Upgrade from Ubuntu to Ubuntu Pro using AWS License Manager

AWS allows users to upgrade Ubuntu LTS instances to Ubuntu Pro using the AWS License Manager.


  • The EC2 instances to be upgraded have to be Ubuntu 16.04 LTS or later

  • The instances should be managed by AWS Systems Manager (SSM)
    • To check if your instances are managed by SSM, in the SSM console, check if they appear as managed nodes under Systems Manager > Node Management > Fleet Manager > Managed nodes

    • If they don’t, follow the AWS instructions for configuring your instance permissions or refer to this tutorial on enabling AWS SSM to create an IAM role and access your instances with SSM

    • You may need to either restart the instance or restart the SSM agent by running:

    sudo snap restart amazon-ssm-agent
  • You’ll need the latest pro client tool, install it by running:

sudo apt install ubuntu-advantage-tools
  • If you have removed cloud-init from your instance for any reason, you’ll need to reinstall it for the Pro commands to work correctly.

  • To give the required network access to your instances, refer to the Ubuntu Pro related network requirements and proxy configuration

Upgrade to Ubuntu Pro

Once you have checked all the requirements from the previous section, go to the EC2 dashboard and stop all the instances that you would like to upgrade. Running instances cannot be selected for an upgrade in the AWS License Manager.

  • Go to AWS License Manager > License type conversion and select Create license type conversion on the right corner.

  • Select Ubuntu LTS as the source operating system and from the list of available instances, select all the instances that you want to upgrade.

  • Select Ubuntu Pro for the License type destination.

  • Select Convert after reviewing the selected instances and license type.

The conversion can take some time and once done the conversion status will show Success in the AWS License Manager console. You can also verify the upgrade by logging into one of the instances and running:

pro status