"I Love Product Activation!" | Apertura Designs

"I Love Product Activation!"

Said no business owner, ever. In working with customers, we're regularly exposed to the questionable practice of vendors forcing businesses to prove the authenticity of expensive proprietary software—which the business has legitimately paid to use. While product activation is marketed to businesses as a seemingly minor measure against software piracy, the stark reality is that it leaves your business open to the risk of productivity being severely crippled—and often at the most critical times.

Product activation schemes range from having to enter a "product key" to unlock the software's features, to connecting regularly over the internet to the vendor to verify proof of license purchase. Regardless of the scheme used, software that fails to activate can exhibit behaviour such as critical features being disabled; the ability to edit and save files being removed; or the product just plain failing to run altogether. Product activation is found not just in office software such as Microsoft Office, but in the Microsoft Windows operating system (OS) as well—and a business computer with an OS that has failed to activate is as good as useless:

Fortunately, there is a better way. By choosing software based on free and open source technology, you can keep the debilitating effects of product activation out of your business—permanently. There are no activation codes to enter, no constant checking over the internet with a vendor—and no nasty surprises when software fails to activate and you, your staff, and your customers are left stranded. By using open source, businesses are also protected against the scenario of a vendor exploiting product activation to permanently remove access to software which businesses have legitimately purchased a license to use.

Product activation is an expensive, time-consuming and ultimately unnecessary burden—one that you can leave your competitors to struggle with by adopting open source software.