have identical multiple entries for every user (because in the log it has different numbers at the end of the entry), then copied unique values into a column and counted them with ROWS.

    I get 179 active users in June. We have 200 CAL's. Also we have 220 employees (this is constant number, though users are changing, some leaving, some coming). RMS RAC report shows 311. Wonder how MS would advertise how many CALs should we have :)

    Tuesday, July 3, 2012 1:13 PM