Licensing and activation of centralized system products

Applies to
ApexSQL Audit, ApexSQL Backup, ApexSQL BI Monitor, ApexSQL Defrag, ApexSQL Job, ApexSQL Manage, ApexSQL Monitor and ApexSQL VM Monitor

This article describes what you need to know about the licensing and activation of centralized ApexSQL products. Those currently includes ApexSQL Monitor, ApexSQL BI Monitor, ApexSQL VM Monitor, ApexSQL Defrag, ApexSQL Backup, ApexSQL Job, and ApexSQL Audit.


Central instance – this is a computer where the main application and SQL Server instance that hosts the central repository database is installed. All data collected from the variously utilized instances are stored in the central repository database. A central instance can host a repository that services hundreds of utilized instances. Only one central instance can exist per application installation.

Utilized instance – is an instance of which actions and value-added features such as auditing, backup, monitoring are employed. So if a SQL Server instance is added in ApexSQL Audit to be audited, it would be considered a utilized instance.

Centralized system products – these are ApexSQL products that perform actions on one or more predominantly remote instances but also include a central repository database (and sometimes additional components as well) on a single and preferably wholly separate instance. In this way, the architecture of the software, which makes up the installation topography, is ‘centralized’ – all data collected from multiple utilized instances are feed into the single central repository database.


Licensing and activation:

Centralized system products are licensed per utilized SQL Server instance, including auditing, monitoring, managing, etc.

For each central instance, a single activation key is issued which allows adding into the application a predefined number of utilized instances (SQL Server or hypervisor). ApexSQL license management system tracks the number of utilized instances that are added and limits it to the total number of purchased licenses. That simplifies activation key management as you only get and need one key per central instance vs. per all utilized instances.

However, if you need more than one central instance, we will provide you with as many central instance keys as required. Just contact us.


  1. Your company buys 100 ApexSQL Audit licenses

    If it is not specified differently, you will get 1 (one) key for the central instance and can be used to add up to 100 audited instances.

    If you have specified that you want to collect the data on 4 different central instances, we will give you a key for each central instance – that is four different keys, and each key will be limited to connections from 25 utilized instances; or in any other distribution that you may have specified.

  2. Your company buys 10 ApexSQL Operations Toolkit for SQL Server bundles

    This gets you 1 key for each centralized system product. This key activates one central instance and up to 10 utilized instances of each centralized system product. If you want to change this configuration and have more central instances, just contact us, and we will redistribute your licenses to as many central instance keys as required.