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Catalyst 9800 "No licenses in use"



I am running into unexpected behavior trying to integrate a catalyst 9800 controller with a smart licensing satellite.

The WLC is running 16.12.01s .


The issue is that the WLC appears REGISTERED/AUTHORIZED and even shows up on the satellite's inventory, but it does not consume any license. In the wlc licensing tab in the GUI i see the message "No licenses in use" (see screenshot).


Also, when running `sho license status` in CLI, i see the REGISTERED/AUTHORIZED state, but none of the dates show up (last renewal attempt, next renewal attempt...). I checked the time config on the wlc and the satellite and they both show the same time (and are synchronized with the same server).


Show license status output :

Smart Licensing is ENABLED

  Status: DISABLED

Data Privacy:
  Sending Hostname: yes
    Callhome hostname privacy: DISABLED
    Smart Licensing hostname privacy: DISABLED
  Version privacy: DISABLED

  Type: Callhome

  Smart Account: SSMS UNI.LU
  Virtual Account: SSMS UNI.LU
  Export-Controlled Functionality: ALLOWED
  Initial Registration: SUCCEEDED on
  Last Renewal Attempt: SUCCEEDED on
  Next Renewal Attempt:
  Registration Expires:

License Authorization:
  Last Communication Attempt: SUCCEEDED on
  Next Communication Attempt:
  Communication Deadline:

Export Authorization Key:
  Features Authorized:


On the satellite i see the WLC in "product instances", but no license are consumed in the "licenses" tab.



Does anyone know this issue ? I have performed similar confiugration with catalyst 9300 running 16.9.4 and as far as a i can remember no additional steps were required after correctly configuring call-home and registration token.





Jesus Pavon

I suffered this issue after hitting CSCvf53989 but after configuring call-home it start working


After doing a deregister, reload, then register, I am now hitting this bug as well (or very similar) except in my case the WLC requests a "ASR_1000_AdvEnterprise" license instead of a "ASR_1000_AdvIpservices".

The workaround provided in the bug does not seem to work : the WLC always ends up requesting this "ASR_1000_AdvEnterprise" license even after i disable it in CLI and reloads. This behavior does not change either if i deregister the WLC, change the license level, reload, and register again.

Has anyone managed to correctly implement the suggested workaround for this bug ?


Hi tom,


Yes that's true, it is not working, and the only way to solve it is to open a TAC case.

I suffered that one.


How did TAC solve this for you?  I have the same problem.

TAC said these issues will be fixed in 16.12.3 which is to be released at the end of the month (Feb 2020)

I have a pair of 9800-80 in HA with 16.12.3 and have still the same bug with our smart licensing satellite.

So in 16.12.3 its not fixed.


did you resolve this issue, I'm focusing it now to on 9800-40 with 16.12.3a. In bug notes this software is described as a corect one but I still have problem with license.



in my case TAC replied there is no workaround and added the bug is only fixed in release train


I haven’t had opportunity to verify this however since the project is on hold.

Thanks. I have spoken with Cisco and this is cosmetic bug, it's propably resolved in 17.2.1, we will stay with recomended version.

I think there is a confusion here: 


For now,  if WLC is using an on-prem satellite server & WLC is running something 16.12.X or above - you will have communication problems. The problem is the on-prem Satellite server and it will get fixed August 2020


BUG CSCvf53989 is indeed resolved in 16.12.3 but this one is seen there CSCvs50944 - you need the 16.12.3 escalation image to fix both and you should be good - we (TAC) can provide this image. 

Rafael - TAC



Yes, this is confusing because your analysis is different from the one TAC provided to me in the SR we opened for this issue.


So you're saying we can fix the bug we are running into by requesting special WLC versions from TAC, but we will still have communication issues to the satellite until august anyway because "WLC is running something 16.12.X or above - you will have communication problems" ?


In this case i think we are better off waiting for all fixes to be deployed in standard, stable, and recommended WLC releases since TAC said it was only a cosmetic bug. And only then look at upgrading the satellite if the issue persists with the fixed WLC release.


Or do you have different information regarding the bug being cosmetic as well ?

This is precisely why I abandoned the use of the satellite server for proxy of license requests and just do it via the cloud.  I opened several cases on it Dec 2019 - Feb 2020 and they kept promising future fixes.  The SMART Licensing process is riddled with bugs and I did apply the engineering special code because 1 of of my 9800-40 registered as a ASR1000 for licensing.  My preference is for LTS code which is why I am avoiding 17 code since that is listed as interim short term.

Guys, it's resolved in 16.12.4a MD I checked it and it's working corectly :) 

Yes that right. I have checked that now. We have the 9800-80 with the 16.12.4a running. And i made a new Registration to our satellite( Version 8-202010). Now i don’t have that issue any more.

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