Wibu-Systems Blog

Anti-Piracy, Flexible Licensing and software monetization

Posted by Terry Gaul on Sep 17, 2015 11:03:39 AM

We’ve all seen the disturbing software piracy statistics released by BSA | The Software Alliance in their Global Software Survey:

  • 43 percent of the software installed on personal computers globally in 2013 was not properly licensed
  • The global rate at which PC software was installed without proper licensing rose from 42 percent in 2011 to 43 percent in 2013 as emerging economies where unlicensed software use is most prevalent continued to account for a growing majority of all PCs in service.
  • The commercial value of unlicensed PC software installations totaled $62.7 billion globally in 2013.

These trends are sure to put a dent into any ISVs bottom line. In their blueprint for reducing software piracy, the BSA points to increased public education and awareness, modernization of IP laws, and stepped-up enforcement with dedicated resources as important steps towards thwarting piracy.

Of course, a more immediate approach to preventing piracy is to integrate copy protection directly into the application with a robust software protection solution like Wibu-Systems’ CodeMeter. It takes just minutes to protect software from illegal copying, reverse engineering or tampering without having to change a single line of source code.

In addition to preventing software piracy and hacking, a sound monetization strategy will serve to maximize ISV revenues as well. With secure, flexible licensing capabilities, ISVs and device manufacturers can effectively implement creative licensing strategies to meet the dynamic market requirements of their end users. The days of the perpetual software license are long gone and ISVs need the ability to introduce various pricing schemes based on pay-per-function, pay-per-use, subscription, or other possible licensing options. A representative example of a flexible licensing system is CodeMeter License Central, which enables ISVs to create, manage and distribute all types of licenses in a secure, straightforward manner.

Industry analyst firm, Frost and Sullivan, concluded in a white paper that “customers experience best long-term value in terms of both top-line revenue realization bottom-line costs and efficiency when license management solutions inherently provide comprehensive functionality and robust security.”

Download Frost and Sullivan Whitepaper

I invite you to download the full whitepaper, entitled Best Practices in Software Monetization: A Customer-Centric View of Secure License Management. The White Paper sheds light on various aspects of successful software monetization strategies, ranging from business-enabling licensing architectures to resilience against hacking. The document demonstrates how changing times demand that ISVs implement customer-centric business models and customer-friendly enforcement in order to increase their top line software revenues while controlling bottom line costs.

   

Topics: License Management, software protection, CodeMeter, secure licensing, software piracy, CodeMeter License Central

Important Considerations in Choosing a 3rd Party Licensing Platform

Posted by Terry Gaul on Mar 26, 2015 5:42:57 AM

If you have decided to integrate a 3rd party licensing solution for your software application, you’ve made the right choice. By doing so, you’ve freed up your developers to do what they do best — write code; you’ve given your marketing team the ability to deliver the software in a manner that is most desirable for the customers in discrete market segments; and, you’ve protected and monetized your software so that you generate the revenues that you deserve from your development and commercialization efforts.CodeMeter License Central

But now the question is which 3rd party solution should you choose? There are several options out there and each solution offers a different approach to licensing. In making your decision, there are several key factors to consider:

Licensing Flexibility — the licensing platform of choice should enable you to create, deliver, activate, update and manage licenses using the business model that’s optimum for your customers without compromise, whether it is single user licenses, network licenses, feature on-demand licenses, demo/trial licenses, pay-per-use licenses, or whatever license model you dream up. This licensing flexibility gives your marketing team the tools they need to define and deliver the product in the optimal manner for each unique market segment and generate the most revenue.

License Security — the licensing platform should provide mechanisms to securely store and deliver licenses, whether it is via a hardware device (Dongle) or PC-bound soft license file. Dongles offer the highest security and portability from PC to PC while soft licenses offer the fastest delivery and activation. Either way, the licensing system should ensure that only authenticated, licensed users can activate and utilize the software.

Easy Integration into Your Business Processes — for ease-of-use and to reduce costs, the licensing solution should integrate seamlessly into your existing ERP, CRM, eCommerce or other business processes using industry standard tools such as SOAP. It should also be capable of accessing your existing databases, such as Oracle, MySQL, and MS-SQL. And, it should have a customer facing portal that can be branded and customized to support your end-users.

License Activation Options — the solution should provide activation options that are best suited for your business model. You should have the flexibility to activate licenses online from within the software application or via an internet web portal; or offline via file transfer from the computer with the software application to another computer with access to the portal.

Hosting Flexibility —the solution should provide you with the option to host your license server on a local web server or host and manage in the cloud of the provider of the licensing system.

Software Monetization — in addition to licensing flexibility, the solution should provide data mining, analytics and reporting capabilities to give you the ability to make sound business decisions and the agility to shift your marketing strategy as market requirements change.

Vendor Reliability — choose a 3rd party licensing partner that you can trust. How long have they been in business? What is their business strategy — are they dedicated to licensing or do they have other interests? Who are their key customers? How good is their support?

At Wibu-Systems, we have focused solely on software protection and secure licensing for more than 25 years and we remain committed to innovation and continuity for the future. Our ongoing mission is to accompany the growth of your business with stability, expertise, and long-term vision. Learn more about CodeMeter License Central, our comprehensive solution that enables you to easily create, manage and distribute your licenses.  I invite you to contact us to discuss your licensing needs, or try our licensing solution with the CodeMeter Evaluation System.

Request a CodeMeter Evaluation System

Topics: License Management, secure licensing, Wibu-Systems news, CodeMeter License Central, software monetization

Webinar: Enhancing License Management with CodeMeter and Salesforce

Posted by Terry Gaul on Nov 20, 2014 1:48:28 PM

Salesforce

Webinar December 4 - see full agenda and presentation times here

Over the last 15 years, Salesforce has grown exponentially to become the world leading CRM platform. In addition to migrating sales, service, marketing and community-related databases to the cloud, many ISVs are now using Salesforce to create and distribute software licenses. For those ISVs, we’ve made the licensing process easier and more efficient by enabling the integration of Salesforce with CodeMeter. CodeMeter License Central automates the process of creating, delivering and managing licenses for software and digital content and can be easily integrated with Salesforce in just a few easy steps.

On December 4, we will host a seminar and demonstrate how to integrate CodeMeter with Salesforce and how to create and manage the license process with your end users.

Visit our registration page to see the full agenda of this one hour Webinar and the presentation times.

Topics: License Management, CodeMeter, CodeMeter License Central

Removing the Complexity from Software Licensing and Activation

Posted by Terry Gaul on Mar 5, 2014 1:05:00 PM

The growing demand by consumers for flexible, scalable, and adaptable license management solutions challenges independent software vendors (ISV) to keep pace.

LicenseCentral customisation Website Colored 01According to International Data Corporation (IDC) Research Vice President, Amy Konary, as she noted in a TechNet Blog post, "customers are also calling for increased flexibility in software licensing — concurrent licensing, pay-per-use models, and licensing approaches that allow customers to take advantage of the benefits of virtualization — while at the same time that they are calling for increased simplicity."

However, the increasingly diverse licensing schemes ISVs require to meet the new software business models, like SaaS and PaaS, threaten to add unwanted complexity. For example, instead of just activating and binding a license to a PC or connecting a dongle, you now have to concern yourself with other details, such as preventing shared passwords by identifying the user logging in to an application in the Cloud, and measuring usage statistics for billing purposes.

Wibu-Systems is focused on providing ISVs with reliable licensing tools that can be integrated into your existing business processes and provide the flexibility needed to adapt to rapidly changing customer requirements. Our License Central system is the cornerstone of our CodeMeter software licensing and copy protection system. Flexibility in license activation is also an important component of a successful software delivery strategy. CodeMeter License Central enables activation of both software-based and dongle-based licenses directly via the internet or offline via file transfer.

We recently hosted a one-hour webinar, entitled A Masterful Customization of your License Activation Process, and invite you to watch a recorded replay of the webinar on our website. While viewing this webinar, you will learn how to use License Central to:

  • Easily implement an online license activation system using an Activation Wizard integrated into your application
  • Opt for an online license activation system using the CodeMeter WebDepot portal
  • Employ a hybrid solution that combines online and offline license activation, while still using WebDepot

Additionally, you will see demonstrations on how to:

  • Customize License Central to meet your business demands
  • Adapt the WebDepot GUI to the look and feel of your brand
  • Incorporate the end-users license lists and available Trial Licenses within WebDepot

Given the importance of your licensing strategy, I encourage you to watch the webinar and see the benefits of using a fully featured, highly scalable, Web-service based license management system.

Topics: License Management, CodeMeter License Central, software licensing, secure licensing, license tracking, network licensing

Are Those Storm Clouds Ahead?

Posted by Terry Gaul on Oct 30, 2013 11:40:00 AM

storm clouds on the horizon
Adobe may have raised some eyebrows last year when they announced they were moving their packaged Creative Suite PC software to the cloud, but most industry analysts predicted this day was coming – it was just a matter of how soon. Microsoft is moving in the same direction with their Office 365 cloud offering and other enterprise application developers are sure to follow suit. However, after the story came out recently that hackers broke into Adobe's network and stole personal information, including an estimated 2.9 million credit card numbers, the cloud may be darkening a bit.

Skeptics have pointed at data security from day one as the most serious drawback to cloud computing and Adobe's misfortune makes their case. But is that enough to break the momentum of the roll out of subscription based model to software delivery? I don't think so because the cost advantages to cloud-based software applications are too great, for both the ISV and the end user. And, end users want access to their apps from any device, from anywhere, and the cloud is the most effective way to fulfill that need.

Nonetheless, it is incumbent upon the software developer and hosting vendor to keep the data out of the wrong hands. There are three types of cloud computing scenarios that exist:

  • Application (SaaS): Independent software vendors (ISV) host their applications in the cloud from where the ISV customers (end users) store their data which is accessed by those applications. The ISV manages the cloud space. Example: salesforce.com.
  • Platform (PaaS): ISVs host their applications in the cloud but, in contrast to SaaS, the user has more flexibility in usage of the stored data by accessing development tools, databases, or web services. The ISV still manages the cloud space. Examples: force.com, windowsazure.com.
  • Infrastructure (IaaS): Users lease the infrastructure (a virtual computer) in the cloud, store their data there, and install, host and run applications. The cloud space is managed by the user rather than the ISV. Example: amazon.com.

Each approach has its unique security strengths and vulnerabilities and requires a strong user authentication and data encryption strategy to protect the cloud-based application. Moving from conventional perpetual licenses to subscription based licensing in the cloud also requires ISVs to consider new licensing strategies to secure the process and protect against license sharing.

In the IaaS environment, traditional software licensing control through a machine binding or a dongle is not possible and new licensing methods must be addressed.

As a provider of software protection and secure licensing solutions for over 25 years, we've been able to apply our experience to the development of the tools that our customers need to secure their software in the cloud and provide their users with the peace of mind that their data is safe.

You can learn more about our proven cloud security techniques by watching this 1-hour pre-recorded webinar, in cooperation with our partner, charismathics. We demonstrate how we protect ISVs' data and business logic in SaaS, PaaS and IaaS schemes against license counterfeiting and duplication. With the integration of charismathics CSSI, we can also guarantee user's secure access based on PKI two-factor authentication for SaaS and PaaS. Explore our complete offering for cloud security during the webinar or go to our web page for more information.

Photo by longhorndave

Topics: CodeMeter, Copy Protection, CmAct, CodeMeter License Central

Maximum revenues with software monetization

Posted by Terry Gaul on Nov 13, 2012 4:55:00 AM

Growing revenues through effective software monetizationLately, we’ve been hearing the term “software monetization” bandied about. What does it mean?

We define software monetization as the capability to effectively maximize your software revenue by meeting marketing demands. No doubt you’re thinking, “Great, but what does that mean for me?”

In a manner of speaking it is giving the people what they want. In today’s difficult economy the license models of yesteryear no longer work.

End-users no longer want to be roped into buying a big application with a perpetual license and big price tag that gets delivered in a Big Box that contains a CD.  In today's environment customers want to buy what they want, when they want it.  How you package your software for revenue generation will determine how you compete in the 21st century.

Software consumers demand instant gratification with their buying experience and expect some of the following things:

  • Applications delivered electronically
  • "Try before they buy"
  • The ability to buy a particular bundle, suite or set of features
  • The ability to add features on-demand
  • License features for only as long as needed via subscription or rental methods
  • Sharing features or functions over a network with floating licenses
  • Moving licenses from office to office or factory to factory

The most successful ISVs in today’s marketplace are working to provide this flexibility in order to meet these market demands. While this is a complex issue to resolve, the key is to make the whole process seem easy to the end-user.

The end-user wants the experience to be simple and intuitive - from placing the order to installing, implementing, and utilizing - it needs to be smooth and painless.  In order to meet these goals you need to have the right license management solution in place.  We think CodeMeter is the right solution as it gives you the flexibility to deliver your software in a way that will maximize revenues and fulfill your software monetization strategy.

You spend a lot of time and money to develop your applications --now maximize profits from your sales model by meeting your customers’ needs.

Topics: CodeMeter, CodeMeter License Central, software monetization

Software Licensing is now easier than ever

Posted by John Poulson on Nov 6, 2012 1:00:00 PM

Imagine Easy Software Licensing Customization

 

Those of you who are using or are familiar with CodeMeter License Central (the Flexible Software Licensing Management Solution from Wibu-Systems) know that the GUI was designed as a programmer’s tool. Many of our customers (who understand the importance of brand management) wanted the ability to make this tool one that could easily be managed by non-technical employees.

The challenge has been how to maintain a high level of security (centralized control) and still provide our customers the ability to make CodeMeter License Central an extension of their own site (decentralized control). We are pleased to announce that we have solved this challenge.

By separating out the “depot” function we increase value to  our customers in two ways:

  1. We place the customized “depot” in its own sandbox, in front of the firewall, thereby increasing the overall security of CmLC
  2. Allow for customization through the use of CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) files of your own design.

The possibilities for further developing the Web-Depot are numerous. Functions such as login, license return and license overview can be easily added to the Web Depot.

Stay tuned to this space for more information about how you can customize your installation of Licesen Central

john poulsonJohn Poulson has worked in the software protection industry since 1988 and has been with Wibu-Systems since 2000. He is an expert in license authentication best practices and deep powder skiing.

Topics: CodeMeter License Central, software licensing

License Central 1.51 released

Posted by John Browne on Aug 7, 2012 2:23:00 PM

Just a quick note to tell you that we've released version 1.51 of CodeMeter License Central.

What's new:

Windows 8: this release completes our support for Windows 8 with the addition of CmActLicenses in the "supported OS" screen. 

License Central 1.51

So now you can use either CmDongle or CmActLicense for your Windows 8 applications with this release of CodeMeter License Central (it was possible earlier but you had to use CmBoxPgm to create the licenses and activation schemes). Notice also we have full support for Windows Server 2012. Now you can test creating licenses for your protected applicaitons using License Central with your beta or pre-release copies of the next Microsoft operating systems.

Individual License Activation: When you go to the depot and click on a ticket with multiple licenses, you can select which of those to activate if you don't want to activate all at once:

CodeMeter License Central

 

 

In addition to these improvements, we also fixed some bugs (yes, we have bugs too). You can see which ones by looking at the change log. As always, download the latest versions of CodeMeter software here.

Topics: CodeMeter, License Management, CodeMeter License Central