Using the cloud for software licenses is all the rage at the moment, especially for enterprise software where admins take over most of the day-to-day management tasks on behalf of the users in their organization. The advantages are obvious: Providers and users can access their license information at any time, and often usage data as well. Licenses can be changed on the fly; they can be created, updated, or revoked as needed. For admins, it becomes easy to actively organize which users can use which licenses on which devices.
Manufacturing facilities on the proverbial shop floor are, however, often not hooked up to the Internet, but instead run offline and fully autonomously. The reasons for this are obvious: Machines will not suddenly come to a standstill should the Internet connection break down. This could lead to massive costs down the line – just imagine a furnace falling cold in a steelworks. At the same time, keeping machines separate from the Internet protects against cyberattacks and sabotage. Attackers cannot tamper with devices they simply cannot reach.
As part of Industry 4.0, more and more manufacturing data is sent over the Internet, e.g., for predictive maintenance. In most cases, the data is captured and passed onto the Internet via dedicated gateways. Still, there is no direct Internet connection on the shop floor for the reasons named above.
What does that mean for licensing? A lot, for architectural purposes. The servers needed to create and manage licenses are usually on the Internet. The users, like the operators of manufacturing lines, need to activate the licenses directly on the computers and devices on the shop floor. As with the data collected for Industry 4.0 purposes, this works without a direct Internet connection. All that is needed is an intermediate medium, which can be a regular PC, to move the license from the online to the offline world. If need be, this can happen completely offline by physically sharing data.
In this webinar, we will follow the process of activating licenses with an offline device and CodeMeter License Central in detail. Which data is needed at what point? How can that data be shared? Which steps are optional and can be skipped for the offline process? And how does CodeMeter License Central make all of this simpler?
The webinar will talk about shop floor scenarios as an example of offline cloud-based licensing, but its insights will apply for all offline scenarios, from sensitive financial management to cutting-edge research labs, the military, or other critical infrastructure. Any scenarios that have to work without a direct Internet connection can be realized with the know-how from this webinar.