Chapter 1. Red Hat Cloud Access program overview

The Red Hat Cloud Access program is designed to provide subscription portability for customers who want to use their Red Hat product subscriptions in the cloud.

Red Hat Cloud Access provides the following customer benefits:

  • Cloud Access is available with most Red Hat subscriptions at no cost.
  • You keep all the benefits of a Red Hat subscription and maintain your existing support relationship with Red Hat.
  • You have flexibility and choice for how and where you use your Red Hat products.
  • You have access to value-add features and capabilities, like gold images and Azure Hybrid Benefit for Linux.

1.1. Cloud Access product eligibility

Subscription portability is a feature included with most Red Hat products and is key to creating open hybrid cloud infrastructures built on Red Hat technologies.

Most Red Hat products are cloud-ready by default but the nature of multi-tenant public clouds (a wide range of providers, differing technologies/platforms, and shared infrastructures) as well as a customer’s limited access to those infrastructures can create technical challenges that customers should be aware of.

The following examples are general guidelines to help you understand Cloud Access product eligibility:

  • Your subscription term must be active.
  • The subscription is available to use in the cloud, that is, it is not currently in use elsewhere.
  • The subscription has a cloud compatible unit of measure, depending on your cloud provider and the instance type you are deploying. Some examples of cloud units of measure are core, core band, managed node, RAM, storage band, vCPU, or Virtual Node/Guest.
  • The Red Hat product you are deploying on the cloud is technically suitable for use in a multi-tenant public cloud infrastructure.

Examples of products and subscriptions that are not eligible include the following:

  • Virtual Datacenter or other unlimited RHEL guest subscriptions that require virt-who
  • Red Hat Virtualization products; nested virtualization is not supported
  • Subscriptions that have a physical unit of measure such as socket or socket-pair
  • Subscriptions for Red Hat-hosted offerings

These guidelines are not definitive, and Red Hat product and subscription eligibility change over time as we introduce new products and subscription types. It is also a good idea to refer to the Red Hat product documentation for any specific details about the product’s use on a public cloud infrastructure.

If you are unsure about the eligibility of your Red Hat products for public cloud use, contact your Red Hat account manager.

1.2. Unit conversion for Red Hat Cloud Access-eligible subscriptions

To understand your subscription usage in the cloud, you need to be able to count based upon the unit of measure associated with each subscription as well as understand the relationship between subscriptions and entitlements.

Each Red Hat subscription includes at least one entitlement that can be used to register a system with Red Hat subscription management tooling. Red Hat subscriptions used in virtualized environments like the public cloud may include an additional number of entitlements.

For example, a single Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server (RHEL) (Physical or Virtual Node) subscription includes 1 physical entitlement or 2 virtual entitlements. When a subscription of this type is used on physical, bare metal hardware, it entitles a single physical RHEL server. When it is used in a virtualized environment like the public cloud, it entitles up to 2 virtual RHEL servers.

Unit conversions differ widely depending upon the Red Hat product, subscription type, and deployment environment, but the following table contains some general guidelines.

Table 1.1. Red Hat Cloud Access Unit Conversion Table

Physical or Virtual Node

1 physical node or 2 virtual nodes

2 virtual nodes


typically sockets or cores

1 virtual node

Core or vCPU


vCPUs (typically 2vCPU:1Core)

Core Band

groups of cores (for example, 2, 4, 16, 64, 128)

vCPUs (typically 2vCPU:1Core)


socket, socket-pair, cores


Additional resources

See the Red Hat Subscription Manager user interface inside the Red Hat Customer Portal for entitlement quantities, units of measure, and related details for each of your Red Hat product subscriptions.

See Appendix 1 of the Red Hat Enterprise Agreement for more details about units of measure, conversions, and counting guidelines for Red Hat products.

1.3. Cloud Access provider eligibility

Red Hat has a large ecosystem of Certified Cloud and Service Provider (CCSP) partners, where Cloud Access customers can use their eligible subscriptions. The Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog contains details about our featured providers (Alibaba, AWS, Google Cloud Platform, IBM Cloud, and Microsoft Azure) as well as other providers with certified cloud images and instance types.

Consider these recommendations when you chose a Cloud Access provider:

  • The provider must have a supported mechanism for customers to import their virtual machine images into the provider’s environment.


    Look for CCSP partners offering Image Upload in the cloud ecosystem catalog.

  • If image upload is not possible, Cloud Access customers need to use Red Hat gold images or have the ability to convert an on-demand PAYG Red Hat image or instance to BYOS.


    Cloud Access gold images are available on AWS and Azure. The Azure Hybrid Benefit for Linux provides a PAYG-to-BYOS conversion capability for Red Hat Cloud Access customers.

  • The provider should be a TSANet member and collaborate with Red Hat when necessary to solve common customer issues.

Red Hat strives to help customers successfully deploy and use Red Hat products across their hybrid cloud infrastructures. The Cloud Access product eligibility and provider guidelines help ensure customer success. We urge customers to follow them.

Customers choosing to deploy Red Hat products outside of these guidelines should be aware of the following conditions:

  • The product or subscription may not work as designed.
  • Product performance may be degraded.
  • Product features and capabilities may be limited.
  • Red Hat may not be able to provide the expected level of support. See Red Hat’s third-party support policy for more details.