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Thread: How to prevent copying of software?

  1. #1
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    How to prevent copying of software?

    Hi,
    I am developing a software, which the user will buy online. This much I am able to do. But if the user coipes the software to some other system, it should not work on the other system. How to do this? Any tips?

  2. #2
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    Re: How to prevent copying of software?

    Actually there is no fool proof way of doing this. There are tools available in the market that can be used to prevent piracy, but then nothing is 100% safe and secure.

    You can use Hardware Locks, which are little bit expensive.

  3. #3
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    Re: How to prevent copying of software?

    You can make your software buyer validate their copy like Microsoft does. Then, everyone will hate you and only buy your products because you have a monopoly on the rise.

    If you did this, you would have to account for changing of computers. A user could buy your software and then get a new computer. He would be out of luck.

    Basically, as Shuja already stated, you can't be 100% fool-proof.
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  4. #4
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    Re: How to prevent copying of software?

    Retain an important part of the algorithm on your server as a web service. Users must be net conencted to use the software. The significant part should be complex enough to avoid proxying.


    Or, provide it mostly as a web service
    "it's a fax from your dog, Mr Dansworth. It looks like your cat" - Gary Larson...DW1: Data Walkthroughs 1.1...DW2: Data Walkthroughs 2.0...DDS: The DataSet Designer Surface...ANO: ADO.NET2 Orientation...DAN: Deeper ADO.NET...DNU...PQ

  5. #5
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    Talking Re: How to prevent copying of software?

    What does the software do?

    You could make your customers download an application (browser-based would be ideal) that runs on the target computer and generates a serial number based on the hardware avaliable on the target computer. The software then generates a code that is sent back to your site. You can do a lot of things with that serial code - maybe encode your customer's name + the serial code into something that can then be used by your software to activiate it.

    I think the most important thing is that you should consider making the activation process as easy as possible. It shouldn't be time consuming and it shouldn't require the end user to do anything other than press buttons and enter personal information.

    But this all depends on what your software does - if we could get a better idea of the software's function (ie., vector graphics creation/maipulation tool or Spyware remover), we might be able to suggest a more appropriate anti-piracy solution!

    Best,

    Nao

    DISCLAIMER:
    THE AUTHOR OF THIS POST WAIVERS ALL LIABILITY FOR DAMAGES ARISING FROM THE IMPLEMENTATION OF IDEAS, CONCEPTS AND/OR SOURCE CODE LISTINGS IN THIS POST. HYPERLINKS ARE PROVIDED AS-IS AND NO GUARANTEE IS MADE AS TO THE AVAILABILITY, VALIDITY OR SUITABILITY OF THE MATERIALS FOUND THROUGH LINKS POSTED BY THE AUTHOR OF THIS POST.

    Blighty
    is a British English slang term for Great Britain, deriving from the Hindustani word bilāyatī (विलायती), meaning "foreign", related to the Arabic word wilayat, meaning a kingdom or province.

    Source: Wikipedia.org

  6. #6
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    Re: How to prevent copying of software?

    A quick note on my last post - if your customer changes their hardware configuration (ie., change a graphics card or upgrade CPU), you might get into trouble.

    Again, it would be great to know what your software does, who your intended market is and how much you're selling it for.

    The best kind of piracy protection I've seen is price. If your software is cheap enough, few people will bother trying to copy it when they can get a copy themselves for, say, $5.

    Best,

    Nao
    Last edited by blighty; October 11th, 2006 at 07:46 PM.

    DISCLAIMER:
    THE AUTHOR OF THIS POST WAIVERS ALL LIABILITY FOR DAMAGES ARISING FROM THE IMPLEMENTATION OF IDEAS, CONCEPTS AND/OR SOURCE CODE LISTINGS IN THIS POST. HYPERLINKS ARE PROVIDED AS-IS AND NO GUARANTEE IS MADE AS TO THE AVAILABILITY, VALIDITY OR SUITABILITY OF THE MATERIALS FOUND THROUGH LINKS POSTED BY THE AUTHOR OF THIS POST.

    Blighty
    is a British English slang term for Great Britain, deriving from the Hindustani word bilāyatī (विलायती), meaning "foreign", related to the Arabic word wilayat, meaning a kingdom or province.

    Source: Wikipedia.org

  7. #7
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    Re: How to prevent copying of software?

    Quote Originally Posted by peejavery
    You can make your software buyer validate their copy like Microsoft does. Then, everyone will hate you and only buy your products because you have a monopoly on the rise.

    If you did this, you would have to account for changing of computers. A user could buy your software and then get a new computer. He would be out of luck.

    Basically, as Shuja already stated, you can't be 100% fool-proof.
    The only way to ensure a 100% fool-proof way to stop software theft is to NEVER release it to the public...because as we make bigger and better rat traps to protect software...they make bigger and better rats !!!
    Jim
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  8. #8
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    Re: How to prevent copying of software?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vanaj
    The only way to ensure a 100% fool-proof way to stop software theft is to NEVER release it to the public...because as we make bigger and better rat traps to protect software...they make bigger and better rats !!!
    Too true!!

    Here's another idea - IF you can make an applet out of your product (wish I knew what it did!), you could just provide username/password access and make sure no two instances of that username/password are logged onto your site at any one time. You could combine that with incentives to get a legal copy - anybody who's using someone else's username/password gets to us the software for 14 days (trial). Meanwhile, you send a new password to the registered user and a warning that if they share their username/password AGAIN, they will be in breach of the user license agreement and you reserve the right to terminate service.

    What happens if the user's username and password was STOLEN (taken without their knowledge)? They get 3 warnings. After that, they can either pay for a new license or go away. There is a piece of software called Final Draft (used to write scripts for TV and Film) that is handled this way.

    Pleeeeeeeeease tell us what your software does!

    Best,

    Nao
    Last edited by blighty; October 16th, 2006 at 03:52 AM.

    DISCLAIMER:
    THE AUTHOR OF THIS POST WAIVERS ALL LIABILITY FOR DAMAGES ARISING FROM THE IMPLEMENTATION OF IDEAS, CONCEPTS AND/OR SOURCE CODE LISTINGS IN THIS POST. HYPERLINKS ARE PROVIDED AS-IS AND NO GUARANTEE IS MADE AS TO THE AVAILABILITY, VALIDITY OR SUITABILITY OF THE MATERIALS FOUND THROUGH LINKS POSTED BY THE AUTHOR OF THIS POST.

    Blighty
    is a British English slang term for Great Britain, deriving from the Hindustani word bilāyatī (विलायती), meaning "foreign", related to the Arabic word wilayat, meaning a kingdom or province.

    Source: Wikipedia.org

  9. #9
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    Re: How to prevent copying of software?

    Quote Originally Posted by blighty
    The best kind of piracy protection I've seen is price. If your software is cheap enough, few people will bother trying to copy it when they can get a copy themselves for, say, $5.
    I would love to see windows vista ultimate....$5

  10. #10
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    Re: How to prevent copying of software?

    I guess you could always individually key your software to your software components to your firmware to your user name and computer name and your device manager configuration seven ways from Sunday. Then the software that works on this computer no longer works on that computer. What a support nightmare though . Oh wait XP did the last part though!
    ahoodin
    To keep the plot moving, that's why.

  11. #11
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    Re: How to prevent copying of software?

    Don't worry. We hard core pirates will find the mistake in it. I can PM you if some one does.

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