A Processor Value Unit (PVU) is a unit of measure used to differentiate licensing of software on distributed processor technologies (defined by Processor Vendor, Brand, Type and Model Number).

Full versus Sub-capacity

Licensees can deploy Eligible Programs using either Full Capacity licensing or Virtualization Capacity (Sub-Capacity) licensing.

  • If using Full Capacity licensing, the Licensee must obtain Processor Value Unit (PVU) entitlements sufficient to cover all activated processor cores in the physical hardware environment made available to or managed by the Program, except for those servers from which the Program has been permanently removed. An Activated processor core is a processor core that is available for use in a physical or virtual server, regardless of whether the capacity of the processor core can be or is limited through virtualization technologies, operating system commands, BIOS settings, or similar restrictions.
  • If using Sub-Capacity licensing, according to the Passport Advantage Sub-Capacity Licensing Terms the Licensee must obtain entitlements sufficient to cover all activated processor cores made available to or managed by the Program, as defined according to the Virtualization Capacity License Counting Rules.

Processor Value Units (PVUs)

A Processor Value Unit (PVU) is a unit of measure by which the Program can be licensed. The number of PVU entitlements required is based on the processor technology (defined within the PVU Tables below by Processor Vendor, Brand, Type and Model Number) and by the number of processors made available to the Program. IBM defines a processor, for the purpose of PVU-based licensing, to be each processor core on a chip (socket). A dual-core processor chip, for example, has two processor cores.

PVU tables

The tables below list existing generally available processor technologies only, as of the published date. PVU requirements for future processor technologies may differ. For help identifying your Processor Model Number, check the Processor Model Number Discovery Guide (US}.

PVU Table per Core (section 1 of 2 - RISC and System z)

Processor
Vendor
Processor
Name
Server model numbers Maximum number
of sockets per server
Proc.
Model
Number
PVUs per Core
IBM POWER Systems cores running Linux OS 7R1, 7R2, 7R4,
POWER IFL, p24L,
S812L, S812LC,
S822L,S822LC, S824L, AC922, L922
Any POWER System core running Linux
All All 70
POWER9 E980 >4 All 120
E950 4 All 100
H922, H924, S914, S922, S924 2  All 70
POWER8 870, 880 > 4 All 120
E850 4 All 100

S812, S814, S822, S824
2 All 70
POWER7 4 770, 780, 795 > 4 All 120
750, 755, 760, 775, PS704, p460, Power ESE 4 All 100
PS700-703,
710-740, p260, p270
2 All 70
POWER6 550, 560, 570,
575, 595
All All 120
520,
JS12, JS22,
JS23, JS43
All All 80
POWER5,
POWER4
All All All 100
POWER5 QCM All All All 50
z15 Model T01, LinuxOne  III LT1, z14, Models M01-M05 and L01-L05, Emperor, Emperor II, z13, zEC12, z196,
System z10 1,5
All All All 120
z15 Model T02, LinuxOne III LT2, z14 Model ZR1/LR1, z13s, Rockhopper, Rockhopper II,
zBC12, z114,
System z9,
z990, S/390 1,2,6
All All All 100
 PowerPC 970 All All All 50
 PowerXCellTM,
Cell/B.E.TM 8i3
PowerXCeltm All All All 30
Any Any single-core All All All 100
Processor Technologies
Processor Brand
Processor
Vendor
Processor
Name
Server model numbers Maximum number
of sockets per server
Proc. model numbers PVUs per core
HP/Intel® Itanium® All All All 100
PA-RISC All All All 100
Oracle / Sun / Fujitsu SPARC64 VI, VII, X, X+. XII All All All 100
UltraSPARC IV All All All 100
SPARC M5 / M6 All All All 120
SPARC M7 T7-4 4 All 100
SPARC T4/T5/M7/S7/M8 T5-8, M7-8, M7-16, M8-8 >4 All 120
T4-4, T5-4, T7-4, T8-4 4 All 100
T4-1, T4-1B,
T4-2, T5-1B, T5-2, T7-1, T7-2, S7-2, S7-2L, T8-1, T8-2
2 All 70
SPARC T3 All All All 70
UltraSPARC T2 All All All 50
UltraSPARC T1 All All All 30
Any Any single-core All All All 100

*Requirements as of publish date: 01 June  2020

Notes:

  1. Each Integrated Facility for Linux (IFL) or Central Processor (CP) engine is equivalent to 1 core.
  2. Refers to System z9, eServer zSeries, or System/390 servers.
  3. Entitlements required for Power Processor Element (PPE) cores only.
  4. The PVU requirement for the POWER7/7+ processor technology is dependent on the maximum possible number of sockets on the server. NOTE: Power 7 Refers to Power 7/7+ 5
  5. z196 refers to IBM zEnterprise 196, zEC12 refers to IBM zEnterprise EC12.
  6. z114 refers to IBM zEnterprise 114.

PVU Table per Core (section 2 of 2 - x86)

Processor
Vendor
Processor
Name
Proc. model
number1
Maximum sockets per server PVUs per Core
Intel® Xeon®2

All Xeon Processor Models including Xeon Scalable (Platinum, Gold, Silver, Bronze) and excluding those model numbers listed below


2
4
>4

70
100
120
Xeon® 3000 to 3399
5000 to 5499
7000 to 7499
All 50
Core® All i3, i5, i7 All 70
AMD Opteron All All 50
AMD EPYC All All 70
Any Any single-core All All 100

*Requirements as of publish date: 26 February 2020

Notes:

  1. IBM offers Software for both Intel and AMD processors. Intel refers to its processors by "Processor Number" and AMD by "Model Number". The processor model can be preceded by a letter. For example, 'x5365 refers to '5365', which is included in the table within the '5000 to 5499' range. 
  2. The PVU requirement for the Intel processor technology indicated is dependent on the maximum number of sockets on the server. If sockets on two or more servers are connected to form a Symmetric Multiprocessing (SMP) Server, the maximum number of sockets per server increases. See single server examples and two or more servers example below.

Single server examples:

Two or more servers with connected sockets example:

PVU Calculator

Use the Processor Value Unit calculator to determine required number of pVUs based on your environment.

PVU FAQs

See answers to some of the most frequently asked PVU questions.

PVU Licensing for IBM Netezza and PureData System Appliances

Learn how to calculate the required number of PVU entitlements for Programs that run on or manage a Netezza or PureData System appliance.