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Licensing Requirements

Nessus is available to operate either as a subscription or managed by Tenable.sc. Nessus requires a plugin feed Activation Code to operate in subscription mode. This code identifies which version of Nessus you are licensed to install and use, and if applicable, how many IP addresses can be scanned, how many remote scanners can be linked to Nessus, and how many Nessus Agents can be linked to Nessus Manager. Nessus Manager licenses are specific to your deployment size, especially for large deployments or deployments with multiple Nessus Manager instances. Discuss your requirements with your Tenable Customer Success Manager.

It is recommended that you obtain the Activation Code before starting the installation process, as it is required before you can set up Nessus.

Additionally, your activation code:

  • is a one-time code, unless your license or subscription changes, at which point a new activation code will be issued to you.
  • must be used with the Nessus installation within 24 hours.
  • cannot be shared between scanners.
  • is not case sensitive.
  • is required to manage Nessus offline.

    Note: For more information about managing Nessus offline, refer to the Nessus User Guide.

You may purchase a Nessus subscription through the Tenable, Inc. online store at https://store.tenable.com/ or via a purchase order through Authorized Nessus Partners. You will then receive an Activation Code from Tenable, Inc.. This code will be used when configuring your copy of Nessus for updates.

Note: See the Obtain an Activation Code page and the Licensing and Downloading video for instructions on how to obtain and use an Activation Code.

If you are using Tenable.sc to manage your Nessus scanners, the Activation Code and plugin updates are managed from Tenable.sc. You must start Nessus before it communicates with Tenable.sc, which it normally does not do without a valid Activation Code and plugins. To have Nessus ignore this requirement and start (so that it can get the information from Tenable.sc), when you register your scanner, select Managed by SecurityCenter.

Copyright © 2019 Tenable, Inc. All rights reserved. Tenable, Tenable.io, Tenable Network Security, Nessus, SecurityCenter, SecurityCenter Continuous View and Log Correlation Engine are registered trademarks of Tenable, Inc.. Tenable.sc, Lumin, Assure, and the Cyber Exposure Company are trademarks of Tenable, Inc. All other products or services are trademarks of their respective owners.