License Type Definitions:
What is a Floating license?
A ‘floating’ license is one that allows you to install software on multiple machines but restricts the use of that software, at any one time, to the numbers of ‘seats/users’ associated with the license. e.g. You may have installed the software on 10 different machines, and have purchased 3 individual licenses (or one license with 3 seats) and therefore only three instances of that software will run at any one time. If one person quits the software on a machine, that ‘seat’ then goes back into the pool and allows another machine/user to run the software. Floating licenses are usually ‘managed’ by software located on the local network or in the ‘cloud’.
What is a Network license?
A Network license is one in which the license is managed by ‘license manager’ software on a server computer within a LAN (local area network) or WAN (wide area network). It is almost identical to a Floating license except that it is limited to machines that have access to the LAN/WAN.
What is a Perpetual/Lifetime/Permanent license?
A perpetual license is one that does not require continuous repayments (Subscription) to stay active. The license remains working for as long as the hardware and operating system support it. Traditionally all software licenses were perpetual and the user only paid once to use the software for as long as they desired. They would then simply pay for upgrades, either on an annual subscription or as desired.
What is a Subscription/Rental/Renewable/Timed License?
A Subscription License is a license that requires regular payment at predetermined intervals to keep the software operational. Typically the interval is monthly, annually or muti-yearly e.g. every 3 years. Most Subscription licenses require internet connection for the license to be checked at regular intervals. Many, but not all Subscription licenses include updates to the latest versions at no additional cost. Many, but not all Subscription licenses are also Floating licenses.
What is an Educational license?
An educational license is a license that legally restricts its use to educational studies. Most educational licenses either restrict the functionality of the program, the size of the projects, the amount of operating timer or the output may include a digital signature (or watermark) that clearly identifies the educational version. It is rare for educational licenses to allow users to produce commercial works of any kind.
What is a Student License?
A Student license is the same as an educational license except that it is limited to a specific student who has provided evidence that they are in fact a student at a course related to the use of the software.
What is a Commercial License?
A commercial license is a license that permits the user to design for commercial gain.
What is a Dongle License?
A Dongle license is a license that is stored or managed within a removeable plug-in device such as a USB ‘thumb’ drive. The concept of a dongle license provides the user with a secure and transportable license, and allows the software to be installed on multiple machines but only operate on the machine in which the dongle is attached. The risk is that the dongle can be lost, damaged or stolen, typically requiring the user to purchase an entirely new license or provide proof of legitimate loss in order to acquire a replacement.
What is a Node Locked license?
A Node-locked license is a license assigned to one or more hardware devices know as nodes (Typically the computer’s hard-drive). Every node is identified by a unique hardware ID (device fingerprint) which needs to be obtained or entered during the pairing process (usually at product setup or first license validation). This licensing model is also known as Single Use License, Device License, Machine Based License, Named Host License, Hardware Locked license.
What is a Trial license?
A trial license is a license that allows the user to evaluate the software before purchasing. All evaluation software will have some form of restriction including, but not limited to, reduced functionality, time limits per session, restricted output formats, limited time to operate.
What is a Cloud/Web Based license?
A cloud based license is a license that is managed and/or stored on a remote server (Cloud server). The advantages of the license being ‘in the cloud’ is that it is not subject to hardware failures of the local machine. Most, but not all Cloud based licenses allow the license to be checked-in and checked-out by different devices at different times. This provides flexibility for the user. It also means the developer has control over the licensees use of the software. Cloud-based licenses can be Perpetual or Subscription/Timed license.
What is a Timed license?
A Timed license is any license in which there is a restricted period of time in which the user has operational access to the software. Most Trial/Evaluation license, Educational/Student licenses, Cloud/Web Based licenses, and all Subscription/Rental licenses are Timed.
What is a Restricted license?
All licenses have some form of restriction applied to them. Restrictions are commonly noted in the EULA (End User License Agreement) that you must agree to before installing any software. Restrictions are designed to protect the software developer from misuse of the software or illegal use of the software.
What is a Named User license?
A Named User license is one that is limited for use by a single named entity such as an individual or corporation. Most licenses, whether they be floating, perpetual, subscription or any other are also Named user licenses and rarely can they be transferred to another legal entity without the express permission of the author/developer. If permitted, a fee is usually required to make the transfer.