NetBackup Appliance version 5.1.1 and later releases Licensing Facts, How To, and Troubleshooting

Article: 100055409
Last Published: 2023-06-05
Ratings: 4 4
Product(s): Appliances


Starting with NetBackup Appliance version 5.1.1 and impacting all later releases, customers will need to install a software license key. This key is specific to their Appliance software entitlement and is separate from their NetBackup software entitlement. This only applies to the current shipping models: 5250 and 5350. Customers will be able to upgrade successfully without the key, but they will get notifications post upgrade reminding them to install a key. 

  • For the 5x40’s, which do not require a license key, customers can install a Hotfix to remove the notification alerts. Details about the Hotfix are available at the following: 
  • For the 5x50’s, a license key is required, and customers should log into the Veritas Entitlement Management System (VEMS) to generate their key. 

On the main NetBackup Appliance OS 5.1.1 page ( – customers will see the following notifications which contain information about the licensing changes:  


There are several useful links in the above.  Of note are the following licensing topics:

The NetBackup Appliance Administration Guide for 5.1.1 has additional information starting on page 161.    


How to download and install a NetBackup Appliance license key   

The instructions below are consolidated from the NetBackup Appliance Administration Guide for 5.1.1 and the VEMS users guide.  Additional information that may be helpful in some situations is available in those resources. 

Instructions for accessing Veritas Entitlement Management System (VEMS)  

  1. Login to the support site – eg. for the US: 
  2. Access Licensing in the upper right: 

  1. In the entitlements page, your company and the product, such as NetBackup  and then click the "Apply Filters" button: 

   The output will show the various entitlements for software (green box) and hardware (red and purple boxes) that are available for the entitlement.


  1.  Find the lines with the "Entitled Version" set to 5.1.1, which appear as follows in the above output:

Look for lines where the Product Name includes "Software" in the description and have an Entitled Version of "5.1.1" ( or greater), are the line items that can be used to generate a license key file. 
Click the ‘Generate License’ icon:  next to the entitlement which needs a license key to be generated.  Do not use the same entitlement ID to generate all licenses.  Unique entitlement IDs can be used to generate license keys until the entitled quantity is met.  

For example, if a entitlement is for 140 TB, license key files for 100TB, 30 TB and 10 TB can be generated; or any combination equaling the total of 140TB.

 See the Generating License Keys section of the VEMS users guide for more information.
**This option is only available for Active Entitlements. 


  1.   The ‘Generate License Key’ page should appear, with a table with product Version and Product Description auto populated.   

    In box #1, which states "How much of your Entitled Quantity would you like to deploy?", type in the number 1 if the license is for a 9TB 5250.  For all other 52. 50 and 5350 models, type in the quantity of the appliance storage, which is shown in the "Entitled Quantity" block.
    In box #2, the “Enter the host lock string for the system where the software will be installed.” box, enter the host name of the system. 
     Note:  The host name entered as the host lock string should be the one that is shown when using the CLISH and running Network > Hostname >Show.  Normally the entitlement will not be not be associated with a specific appliance serial number.  To track specific host names to an entitlement, use the "Add Comments" box.  
     Note:  If a host name needs obfuscation, a support case should be opened referencing internal article 100060783.

  1. After you have entered all the other required information, click Generate  to generate the license key. 

  2. Click Save License in the Actions column to save the License Key to the local file system. Click Email License to receive the License Key via email.  

  3. Upload the license key to the general share on the appliance as follows: 
     Main > Settings > Share General Open 

  4. Add the license key to the appliance with the following command: 
    Manage > License > Appliance > Add license_key_filename 

  5. After the license key has been added successfully, close the general share as follows: 
    Main > Settings > Share General Close 



Problem: Product Version” and "Product Description” box shows “No records found” 


Cause: This issue may occur when the entitlements are not up to date in the VEMS system or if non-software entitlement is selected, such as in the example above.  Note the selection in this example was "NETBACKUP APPLIANCE 5250 36 TB 4 1GB ENENT - 2 25 10GB ENET - 2 16GB FC - 64GB -8GB DIMM SERVER NODE APPLIANCE" versus something with "NETBACKUP APPLIANCE SOFTWARE" or "APPLIANCE KIT" in the Product Name column, and which does not have an assigned "Entitled Version" on the Entitlements page.

Solution: If you see this issue complete the following:

  • Verify that the item selected on the entitlements page when you clicked "Generate License"  has the 5.1.1 (or later version) in "Entitled Version" column.
  •  If the "Entitled Version" has a value in it, contact Veritas Technical Support and request assistance.   


Problem:   Invalid License. The license hostid does not match the hostname for this appliance

Example error:  

Cause: This issue triggered most commonly by either: 

  • The license file is valid, but for a different host. 
  • The hostname entered in the “Enter the host lock string for the system where the software will be installed.” was not correct.  Commonly this is caused by generating the license key with the short name of the system versus the FQDN (Fully Qualified Domain Name) or vice versa 

Solution: Log into VEMS and regenerate the license file. Use the hostname associated with the system, which is  the one that is shown when using the CLISH and running Network > Hostname > Show.


Problem: Invalid License. The license key may be expired, corrupted, or an incorrect product type… 

Example error:  

Cause: This can be caused by a variety of things, such as manual editing of the file, expired key, invalid product, etc.   

Solution: Log into the VEMS and generate a valid license key. 

Note: The license files are in .xml format and can easily be viewed. Do not edit the file as it will render the file invalid.  In the file compare the following with the system you are trying to install the license on: 

  <Host_id> = Host name of the server which should match what is returned when running Network > Hostname > Show.
  <service_expiration> = Expiration date of perpetual-based license. 
  <end_date> = Expiration date of subscription-based license. 
  <product_name> = The product the license is valid for. 

Other fields may need to be validated also. 


Problem: Entitlements do not show the correct entitled quantity; unable to generate a license for the full storage entitlement. 

Example: In the below, "Entitlement ID" XYZ3 only has an "Entitled Quantity" of 1, even though it is for a 140TB.  Where as entitlements ABC1, and DEF2 both show the entitled quantity of 140:

Example details:

For the above example, the following is true:

  • XYZ3 represents a primary server.  The two storage shelves (65TB each) that were originally purchased with the unit have been moved to the other two servers.  Currently this server has 10TB of storage. 
  • ABC1 and DEF2 are media servers.  Each originally was purchased with two 65TB storage shelves plus the 10TB on the head node for a total of 140TB each.  With the addition of the 65TB shelf from the primary server, each server now has 205TB of storage.

Cause:  This issue may be seen for products that were purchased before August 2021.  

Solution:  During the next renewal, the license will be corrected automatically, but to allocate the correct licenses for each NBA server, the following can be completed:

  • For one media server, use entitlement XYZ3 to generate a license. 
    • For units which only show '1' and which were purchased before August 2021, the license keys are entitled to 400TB, which allow the NBA server to function without license capacity errors.
  • For the other media server – generate two keys – one using entitlement ABC1 allocating 140 TB and another one using DEF2 and allocating 65TB (the additional storage shelf that was moved)
  • For the primary server, generate a single key using DEF2, but only allocating 10TB of the storage.



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