XenServer 7.1 is available in two commercial editions:

  • Standard
  • Enterprise

The Standard edition is our entry-level commercial offering. It has a range of features for customers who want a robust and high performing virtualization platform, but don’t require the premium features of Enterprise. Meanwhile, they still want to benefit from the assurance of comprehensive Citrix Support and Maintenance.

The Enterprise edition is our premium offering, optimized for desktop, server, and cloud workloads. In addition to the features available in the Standard edition, the Enterprise offers the following features:

  • Automated Windows VM Driver Updates
  • Automatic updating of the Management Agent
  • Support for SMB storage
  • Direct Inspect APIs
  • Dynamic Workload Balancing
  • GPU Virtualization (vGPU) with NVIDIA vGPU and Intel GVT-g
  • VMware vSphere to XenServer Conversion utilities
  • Intel Secure Measured Boot (TXT)
  • Export Pool Resource Data
  • In-memory Read Caching
  • PVS-Accelerator
  • Automated Updates using XenCenter
  • XenServer Live Patching

Customers who have purchased Citrix Virtual Apps or Citrix Virtual XenDesktop (formerly Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop) have an entitlement to XenServer, which includes all the features listed previously. Note that in XenServer 7.1, all XenServer 7.1 customers are able to use the In-memory Read Caching feature (previously available to Platinum customers only).

Apply a license

XenServer uses the same licensing mechanism, as used by many other Citrix products. XenServer 7.1 licensing requires Citrix License Server or higher. You can download the License Server from Citrix Licensing. After purchasing a license, you will be provided with a .LIC license key. This license key should be installed on either:

  • a Windows server running the Citrix License Server software.
  • the Linux-based Citrix License Server virtual appliance.

Customers should allocate product licenses using a Citrix License Server, as with other Citrix components. From version 6.2.0 onwards, XenServer (other than through the XenDesktop licenses) is licensed on a per-socket basis. Allocation of licenses is managed centrally and enforced by a standalone Citrix License Server, physical or virtual, in the environment. After applying a per-socket license, XenServer will display as Citrix XenServer Per-Socket Edition. All hosts in a pool must be licensed. Mixed pools of licensed and unlicensed hosts will behave as if all hosts were unlicensed.


Upgrades to the Enterprise edition are available from the Standard edition. Click here to purchase a XenServer 7.1 license.

For instructions on applying a XenServer license to a Citrix License Server Virtual Appliance, see CTX200159.

To license Citrix XenServer

  1. Install the Citrix License Server and console.

    For detailed installation procedures, see Licensing on the Citrix Product Documentation website.

  2. Obtain your Citrix XenServer license files and load them on the Citrix License Server.

  3. Configure licensing for each Citrix XenServer host using XenCenter or the xe CLI.

    Licensing configuration tasks

To configure licensing by using XenCenter

For more information on using XenCenter press F1 to access the context sensitive Online Help.

  1. On the Tools menu, select License Manager.

  2. Select the host(s) or pool/s that you wish to assign a license. Click Assign License.

    This displays the Apply License window:

    The Apply License dialog

  3. In the Apply License window, choose the Citrix XenServer edition that you wish to license, and then enter the Citrix License Server details.


    By default, the License Server uses port 27000 for communication with Citrix products. If you changed the default port on the License Server, enter the appropriate number in the Port number box. For more information about changing port numbers due to conflicts, refer to Licensing topics on the Citrix Product Documentation website.

  4. Select OK to proceed.

    XenCenter contacts the specified License Server and checks out a license for the specified host(s) or pool/s. The information shown in the XenCenter License Manager will be updated.

To release a license (to revert a licensed XenServer host to unlicensed XenServer): from the License Manager, select a host, and then click Release License.

To configure licensing for Citrix XenServer hosts by using the xe CLI

Run the host-apply-edition command. For example, enter the following:

xe host-apply-edition edition= enterprise-per-socket|desktop-plus|desktop| \
        standard-per-socket\ license-server-address=license_server_address \
        host-uuid=uuid_of_host license-server-port=license_server_port

You will only need to supply the license server IP address and port number parameters for the first time you assign a license. The values are stored and used automatically if in future, you do not specify the license server parameters.

If no host UUID is specified, the license will be applied to the host that you are running the command on.

To configure a pool

Run the pool-apply-edition command. For example, enter the following:

xe pool-apply-edition edition= enterprise-per-socket|desktop-plus|desktop| \
        standard-per-socket\ license-server-address=license_server_address \
        pool-uuid=uuid_of_pool license-server-port=license_server_port

Discovering the license status of hosts and pools

XenCenter displays the license type of a server or pool.

To see the license type of a server or pool, select that server or pool in the tree view. XenCenter displays the license status in the title bar for that server or pool, after the server or pool name.

You can also go to the General tab of the server and find the license type in the License Details section.

Mixed pools of licensed and unlicensed hosts behave as if all hosts were unlicensed. In the tree view XenCenter displays unlicensed pools with a warning triangle icon.

To find the license type of a server by using the command line, run the following command in the console of a server in your pool:

xe host-license-view host_uuid=<UUID> | grep sku_marketing_name

Additional Licensing Information

This section discusses miscellaneous licensing information, such as, license expiry and grace periods.

Refer to the XenServer 7.1 Licensing FAQ for more information.

License Expiry

XenCenter notifies you when your license is due to expire. You should purchase a license before it expires. When a XenServer license expires:

  • XenCenter License Manager will display the status as Unlicensed.

  • You will no longer be able to access licensed features or receive Citrix Technical Support for any host within the pool until you purchase another license.

License Grace Period

Citrix licensing has built-in timeout technology. After a startup license is checked out by a XenServer host, XenServer and the License Server exchange “heartbeat” messages every five minutes to indicate to each other that they are still up and running. If a XenServer host cannot contact the License Server, for example, due to problems with the License Server hardware or software or network failures, the server lapses into a 30-day licensing grace period. During the grace period, XenServer licenses itself through cached information and the hosts are allowed to continue operations as if they were still in communication with the License Server. The grace period is 30 days and when the grace period runs out, XenServer reverts to an unlicensed state. After communication is re-established between XenServer and the License Server, the grace period is reset.