Software distribution system
Method for multiple programs management within a network having a server computer and a plurality of remote computers
Apparatus for controlling the use of computer software
License mangagement system and license storage key
Software licensing management system
Network license server
Manipulating rights-to-execute in connection with a software copy protection mechanism
Apparatus and method for licensing software on a network of computers
System and apparatus for protecting computer software
Management interface for license management system Patent #: 5204897
ApplicationNo. 304632 filed on 09/12/1994
US Classes:705/8, Allocating resources or scheduling for an administrative function705/26, Electronic shopping (e.g., remote ordering)705/59Licensing
ExaminersPrimary: McElheny, Donald Jr.
Attorney, Agent or Firm
International ClassesG06F 017/40
AbstractA distributed computer system employs a license management system to account for software product usage. A management policy having a variety of alternative styles and contexts is provided. Each licensed product upon start-up makes a call to a license server to check on whether usage is permitted, and the license server checks a database of the licenses, called product use authorizations, that it administers. If the particular use requested is permitted, a grant is returned to the requesting user node. The product use authorization is structured to define a license management policy allowing a variety of license alternatives by values called "style", "context", "duration" and "usage requirements determination method". The license administration may be delegated by the license server to a subsection of the organization, by creating another license management facility duplicating the main facility. The license server must receive a license document (a product use authorization) from an issuer of licenses, where a license document generator is provided. A mechanism is provided for one user node to make a call to use a software product located on another user node; this is referred to as a "calling card", by which a user node obtains permission to make a procedure call to use a program on another node. A management interface allows a license manager at a server to modify the license documents in the database maintained by the server, within the restraints imposed by the license, to make delegations, assignments, etc. The license documents are maintained in a standard format referred to as a license document interchange format so the management system is portable and can be used by all adhering software vendors. A feature of the database management is the use of a filter function.