At Avnet, we help our customers turn their ideas into technology. We supply and deliver to contract manufacturers and original equipment manufacturers worldwide – whether they are entrepreneurial start-ups or global businesses looking for a competitive edge.
We support you with advice, product design and development expertise to be your true partner in getting your ideas into the real world, and to market more quickly, more cost effectively and more efficiently. Our experience means you can trust us to support you with all aspects of your project and product.
Our software team includes Microsoft software specialists and architects, who can advise on the optimal setup from a data/sensor level, to IoT gateways, to OEM devices, to on-premise server solutions all the way to the Cloud. Avnet can also support customers in better utilizing their data – which could for example help with predictive maintenance or in building new services and offerings. To support cloud technologies Avnet has built a unique “IoTConnect” Platform-as-a-Service solution on top of Microsoft Azure, which is recommended by Microsoft.
The Windows Embedded channel, or OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) channel sits alongside the other channels of Desktop, System builder and EPG divisions, and is focused on embedded and IoT devices and systems across industries such as Healthcare, Transportation, Industrial and Building Automation, Retail and others. In the Embedded channel, manufacturers have access to technology for 10 years without the need to buy the latest version and giving more longevity to embedded products. Importantly, extended support is included with all embedded licenses, giving Microsoft security updates and critical patching for 10 years.
Embedded licensing is designed specifically for OEMs to use Microsoft products on proprietary devices in dedicated scenarios. For commercial products like Server 2019 or Windows 10 Pro, the buyer is the end user, who has the direct relationship with Microsoft. Because Embedded licensing is only available for use on dedicated function devices and is not for general purpose computing, a COA (Certificate of Authenticity) sticker is required for each device or system and product keys are tied to the system, not the company or user.
Embedded operating systems are based on the Windows platform (Windows Enterprise for Windows 10 IoT) and contain all the features, security and additional controls not available in ordinary OS licenses. For example, it is possible to reduce the software footprint, control updates, lock-down ports, and enter “Kiosk mode” where only the business application and not windows underneath is accessible.
Embedded Servers all available in all versions (Standard, Enterprise, Datacenter etc.). In most cases the installation files are identical to standard versions. In addition, the Embedded license provides full access to additional features and controls in the server. In the Embedded channel, additional server licenses exist to fit your specific configuration and it is possible to buy a specific server product and licence for 15 years. This means you don’t have to buy the latest version and do subsequent downgrade actions, which is the only option in the commercial/mainstream channel.
Special CAL-less license
Avnet can also offer the new CAL-Less Server licenses, which are sold under special and beneficial license terms. CAL-less means that User and Device CALs are not required and this is often preferred with many of our customers and can mean that there are substantial savings on offer, especially where multiple licences are required.
Embedded SQL Servers
Embedded SQL Servers contain the same Embedded benefits including 10 years support and are often significantly cheaper than commercial licenses. Only active compute nodes in an appliance need an Embedded licence, compared to core based licenses when everything does.
Choosing Windows Embedded software gives you access to a number of benefits not available to regular (non-embedded) customers, such as:
More licence options and a more competitive pricing structure, ensuring the licence you buy is the most cost effective for your business.
The ability to build, sell and distribute product globally with the Microsoft Embedded licence installed.
More control over when updates are scheduled.
Additional software functionality and security options such as extra ports and users.
Extended product availability and support (typically 10years plus the option to extend by another 3-5 depending on location), helping you maximise your investment.
No need to buy the latest commercial licence and subsequently downgrade at an additional cost.
One unique key for OS Desktop
OEM Activation (OA) rights for Embedded Servers.
Worldwide shipment – this is not limited to one region as it is in other channels.
Access to extended vendor support such as Microsoft technical support.
Access to a detailed Avnet Azure reporting tool which is updated every 24 hours to display consumption and price.
A range of consultancy, training and extra support services not open to non-Embedded customers.
Even though they include all the above enhancements, Embedded licences are still typically better value than commercial licenses.
Embedded Microsoft Products available through Avnet
We can offer a full menu of Windows embedded Microsoft products.
How to qualify for Microsoft Embedded CLA Licencing
In order to be able to use an Embedded licence from Microsoft, you need to be approved by Microsoft as an Embedded OEM Manufacturer. With Avnet as your distributor, we can facilitate the CLA process for you. There is no cost associated with this and Avnet can usually process this in a matter of days on your behalf.
What we will need to know is:
Your CLA number if you have one (if you don’t have a CLA number, we can arrange this for you)
Your company name and address
The full name of the person who has responsibility in your company for the CLA agreement with Microsoft.
The email address of the above person.
What happens then is:
Your CLA contact will receive a link directly from Microsoft, with the CLA details and approval process.
Once approved by Microsoft, your company will be issued with an Embedded CLA number, which will allow you to purchase Embedded licences via Avnet.
Your company can buy embedded licenses individually and Avnet can also preinstall these as part of a Server, Workstation or laptop project as part of this proposal or new engagements going forward.
Once a Purchase Order has been received by Avnet for e.g. individual licenses, they are typically shipped within 1-2 business days and delivered within 14 days and the required location.
Compared to normal licenses, Embedded licenses have different part numbers. We can ensure you have access to instantly download and access the latest Microsoft releases via the OPK Portal for Embedded Customers. This ensures that your technical team can test and build master OS images at no cost. Licences only need to be purchased when the products go into production.
In most cases customers provide Avnet with a Server image, which is subsequently installed on the hardware. Avnet can also handle the image creation, which is subsequently signed off and approved by you as the OEM Manufacture and product owner.
Want to apply for an OEM Customer Licence Agreement (CLA)? Fill in this form and we will do the rest!
Applying for a CLA is quick and easy with Avnet. Fill in the boxes below and we will submit an application for you and will be in touch!
Avnet Software Consultancy Services
Softweb, a recent acquisition by Avnet is a dedicated team of software development consultants that can support customers in building master images. By understanding what you are looking to achieve, the team can help with upgrade strategies, language selection, and a whole host of other services. Whatever your needs, our team are here to help!
Training: Get a consultant on-site to sit together with your people and train them and at the same time build the images on the actual systems.
Typically 2-5 days – depending on the agreed agenda and actions.
(Some image work might be required subsequently by your own staff.)
Remote image build: We ship the equipment to Avnet’s location and a consultant builds an image remotely, which fits 100% on your specific device and requirements. In these cases, we will ask a series of detailed questions to ensure the image is according to your specifications.
Customer Image validation. We validate an existing image built by your team and suggest improvements if required. In all cases, the image will be signed back to you for your final verification and subsequent control.
We can also help with Avnet Embedded solutions, Deployment and Recovery and Image Maintenance.
Windows Embedded Licence Dates
To assist with planning, we have listed below critical dates when Microsoft Windows products go into End-of-support (when Microsoft stop providing fixes, updates and technical support) and End-of-licence, when the product is no longer available from Microsoft.
A huge advantage of Embedded licenced products is that they include extended Microsoft support for 10 years and are also able to receive critical patching and security updates in this period, extending the life of your embedded products.
Windows Embedded Licence Dates
End of Support
End of Licence
Windows CE 4.2
Windows CE 5.0
Windows CE 6.0
Windows CE 7.0
Windows XP FES
Windows XP WES
Windows XP POS
Windows 7 FES
Windows 7 WES
Windows 7 WS7E
Windows 7 WS7P
Windows 7 POS
Windows 8.1 FES
Windows 8.1 Industry
Windows 8 WES
Windows 10 IoT Ent LTSB 2015
Windows 10 IoT Ent LTSB 2016
Windows 10 IoT Ent LTSC 2019
Windows Server Operating Systems
End of Support
End of Life
Windows Server 2003
Windows Server 2003 R2
Windows Server® 2008 for Embedded Systems
Windows Server® 2008R2 for Embedded Systems
Windows Server 2012 for Embedded Systems
Windows Server 2012 R2 for Embedded Systems
Windows Server 2016 for Embedded Systems
Windows Server® IoT 2019
Microsoft® SQL Server® 2005 for Embedded Systems
SQL Server 2008 for Embedded Systems
SQL Server 2008 R2 for Embedded Systems
SQL Server 2012
SQL Server 2014 for Embedded Systems
SQL Server 2016 for Embedded Systems
SQL Server 2017 IoT
SQL Server 2019 IoT
Talk to the experts!
Let us know about your product or your challenge and our team will get in touch to discuss how we can help.