Smith Micro Graphics Software Blog

License Activation for Poser Pro Game Dev

Posted by Steve Cooper on Jan 9, 2015 8:02:37 AM


It’s hard to get excited about a software license activation system.

To users, activation can feel invasive and distrustful. For developers the system can be an effective deterrent to casual piracy. In an effort to be transparent about our activation system in Poser Pro Game Dev, we’d like to detail the implementation and share some perspectives on the net benefits to this system.

The system requirements for Poser Pro Game Dev list an Internet Connection to automatically validate the installation and your serial number. If there’s an internet connection on the computer you’ve installed on, the serial number is submitted, validated and the software license is automatically activated. There is a 7 day grace period after first launch to activate the software. However once that grace period is expired you must activate to get the application to launch again. Again, the activation is automatic when the computer is connected to the internet, which is why we list that in the system requirements.

If you decide to install Poser Pro Game Dev on a computer which is not connected to the internet, you will need to manually activate your license via another computer which does have internet access before the 7 day grace period expires. This is a simple process which is described in the Poser Pro Game Dev product addendum. To make manual activation easier, you can follow the step by step process right inside Poser Pro Game Dev .

Poser Pro Game Dev requires reactivation periodically. If the installation computer is connected to the internet, this will happen automatically every 60 days. If the installation computer is not connected to the internet, the license will need to be reactivated manually every 180 days. The process for manual reactivation is the same as the first time you’ve activated.

Each license you’ve purchased can be activated a maximum of 3 unique times. You can manually deactivate the license on one system to transfer it to a new system without using up one of your 3 activations. If you need to reactivate beyond 3 unique times for hardware related reasons, contact our tech support team for their assistance. In the case of most other graphic software products from industry leading developers, you are limited to 1 activation per license, and in some cases deactivation or installing on a new computer is not possible without help from the developer’s support team. We feel 3 unique activations is a fair middle ground.

In the future, if you choose to opt-in, we will be collecting anonymous data help our team identify features in Poser that are frequently used. It also will give us a very basic snapshot of the hardware you are running on. That data will also tell us about crashes to help us improve Poser’s reliability. For reference, most major ecommerce and social media websites like Amazon, Facebook and eBay capture far more data than we will be in the future.

At this point you’re likely asking why we would implement an activation system. As noted earlier, there are benefits on both sides. If you have decided to opt-in to receive email from us, we will keep you up to date on products that might be of interest to you. Note that you can completely tailor your email preferences to only receive very specific communications from us, such as our useful graphics newsletter. If you’ve opted-in for data collection, this information will help us make smarter choices about expanding the Poser features you value most. Opting-in allows us to keep you informed, to help build a better relationship with you and to build a better Poser.

The benefit to us is straight forward. Like most software developers, piracy is an issue that we encounter daily. We would need to harden the application deeply to attempt to combat the most extreme levels of piracy. Frankly, we wouldn’t choose to go that route. But there’s a surprising amount of casual piracy. Casual piracy is complicated. It ranges from users who share their serial numbers with friends, serial numbers shared in social media or sold online, all the way to companies which purchase a single license to install across a lab full of computers.

While we appreciate the desire to share our products, acts of casual piracy put the future of product development at risk. The impact from casual piracy is very real, and our activation system is a useful deterrent. Reactivation is also an important part of the solution to help us combat casual piracy. In a competitive world where every little bit helps, this can mean the difference between a net loss and success.

Ultimately, we are a business, and continued investment in developing the products that we love is contingent on their financial success. That ongoing investment assures there will be new versions of Poser, with new features to enable your personal creativity.

Thank you for reading this far along. We appreciate your passion for our products. We also appreciate your willingness to hear why we have made these choices and hope you can understand them. We are glad that we are able to share this transparency with you and look forward to your continued support.

Topics: Poser

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