About licensing for GitHub Enterprise
GitHub Enterprise offers two deployment options. In addition to GitHub Enterprise Server, you can use GitHub Enterprise Cloud to host development work for your enterprise on GitHub.com. For more information, see "GitHub's products."
GitHub uses a unique-user licensing model. For enterprise products that include multiple deployment options, GitHub determines how many licensed seats you're consuming based on the number of unique users across all your deployments.
Each user only consumes one license, no matter how many GitHub Enterprise Server instances the user uses, or how many organizations the user is a member of on GitHub Enterprise Cloud. This model allows each person to use multiple GitHub Enterprise deployments without incurring extra costs.
To ensure the same user isn't consuming more than one license for multiple enterprise deployments, you can synchronize license usage between your GitHub Enterprise Server and GitHub Enterprise Cloud deployments.
In order to use a GitHub Enterprise Server instance, you must upload a license file that GitHub provides when you purchase, renew, or add user licenses to GitHub Enterprise.
About synchronization of license usage for GitHub Enterprise
For a person using multiple GitHub Enterprise environments to only consume a single license, you must synchronize license usage between environments. Then, GitHub will deduplicate users based on the email addresses associated with their user accounts. For more information, see "Troubleshooting license usage for GitHub Enterprise." For more information, see "Syncing license usage between GitHub Enterprise Server and GitHub Enterprise Cloud."
About license files for GitHub Enterprise
When you purchase or renew GitHub Enterprise, GitHub provides a license file for your GitHub Enterprise Server instance. A license file has an expiration date and controls the number of people who can use your GitHub Enterprise Server instance. After you download and install GitHub Enterprise Server, you must upload the license file to unlock the application for you to use.
For more information about downloading your license file, see "Downloading your license for GitHub Enterprise."
For more information about uploading your license file, see "Uploading a new license to GitHub Enterprise Server."
If your license expires, you won't be able to access GitHub Enterprise Server via a web browser or Git. If needed, you will be able to use command-line utilities to back up all your data. For more information, see "Configuring backups on your appliance."
If you have any questions about renewing your license, contact GitHub's Sales team.