Sunday, February 24, 2008

Microsoft Software Licensing and Protection Services

In the current versions of the products that we publish at VLS we use Macrovision's FLexNet package to provide the licensing services.

Today, I found out that Microsoft has released a new licensing product called "Microsoft Software Licensing and Protection Services" (SLP), which provides an API and SDK to protect IP as well as monetize your .NET software products.


A couple of major differences between FlexNet and SLP is the fact that SLP provides native .NET support. (FlexNET - can be used with .NET via interop). The other is that SLP also provides for protection from code reverse engineering via a code transformation technology called "Code Protector".

So is SLP going to be a DotFuscator and FlexNET killer?

One of the biggest features that I could not find out about in SLP is whether it supports network based licensing tokens (aka floating licenses).

Keep watching to see my comparison between FlexNET and SLP (That is if I can get an evaluation license to SLP easily).

Some of the things I would like to check out:

  1. If the code transformation technology leads to slowdown of the application.
  2. How easy is it to customize what is transformed in the dlls - so that the API parts of the dlls are still accessible to other programmers?
  3. Does SLP support network based licenses?
  4. How are the licenses locked? (ie computer id, Mac id, etc). Also does it support dongles?
  5. What reporting capabilities are available from the licensing service?

News of MSLP's release via Protect your Assets.

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