User-Based Licensing Now Online

March 8th, 2010 by Michael Kirkham

As previously (but quietly) announced, User-Based Licensing was introduced in MIB Smithy SDK 4.0, and subsequently in MIB Smithy 4.2 and MIB Views 1.5. Earlier versions of these products supported only Host-Based Licensing.

Host-Based Licensing permits any user to use the software on a single specified computer, provided it’s used by only one person at a time. This scheme is useful in multi-user environments where use is less frequent, as licenses can be shared in this manner, with the trade-off being limits on how often the license can be transferred to another computer.

User-Based Licensing, on the other hand, permits a single specified user to use the software on any computer, provided it’s used on only one computer at a time. This scheme is useful in environments where a user uses multiple computers or changes computers frequently (such as on a desktop and laptop), with the trade-off being that each user needs their own license.

The User-Based Licensing feature was implemented in these releases, but until now the systems on the web site weren’t set up to handle it. From now on, when initially configuring their license key, new customers can choose whether to designate it as a User-Based or Host-Based License, and whether to use the old license key format (compatible with all versions) or new license key format (compatible with these versions and later) for Host-Based Licenses. The new format includes a couple of freely editable plaintext fields (usually filled in with the product name and serial number) that make it easier for customers with multiple license keys to distinguish them from one another, and gets rid of those BEGIN/END lines people often don’t realize are required parts of the old key format.

Customers who initially purchased their license prior to December 31, 2010 (through end of this year) who are using Host-Based Licenses can elect to permanently convert their keys to User-Based Licenses, provided their support is current, and can now do so online by following link at the bottom of the License Detail page, accessible via serial number link at Manage Licenses. This future cutoff date was chosen to allow for transition time, as some current MIB Smithy SDK users may want to switch to User-Based Licenses, and may wish to acquire additional licenses, but need time to port their scripts or hardware from SDK 3.x to 4.x API and Platform Changes.

After conversion to a User-Based License, you’ll be permitted to continue to use your old Host-Based license key as necessary for migration and script porting, but it may no longer be shared (it must be used only by the newly assigned user) and no further Host ID transfers will be permitted.

The new format looks approximately like this, with the two fields in ||’s editable in any way that helps you keep track of your licenses (except by inserting | characters):

|MIB Smithy Professional - Windows|XXXXXX-XXXXXX-XXXXXX|dcPkYQW

If you’d like to convert your license to the new format, but stay with Host-Based Licensing, please contact support. As with conversion to User-Based, your support must be current (it’s only supported by the above versions of the software).

P.S. No, that’s not a valid license key, so don’t even try. :)

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