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Desaware Licensing System Support

Frequently Asked Questions (version 2.0)

FAQ for version 1.0-1.6 of the licensing system can be found here.

  1. I'm having trouble communicating with the licensing server (or having other server configuration issues).
  2. I'm seeing an error "The MachineLicense component must itself have a valid license to Install software when running under a debugger. Be sure to copy a valid .DLSC file to the same directory as the Desaware.MachineLicense.Dll. License error".
  3. Which Web hosting services can host the licensing activation server?
  4. I am confused about the separate Server and Client licenses. What is each one used for and what is the minimum number of licenses I would need?
  5. Are different versions of the licensing system compatible with each other?
  6. Server Error in '/LicenseServer' Application - Parser Error - Parser Error Message: Could not create type 'Management'.
  7. Server Error "Failed to Access IIS Metabase" or "The process account used to run ASP.NET must have read access to the IIS metabase (e.g. IIS://servername/W3SVC)".
  8. The first attempt to activate a license fails but subsequent attempts succeed.
  9. My server extension or plug-in is not working.
  10. What versions of the .NET Framework are supported?
  11. What ports are used by the licensing system and how do I deal with proxy servers?
  12. I'm unable to install the licensing server on a Windows 2008 machine.
  13. I'm having problems using an Access database on a 64 bit operating system.
  14. Why do I have to enabled II 6 metabase compatibility for IIS 7 ? .
  15. Why did you change the licensing model of the server to by domain instead of by machine? .
  16. How do I migrate my license server to a new machine?


1. I'm having trouble communicating with the licensing server (or having other server configuration issues).

Between the different operating systems, databases, IIS configurations, and other services that can be installed on a server, the possible permutations are nearly endless. It's no surprise that virtually every support question we get on this product relates to server configuration. Please refer to the Getting Started section of the licensing system documentation (available when you install your client software and here) for an in-depth guide to installing the server. Use the license manager application diagnostics to retrieve server logs that can identify most problems. Please include a copy of these diagnostics when contacting Desaware support.
Also, check out our VPS Installation instructions - these instructions will work on most clean Windows 2003/2008 servers.


2. I'm seeing an error "The MachineLicense component must itself have a valid license to Install software when running under a debugger. Be sure to copy a valid .DLSC file to the same directory as the Desaware.MachineLicense.Dll. License error".

In order to run your licensed application under the Visual Studio .NET debugger, you must copy your dls20client.dlsc file to the same folder as your compiled assembly file. A copy of the dls20client.dlsc file for your system can be found in the Program Files\Desaware license System directory (assuming that is where you installed the client software).

In other words - the machine license component is itself licensed. So you need to place the dls20client.dlsc file that was created during installation into the bin directory of your application in order to debug it. This is, of course, only required to debug your licensed application (during development).

This is also discussed in the licensing system readme file and documentation.

Note that the version 2.0 license file is dls20client.dlsc. The prior version dls10client.dlsc file will not work with verison 2 software.


3. Which web hosting services can host the licensing activation server?

See our Hosting Information page.


4. I am confused about the separate Server and Client licenses. What is each one for and what is the minimum I would need?

You would need a minimum of 1 server license and 1 client license. The Server License is for the Licensing System's web service that validates your applications and install codes, manages the database, and allows you to create new applications and install codes. The Client License is for the developer and those who are managing licenses. 

Your initial client and server license allows you to use the Desaware.MachineLicense.dll component to add to your application project, test and run it in debug mode. It also includes the Desaware License Manager which allows you to communicate with the License Server to create new Applications and their corresponding RESX file, generate install codes, sign DLSC files, etc.

The License Server allows you to create as many unique Applications as you wish for one particular URL used to access the licensing web service. You would only need additional Server licenses if you want to access the licensing web service using multiple URLs - for example, if you wanted to divide the licensing of different applications onto different domains. If you use the installer application to install the license server, you will also be able to access the licensing web service from the local system.

The server licensing has changed from version 1 (where the server was also licensed per-machine). Read more about this here.

The License Client allows you to develop .NET projects that use the Licensing System or run the License Manager application. This is licensed per machine. You would need additional client licenses if you have more than one developer working on the licensing or installation code for a particular project (you do not need a license for each developer who is working on the project - only those who need to debug the licensing code).

You will also need additional client licenses for each system that runs the License Manager application - that allows creation and management of installation keys and applications.

Once you create your application, you can freely redistribute the Licensing System's required files without any additional fees.


5. Are different versions of the licensing system compatible with each other?

We've worked hard to ensure that different versions of the licensing system remain compatible with each other, but changes in the .NET framework have not always made this possible. The following compatibility matrix will help you ensure that your existing applications continue to license correctly as you update both your applications and servers.

Our highest priority has been to ensure that older versions of the client component (MachineLicense) will work correctly with newer versions of the licensing server.

    Server    
Client Version 1.0 Version 1.1 (all) Version 1.2/1.3 (all) Versoin 2.0
Version 1.0 Yes Yes Yes Unsupported
Version 1.1 (all) Yes Yes Yes Yes

Version 1.2
.NET 1.1 component
.NET 2.0 component


Yes
No

Yes
Requires latest 1.1 update

Yes
Yes

Yes

Yes

Version 1.5-1.6
(.NET 2.0 only)
No Requires latest 1.1 update Yes Yes
Version 2.0 No No No Yes

This table assumes all versions of the software are running under their target version of the framework. The 1.0 framework machinelicense component should not be run under .NET 2.0. The latest version of the 1.1 framework machinelicense component will run under .NET 2.0 but will only work with the latest server (1.1 or 2.0 framework). You can use your application configuration file to prevent applications from running under incorrect framework versions.

License version numbers are NOT synced to the .NET framework.

  • Version 2.0 of the Licensing System is a major update. It includes components for .NET 2.0, 3.5 and 4.0
  • Version 1.5-1.6 of the Licensing System include new features. There is no need to update server components.
  • Version 1.3 of the Licensing System includes client components with Vista support. These components, by default, store license files in the ApplicationData directory under Vista, allowing license files to be correctly found by multiple users under Vista. There is no need to update server components from 1.2 to 1.3.
  • Version 1.2 of the Licensing System includes components for .NET 1.1 and 2.0
  • Version 1.1 of the Licensing System includes components for .NET 1.1 and 1.0
  • Version 1.0 of the Licensing System includes components for .NET 1.0

    Please visit our downloads page or contact Desaware support if you need updates.


6. I'm seeing the following error:

Server Error in '/LicenseServer' Application.
Parser Error
Description: An error occurred during the parsing of a resource required to service this request. Please review the following specific parse error details and modify your source file appropriately.
Parser Error Message: Could not create type 'Management'.
Source Error:
Line 1: <%@ WebService Language="VB" CodeBehind="~/App_Code/Management.vb" Class="Management" %>

First, make sure you have configured IIS to use the correct .NET runtime for the version of the licensing system you installed (this is selected on the ASP .NET tab under the IIS Management properties for your web site).

You may also need to change the application pool for your web site. .NET 1.1, .NET 2.0 and .NET 4.0 applications cannot run in the same application pool. Be sure all your .NET 1.1, .NET 2.0 and .NET 4.0 web sites are in an application pool configured for the version of the runtime they need.

You may also need to add the following code to the <system.web> section in your web.config file:

<compilation>
   <assemblies>
      <add assembly="*" />
   </assemblies>
</compilation>

By default, .NET assemblies are supposed to preload all assemblies in their bin directory, however on some systems we've found that they do not. This change to the web.config file should solve the problem.


7. I'm seeing the following error:

"Failed to Access IIS Metabase" or "The process account used to run ASP.NET must have read access to the IIS metabase (e.g. IIS://servername/W3SVC)"
This typically occurs when IIS is installed after the .NET framework, often on XP development systems.

To solve this problem (in most cases), you can do the following:

  • Using Add/Remove Programs, select the Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0, click on "Change/Remove" then select "Repair"
  • Using the aspnet_regiis application (under \Windows\Microsoft .NET\Framework\v2.0.50727 directory), try to uninstall then reinstall the framework extensions (first using the -u, then the -i options).
  • Restart your system, then verify your IIS configuration for ASP .NET.


8. The first attempt to activate a license fails but subsequent attempts succeed?

See our instructions for turning off idle timeouts on the server .


9. My server extension or plug-in is not working.

There are two steps to diagnosing server data problems. Turn on server diagnostics (see the documentation). Use the license manager application diagnostics tab to verify that your plug-in has been installed for the application you are testing. Cycle the server application (easily done by just modifying the web.config file or through IIS Manager), and examine the trace log available in the diagnostics tab of the license manager application after an activation is attempted. The log will show whether or not your plug-in has been found and any errors that occur. In many cases, an error in your desaware.licenseserverxx.dll.config file will be the issue. The most cases you'll find an unhandled exception occurred in your code.

Your plugin can embed diagnostic data into the system logs using the IManagement.Trace method.

You can debug your server plug-in functions by attaching a debugger. This is done using the System.Diagnostics.Debugger.Launch method to attach a debugger to your server, then call the System.Diagnostics.Debugger.Break method to actually break into the debugger.


10. What versions of the .NET Framework are supported?

The Desaware Licensing System currently requires .NET 3.5 to install (the 3.5 client installer installs .NET 2.0, .NET 3.5 and .NET 4.0 components).
For the License Server you can choose between a .NET 3.5 and .NET 4.0 install.

Note that the .NET 2.0 client component does not support all of the new features of the licensing system.

Client and server components for the .NET 1.1 framework are available on request from Desaware support. These components are supported but are no longer under active development.


11. What ports are used by the licensing system and how do I deal with proxy servers?

See DLS Ports and Licensing Through Proxy Servers


12. I'm unable to install the licensing server on a Windows 2008 machine.

On a clean Windows 2008 web server install, you'll need to take the following steps:

  • In Windows 2008, open the Server Manager.
  • Choose Roles
  • Select Web Server (IIS)
  • Scroll down to Role Services
  • Check (install) IIS 6 Management compatbility.

The installer uses the IIS6 interface to set up the web application.


13. I'm having problems using an Access database on a 64 bit operating system

The Access oledb drivers are available in 32-bits only. IIS 7 application pools on 64 bit operating systems by default only allow 64 bit applications to run. To use an Access database, select the Application Pool that you are using for your license server. Choose the "Advanced Settings" option in the IIS manager. Then check to box to enable 32 bit applications in the application pool.


14. Why do I have to enabled II 6 metabase compatibility for IIS 7

IIS 6 metabase compatibility (enabled via Windows features) is only required to run the license server installer. It is not a requirement for the license server to run, and is not required when deploying to a production environment (using the hosted install feature of the server).


15. Why did you change the licensing model of the server to by domain instead of by machine?

With version 2.0, the license server has changed to be licensed by URL instead of by machine. For example: if you set up a server at licensing.yourcompany.com, then wish to also access it as licensing.secondcompany.com, you will need an additional license.

The reason for this change is because it dramatically simplifies the process of upgrading servers and supporting clusters and cloud scenarios. Each distinct URL (consisting of a complete requesting URL path including the domain and application path) is licensed separately and the corresponding license certificate is stored in the license database.

Now, when you upgrade to a new server, or deploy your server to a cloud or cluster of web servers, there will be no need to license each individual server as long as they are accessed using the original licensed URL.


16. How do I migrate my existing license server to a new machine?

The following is a typical migration for a verison 2.0 server - it is not a comprehensive review of the subject.

  1. Do a manual install of the license server to your new machine. You can install it as a demo at this point. Test it out using a temporary database and make sure it is fully functional in demo mode.
  2. (optional) Change the connection string in the web.config file to point to the existing database (if it is accessible from the new machine). Both servers will now be using the same database.
  3. Change the DNS settings as needed to switch references from your old machine to the new one. Wait a bit (hours/days?) until the whole world knows the new DNS settings. The license for your licensed URL is contained in the database, so your new server will automatically be licensed for that URL.
  4. Copy the database to the new machine. Change the web.config file on the new server to point to the new database. Shut down the old machine.

Obviously there are variations - if the new machine is going to take over the same IP address as the old one, you don't have to do the DNS change - so you can skip straight from step 1 to 4.

 


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