Edit. Didn't see Kipling's post above mine.
Edit. Didn't see Kipling's post above mine.
Thanks Kipling and Arthur. You both come up with the same disadvantage in terms of security. I guess it's useful to see this in the context of the current version which doesn't require registration at all.
I'm actually not trying to find ways of controlling the number of users using this reg data. I'm back to trusting in the honesty of the poeple in the school really...
The school is provided with a registration key along with their CD. When they run the software and get to the registration screen - step f in my scenario a few posts ago, they will need to key in the registration key. This will then download a file from the taskmagic website containing the licence details for the school.
When the program is run subsequently the school's name and licence type will appear on the splash sceen when TaskMagic opens. A pop-up will also appear at random intervals (hopefully not enough to be too much of a nuisance, every nth time a game screen is opened for example) saying that the software is licensed for use on 1 / 10 / all machines in the school (the name of the school will appear here too), and encouraging the reader to contact us if they suspect that the software is being used illegally...
So if you pass on your registration key to another school, the splash / popup screens will hopefully be enough to discourage the other school from using the software.
Our single user / 10 user licences are not concurrent users, but machines on which the software can be accessed without being in breach of the agreement. There's nothing physical to prevent this.
I still think a hidden ini file might be more beneficial, doesn't mess with registry, and backups can be kept.
But that's just me and how I prefer it.
In that case I think the best solution is the one Arthur suggested a few posts back.
To summarise it:
You supply your program in an uncompressed format with an msi file and have a dummy licence file included within the structure.
The network admin then has a few options.
a) Contact you and get the correct licence file emailed across. Replace the dummy file with the new one and push the whole lot out over the network.or
b) hand install the software on one PC using your current online registration system. Once completed, copy the newly downloaded licence file from that PC and overwrite the dummy file on the server; then push the whole lot out over the network.
Itís simple, itís guaranteed to work, it doesnít run into any user permission problems and it allows users to continue using the software when not connected to the network.
If the software gets upgraded all the admin has to do is make sure the real licence file is copied over the dummy one again and let it roll out to clients.
Thanks for all your help. I've gone with what was suggested by Kipling / Arthur. A dummy licence file is included along with the msi, unpackaged. The person installing to the network can register on one machine, then copy the new licence file to the installer before rolling out across the network.
That's great news, Martin. You will have certainly pleased a lot of IT tech's/NMs. :)
Thanks also for taking our feedback on board. Many educational software developers wouldn't even bother to do what you have done.
OK, here I am 18 months on.
I used the model as suggested by several people on here, and it worked a treat. In the last couple of months, however, there have been several reports of the process not working as it should. What's happening is that, after registering on one machine and copying the modified file into the installation directory, when this is installed to the network, the modified file isn't installed (ie. it isn't copied across). I haven't changed anything, as far as I can see, so I'm completely puzzled as to why this should be happening now, when it worked fine for the first year or so (with ZERO reports of it not copying the file across).
Thanks for your reply Pete. That's what I thought at first, but there have been several similar reports now over the last month or two. I haven't asked them to provide the log file. I'll maybe do that, and try to replicate it on my computers here.
BTW the computer I just tried it on was XP. Also, the number of bytes in the modified file is 3 more than the original. Would this make a difference?
I recently installed it on some Windows 7 x64 machines and a Windows XP machine via .msi unattended, it rolled the license file out fine that's in the deployment share. Wouldn't register through the proxy for love nor money, but just took my laptop home to do that.
The issue is not with sending out the licence file that's already in the installation folder. This always installs no problem. But if you modify it (or rather, replace this one with a modified one) some people are saying it isn't copied acroos by the installer...
Is it just network installs that are having the issue? (sorry if I missed it, got a 2 year old running around, on the phone, and writing a document up as well! lol)