Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

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gunnarh
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Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

Post by gunnarh » Sat Aug 31, 2013 4:48 pm

PDF-XChange Editor
Menu: Help -> Enter Serial
or: Menu: Edit -> Preferences -> Registration

Shows up the Serial Key the Admin used to register/unlock the Software.

This Information should not be visible to End-Users. Our Users could write down this number and use it to make illegal copies of PDF-XChange Editor (for example for Home use).

Please make this Information unreadable, at least for Users without Admin-Rights.

John - Tracker Supp
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Re: Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

Post by John - Tracker Supp » Sat Aug 31, 2013 5:32 pm

Hi,

Please do not post the same topic multiple times - this causes extra work and simply reduces our time and ability to support users.

With regards serial keys - this has always been this way from our first release more than 13 years ago and we have no intention of changing this property - the benefits far outweigh the disadvantages for all concerned.
If posting files to this forum - you must archive the files to a ZIP, RAR or 7z file or they will not be uploaded - thank you.

Best regards
Tracker Support
http://www.tracker-software.com

gunnarh
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Re: Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

Post by gunnarh » Sat Aug 31, 2013 6:06 pm

Sorry for the accidently double-Post.

We currently evaluate PDF X-Change Editor and have plans to buy a company License to install it on all your PCs and Notebooks. But we are afraid our users could use the visible Serial Key to install the Software on further (private) Devices. How would other customers protect their license keys?

There was a similar discussion some time ago:
http://www.tracker-software.com/forum3/ ... 35&t=18081

There you answered, that there are no plans for PDF-XChange Viewer but you plan to hide the Serial in PDF-XChange Editor.

I don't think that checking if the user has Admin-Rights is very high sophisticated. Only showing the Serial Key for Users with Admin-Rights would solve the issue.

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Re: Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

Post by John - Tracker Supp » Sat Aug 31, 2013 6:53 pm

It's not that it is hard to do - but the likelihood is that whilst it may to a very limited degree protect license information - the consequences for our support team are potentially enormous.

Around 50% of all support calls we receive are based on serial number issues of one type or another (simple typo's being the most common) and masking them would complicate this enormously.

The new serial number algorithym is based around a hash key of some length and this is likely to be somewhat 'moot' all around once released in the next set if builds later in September.
If posting files to this forum - you must archive the files to a ZIP, RAR or 7z file or they will not be uploaded - thank you.

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Tracker Support
http://www.tracker-software.com

gunnarh
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Re: Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

Post by gunnarh » Sat Aug 31, 2013 11:19 pm

I agree that this is not a real protection, as the Serial can be found in the Registry too.

But: Hiding the Serial would raise the bar to an acceptable level. Currently the Serial is completely unprotected.

What about following suggestion:
Implement a Registry key like:
HKLM\SOFTWARE\Tracker Software\PDFXEditor\3.0\Settings\Registration\HideSerial = 1

If it is set to 1 the Serial should be hidden. A missing Key or 0 will keep the Serial been shown.

Your regular Installer does not set this Key, but if Admins want to hide the key from their Users they can set this Property.

Should be very simple to implement and would be the solution for Admins who want hide the Key from the eyes of regular End-Users.

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Re: Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

Post by John - Tracker Supp » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:27 am

As detailed we are just weeks away from an entirely new methodology and any changes now would be pointless and akin to 'shutting the stable horse after the horse has already bolted' - whatever your stand point. so as stated the whole issue is somewhat 'moot' anyway.
If posting files to this forum - you must archive the files to a ZIP, RAR or 7z file or they will not be uploaded - thank you.

Best regards
Tracker Support
http://www.tracker-software.com

snowgreg
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Re: Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

Post by snowgreg » Tue Sep 03, 2013 3:55 pm

I agree that the serial number should be hidden as I've had that same concern that any of my employees could copy the serial number down and download the program from your website and install it and use the same serial number at home and/or distribute to their friends, the internet, etc. I'm not terribly concerned about it though because if my serial number were to become compromised my gut tells me that it would not be my problem as it would be impossible to prove how the serial number was compromised/distributed. I look forward to the new serial number methodology you have alluded to.

Thanks,
Greg

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Re: Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

Post by John - Tracker Supp » Tue Sep 03, 2013 3:56 pm

Thanks for your input Greg.
If posting files to this forum - you must archive the files to a ZIP, RAR or 7z file or they will not be uploaded - thank you.

Best regards
Tracker Support
http://www.tracker-software.com

fghj
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Re: Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

Post by fghj » Wed Oct 02, 2013 8:26 am

I'd like to add that you can also look up the serial number of Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Office and most other software I know of in the registry. You did and do not need administrator rights for that.

Tell your employees that they cannot use the companys licenses at home. And if one employee still copies licenses and takes them home to use them own his private computer, he's the one who's infringing license agreements, not you.

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Tracker Supp-Stefan
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Re: Serial Key is visible - even for non Admin-Users

Post by Tracker Supp-Stefan » Wed Oct 02, 2013 8:33 am

Thanks for the input fghj!

Cheers,
Stefan

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