I am trying to set up a customer portal in Sharepoint 2013. The goal is for the customer to come on the site and check the Order Status, Incident Report and to view Invoices. I would like to do this without having to pay for extra licenses. What is the easiest and if possible the cheapest way to do this?

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    You don't need CALs' for external users. I couldn't find the 2013 licensing page but this is the 2016: products.office.com/en-us/sharepoint/…
    – Bunzab
    Jun 28, 2017 at 12:51
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    @Bunzab add your comment as an answer it's a correct one, but note “External Users” means users that are neither your or your affiliates’ employees, nor your or your affiliates’ onsite contractors or onsite agents. for more details degdigital.com/insights/sharepoint-2013-licensing-for-dummies Jun 28, 2017 at 12:58
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    The "you don't need CALs" highly depends on the mode of authentication. If they're Active Directory users, you absolutely need Windows CALs (or a Windows External Connector). Of course, as stated, you don't need SharePoint CALs.
    – user6024
    Jun 28, 2017 at 14:36

1 Answer 1


I'm really hesitant to give licensing advice on anything MS related as it is a minefield of confusion. See @M.Quassas comment for more specific details as to what an external user is but I also found more specifics for 2013 here

Please ensure you consult with your MS partner before making any decisions.

  • Agree to Bunzab. Ask your Licensing-Partner for help on this topic. If you ask 2 partners, you will get 5 answers. My tactic: Ask as lot of partners as you can and save the best answer for you ;-)
    – MHeld
    Jun 28, 2017 at 19:50

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