New Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent

IT Asset Management version 2020 R2.5

This release introduces a new tool for collecting device and software inventory in clusters managed by Kubernetes — the Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent, initially available only on Linux x86_64 platforms. This is in addition to the existing FlexNet Inventory Agent, which remains available as always.

The Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent brings new functionality in three main areas:
  • Resources: The Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent uses the Kubernetes API to collect resource information assigned to each cluster to report on:
    • Nodes, sometimes called "worker nodes", which are the devices (real or virtual) within your Kubernetes cluster where containers can run. Nodes are analogous to the 'container host' data already supported in a Docker environment (and for consistency within IT Asset Management, the 'container host' terminology is used for both kinds of environment).
    • Pods, the minimum deployable entity in Kubernetes, most often supporting a single container each (although a pod may include more than one container if these share identical resource requirements).
    • Annotations assigned to images, as required by IBM to identify IBM products running in containers instantiated from those images.
  • IBM License Service: For license compliance for IBM products running within Kubernetes clusters, use of the IBM License Service is mandatory for tracking/reporting sub-capacity consumption of purchased entitlements for the IBM VPC or IBM PVU licenses in use. Optionally, the Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent can integrate with the IBM License Service, extracting license-related data for a rolling window of the last 180 days so that you can report on your preferred period within that window. For more information on the resulting report, see New report for IBM licensing in Kubernetes clusters.
  • Inventory: The Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent can return software inventory both from the nodes and from container images running in your Kubernetes cluster(s). When this functionality is enabled (which is the default), the Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent delivers container software inventory by injecting the core inventory-gathering component of the existing FlexNet Inventory Agent ( into the container, and removing it again once inventory has been returned. You may recognize this process as analogous to the zero footprint inventory collection that can already be managed by inventory beacons, except that in this case it is managed by the Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent. For this reason, both the Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent and the FlexNet Inventory Agent (or at least, ndtrack) are distributed together in a single container.
    Tip: Software inventory from the OCI containers is required to resolve the compliance position for software running there. Keep in mind that the IBM License Service monitors only IBM software.

Because the Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent requires configuration details from your (potentially multiple) Kubernetes clusters, it must be uniquely configured for your estate either in the installation process, or by declarations made within the Kubernetes Resource Model (KRM) through a file in the YAML language (a template YAML file is included in the downloadable archive for the Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent). Therefore some familiarity with the Kubernetes platform is required, and it's expected that you may need to collaborate with those within your enterprise who administer your Kubernetes clusters.

To access the Flexera Kubernetes Inventory Agent within IT Asset Management, navigate to Discovery & Inventory > Settings > Inventory agent for download, and see the online help there for considerable further information.

IT Asset Management (Cloud)