Customers can buy Cisco IOS Software in three ways:
Go to Ordering on Cisco.com for information about ordering Cisco products, including Cisco IOS Software.
There are two types of Feature Pack CDs:
An upgrade of the default release that you can order when purchasing security or voice bundles with new hardware. Cisco installs the release at the factory.
Any single release with any feature set except Cisco IOS IP and IP Base.
Customers license the right to use Cisco intellectual property (software) from Cisco. When you purchase hardware, you also purchase the software and the license to use it. Hardware arrives with licensed software. When you need a different feature set, you need to purchase the license for it. Upgrade features may be licensed separately, and special Cisco IOS features are licensed separately, either on a flat usage or per-seat basis, depending on the features.
When customers and partners download software from the Cisco.com Software Center, or e-mail downloaded software to someone, they are obligated to comply to the terms and conditions of the Cisco Software License Agreement.
Licensing Best Practices
Customers who have an active SMARTnet contract, and who have paid for a specific feature license (per device), are entitled to access and download the images for which they have paid.
A customer who has an active SMARTnet contract is entitled to unlimited maintenance releases from multiple Cisco IOS trains as long as a service contract has been purchased for the target equipment and the customer downloads only the licensed feature set.
An individual feature license must be purchased for the specific Cisco IOS Software image for each router on which the image will be used. For example, customers who have purchased a Cisco IOS Software IP image along with their Cisco equipment, and subsequently wish to use Cisco IOS Software IP Plus, must purchase a feature license for Cisco IOS Software IP Plus. The additional feature license will entitle them to use the Cisco IOS Software IP Plus image.