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Re: Software Keys

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> From: "Polhemus, Bill" <Bill.Polhemus(--nospam--at)>

> What's REALLY self-limiting, though, is having such a program with a
> Dongle, that you only use every so often, and not being able to find the
> Dongle when you want to use the program.

I suspect that situation is rare in the broader market. Otherwise, I
agree that it doesn't need to be like a sudden death overtime condition
- one slip and you lose everything. However, read the EULA that comes
with any non-dongled product - lose the CD and you have no recourse
(e.g. upgrade to a new machine and you can't install without the CD).
Replacement becomes a policy issue with the vendor. I have not had to
test this. 

I have software with a dongle that I have been carrying in my briefcase
for several years. I haven't lost the briefcase and I haven't left the
dongle behind (it's rather unique and hard to miss, though).

I do like Acronym's key-code method and they have been considerate of my
operation. There may be an issue here relating to perceived financial
costs for this method compared to more expensive products and the total
number of installations to support. Also, it does permit them to track
individual machine installations for any single license. They can
determine if you appear to be abusing the license. It seems to me that
MS/Intel took a lot of flack a few years ago for this same approach with
chip IDs. 

I know one software vendor, whose product is WAY more expensive than
anything that is considered on this forum, which requires the dongle to
be flash upgraded on a regular basis! They have a substantial loss
potential for even a single copied license or cracked hardware locks. 

In a larger office, where dongles stay on one desktop machine for a long
time, missing dongles is hardly a problem. I haven't heard of security
issues (stolen dongles) as with other stolen components (drives, memory,
etc.). I have encountered "spare" dongles, for site licenses, that have
been difficult to locate because they were inappropriately stored in
somebody's desk drawer. 

As I stated at the beginning, if there has to be a dongle, incorporate
the application software installation into it. One dongle, any user, any
machine, anytime, full portability.

R. Paul Ransom, P. Eng.
Burlington, Ontario, Canada
<mailto:ado26(--nospam--at)> <>

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