My Organization has been downgraded to Nebula, what are the changes made?
This document intends to provide a detailed description of the changes an organization will go through when a NCC license expires.
For a high level and quick overview, you can check the comparison table between Nebula Professional Pack vs Nebula, also included in the email notifications sent prior the license expires.
Nebula Control Center license expiration
When the license of your organization expires, your Nebula Professional Pack will become Nebula, the free version. Along with this conversion, there will also be some changes that are going to be explained in this whitepaper.
Based on the license model, there are three types of Organization in Nebula Control Center, the figure bellow explains the correlation between then. This documentation will limit its content to explain the downgrade process from Professional Pack to Nebula and the limitations in Nebula organizations.
The following figure summarizes the feature limitations in the Nebula free version.
Let's explain one by one the changes your organization will face once the downgrade takes place.
Nebula Control Center changes
When your account manages multiple organizations, probably one of the first things you will notice is the organization type. After login, you will see the Choose Organization page that lists all the organizations to which your account has access and their type. Once the downgrade has already taken place, the organization type will be converted from Nebula Professional Pack to Nebula.
Nebula as organization type means that the organization NCC license status is either "N/A" when no license has ever been registered or "EXPIRED" when your organization has been downgraded. You can find details about the license in the Organization > Configure > License management menu.
Nebula -free- banner
After getting into your organization, there will a banner on top of your Nebula Control Center page. The banner lets you know that the current organization is Nebula type and that advanced features are only available by registering a license key.
As mentioned before, advanced features are only available by having a license key activated. When your organization downgrades to Nebula, these advanced features are not able to enable/select and are easily recognized by an upgrade icon next to the feature name. By clicking on the icon, a pop-up window will appear explaining that this is an advanced feature.
Once your organization downgrades to Nebula, all the historical data is limited to the last 7 days, e.g.:
The following places are affected by this change.
Last 30 days and custom range that allows up to 6 months are disabled. The change includes Site-wide, Access Point, Switch and Gateway summary reports.
Up to last 7 days statistics available, affecting the three device types:
- Access point usage and connectivity
- Switch uplink usage
- Switch power consumption (PoE switches)
- Switch port stat: status, bandwidth utilization, power consumption and packet counter.
- Gateway network usage and connectivity
Above data can be found in the device details page.
Device event logs
The event logs for access points, switches, and gateway will only be shown up to the last 7 days, using both “Before” or “Range” options.
A message is shown on top to remind you this limitation.
Device clients’ data
The client statistic information will also be limited to the last 7 days at most, affecting the client list and the client traffic chart period selection for access points, switches, and gateways.
Good news is, once you renew your license you will immediately recover the previous history logs and statistics which allows checking up to 1 year.
When your organization becomes Nebula, some services will stop working even if you have them configured previously on Nebula Professional Pack. These services include:
Summary report email & schedule
On Nebula, the email reports (Site-wide, AP, SW, and GW) become disabled and you cannot longer opt to send the site or devices statistics by email. In case the automatic email reports by schedule were configured in Professional Pack, they will stop being sent as well.
Emails alerts notifications
Emails alerts are also disabled when your organization downgrades. You will still be able to turn ON/OFF each notification and set timers in the bottom section of Site-wide > Configure > Alert setting menu. However, the upper section will be disabled and cannot be change.
Organization change logs
The Change log page in Organization > Monitor > Change log becomes disabled and cannot be accessed in Nebula.
You will continue receiving HQ support through email for the existing tickets opened before the downgrade took place, but you will not be able to open new tickets directly from NCC. Alternatively, you can use our Forum support or contact your regional Zyxel contact if available.
Similar to the statistics limitations, these services will be totally recovered once you upgrade to Nebula Professional Pack.
Business features disabled
This section will cover the features that become disabled when your Professional Pack service license expires. The details are as follow:
Site configuration clone
The configuration cloning feature is not available when your organization is expired. Therefore, you will need to configure every new site from default settings.
The automatic visual topology available in Site-wide > Monitor > Topology is disable and cannot be accessed in any site of an expired organization.
The Configuration sync tool located in Organization > Configure > Configuration sync also becomes disabled and cannot be accessed.
Organization settings: Login IP range
The Login IP ranges feature is also disabled when the organization expires. To prevent being locked-out, the feature will automatically turn OFF but the IP addresses list will be kept.
Data export files
All the Export buttons available for devices, clients, sites and organization data will be disabled and no file can be downloaded.
Access point and Gateway: Add client
Once downgraded, you will not be able to add new client’s MAC address and define the captive portal policy in advance. The policies are still available already connected or known clients.
When the Nebula Control Center license expires, the following limitations will affect your entire organization by automatic changes performed by NCC.
Up to 5 activated administrators
Nebula free version only allows 5 activated administrators. In case your Professional Pack organization has more than 5 admin accounts, when expires, the following criteria is used by NCC to keep 5 accounts activated and deactivate the others:
- Organization owner account always kept as activated.
- The other accounts that will remain as activated are the 4 recently logged-in accounts, using the Last access time (UTC).
- When multiple accounts have the same login date and point 2 cannot be determined, the oldest created accounts will be considered to select the remaining 4 activated admins, based on the Created date.
When 5 administrators are already activated, it is possible to add more accounts but they cannot be activated, you will need to de-activate existing accounts first.
Up to 100 authorized entries in Cloud Authentication
Similar to the administrator limitation, the Cloud authentication is limited to 100 authorized entries between User, Guest, MAC, and VPN User accounts type. NCC will keep the latest 100 created accounts as authorized, based on Created at (UTC) time; other accounts will be unauthorized automatically and cannot be used.
When 100 entries are already authorized, it is possible to add more but they cannot be authorized, you will need to de-authorize existing entries first. New accounts created through Self-registration auto authorized will be unauthorized by default.
Network limitations – device settings
Nebula includes some limitations related to the device network settings. When an organization has never been upgraded to Nebula Professional Pack, these features cannot be enabled in Nebula free.
Fortunately and in order to preserver your network intact, when the features are enabled and your organization downgrades, they will remain enabled with the latest configuration prior expiration, however, you cannot perform any modification.
Following are the details of the features that are restricted in Nebula.
Access point – SSID authentication
The following features can be located in the menu Access Point >
Configure > Authentication
Captive portal - Radius accounting
Radius accounting server settings cannot be edited when the organization expires but the access point device will keep the settings configured.
Captive portal - NAS ID for radius authentication
NAS Identifier for the Radius authentication server becomes grayed-out and cannot be edited. Similar to previous settings, the device will keep this setting running.
Gateway – Traffic shaping.
Recently, the global bandwidth limits settings available in Gateway > Configure > Traffic shaping added more customizable fields as Destination IPs, Ports, Protocol and Priority. The four new fields belong to Professional Pack and when the organization downgrades to Nebula, settings won’t be editable but NCC and the device will keep them.
Gateway – Traffic log to Syslog server
Gateway traffic log tag available in Site-wide > Configure > General setting > Reporting will not be able to be selected in Nebula free. NCC will keep the tag and device will keep sending the logs to the syslog server even when the organization expires. The tag or server entry cannot be removed.
When the organization license is renewed, you will be able to enjoy again all the benefits and advantages that Nebula Professional Pack gives to your network without limitations!