AWS License Manager

In the “Architecting on AWS Accelerated” course there is 1 slide on License Manager.

License Manager was launched in 2018.

From the documentation:

“AWS License Manager makes it easier to manage your software licenses from software vendors such as Microsoft, SAP, Oracle, and IBM across AWS and on-premises environments. AWS License Manager lets administrators create customized licensing rules that emulate the terms of their licensing agreements, and then enforces these rules when an instance of EC2 gets launched”

As a very simple test to get started, I created a custom AMI of a Windows Server instance. Note that in practice, you would have to check the license agreement with the vendor. As an example, some Windows products require dedicated hosts or dedicated instance tenancy, while others can be used with shared tenancy. These requirements can be emulated using License Manager rules.

To get started:

Launch a Windows Server t2.micro instance.

Create an Image of the instance.

In License Manager, Create a License Configuration. Give it a name.

For License Type, choose vCPU, Number of vCPUs 1, and tick Enforce license limit. Submit.

Select the License Configuration, Action, Associate AMI and associate it with your custom AMI.

Note that Licences Consumed is 0 out of 1.

Launch an instance using the custom image. I chose a t2.micro which has 1 vCPU.

As soon as it is running, in License manager the vCPUs in use is 1 out of 1.

Launch another. It fails as expected with a message:

To clean up:

  • Terminate the instance that was launched successfully
  • In Licence Manager, click on the License Manager Configuration, then the Associated AMIs tab and disassociate the AMI. Delete the License Configuration.

Of course there are a lot more features,  here are some additional ones:

  • License Manager simplifies the management of your software licenses that require Amazon EC2 Dedicated Hosts.
  • License Manager provides a mechanism to discover software running on existing EC2 instances using AWS Systems Manager
  • License Manager is integrated with Amazon EC2, AWS Systems Manager, AWS Organizations, AWS Service Catalog, and AWS Marketplace.