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Do you need IBM’s License Metric Tool (ILMT)?


Most organisations that own IBM server software are required in their contract with IBM to manage those licences in a way that is able to be audited and show that the history of server compute power does not exceed the software licence. IBM License Metric Tool (ILMT) is a powerful solution designed to simplify license management for organisations using IBM software products. In this blog post, we will explain ILMT, its purpose, and work through a flow chart that helps you understand if you are required to use ILMT.

If you’re a large enterprise or a growing business, understanding ILMT’s role can lead to a more robust software estate and better vendor relationships. It might also just save you a bucket of cash when you face an IBM compliance audit!

Please note that this guide is not a substitute for your reading, understanding and accepting your legal responsibilities from your contract with IBM. This is a guide only and is intended to provide general information. Users of this guide are strongly encouraged to consult with a specialist licencing expert or lawyer before taking any course of action related to information, ideas or opinions expressed in this guide.

Understanding ILMT

ILMT is IBM’s proprietary software license discovery and management tool. It enables businesses to collect software and hardware information from servers within their infrastructure, tracking processor value units (PVUs) and resource value units (RVUs) consumed by each product.

Why you need ILMT

Compliance and Audit

One of the primary reasons for adopting ILMT is to ensure compliance with IBM software licensing agreements. Failure to generate required reports or provide them to IBM could lead to charging under full capacity, potentially resulting in financial penalties or other liabilities. In other words, instead of paying for the PVU required for the virtual server you have deployed on, you might be required contractually to pay for the entire physical server the software is installed on.

Other Reasons for ILMT

Other reasons we need ILMT are as follows:

  • Compliance and Audit Readiness
  • Manage Sub-Capacity Licensing
  • Early Identification of Discrepancies
  • Cost Optimisation, by not paying for licenses you don’t use
  • Vendor Relationship

Do You Need ILMT?

Use this flowchart to determine if you need to have ILMT in your organisation. Beneath it we will explain each step in more detail.

Exception Rules for ILMT

While the need for ILMT is visible in many cases, there are exceptions where it may not be mandatory. These include:

  • Organisations with less than 1,000 employees and contractors, and no service provider managing eligible products.
  • Servers licensed to full capacity. In other words, where there is sufficient server software PVU licenses to cover the capacity of the physical server.
  • Companies with less than 1,000 PVUs of total physical capacity using sub-capacity licensing for any IBM software.
  • Instances where ILMT does not yet support eligible sub-capacity products or unsupported virtualization technology (with a 90-day grace period if ILMT does start to support that software).
  • Using IBM approved alternative Software Asset Management (SAM) Tools


Last but not least, while there are exceptions where ILMT may not be required, the benefits of using it compensate the complexities of compliance reporting. For most companies with IBM Passport Advantage Agreement Software, implementing ILMT is a proactive approach to managing licenses, optimising costs, and staying audit-ready. To ensure a smooth ILMT deployment, consider seeking assistance from experienced IBM license experts like Chartertech.

Remember, an organised and well-managed software estate not only helps you satisfy audit requirements but also ensures you have the right licenses for your business needs. So, embrace ILMT to streamline your license management process and enhance your vendor relationships.

Do You Need Help With ILMT?

If you would like assistance with ILMT, please get in touch. We’d be delighted to just offer you some advice or to do a full installation and configuration for you.

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