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Retiring a computer does not reclaim an Altiris product license


Article ID: 158855


Updated On:


Patch Management Solution for Windows Inventory Solution Asset Management Solution CMDB Solution


A computer is retired in the SMP (Symantec Management Platform), however, when its license for a specific Altiris product (such as Inventory Solution) is later checked, it is found that it was not reclaimed.




Retiring a computer will reclaim certain Altiris client-consumed licenses. If this fails to work, follow the below instructions to troubleshoot this.

Part 1: The computer's Status is not set to Retired. 

  1. In the Symantec Management Platform Console, click on the Home button > Service and Asset Management > Manage Configuration Items.
  2. Click to expand the folder Computers and Peripherals.
  3. Edit the computer to check. If its Status is not Retired, set it to be and then save the record. If its Status is already set to Retired, continue with Part 2. Note: Other Status values, such as Disposed, etc., do not reclaim licenses, even though may set the Status value to a non-Active value; only Retired can reclaim licenses.
  4. After setting the Status to Retired, check and refresh a license status page, such as on the Home page of the Symantec Management Platform or in Symantec Installation Manager, to verify if the license was reclaimed or not.

If the computer was previously set to Retired but had its status changed back to Active, refer to the following article for additional information on why this happened:

Computer Status unexpectedly changes to Retired

Computer Status unexpectedly changes to Active

Part 2: Notification Server troubleshooting.

Some parts of the Core Notification Server can hold up the license reclamation process. Sometimes this is part of the NS.Daily scheduled job, which only runs once a day. This can be manually invoked by doing one or both of the following:

  1. In the Symantec Management Platform Console, click on Settings > All Settings > Notification Server > Resource Membership Update.
  2. Run each of the three listed schedules now (click on their respective Run buttons).
  3. If this does not reclaim the license, next go into Windows Task Scheduler by clicking on the Altiris server's WIndows Start button > Administrative Tools > Task Scheduler.
  4. In the Active Tasks section, locate and double click on the NS.Daily task.
  5. Click on the Run button. WARNING: This is normally scheduled to run at 2:10 AM daily and if manually ran outside of that, will process tasks and policies that would normally only be processed during that time. If this is ran during production hours, depending on what's been scheduled, may result in extra processing by the Altiris server. This may therefore need to be run outside of production hours or the customer may need to wait until the next day to allow the task to run normally at 2:10 AM.
  6. Wait about 30 minutes to allow the task to complete. Then, check to see if the license has been reclaimed.
  7. Also, restarting the Altiris Service may resolve this. Refer to Part 3 for more information about this.

Part 3: The computer was deleted and/or its Symantec Management Agent uninstalled before its Status could be set to be Retired.

Setting a computer's Status to Retired is the only way to reclaim certain Altiris client-consumed licenses. If the computer was deleted or its Symantec Management Agent was uninstalled first, however, this breaks this process. For either of these scenarios, this issue can be corrected by restarting the Altiris Service on the Symantec Management Platform server. The following instructions describe how to do this. WARNING: Restarting the Altiris Service will temporarily disrupt Altiris, which will become offline during this restart.

  1. On the Symantec Management Platform server, click on the Windows Start button > Administrative Tools > Services.
  2. Right click on the Altiris Service > Restart.
  3. Click on the Yes button.

Part 4: Remove product licenses (license clean-up)

It may be necessary to remove product licenses and then reinstall them to resolve this issue. The following instructions describe how to do this:

  1. On the Symantec Management Platform server, locate the license file for the product. This is a text *.TXT file. As this can be saved to any location on the Symantec Management Platform server, unfortunately these instructions cannot pinpoint its location for the customer. If this cannot be found, the customer will need to contact their Symantec Sales or Licensing representative to re-obtain this before continuing these steps.
  2. Navigate using Explorer to C:\Program Files\Altiris\Notification Server\Bin\Tools.
  3. Run the RemoveLicense application. Note: If this fails to run, the Windows MMC must instead be used to remove Altiris licenses. Instructions for how to do this can be found in the following article:

    How to manually remove licenses without the license removal tool
  4. Locate the license(s) for the product to remove. There may be more than one. Remove each of these.
  5. Restart the Altiris Service, which is discussed in Part 3.
  6. Click on the Windows Start button > All Programs > Symantec > Symantec Installation Manager > Symantec Installation Manager.
  7. Click on "Add/Upgrade licenses".
  8. Click on the "Install licenses" button.
  9. Navigate and locate the license file from step 1,then click on it and click on the Open button.
  10. Continue with the license installation, once it is finished, click on the Close button. 
  11. A warning appears, noting that the license change may take 30 minutes or longer to become active. Click on the "Restart services" button. WARNING: Restarting the Altiris Service will temporarily disrupt Altiris, which will become offline during this restart.
  12. Wait at least 30 minutes for the license to be applied.

Additional Information

  • Asset Management/CMDB Solution is not responsible for recovering Altiris product licenses. It's sole purpose in this process is to simply set the computer in question to have a Retired status. This process is the same even without Asset/CMDB installed, as the Core Notification Server provides this ability to retire computers. Once Asset/CMDB are installed, they take "ownership" of computer statuses as they add additional status types. However, it's still up to the Core license reclamation process and the specific Altiris product to reclaim its licenses, not Asset/CMDB's. If this is still not occurring, contact the respective support team for the product in question. For more information about how to retire a computer, refer to the following article:

    Best practices for retiring a computer
  • Known Altiris products that use client-consumed licenses that should have their licenses reclaimed by having their computer's Status set to Retired are: Inventory Solution, Monitor Solution and Patch Management Solution. Inventory Solution can also have its licenses reclaimed with any non-Active out of box Status, however, only Retired will do this for Monitor Solution and Patch Management Solution, as described here:

    Changing the Status of a computer to a non-Active value does not release Monitor Solution or Patch Management Solution licenses

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