prevent My CD from Copy

Posted on 2003-03-05
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-04
i develop software, & i will distributing it, but how could i prevent my S/W in the CD to be coped or instaled more that 2times..?
Question by:ahmpoison
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Accepted Solution

Goldwing earned 200 total points
ID: 8073086
3 ways,

1: use the microaoft way using activation (the expencive way)

2: Make the registration number from a hardware snapshot,
When the customer installs the software the installer will make a code from the Harddrive serial, type of videocard, etc,etc
Let the customer call or mail that code, and you have to make a keygenerator that converts that code into a registration code that only works on THAT system.

I agree, alot of programming but a verry effective method.

3: use a "dongle" a special key that the customer has to connect to his LPT port, (like CUBASE AUDIO has)

but this is also an expencive way to do it.

good luck

Expert Comment

ID: 8074195

Aside from the fact that there is NO WAY to really stop multiple installs, I think the only practical option is to have them:

1. Install program.
2. Request key from the program which will make a unique key for that machine.  Using MAC addresses of the users NIC is a good way to start since they are completely unique.
3. Have them send you the code.
4. You use that as a seed to generate the unlocking key from your own program.
5. They use the key you send them to unlock the software.
6. Have the software do an occassional check to verify it matches, disabling software if it doesn't.

Problems: This will not allow your users to change their hardware without contacting you again.  From a user standpoint I think that stinks.

Think about how much time and money of yours it will take to implement any of these options and then think about how much money you stand to lose realistically.   I think you will find that a single install key code is the most practical option.  

LVL 24

Expert Comment

ID: 8074392
Newbie, huh? This is frequent question, so search of PAQs would be useful. That'd be my answer, thinking you a newbie who won't return with follow up comment or PAQ award. but...

How about: place ID on CD. Make ID + count on HD. Recognize you cannot stop people from copying if they really want to bad enough.

Rather that spending all time tinkering with encryption methods, my approach is recommend you spend time improving product, and increasing desire of others to use it, to copy it, and to order further upgrades to product. Without market, additional security is no issue.

Expert Comment

ID: 8077358
Truly, they want it, they'll get it, no matter. A good product will get you more money, cd's are a lost cause to try to protect your program. They need to self destruct somehow... but if the customer needs to re-install then what... you can encrypt, but they will have the serial to decrypt and can send it on to someone else, you can make a system hash and then ask for an activation code, but someone will reverse that algorythim and won't need to call you to activate it anylonger (LC4). you can add an ID to the HD, but if they can specify where to install to, they can specify another hd, or just put it in a diff pc. you can make it try to contact a website for a "go ahead" response, but they'll have a crack that makes it think it got the response.... on and on... it's all be tried, it's all been beaten. With Palladin and it's ilk, your likely to see a reduction in cracks... but not warez. Then that will all be broken with some mod chip that allows them to do the same as before... Good apps, make more money. You may want to add enough protection to keep your average "joe" from doing multiple copies, but the guys that know what there doing... GL. Cater to the corporations, they will pay, since it's their butt's if they get caught with "stolen" or "cracked" software and no have no ligitimate license's. M$ looks at everyone, adobe contacts their customers. There are software audit company's for hire. Just me 36cents... about 18times the amount of words i was planned on using:p

Expert Comment

ID: 9070799
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