AWS License Manager: A Step-by-Step Guide 

Welcome to our AWS Certified Solutions Architect Professional tutorial series. In this tutorial, you’ll discover how to streamline your Bring Your Own License (BYOL) experience with dedicated host management capabilities in AWS License Manager. These new features enable you to leverage your own licenses on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) dedicated hosts while specifying management preferences and seamlessly launching instances on dedicated hosts.

what is AWS License Manager

Amazon Web Services (AWS) offers a range of options for utilizing licenses, and one of the most cost-effective approaches is the Bring Your Own License (BYOL) model. BYOL allows you to use your existing software licenses on AWS infrastructure. However, managing dedicated hosts and licenses can be challenging. AWS License Manager comes to the rescue by simplifying the process and ensuring you have a clear view of your license usage.

How to use AWS License Manager

Manual Host Allocation

Traditionally, allocating dedicated hosts for your EC2 instances required manual configuration through the EC2 Management Console. This approach involved specifying parameters like instance family and type, resulting in some management overhead. You had to allocate, manage host utilization levels, and release hosts when instances terminated. Additionally, planning was essential to determine the number of instances needed and allocate dedicated hosts accordingly.

AWS License Manager to the Rescue

AWS License Manager simplifies this process by allowing you to launch EC2 instances on dedicated hosts on-demand. It automates host allocation, making it easy to launch and terminate instances on dedicated hosts without worrying about the underlying management.

Dedicated Host License Configuration

To use AWS License Manager effectively, you must create a license configuration tailored for dedicated hosts. Follow these steps: This is dashboard

  1. Specify a name for the license configuration.
  2. Choose “cores” as the license allocation measurement for dedicated hosts.
  3. Optionally, set a license limit.
  4. Define the tenancy for the license configuration by selecting “dedicated host.”

This configuration ensures that instances launched with this license configuration will only run on dedicated hosts. You can view the associated AIM for a license

Dedicated Host Resource Group

To efficiently manage licenses for dedicated hosts, you should create a host resource group within AWS License Manager. A host resource group allows you to manage multiple dedicated hosts as a single entity. Here’s how:

  1. Specify a name for the host resource group.
  2. Review management settings (e.g., automatic allocation/release of hosts).
  3. Associate the license configurations created earlier (e.g., Windows Server and SQL Server licenses).

This host resource group will facilitate the allocation of dedicated hosts for your instances.

Deploying an Instance to a Dedicated Host

Now, let’s deploy an instance to a dedicated host using the configured license configurations and host resource group. Follow these steps:

  1. Select an Amazon Machine Image (AMI) that corresponds to your license requirements.
  2. Choose an instance type.
  3. Ensure that the tenancy is set to “dedicated host” for the license configurations associated with your AMI.
  4. Select the option to launch the instance into the host resource group you created.
  5. Review launch details, acknowledge, and launch the instance.

You’ll notice that AWS automatically allocates a dedicated host and places your instance on it. This streamlined process eliminates the need for manual host allocation.

Advanced Features

AWS License Manager offers advanced features like using EC2 launch templates for dedicated hosts and creating auto-scaling groups based on those templates. These features further simplify the management of dedicated hosts and license usage.


AWS License Manager empowers you to simplify your BYOL experience with dedicated host management capabilities. You can seamlessly leverage your licenses on EC2 dedicated hosts while enjoying the benefits of AWS’s simplicity, resiliency, and elasticity. With the automation provided by AWS License Manager, you can efficiently manage dedicated hosts and focus on optimizing your cloud infrastructure.

Incorporate these hands-on steps to simplify your BYOL experience and maximize the value of your licenses on AWS. Explore the possibilities and unleash the full potential of your cloud infrastructure

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