CRM 2011 – Client Access License Types

I am studying for the CRM 2011 installation certification and I was reading about the topic of client access license types.

You will have probably heard of these before as CALS (Client Access License) and to access CRM you need a CAL.


There are three difference Client Access License Types

  • Full: Users configured with this license type can view and modify records (subject to their assigned security roles and privileges).
  • Limited: Users configured with this license type can only view records (subject to their assigned security roles and privileges). They cannot modify records.
  • Administrative: Users configured with this license type can administer the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Server but will not have access to the Sales, Marketing, or Service areas.

Interestingly the Administrative user does not use a license type, initially I thought, wow just make all users an Administrative user and it won’t cost you a bean but then after reading the description above properly I realised you can’t see any of the data.

Still it’s interesting to wonder how many people are using a license for someone who is only doing administrative tasks.

The Full and Limited CALs can be either a Device or User CAL.  I never really understood this and couldn’t understand why people would get Device CALs, so lets look at the definition of the a user and device CAL.

  • A user CAL enables a user to connect to CRM from any computer or other device
  • A device Cal enables any number of users to connect to CRM from the same computer or device.

There is not price difference between a device and user call so when would you use each different type.

You would use a device CAL if you had a lot of different users accessing CRM from the same computer, so if you have shift workers then you could buy device CALs and then each shift workers could use a different login but the same computer to access CRM.

If you have workers with multiple devices who might have a different computer at the office and at home then it would be better for this user to have a user cal where they can access CRM from multiple devices.

I think the user CAL might be relevant in the future when users can use tablets and phones to access CRM.


Another interesting point which you learn if you study for the Installation certification is disabled users no longer use a CAL and you can enable and disable users at any time.

To find out how many licences you are using then you can find this information in the Deployment manager.