A first look at IBM Container Licenses

IBM recently announced new IBM Container Licenses with a new measurement tool: IBM License Service. These new Container Licenses are meant for IBM Certified Containers and IBM Cloud Paks running on Kubernetes orchestration technology.

TIP #59 October 2020: What are IBM Containers, and what are the prerequisites for using IBM Container licenses? In this tip we tell you more about it.

IBM Containers and Cloud Paks explained:

  • Containers are lightweight and portable executable units (images) of software in which application code is packaged, along with its libraries and dependencies.
  • IBM Cloud Paks are integrated software solutions built on the Red Hat open hybrid cloud platform, enabling build once and deploy anywhere.

For both options, customers must acquire entitlements equal to the license requirements measured by the IBM License Service.

Prerequisites for using IBM Container licenses:

For Passport Advantage 10 or older, customers require a PA container licensing transaction addendum stating container licensing terms. This addendum includes guidance on two subjects:

  • Compliance & Reporting
  • Use of the IBM License Service

As you can see, container licensing differs from Sub-Capacity licensing. Container licensing with IBM License Service is an alternative to IBM Sub-capacity with ILMT.

Let’s take a closer look at the IBM License Service tool:

The IBM License Service is the only accepted tool for license usage tracking and reporting container licensing. It is:

  • contained in each IBM Cloud Pak’s services,
  • available for download for use in IBM Certified Containers, by contacting talk2sam@us.ibm.com.

Customers should verify whether IBM License Service is installed and configured correctly when deploying their containerised programs.

Available vCPU capacity will be polled at frequent intervals (≤ 30 minutes) throughout each day and processed, where the maximum value from intraday calculations determine daily available vCPU capacity.

It is essential that you use and maintain the license usage tracking tool (IBM License Service) included in each of the Cloud Pak services. This service will track license usage and determine your required entitlement needs.