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Licensing and subscription FAQ

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How do I purchase a subscription?

You can purchase a subscription for GitLab Enterprise Edition (self-managed) or for (hosted by GitLab) on our Customers Portal with a credit card.

How much does GitLab cost?

You can find pricing for subscriptions on our pricing page here and GitLab Enterprise Edition (self-managed) here.

Can I pay for the subscription monthly?

All subscriptions are paid in annual payments, monthly payments are not an available payment option.

What payment methods are accepted?

When purchasing via our Customers Portal you may pay via credit card. We are able to accept payment via check and wire in select circumstances, to get help with other type of payment methods please contact our sales team via our sales form.

How do I use my subscription?

Please take a look at our getting started with subscriptions page for information on getting set up, applying, and managing your subscription.

How do I renew my subscription?

  1. Log into your account in the Customers Portal.
  2. Select Manage Purchases from the menu.
  3. Check to see if your subscription has been cancelled previously. If it has, you'll see a Resume subscription button. Select Resume subscription to set your subscription back to automatically renew. If you see Cancel subscription then you don't need to do anything.
  4. Note, the renewal will automatically occur at 12:00am UTC on the expiration date listed and will be processed for the exact subscription details (tier and number of users) as the previous subscription. If you require a change to the number of users or tier, please contact support via our support form and select Licensing and Renewals Problems from the form menu.

Self-managed GitLab

  1. Log into your account in the Customers Portal.
  2. Select Manage Purchases from the menu.
  3. Select the Renew button.
  4. Determining user counts for renewal purposes:
    1. Users Only active users at the time of renewal count towards total user count for the upcoming subscription.
    2. Users over license (aka true-up users) If at any time during the prior subscription period the account has had more billable users than the subscription, these users over the license will be due at the time of renewal.
  5. Select Proceed to checkout.
  6. Review Subscription Renew Detail.
  7. Select on Confirm Renew.

The following will be emailed to you:

Administrators of self-managed instances can find user usage through the following options:
  1. Within GitLab UI, select Admin Area -> Users to view the Active Users tab which indicates the users currently counted.
  2. View the User Statistics panel from Admin Area -> Overview -> Dashboard to view users available in license and users over license.
  3. Run the command sudo gitlab-rails runner 'p' to obtain the Active User count.
  4. Run the command sudo gitlab-rails runner 'p ::HistoricalData.max_historical_user_count' to obtain the Maximum billable user count.
  5. Run the command GET /users to obtain a list of all billable users.

GitLab Education Program

In order to renew, send an email to with the following information:

  1. Indicate the number of seats for the renewal. Seats can be added at this time if needed.
  2. Describe the use case for the license. Specifically, we need verification that the use meets the End User License Agreement. Note that University infrastructure operations and information technology operations do not fall within the stated terms of the Education Program. See the FAQ here.
  3. Include the full name, email address, and phone number of the primary contact who will be signing the renewal quote. Only signatures by faculty or staff with proper signing authority on the behalf of the University will be accepted.

Once we receive the above information, we will process the request and return a renewal quote for signature. Please allow a minimum of 2 business days for return. Email us at with any questions.

GitLab Open Source Program

All requests for our GitLab Open Source program (even renewals) must be made via the application process found here. If you have any questions, email the team at for assistance.

What does "users over license" mean?

If you've added more users to your GitLab EE instance during the past period than you were licensed for, the additional users will be payable at the time of renewal.

Without adding these users during the renewal process, your license key will not work.

You can find the number of users over license by going to the /admin section of your GitLab instance (e.g. This can also be found by clicking the admin wrench in the navbar of your instance when logged in as an admin.

In the top right section of the admin dashboard, you should see the number to enter when asked this during the renewal process.

Who gets counted in the subscription?

Every occupied seat, whether by person, job or bot is counted in the subscription. The only exception are members with Guest permissions with an Gold subscription.

Since counts concurrent seats and not named users, you can remove members and add new members as you'd like as long as the total users at any given time is within your license count.

Self-managed GitLab

Every occupied seat, whether by person, job or bot is counted in the subscription.

The following are the only exceptions which are not counted towards the subscription:

  1. Blocked users who are blocked prior to the renewal of a subscription will not be counted as Active Users for the renewal subscription but may count as true-up users for the term in which they were originally added.
  2. Members with Guest permissions on an Ultimate subscription do not count towards the subscription.
  3. Ghost User and Support Bot do not count towards the subscription.

How are Maximum Users Calculated?

The Maximum Users value found in self-managed instances of GitLab reviews the daily active user counts recorded in the instance for the period of 1 year prior to the expiration date of the license. Since most GitLab subscriptions are annual, this means the Maximum User count in these cases is simply the highest number of active users at any one time during that subscription. However, for non-standard contract lengths (8 months, 14 months, 24 months), the Maximum Users count is not refelective of the entire subscription term, but rather for the 12 months prior to the expiration date.

Do I need the administrator account (aka root) that came installed if I am also an administrator?

Nope! The root user is just the first admin account, created by default in self-managed versions of GitLab. Just like any other user, this account does occupy a license seat. So, please consider following good security practice and have one or more "real" people play the role of administrator. You're allowed (and encouraged) to rename the user, or even delete or disable it as long as you've promoted other users to administrator.

How do I start a trial?

It is possible to obtain a free evaluation of our or self-managed subscriptions for a 30 day period for up to 100 users. Please visit our free trial page to sign up.

For self-managed users, when you decide to purchase a subscription, you will be issued a new license key. Should you not take out a subscription, your key will expire at the end of your evaluation period. At that point you should remove the trial key and the system will revert to our free Core version.

Can I use my paid seats for different users?

The seats for your license are generic and are not specific to a user. GitLab does not use a named license model.

The seats you buy can be distributed however you choose. If a user leaves your organization, you can remove or block that user to free the seat. This seat can then be used by another user.

Note that this may result in a user over license if your maximum users has been reached.

Can I add more users to my subscription?

Currently we do not have a self-service option to for adding additional users to your subscription outside of initial purchase and renewal periods. You can add users to your group as needed, however you won't be billed for these until the renewal cycle. If you would like to be billed offcycle for additional users please contact support via our support form and select Licensing and Renewals Problems from the form menu.

Self-managed GitLab

You can add users to your subscription any time during the subscription period. The cost of additional users added during the subscription period will be prorated from the date of purchase through the end of the subscription period.

To do this:

  1. Log into your account via the Customers Portal
  2. Select Manage Purchases from the menu.
  3. Select the Add more seats button.
  4. Enter the amount of additional users (E.g. You currently have 10 users and want to add 5 more users, enter 5).
  5. Select Proceed to checkout.
  6. Review the Subscription Upgrade Detail. Note, the system has listed the total price for all users on the system and a credit for what you've already paid. You will only be charged for the net change.
  7. Select Confirm Upgrade

The following will be emailed to you:

Can I apply one license to multiple instances?

If your GitLab instances cover the exact same set of users (e.g., for backup, high availability, failover, testing, and staging), you can use the same license file for all of them.

However, if you're running multiple production instances with different mixes of users, you will need an individual license for each instance.

What happens when my subscription is about to expire or has expired?

Once the subscription has expired, the system will revert to the Free tier and users will no longer see paid features, however no data will be lost.

Self-managed GitLab

What's the difference between a Group plan and a Personal plan on

A subscription for can be applied to one of two types of namespaces. Where you assign your subscription determines where those features are accessible. Plan on Personal Namespace

If a subscription is applied to a personal account then that account will have access to the features of the subscription for all of the projects they create under their personal account. If they want, other users can be invited to those projects and they'll be able to enjoy the features of that subscription only while working on those projects. If that user then creates a group, it will by default be on the Free plan.

A user that never collaborates with others on GitLab may opt to purchase a subscription for their personal user account since they have no need for a group and will always only work in projects under their personal account.

You can find the plan details for a personal namespace by navgiating the User Settings>Account>Billing. Plan on a Group

A user can choose to purchase a subscription and apply it to a group they've created. This way any project they create in that group or in a subgroup of that group gets access to the features of the subscription they purchased for it. This extends to any user that gets invited as a member of that group.

A user that's part of an organization with multiple GitLab collaborators will ideally choose to create a group for that organization, purchase and apply a subscription to that group, and then invite their colleagues to that group so that all can enjoy those paid features while working in that group.

Note that all members within a group subscription are counted as billable seats at the same subscription plan (Bronze, Silver, Gold) rate.

You can find the plan details for a group namespace by navgiating the Group Settings>Account>Billing.

How can I manage multiple teams in one group/plan but prevent the teams from accessing each other's projects?

You can create a parent group and only allow access to this group to anyone who should have unlimited child subgroup/project access. Then, create subgroups for each team with nested projects and add people at the subgroup level. This will essentially lock them out of any other team's subgroups for which they do not have access.

In this situation, regarding billable users - you will only be responsible for the unique users within the hierarchy of the parent group. If a user is added to multiple subgroups or projects, they will only be counted as 1 billable user.

How do I purchase a Group Plan on

You will first need to create your group in and add users. Follow the steps below:

  1. Create a group in
  2. Add users to the group
  3. Log into the Customers Portal to purchase the desired plan for your group.
  4. Select the subscription plan using the Order (Bronze, Silver, Gold) Plan button
  5. From the This subscription is for dropdown, select the group name you've created
  6. Select the Proceed to checkout button

How do I downgrade my subscription?

Please submit your request via our support form and select Licensing and Renewals Problems from the form menu. Note, only purchases made within the last 45 days are eligible for a refund.

How can I get a copy of my invoice?

Your invoice should be available for viewing and download within our Customers Portal by navigating to the Purchase History page. If your invoice is not available, please submit your request via our support form and select Payment Failures and Refund from the menu.

I purchased a multi-year subscription, why is my license only for 1 year?

We issue self-managed GitLab licenses in 12 month increments and check-in at the start of each subsequent term within the subscription period to see if there are any changes to users needed prior to generating the license.

You can always contact us via our support form as the next term approaches otherwise someone will be in touch as well.

Do you support resellers?

We don't currently support reseller purchasing via the portal. If you are a reseller looking to purchase GitLab on behalf of your client, please get in touch with us using the Contact sales form.

If you include your billing contact name and email, your physical billing address, and the end customer's name, email address and shipping address, we will send you (not your customer) a resellers quote which you can execute either with a credit card or an EFT.

You can find details on our reseller program at