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Frequently Asked Questions

  • FAQ on Veeam Backup Essentials
  • Licensing
  • Upgrades
What is Veeam Backup Essentials?

Veeam® Backup Essentials™ delivers fast, reliable and affordable backup and recovery for ALL workloads — virtual, physical and cloud (including VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper‑V) — from a single management console. It combines the backup, restore and replication capabilities of Veeam Backup & Replication™ with the advanced monitoring, reporting and capacity planning functionality of Veeam ONE™. Designed for smaller businesses with less than 250 employees and environments no larger than 6 CPU sockets or 50 instances, Veeam Backup Essentials delivers the same enterprise-level functionality as Veeam Availability Suite™ with considerable savings.

Veeam Backup Essentials is offered in three product editions — Standard, Enterprise and Enterprise Plus.

What’s new in Veeam Backup Essentials?
Visit the Veeam Backup Essentials page to see the latest information.
What features are included in the various product editions?
Veeam Backup Essentials includes several features across the respective editions, and those features track the capabilities of Veeam Availability Suite. Check out the Editions Comparison.


If I am using Veeam Backup Essentials for my VMware environment, does it also require VMware vSphere Essentials?
No, but it does require a VMware vSphere license with unlocked "vStorage APIs" and "vAAI" features (at least VMware vSphere Essentials).
Is there a difference in price for using Veeam Backup Essentials for VMware vSphere environments in comparison to Microsoft Hyper-V environments?
No, Veeam maintains price parity across hypervisors, and our licensing is no longer hypervisor specific for vSphere and Hyper-V.
What if my virtual environment includes both VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V?
Veeam licenses are no longer hypervisor-specific. You can purchase 2-socket bundles on a perpetual basis (up to a maximum of 6 sockets) or between 10 to 50 instances (in 5-instance bundles) through an Instance license and utilize them for any mix of hypervisors.
How do I know whether I’m eligible to purchase additional bundles of Veeam Backup Essentials?
You can open a licensing case at the Veeam Customer Portal. If you have reached your purchase limit for Veeam Backup Essentials, Veeam makes it easy for you to upgrade to Veeam Availability Suite, which supports environments of any size.
Is Veeam Backup Essentials available for Veeam Cloud & Service Provider (VCSP) usage?
No, VCSP partners are welcome to obtain an Instance or Perpetual license of Veeam Backup Essentials, however, they may not use it to manage or protect third-party data.
General Veeam licensing information, including licensing criteria and terminology, can be viewed here
How is Veeam Backup Essentials licensed?

Veeam Backup Essentials can be purchased in two ways:

  1. Through use of a portable Instance license, which includes 24x7 Production Support
  2. Using a Perpetual per-socket license with Basic or Production maintenance

Certain features may be offered only with Instance licensing due to the nature of the environment or workload.

Perpetual licenses of Veeam Backup Essentials are licensed in CPU sockets (2-socket bundles) on hosts with virtual machines (VMs) to be backed up, replicated, monitored or reported on. A license is required for each occupied motherboard socket as reported by the hypervisor API.

Instance licenses of Veeam Backup Essentials are portable Subscription licenses sold in bundles of instances (from 10 to 50 instances) and packaged in 5-instance bundles. There are one- to five-year Instance licensing terms available, and customers can choose to purchase Instance license bundles upfront or pay annually. Learn more about portable Instance licensing.

To purchase, please contact your preferred reseller, find a Veeam reseller in your area or place an inquiry with Veeam sales.

General Veeam licensing information, including licensing criteria and terminology.

What do I need to do when upgrading from a previous version to Veeam Backup Essentials 9.5 Update 4?
Existing subscription customers, prior to Feb. 1, 2019, will be required to update their license file within 90 days for an in-place upgrade of Veeam Backup Essentials 9.5 Update 4. The new VIL (Veeam Instance license) model goes into effect at the install of Update 4 or the renewal of the subscription term.
How do I update my license file?

This process will be handled in the user portal under My Account. Customers will be notified in My Account that they have 90 days to update. This includes customers who have some Perpetual licenses and some agent Server / Workstation licenses.

The upgrade process is easy: Go to My Account, select “Get New Licenses,” choose the proper account if you have multiple, then select your product(s) and, last, select Download License for each product you need to upgrade. Then, you are finished.

Is it possible to stay with my current license version (prior to Update 4)?
Yes, you can stay with your current license version if you don’t want to upgrade and take advantage of the enhancements available only with Update 4. Customers needing some features like agents or Veeam Backup & Replication for AWS are required to use Instance licenses. Please note that after renewal, you will get a VIL file compatible only with U4. If you still don’t want to install U4, you can request a legacy license file by opening a licensing ticket at my.veeam.com. 
If I don’t upgrade to Update 4, will my legacy license file of Veeam Backup Essentials subscription per-VM continue working?

Your legacy license file will be working as-is for your current support term. However, this licensing option is no longer available, and you need to consider the following renewal options:

  1. Renew your support term for Veeam Backup Essentials with the new model and benefit from centralized management across all protected workloads.
  2. Check the size of your managed environment. If you require central management and protected workloads consume more than 50 Instance licenses, plan to upgrade to Veeam Availability Suite: License configurator.

More information on merging products is available here, and you can calculate how many instances you need here. Please contact the Veeam Renewals Team if you want to discuss your options early.

Note: Veeam Backup Essentials is a heavily discounted SMB offering and can manage a maximum of 50 Instance licenses per environment / installation. Please refer to the licensing policy for details.

What happens if after Update 4 my total license count across Veeam Backup Essentials (subscription per-VM) and Veeam Agent licenses exceeds 50 instances? How does Update 4 affect my current licenses?

Instance licenses of Veeam Backup Essentials are sold in bundles of 5 instances with a minimum order of 10 instances (two bundles) and 50 instances maximum. Veeam Backup Essentials is a heavily discounted product specifically designed for SMB customers and is capped at a max of 50 instances per environment / installation. After we convert your legacy contract(s) to the VIL model, your workloads might exceed this cap.

If the product installation manages an environment of more than 50 instances, at the renewal of your subscription term, you can choose from the following options based on your business needs:

  • If centralized management is required, we advise you to renew your subscription term with a FREE upgrade to Veeam Availability Suite. This is a one-time offer to renew for one to five years at the price of Veeam Backup Essentials. After that, the subsequent renewal will be quoted for the then-current full price of Veeam Availability Suite.
  • If no centralized management is required, you can split and renew your subscription into several licenses for Veeam Backup Essentials — up to 50 instances each.

For your current subscription term, you can generate a new license file at no additional cost for the workloads you have. Attention! The centralized management option for more than 50 instances will only be available until your next renewal.

As a heavily discounted SMB offering, all new and renewed Veeam Backup Essentials licenses will be restricted from merging with any other product licenses, per the licensing policy

Check the size of your environment with the Veeam Instance Calculator.

Please contact the Veeam Renewals Team if you want to discuss your options early.

I’m a Perpetual license customer and I want to try Instance licensing. What do I do?
We are happy to announce that perpetual customers for Veeam Availability Suite, Veeam Backup & Replication and Veeam Backup Essentials get one Instance license for each Socket license, up to six. These licenses are free for life and made available so you can try out the capabilities of Veeam Agents for Microsoft Windows and Linux, Veeam Backup and Replication for AWS, enterprise plug-ins for Oracle or SAP and more with no strings attached. When you install Update 4, the free instances appear in your user portal as shown below:
I have a Veeam Backup Essentials Perpetual license per-socket that has some built-in free instances. Can I use them to back up physical servers and workstations?
The gifted instances provided to existing perpetual customers (1 instance per each CPU socket, up to a maximum of 6 instances) are intended to promote protection of physical agents for servers and workstations, but they can be used for Veeam Agents for Microsoft Windows and Linux, Veeam Backup & Replication for AWS and more. However, these free instances cannot be used to protect Hyper-V or vSphere VMs if you currently protect VMs with Perpetual licenses. There are no obligations, and these included instances do not expire; however, they are not cumulative with any additional instances you may decide to purchase in the future.
I have Veeam Backup Essentials Perpetual license per-socket and I need centralized management with Veeam Agents. Is it possible to get a merged license file for my infrastructure?
For your current support term, you can generate a merged license file at my.veeam.com. Instructions on merging license files can be found here.
How do I merge license files?
If a customer wants to have a centrally managed environment, they may need to merge license files. The requirement is that maintenance be current for BOTH the perpetual AND the subscription components. Reference this KB article for more details on merging accounts. Contact Veeam Support for assistance with any issues.
What is the conversion ratio for VMs to instances in the case of a Veeam Backup Essentials Subscription license?
Your current VM licenses are converted one-to-one into Instance licenses based on your edition. 10 VMs will convert to 10 instances, however, now you can also use Instance licenses on other workloads as well — servers, workstations and Nutanix AHV VMs. Please refer to the license policy for details. Existing subscription customers will have their instances rounded up to the nearest increment of 10. Example: If you have seven VMs, you’ll be converted to having 10 instances.
I have a Veeam Backup Essentials Subscription license per-socket. Will it be converted to the VIL model after I install Update 4?
No actual conversion needs to be performed. Your legacy license file will be working as-is for your current support term. However, you need to prepare for the renewal and consider your licensing options. 
Is there a single license file for Veeam Backup Essentials?
Yes, you get a single license file that you install, and that license file contains two components (Veeam Backup & Replication and Veeam ONE).
Are any product components (backup servers, backup proxies, backup repositories) licensed separately?
No, the product components are not licensed separately. You can deploy as many of these components as you like while licensed to the correct number of sockets or instances.
Can a customer have more than one edition in an environment?

No, only one edition (Standard, Enterprise or Enterprise Plus) can be used in the same physical location. Furthermore, all licensed editions must be the same across multiple locations to manage them through one Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager.

This requirement applies to all Veeam Backup Essentials deployments, including multi-hypervisor environments and environments that include some Perpetual and some Instance licenses.

Current customers who wish to upgrade to Enterprise or Enterprise Plus must upgrade all current licenses to receive a merged license file.

Can I merge my Veeam Backup Essentials license with the licenses for my other Veeam products?
No, since Veeam Backup Essentials provides special bundled pricing, the products cannot be unbundled and combined with other individually licensed products, including other licenses of Veeam Backup Essentials.
Is there any required action when installing Veeam Backup Essentials 9.5 Update 4?
Yes, existing subscription customers, prior to January 22, 2019, will be required to update their license file upon installing Veeam Backup Essentials 9.5 Update 4. This process will be handled in the user portal. Contact Support for more information.
What do I do when my virtual environment grows beyond 6 sockets or 50 instances?

You have four options: First, you can license Veeam Backup Essentials perpetually for 6 sockets to determine if this arrangement provides proper protection for your environment. If your environment has outgrown this scenario, then licensing either Veeam Availability Suite or Veeam Backup & Replication is your best option. Both products are offered for the difference in price between the product you’re upgrading from (Veeam Backup Essentials) to the price of the product you’re upgrading to (either Veeam Availability Suite or Veeam Backup & Replication), and all sockets and instances can be centrally managed. A fourth option is to purchase an additional license of Veeam Backup Essentials and manage this installation separately. 

It is recommended that organizations currently holding licenses for Veeam Backup Essentials and any individually licensed Veeam product contact a Veeam sales representative to discuss appropriate upgrade options.

What happens to my Veeam ONE license if I upgrade from Veeam Backup Essentials to Veeam Backup & Replication?
If you upgrade from Veeam Backup Essentials to Veeam Backup & Replication, your Veeam ONE license is invalidated, and you are no longer eligible for support or maintenance for Veeam ONE. You are required to sign and submit a Letter of Destruction for Veeam ONE, and you should discontinue use of it.
What licensing and installation details are required to manage Linux-based and Windows-based agents from Veeam Backup Essentials?
Utilization of agent management functionality requires the additional installation of the redistributable package of Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows v3 or later and / or Veeam Agent for Linux v3 or later with Veeam Backup Essentials. Agent licenses are available on a subscription / instance basis and can be utilized for either Linux- or Microsoft Windows-based workloads.
How do I upgrade my license to another edition?
To upgrade, please visit the Veeam Licensing PortalPlease see this comparison to understand which features are included in each edition.
How do I upgrade my license?
You will need a new license file, even if you do not plan to upgrade your edition. Please visit the Veeam Licensing Portal to download a new license file.
How do I renew support for my Perpetual licenses?
To renew your support, please complete a request for a renewal quote.
What is automatic license update?
Starting with v7 patch 4, Veeam Backup & Replication, included in Veeam Backup Essentials, supports automatic license updates. With this feature enabled, Veeam backup server (or Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager server if deployed) proactively communicates with the Veeam licensing portal to receive a new license before the current license expires. For more information on how to enable this feature, please review the Veeam Backup & Replication User Guide for vSphere and for Hyper-V.
My organization currently owns Veeam Backup Essentials. Can I buy licenses of Veeam Availability Suite or Veeam Backup & Replication?
Yes, however, to get a merged key (which would include Veeam Backup Essentials licenses), customers should either upgrade those licenses to Veeam Availability Suite or Veeam Backup & Replication.

Do you have more questions?

Attend one of our live product demos or contact your Veeam sales representative.