What is AWS License Manager? - AWS License Manager

What is AWS License Manager?

AWS License Manager is a service that makes it easier for you to manage your software licenses from software vendors (for example, Microsoft, SAP, Oracle, and IBM) centrally across AWS and your on-premises environments. This provides control and visibility into the usage of your licenses, enabling you to limit licensing overages and reduce the risk of non-compliance and misreporting.

As you build out your cloud infrastructure on AWS, you can save costs by using Bring Your Own License model (BYOL) opportunities. That is, you can re-purpose your existing license inventory for use with your cloud resources.

License Manager reduces the risk of licensing overages and penalties with inventory tracking that is tied directly into AWS services. With rule-based controls on the consumption of licenses, administrators can set hard or soft limits on new and existing cloud deployments. Based on these limits, License Manager helps stop non-compliant server usage before it happens.

License Manager's built-in dashboards provide ongoing visibility into license usage and assistance with vendor audits.

License Manager supports tracking any software that is licensed based on virtual cores (vCPUs), physical cores, sockets, or number of machines. This includes a variety of software products from Microsoft, IBM, SAP, Oracle, and other vendors.

With AWS License Manager, you can centrally track licenses and enforce limits across multiple Regions, by maintaining a count of all the checked out entitlements. License Manager also tracks the end-user identity and the underlying resource identifier, if available, associated with each check out, along with the check-out time. This time-series data can be tracked to the ISV through CloudWatch metrics and events. ISVs can use this data for analytics, auditing, and other similar purposes.

AWS License Manager is integrated with AWS Marketplace and AWS Data Exchange, and with the following AWS services: AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM), AWS Organizations, Service Quotas, AWS CloudFormation, AWS resource tagging, and AWS X-Ray.

Managed Entitlements

With License Manager, a license administrator can distribute, activate, and track software licenses across accounts and throughout an organization.

Independent software vendors (ISVs) can use AWS License Manager to manage and distribute software licenses and data to end-users by means of managed entitlements. As an issuer, you can track the usage of your seller-issued licenses centrally using the License Manager dashboard. ISVs selling through AWS Marketplace benefit from automatic license creation and distribution as a part of the transaction workflow. ISVs can also use License Manager to create license keys and activate licenses for customers without an AWS account.

License Manager uses open, secure, industry standards for representing licenses and allows customers to cryptographically verify their authenticity. License Manager supports a variety of different licensing models including perpetual licenses, floating licenses, subscription licenses, and usage-based licenses. If you have licenses that must be node-locked, License Manager provides mechanisms to consume your licenses in that way.

You can create licenses in AWS License Manager and distribute them to end-users using an IAM identity or through digitally signed tokens generated by AWS License Manager. End-users using AWS can further redistribute the license entitlements to AWS identities in their respective organizations. End-users with distributed entitlements can check out and check in the required entitlements from that license through your software integration with AWS License Manager. Each license check out specifies the entitlements, the associated quantity, and check-out time period such as checking out 10 admin-users for 1 hour. This check out can be performed based on the underlying IAM identity for the distributed license or based on the long-lived tokens generated by AWS License Manager through the AWS License Manager service.

License Manager use cases

The following are examples of the functionality provided by License Manager for various use cases:

License Manager is integrated with Amazon EC2, Amazon RDS, AWS Marketplace, AWS Systems Manager, and AWS Organizations.

The Amazon EC2 integration allows you to track licenses for the following resources and enforce licensing rules throughout the resource lifecycle:

When you use License Manager along with AWS Systems Manager, you can manage licenses on physical or virtual servers hosted outside of AWS. You can use License Manager with AWS Organizations to manage all of your organizational accounts centrally.

Additionally, you can govern the use of licenses purchased from AWS Marketplace, AWS Data Exchange, or directly from a seller who integrated their software with AWS License Manager. You can use AWS License Manager to distribute rights of use, known as entitlements, to specific AWS accounts.

License Manager integrates with Amazon RDS for Oracle and Amazon RDS for Db2 vCPU-based BYOL licenses. With this integration, you gain visibility into vCPU usage for your RDS for Oracle and RDS for Db2 DB instances. You can use this data to calculate the number of licenses consumed based on your licensing terms with the database management system vendors. For more information, see the following associated links in the Amazon RDS User Guide.