Cisco Nexus 1000V License Configuration Guide, Release 4.2(1)SV2(1.1)
Overview
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Overview

Overview

This chapter contains the following sections:

Information About Licenses

One Cisco Nexus 1000V license is needed for each installed server CPU on every Virtual Ethernet Module (VEM) in the distributed architecture. There is no limit to the number of cores per CPU.

Figure 1. Cisco Nexus 1000V Distributed Architecture



Tier-based Licensing

Starting with Release 4.2(1)SV2(1.1), a tier-based licensing approach is adopted for the Cisco Nexus 1000V. The Cisco Nexus 1000V is shipped in two editions: Essential and Advanced. You can use the show switch edition command to display the current switch edition and other licensing information.

In the two tier licensing model that is supported with Release 4.2(1)SV2(1.1), the software image is the same for both editions. You can switch between the Essential edition and the Advanced edition at any time. The switch edition configuration is global which means that the entire switch (supervisor and all modules) is either in the Essential edition or the Advanced edition.

The licensing infrastructure, the location and content of license files, the types of licenses, and the process for obtaining licenses remain the same in Release 4.2(1)SV2(1.1). The license format has not changed and the existing licenses are not affected. The only change is to determine if the licenses are required for a module based on the configured switch edition. The Cisco Nexus 1000V software is licensed as NEXUS1000V_LAN_SERVICES_PKG. Cisco VSG and ASA 1000V services are packaged and licensed separately.

In a tier-based licensing approach, the licenses are checked out only if the switch edition is Advanced. In the Essential edition, the license checkout process is skipped. The modules automatically transition into the licensed state.

Essential Edition

When the Release 4.2(1)SV2(1.1) software is installed, the Essential edition is the default edition. When the switch is configured in the Essential edition, all the features (other than the advanced features) are available for free for an unlimited time. No licenses are required to operate the Essential edition. The switch edition configuration is global, not per module. In the Essential edition, all the modules are automatically licensed. You can use the command svs switch edition < essential | advanced > to move the switch from the Essential edition to the Advanced edition and from the Advanced edition to the Essential edition.

Advanced Edition

Licenses are required when you configure the switch edition as the Advanced edition. The advanced edition is the default edition when you upgrade the software from a pre-4.2(1)SV2(1.1) to 4.2(1)SV2(1.1) release.

You can configure and use the advanced features only in the advanced edition. Refer to the Advanced Features section for more information.

Advanced Features

The following advanced features require licenses:

  • Cisco TrustSec (CTS)
  • DHCP Snooping
  • IP Source Guard
  • Dynamic ARP Inspection

You can enable CTS by using the feature cts command. You can enable the DHCP Snooping, IP Source Guard, and Dynamic ARP Inspection (DAI) features by using the feature dhcp command.

Changing the edition

The change from Essential to Advanced edition can be done through the configuration. The switch edition can be changed to Advanced only if there are enough licenses available for all the modules present in the system.

Changing from Essential to Advanced Edition

You can change the switch edition from the Essential edition to the Advanced edition by checking out the licenses for all the modules present in the system. If the number of licenses required is more than the number of licenses available, an error message appears and the switch remains in the Essential edition. You must obtain additional licenses to operate the switch in the Advanced edition and activate the advanced features. The number of licenses available and the number of licenses required is shown in the error message.

Changing from the Advanced to the Essential Edition

You can change the switch edition from the Advanced edition to the Essential edition by checking the licenses used by all the modules back into the license pool because the Essential edition does not require any license to operate. If the license check-in process fails and a module still has licenses checked out, you must use the license transfer command to manually transfer these licenses back to the license pool. Before configuring the switch edition to Essential, you must disable all the advanced features by using the no feature command. The change to the Essential edition fails if any advanced feature is enabled.

Licensing and High Availability

The following describes licensing and high availability (HA) for the Cisco Nexus 1000V:

  • License installation is a nondisruptive process.
  • The license file is shared by both Virtual Supervisor Modules (VSMs) in an HA pair.
  • If your system has dual supervisors, the licensed software runs on both supervisor modules and provides failover protection.
  • Uninstalling a license file results in a service disruption.

Types of Licenses

This section includes the following topics:

  • Permanent Licenses
  • Default Licenses
  • Evaluation Licenses
  • Overdraft Licenses

Permanent Licenses

You can purchase permanent licenses for a fixed number of VEM CPU sockets. Permanent licenses do not expire. The number of licenses that you need is specified in the license file that you purchased.

When you upgrade to a new software release, all previously installed permanent licenses remain in effect.

When you purchase permanent licenses, make sure to request enough licenses to cover all of your installed CPUs in all of your VEMs. Before licenses are applied to a VEM, enough licenses must be available to cover all of the CPUs in that VEM. If you do not have enough licenses to cover all of the CPUs, no licenses are applied to the VEM.


Note


If your license does not have the capacity to cover all CPUs in a particular VEM, any licenses that could have been applied to that VEM are placed into a pool of available licenses on the VSM to be used as needed. The VEM remains unlicensed until sufficient licenses are available to cover all CPUs in the VEM.


After you purchase a license package, you then install the package on your VSM. The license package shown in the following table is an example of a license package name.

Table 1 License Package
License Package Description

NEXUS1000V_LAN_SERVICES_PKG

Virtual Ethernet Module (VEM)

After installing permanent licenses, if your evaluation licenses are no longer used, you can remove the evaluation license file from the pool.

Default Licenses

The number of default licenses that are pre-installed in your Cisco Nexus 1000V software is 512 and these licenses are valid for 60 days from the date of VSM installation. These default licenses allow you to use the Cisco Nexus 1000V Advanced Edition for a 60-day trial period before purchasing permanent licenses.

Default licenses are invalidated when one of the following occurs:

  • You install a permanent license file or an evaluation license file. Make sure your license file has enough capacity for all VEMs that are covered by your VSM. If not, since your default licenses will be invalidated, some of modules might become unlicensed.
  • 60 days after installation of the VSM.

Caution


Service Disruption—Even though virtual Ethernet (vEthernet) interfaces are not dropped on unlicensed VEMs, the following events might affect the vEthernet interfaces:

  • Any new vEthernet interfaces will not be brought up
  • vEthernet interfaces will remain down with a “VEM Unlicensed” reason if there is a reattach due to a configuration change, module flap, or a port flap.

If you need additional licenses to cover all VEM CPU sockets, you must obtain either permanent licenses or evaluation licenses from Cisco.com.

Evaluation Licenses

Evaluation licenses, valid for 60 days, are available from Cisco.com in packages of 512 licenses. Evaluation licenses allow you to evaluate the Cisco Nexus 1000V before purchasing permanent licenses.

The 60-day evaluation period starts when you install the evaluation license file. Unlike default licenses, an evaluation license is not invalidated when you install a permanent license.

Evaluation licenses expire when the license file reaches its expiration date. The validity period may vary and the expiration date is mentioned in the license file.


Caution


Service Disruption—Even though vEthernet interfaces are not dropped on unlicensed VEMs, the following events might affect the vEthernet interfaces:

  • Any new vEthernet interfaces will not be brought up
  • vEthernet interfaces will remain down with a “VEM Unlicensed” reason if there is a reattach due to a configuration change, module flap, or a port flap.

After installing permanent licenses, if your evaluation licenses are no longer used, you can remove them from the pool.

Overdraft Licenses

Overdraft licenses are used when the installed licenses are used up. Overdraft licenses can prevent a service disruption in the event you exceed the number of permanent or evaluation licenses specified in your license file. The number of overdraft licenses provided is based on the number of licenses ordered. if the number of licenses installed is less than or equal to 64, the number of overdraft licenses provided is 16. otherwise, it is 30% of the installed licenses. The expiration of overdraft licenses is tied up to the installation of the license.

Monitoring Licensing Usage

A system message similar to the following is generated when more licenses are being used than are installed. This message indicates that you should add more permanent licenses:

%LICMGR-2-LOG_LIC_USAGE: Feature NEXUS1000V_LAN_SERVICES_PKG is using 17 licenses, only 16 licenses are installed.

A system message similar to the following is generated every hour with a list of modules that are unlicensed:

%VEM_MGR_UNLICENSED_MODS: Modules 3-10 are not licensed, this will result in network connectivity issues. Please contact your Cisco account team or partner to purchase licenses. To activate your purchased licenses, click on www.cisco.com/go/license.

Pool of Available Licenses

If you have licenses that are unused, the VSM stores these unused licenses in a pool of available licenses. If your license does not have the capacity to cover all CPUs in a particular VEM, any licenses that could have been applied to that VEM are placed into the pool to be used as needed. If a VEM is no longer used, then its licenses are returned to the pool. Before you can uninstall a license, you must first return all licenses from its VEMs to the pool.

If any licensed VEM is offline during a renegotiation of licenses, its licenses are returned to the VSM license pool. Once the VEM comes back online, it again acquires its licenses from the VSM.

The following events trigger a renegotiation and synchronization of licenses between the VSM and its VEMs:

  • Clock change in the VSM system clock
  • VSM reload
  • Installing a new license file
  • Clearing an existing license file

During the license renegotiation process, system messages alert you if licenses are returned to the VSM pool for a VEM that is offline. This process requires no action on your part because the licenses are returned to the VEM when it comes back online.

Volatile Licenses

The volatile license feature automatically captures unused licenses when a VEM is taken out of service and adds them to the VSM license pool so that they can be reused by another VEM. When you enable this feature, any time a VEM is taken out of service, either automatically or manually, its licenses are returned to the VSM license pool.

If its licenses are nonvolatile, the VEM does not release them when taken out of service. When returned to service, the VEM resumes normal activity without further interruption.

The Volatile Licenses feature is disabled by default. That is, the licenses in VEMs are nonvolatile and are not released when a VEM is removed from service.


Caution


Service Disruption—Volatile licenses are removed from a VEM during a loss in connectivity and are not returned to the VEM when connectivity resumes. We recommend that volatile licenses remain disabled (the default), and that you transfer unused licenses using the Transferring Licenses to the License Pool procedure.