1. Is the license expired?
This is the most obvious cause and simple to verify. Check https://verify.cpanel.net/ with the server’s IP.
2. Is the server’s hostname a fully qualified domain name?
I like to check this one and the whether the hostname resolves locally with this command:
root@spaceboy [~]# host `hostname`
spaceboy.domain.com has address 192.168.1.69
The hostname should be properly formated. We’ve seen cases were leading or trailing whitespace in the hostname was causing the licensing verification to fail.
3. Does the server’s hostname resolve locally and remotely?
I’m not so sure how important this one is, but it should be the case regardless. And if it’s not obvious, local and remote name resolution should match (unless the server is going through NAT). You can also check the server’s public IP address using cPanel’s IP chicken:
root@spaceboy [~]# curl cpanel.net/myip/
4. Does cpkeyclt report a problem?
Run the following command:
This should promptly return the command line with no messages. If it takes a while (longer than 3 seconds), then there is likely a connectivity issue between your server and the licensing server. If it quickly returns the command line, then all is well with your license, and you can consider the issue resolved.
5. Is there a firewall blocking connections to the licensing server?
Out going tcp connections to port 2089 need to be open, with all established and related traffic being allowed back through the firewall (It is using a stateful firewall, right?). If you’re not sure that your firewall is properly configured, then the best thing to do is temporarily flush your firewall rules (iptables -F). Afterwards give cpkeyclt a try. If it works then you know the issue is with your firewall.
6. Is the license IP address bound directly to the interface and not an IP alias?
This one is a little more flexible, but can be a problem at times. On a VPS system, I don’t think this one applies as the public IP is usually bound to venet0:0 by default. This is usually worth checking and shouldn’t be anything strange on a properly configured system anyways.
7. Does the licensing server think the server’s query is coming from the proper IP address?
I suggest watching your net traffic using tcpdump while running cpkeyclt. That should give you a pretty good indication.
The above checks should cover 99.3% of all expired license issues. If your issue isn’t resolved by going through this checklist, then please submit a support ticket.