In a statement, CERN said it had created a project known as Microsoft Alternatives or MAlt a year ago, anticipating that Microsoft would seek to earn more money from the software that the organisation uses.
"Recently, [Microsoft] has decided to revoke CERN’s academic status, a measure that took effect at the end of the previous contract in March 2019, replaced by a new contract based on user numbers, increasing the licence costs by more than a factor of 10," CERN's Emmanuel Ormancey said.
"Although CERN has negotiated a ramp-up profile over 10 years to give the necessary time to adapt, such costs are not sustainable."
"In parallel, some Skype for Business clients and analogue phones will migrate to a softphone telephony pilot," Ormancey said.
He said many other products and services were being worked on. "Evaluations of alternative solutions for various software packages used for IT core services, prototypes and pilots will emerge along the course of the next few years."
iTWire has sought comment from Microsoft as to why the company decided to charge CERN more for its software.