We need to move our SQL Server 2016 standard License. Our plan is to install SQL Server on the new box with the same license key , test the application / databases and then delete the old SQL server after few days

Here is my question can the migration be done in parallel without uninstalling the old server or we have to uninstall the old SQL server first then install the SQL server with the same key on another box.

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    I’m voting to close this question because licensing questions are off topic here. Contact Microsoft directly for information on what you can/can't do with your licenses. Mar 8, 2021 at 14:18

1 Answer 1


It is possible but you will have two SQL server in place with only half licenses needed.

More appropriate would be to use an evalutation license (180 days) and the upgrade it to the proper full licence.

To do this use the proper DVD/ISO, Launch SQL Server "setup.exe", select maintenance tab and select edition upgrade.

  • Thank you for your reply. So for example if I install the SQL License with the same key on another box that will not cause any issue to the original sql server that was installed before. Mar 8, 2021 at 14:16
  • Right, is up to you to keep the licenses aligned to your environment
    – MBuschi
    Mar 8, 2021 at 14:17
  • @MBuschi, having managed some SQL servers initially installed/configured by another DBA in the past, I wonder if it is possible to: 1) find out what actual license key was used to install given instance of SQL Server ? 2) is there a website where I can lookup the license key and see information - by whom this license key was bought, by which organization, and so on ? Mar 8, 2021 at 15:24
  • The licence key is delivered within the sql server DVD/ISO and is not related in any way to the real env. You don't need to go on with this search, count your licenses based on edition, core/CAL, HA-DR and so on. Just keep track of the numbers and match these numbers with your sql license asset. Then buy what is missing or decommission the surplus
    – MBuschi
    Mar 8, 2021 at 15:33

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