Tracking license usage of stand-alone IBM® Containerized Software

You can deploy License Service on any Kubernetes cluster without an IBM Cloud Pak to measure and track license usage of your IBM Containerized Software.

You can use the ibm-licensing-operator to install License Service on any Kubernetes cluster and collect information about license usage of IBM containerized products. You can retrieve license usage data through a dedicated API call and generate an audit snapshot on demand.


To deploy and configure License Service, you require the ibm-licensing-operator that is hosted on GitHub. For more information, see IBM licensing operator repository in GitHub.

Note: License Service is integrated into IBM Cloud Paks. You do not have to deploy it to clusters where IBM Cloud Paks are deployed. License Service should already be there and collect usage data for the IBM containerized products that are enabled for reporting.

Follow the installation guidelines to deploy License Service to a cluster where IBM Cloud Paks are not deployed. For more information, see Installing License Service.

About License Service

License Service is required for monitoring and measuring license usage of the IBM Containerized Software in accord with the pricing rule for containerized environments. Manual license measurements are not allowed.

License Service collects and measures the license usage of your products at the cluster level. You can retrieve this data upon request for monitoring and compliance. You can also retrieve an audit snapshot of the data that is audit evidence.

License Service:

Using License Service for container licensing

Currently, supported core-based metrics for container licensing are Processor Value Unit (PVU) and Virtual Processor Core (VPC). For core license metrics, you are obliged to use License Service and periodically generate an audit snapshot to fulfill container licensing requirements.

For more information about core and noncore metrics that are collected by License Service, see Reported metrics.

License Service collects data that is required for compliance and audit purposes. With License Service, you can retrieve an audit snapshot per cluster without any configuration.

At this point, it is required to generate an audit snapshot at least once a quarter for the last 90 days, and to store it for 2 years in a location from which it could be retrieved and delivered to auditors.

Note, that the requirements might change over time. You should always make sure to follow the latest requirements that are posted on Passport Advantage.

For more information, see the following resources:

Best practices