Integration and Dynamics NAV licensing

I think I must have been sleeping when the teacher talked about Dynamics NAV licensing in school. The description of the following NAV granules in the price list explanation is simply not clear enough for me.

1240 Microsoft Dynamics Employee Self Service User
1260 Microsoft Dynamics Light User
1280 Microsoft Dynamics Limited Device CAL
2510 External Connector

The only one that is more or less clear is the External Connector. As far as I see it, then this is the replacement for the old “Web User” granule?

But what if I a 3rd party application that reads files that have been exported from Navision. These XML files holdes inventory and order information. The 3rd party application then distributes the data to a mobile PDA device, where the person using the PDA can update the order information. After this the 3rd. party application creates some new files, which are picked up by NAV. I was told by someone that if the import/export from NAV was done manually, then there was no rules in regards to extra licensing in NAV, but if ran automated, like using the NAV scheduler, then additional NAV licensing would apply.

Who can cast more light on this? Is it true that if it is automated, then the customer must buy additional users (of the above types) and if it’s not automated, then no additional licensing applies? I can add that the PDA users are “named” and employees of the company. But if additional licensing applies, then are we here talking about the “Self Service Users” or “Light Users”? What they are doing on the PDA is basically just what they could have done directly in NAV, which makes it not different from the examples mentioned in the price list explanation (Time & Attendance, Travel & Expenses and Requisitions). But on the other hand then maybe the Limited Device CAL could apply?? Except that the device besides sending update information to NAV also can do many other things and as such is no “single purpose device”.

Well I’m basically really confused and if anyone who can help me, then it would be very appreciated.

I’m not sure I see the “External Connector” as a replacement for the “Web User”. Wasn’t the “Web User” a "per user license? Whereas the “External Connector” is an unlimited session license, but only for non-company users. I think the “Light User” is probably closer to the “Web User”. Unless of course, I’m totally not rememberign the “Web User” correctly.

But I agree, this all gets very confusing. It’s also seems when we finally start to understand it, thry change it again.

Then there’s the whole area of Windows, SQL, and other classic product licensing. Which is another areas I find somewhat misunderstood (or outright ignored).


My understanding of Microsoft stance with regards to licensing is that if you are taking data from within NAV and distributing this for editing purposes to another application, or device, then additional licensing is required.

In the example that you gave above, additional “Device CAL” licenses would be required, on a name user basis for each PDA that you intend to use the application for.

That said, Microsoft’s biggest challenge in this is the policing and the fairness of it all. Naturally they would not want to open NAV up with connectors to Excel (for example) and then lose license revenue because half of the work force has a very limited requirement to populate data in NAV, so does it via Excel, not a NAV user license.

There are a couple of white papers on partnersource

This one is explicitly about the light user scenarios

horrible area to deal with, but good luck




In a similar vein, the popular trends include data warehousing and business intelligence and extra reporting. Should some poor foole export the contents of the database to a data warehouse, manipulated it and analyze it and then prepare pretty analyses charts for web distribution to the board members and C-levels, should Microsoft expect that all those recipients be licensed? What if this is done by a SQL system at regular intervals? Where is the difference?

I am convinced the licensing model for Dynamics is poorly conceived, antiquated, far too rigid in concept, and totally unenforceable. Perhaps it has been so since the very first but in the past 20 years our integration and presentation technologies have far outmaneuvered the license czars at Dynamics. I look forward to new thinking, new blood, or the kind of external competition that forces change on dinosaurs.