Version 2.0 Updates
One should not judge a licensing system based on a feature list (see Extensibility and security). But for those who insist on feature lists, here is a summary of the new features for version 2.0.
- .NET 4.0 support (x32 and x64)
- New extensibility model allows intervention at several points in the activation process, including the ability to block an activation. API provides rich access to data about an activation, and direct access to the management interface for creation of sophisticated licensing scenarios.
- Subscription expiration is built-in. Define default subscription expiration on an application basis or set the expiration by individual installation code. Installation codes can be set to expire even on applications that are not defined as subscription based.
- Disable installation codes. Individual installation codes can be disabled. When a code is disabled a certificate will still be issued that contains a flag indicating that the certificate is invalid. This can be used to "turn off" software.
- License updating feature. The new UpdateLicense function joins the InstallLicense and InstallDemo functions as core installation functions. UpdateLicense can update an existing signed certificate - there is no need to resupply the installation code.
- The ability to attach metadata to installation codes or unique installations. Metadata can be optionally embedded into license certificates during activation or update. Metadata can consist of an serializable .NET data type (including custom objects and many collection types).
- Metadata API allows embedding of data into the server without creating a server plug-in.
- Easily extend the expiration date for demo certificates both through the web-service API and the License Manager application.
- Two new system matching algorithms are included in the core system, including a tighter default algorithm.
- New default system identifier uses hard disk serial number if available.
- Support for "special" system identifiers that allow for some customization of comparison algorithms without the need to write a new comparison algorithm.
- Ability to attach arbitrary encrypted data to an installation or update request. Ideal for e-commerce scenarios.
- New EDLSC file format available for offline (non-Internet based) activation supports embedding of arbitrary encrypted data.
- Improved Diagnostics. Extensive XML based diagnostics make it easier to configure the server and track down errors on client systems. Plugins have full access to the new diagnostic system.
- There is no longer a need to distribute the Desaware.Dls.Interfacesxx.dll file with your application. This file is now only used for server and license manager extensibility.
- Support for Mysql using the ODBC connector.
- Define feature lists for applications and set feature parameters using the License Manager application.
- Define module or feature lists for applications and automatically generate custom passwords to allow clients to enable individual features or modules. Passwords are unique to each installation code and cannot be reproduced using a hack or key generator.
- The ability to revoke a license certificate (typically used to uninstall software or transfer a license from one system to another)
Version 2.0 also ships with a completely new and extensible license manager application that offers the following new features:
- Extend demo license certificates.
- Plugin architecture allows addition of custom user tabs that integrate seamlessly with the built-in tabs (and in some cases can even override the built-in tabs, which are themselves just plugins).
- Dramatically improved connection management supports additional authentication options including the option to use private SSL certificates for license server management (eliminating the need and cost for regular SSL certificates for management of license servers).
- Complete diagnostic support eliminates the need to use the web interface to diagnose server installation and configuration issues.
- Included "features" plugin (with source) allows attachment of text and number fields to installation codes and embedding of that data in certificates when issued.
- Included "locked modules" plugin (with source) allows definition of features or modules for an application, where an access password is generated for each one that is unique to each installation code. The hashed version of this password are stored in a license certificate allowing extremely secure password based enabling of features.
- Improved performance for large numbers of keys. The license manager no longer downloads all key information for an application when an application is selected.
- Create local unsigned DLSC files for test purposes.
Buy the Desaware Licensing System for $1495 (includes one client and one server license)