The Activation Server functionality allows customers to quickly and easily activate Kemp LoadMaster products for a fixed period of time. This licensing method enables different operational and deployment models to be supported instead of the standard single Virtual LoadMaster (VLM) licensing model.
The purpose of this document is to describe the Activation Server feature of the LoadMaster and provide instructions on how to use it.
This document is only relevant to customers who have the Activation Server add-ons installed on their LoadMasters. If you think you could benefit from this functionality, please contact your Kemp representative.
For the Activation Server functionality to work, a server and client VLM needs to be set up and configured. Follow the steps in the two sections below to do this.
A specific VLM needs to be deployed to set up the server VLM. The Activation Server add-on is pre-installed on the server VLM. The instructions on how to deploy the server VLM are the same as a normal VLM. For instructions, refer to the relevant Installation Guide on . The server VLM license and expiration date will be based on the license as agreed with your Kemp representative.
The server VLM does not perform any load balancing because it is a management server.
There are less options available in the server VLM WUI because it only acts as the activation server. Also, the API Interface is disabled for the server VLM.
Selecting Instances from the main menu of the server VLM will show a list of active client VLM instances and details about them.
Clicking the delete button on this screen will remove the relevant VLM instance from this list. It does not delete or deregister the client VLM. If the deleted client VLM is up and running, the next time a periodic check is sent to the server VLM, the client VLM will be re-added to this list.
There are two ways to create a client VLM template:
Set up and configure an initial client VLM and save it as a template
Create a DNS entry for the Activation Server
For more information, refer to the relevant section below.
After setting up the server VLM, you can deploy and configure the initial client VLM. Then, save this VLM as a template which can be used to create new client VLMs.
1. Deploy the client VLM (which will have the Activation Server add-on pre-installed). The instructions on how to deploy the client VLM are the same as a normal VLM (apart from the licensing steps). For instructions, refer to the relevant Installation Guide on .
Please contact your Kemp representative to get the correct VLM.
2. In the main menu of the LoadMaster WUI, select System Configuration > Miscellaneous Options > Activation Server.
3. Enter the IP address, or the Hostname of the Activation Server and click Set address or Set name.
This is the IP address or host name of the server VLM which was set up in the Set Up the Server VLM section.
4. Click Prep As Template.
When the Prep As Template button is clicked, the IP configuration information is removed from the VLM. The VLM is then shut down. This template client VLM should remain shut down and can be copied to create new client VLMs. The Activation Server details are kept in the template so there is no need to configure those when deploying a copy VLM.
Create a DNS entry for the Activation Server with the default name, for example LM-ACT-SERVER-DEFAULT, on the DNS server that is announced by the DHCP server on eth0. When this has been done, the Activation Server can be found right from the start without needing to configure the Activation Server details in the VLM. This means that the client VLM (which has been provided by Kemp) can be used immediately as a template, without the need to set up and configure the client VLM and save it as a template.
Now, the Virtual Machine (VM) of the template client VLM can be freely copied.
How you copy the VM depends on the platform you are using, for example VMware or Hyper-V. Refer to the documentation for the relevant platform for instructions on how to copy the VM.
After the template client VLM Virtual Machine has been copied, the copy will need to be deployed as normal. The instructions on how to deploy the client VLM are the same as a normal VLM (apart from the licensing steps). For instructions, refer to the relevant Installation Guide on .
When a client VLM is started for the first time, a check is sent to the activation server. If the activation server is down, or if it returns a failure, the client VLM will start but it will not have all functionality available.
After a client VLM has been activated, checks will be sent to the activation server periodically. If the activation server cannot be found, or there are any errors, the client VLM will stop working after a predetermined length of time based on your agreement with Kemp.
The server keeps track of the activated systems by keeping a list of activated VLMs and MAC addresses. Please ensure the MAC addresses of the VLMs are unique to ensure proper tracking. If the limit of VLMs is reached, the server will not activate any more VLMs (i.e. any additional VLMs will have limited functionality). If the limit is reached, an existing active VLM instance will need to be unlicensed (deregistered), and a client VLM instance entry will need to be deleted from the server VLM Instances list, in order for a new VLM to be licensed. To deregister a client VLM, refer to the Deregistering a Client VLM section.
Alternatively, to add more available licenses to the Activation Server - please replace the Activation Server add-on pack with a new one. To do this, in the Activation Server VLM WUI, select System Configuration > System Administration > Update Software and upload the new Activation Server add-on pack (which you can get from your Kemp representative). This will overwrite the previous Activation Server add-on pack.
If an activation check fails, a message will be displayed on the homepage which says Activation Check failed and a reduced main menu will be displayed.
If you need to manually activate a client VLM, for example if activation has failed and you do not want to reboot the client VLM in order to activate it, follow the steps below:
1. In the main menu of the client VLM WUI, select System Configuration > Miscellaneous Options > Activation Server.
2. Click Activate.
Client VLM licenses can be deregistered and removed permanently if needed.
A deactivated VLM cannot be reactivated without intervention from Kemp. Please use with care.
Kemp recommends taking a backup of the client VLM configuration before deregistering it. Manual backups can be taken by going to System Configuration > System Administration > Backup/Restore in the main menu of the client LoadMaster WUI.
When a client VLM is deregistered it frees up another instance to be registered. For example, if you have reached the client VLM limit and you deregister one client VLM, you can now activate another client VLM.
Follow the steps below in the relevant client VLM in order to deregister it:
1. In the main menu, go to System Configuration > Miscellaneous Options > Activation Server.
2. Click the Kill LoadMaster button.
3. When the license is killed, the client VLM will automatically reboot. After the reboot, the client VLM will be unlicensed and the usual LoadMaster licensing screen will be displayed.
When a client VLM is deregistered in this way it frees up another instance to be deployed. For example, if you have reached the client VLM limit and you deregister one client VLM, you can now activate another client VLM.
If for some reason the list of Active Instances in the server VLM has not been updated automatically (for example if the server VLM was down when the client VLM was killed, or the client VLM was unable to update the server), you can manually delete a client VLM instance entry in order to free up a slot. Refer to the below steps to do this:
4. In the main menu of the Server VLM, select Instances.
5. Click delete on the relevant client VLM.
The client VLM instance will be removed from the list. This frees up a spot for another client VLM to be activated.
Licensing, Feature Description
Web User Interface (WUI), Configuration Guide
This document was last updated on 21 June 2022.