Once you configure a vSphere cluster for vSphere with Tanzu and it becomes a Supervisor Cluster, you must assign the cluster a Tanzu edition license before the 60 day evaluation period expires.

About the Tanzu Licenses

A Tanzu license enables the Workload Management functionality in vSphere 7.0 Update 1 and later. It is applicable to Supervisor Clusters that are configured with the vSphere networking stack or with NSX-T Data Center. For Supervisor Clusters running on vSphere 7.0, you need the VMware vSphere 7 Enterprise Plus with Add-on for Kubernetes license assigned to each host from the Supervisor Cluster.

As a vSphere administrator, when you assign a Tanzu license to a Supervisor Cluster cluster, you can create and configure namespaces and provide access to these namespaces to DevOps engineers. As a DevOps engineer, you can deploy Tanzu Kubernetes clusters and vSphere Pods inside the namespaces to which you have access. Supervisor Clusters configured with the vSphere networking stack only support Tanzu Kubernetes clusters.

Licensing a Supervisor Cluster

After you enable Workload Management on a vSphere cluster, which deploys a Supervisor Cluster, you can use the full set of capabilities of the cluster within a 60 day evaluation period. You must assign a Tanzu license to the Supervisor Cluster before the 60 day evaluation period expires.

If you configure NSX-T Data Center as the networking stack for the Supervisor Cluster, you must assign an NSX-T Data Center Advanced or higher license to NSX Manager. If you configure the Supervisor Cluster with the vSphere networking stack with NSX Advanced Load Balancer, you need an appropriate license for the load balancer depending on your Tanzu license edition.

If your environment runs on top of vSphere 7.0 and you upgrade the Supervisor Cluster to vSphere 7.0 Update 1 or later, the cluster enters evaluation mode after the upgrade completes. The VMware vSphere 7 Enterprise Plus with Add-on for Kubernetes license that is assigned to the hosts acts as a regular vSphere Enterprise 7 Plus license, it does not enable any vSphere with Tanzu functionality. In that case, you must assign the Supervisor Cluster a Tanzu edition license before the 60 day evaluation period expires.

Tanzu License Expiration

  • vSphere 7.0 Update 3. Starting from vSphere 7.0 Update 3, when a Tanzu edition license expires, you can continue using the full set of capabilities of vSphere with Tanzu until you procure new licenses. To use the full set of capabilities for new Supervisor Clusters however, you need a valid Tanzu edition license the evaluation period expires.

  • vSphere 7.0 Update 2 and Update 1. When a Tanzu edition license expires in an environment that runs on vSphere Update 2 or Update 1, as a vSphere administrator you cannot create new namespaces or update the Kubernetes version of the Supervisor Cluster. As a DevOps engineer, you cannot deploy new workloads. You cannot change the configuration of the existing Tanzu Kubernetes clusters such as adding new nodes.

    You can still deploy workloads on Tanzu Kubernetes clusters and all existing workloads continue to run as expected. All Kubernetes workloads that are already deployed continue their normal operation.

Tanzu License Compliance

A Tanzu license key has per CPU capacity with up to 32 cores per CPU, similarly to the ESXi host licenses. When you assign a Tanzu license to a Supervisor Cluster, the amount of capacity consumed is determined by the number of CPUs on the hosts from the cluster and the number of cores in each CPU. You can assign a Tanzu edition license key to multiple Supervisor Clusters at a time, but you cannot assign multiple license keys to one cluster.

  • vSphere 7.0 Update 3. Starting from vSphere 7.0 Update 3, if you expand a Supervisor Cluster by adding new hosts for example, and the license key that you have assigned to the cluster runs out of capacity, you can continue using the same license key. To remain in EULA compliant however, you must procure a new license key with sufficient capacity to cover all the CPUs and cores in the Supervisor Cluster.

  • vSphere 7.0 Update 2 and Update 1. If your vSphere with Tanzu environment runs on vSphere 7.0 Update 2 and Update 1, the total number of CPUs in a Supervisor Cluster must not exceed the amount of CPU capacity of the Tanzu edition license that is assigned to the cluster.

Evaluation Period Expiration

When the evaluation period for a Supervisor Cluster expires, as a vSphere administrator you cannot create new namespaces or update the Kubernetes version of the Supervisor Cluster. As a DevOps engineer, you cannot deploy new workloads. You cannot change the configuration of the existing Tanzu Kubernetes clusters such as adding new nodes.

You can still deploy workloads on Tanzu Kubernetes clusters and all existing workloads continue to run as expected. All Kubernetes workloads that are already deployed continue their normal operation.

The evaluation period expiration behavior is valid for both vSphere 7.0 Update 2 and Update 3.