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Dragon Naturally Speaking 10.1 App-V package - activation RRS feed

  • Question

  • I've packaged Dragon Naturally Speaking 10.1 using App-V 4.6 SP3, & all functions that I have tested are working normally.

    However, the one problem I can't seem to get past is that every time my Dragon user logs a different VDI (virtual desktop), Dragon asks to activate again, and it only has a limited number of activations before the license code is locked out. As our users are connected at random to one of a large pool of VDI's when they log in, this is a problem.

    I have been in contact with Nuance directly and with our software supplier, who are partnered with Nuance, and have been given a lot of conflicting information, but have not been able to resolve matters. This has been going for several weeks. 

    As I can see several topics that would indicate others have successfully sequenced Dragon NS before, I would like to ask how product activation was dealt with?

    To clarify: I am NOT asking for anything illegal (keys, cracks, etc), and I already have a paid-for licence. I just need to get this running as it is a health & safety requirement for my user, and until I can resolve the activation problem, I'm stuck.



    • Edited by DixieLandBlues Monday, March 3, 2014 9:51 AM
    • Moved by Aaron.ParkerModerator Tuesday, March 4, 2014 11:09 AM Please don't post questions to the App-V Recipe forum. This forum is for completed recipes only
    Wednesday, February 26, 2014 5:19 PM

Answers

  • (Apols for posting to the wrong forum)

    I have done the initial activation during sequencing, but skipping it does not make a difference. I haven't been able to determine any specific location or file that is linked to activation, but Nuance have informed me that the software does generate a hardware fingerprint which it uses to determine activation.

    As mentioned, I have been in contact with Nuance (the manufacturer) regarding this, but with limited results:

    (Wall of text follows, sorry!)

    -I was initially told by Tech Support that there was an enterprise activation tool to bypass this issue, and they would send it to me. After chasing for about a week, I was told that they were not allowed to send it to me, and I need to buy an Enterprise license.

    -Cue phoning Nuance sales for a quote - after explaining, was told that I need to contact a re-seller as Nuance could not sell an Enterprise licence to me directly.I got in contact with our corporate software re-seller, they got in contact with their Nuance account manager, another few days exchange resulted in my being told that there is no Enterprise licence, and Dragon is not supported at all in Citrix as it doesn't work.

    Explained that I already have it working, just need a way around the activation, & account manager has now put me in contact with a specialist 3rd party vendor they say might be able to help, as Nuance can't.

    I am now about to contact the specialist supplier to see if they can advise.

    Tuesday, March 4, 2014 12:40 PM

All replies

  • Where are you doing the initial activation? During sequencing?

    If that is the case, then it's likely that the application is asking to re-activate because the hardware has now changed. You'll need a version of Naturally Speaking that can be used without activation or uses a different approach (like Office does with KMS).

    Where is the activation stored? You'll need to determine this to see whether you can capture the location or exclude and activate on the user's desktop after deployment.

    Either way, non-persistent desktops with software that uses hardware based activation is going to be an issue because the 'hardware' is create new at each boot, thus the activation will fail.



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    Tuesday, March 4, 2014 11:08 AM
    Moderator
  • (Apols for posting to the wrong forum)

    I have done the initial activation during sequencing, but skipping it does not make a difference. I haven't been able to determine any specific location or file that is linked to activation, but Nuance have informed me that the software does generate a hardware fingerprint which it uses to determine activation.

    As mentioned, I have been in contact with Nuance (the manufacturer) regarding this, but with limited results:

    (Wall of text follows, sorry!)

    -I was initially told by Tech Support that there was an enterprise activation tool to bypass this issue, and they would send it to me. After chasing for about a week, I was told that they were not allowed to send it to me, and I need to buy an Enterprise license.

    -Cue phoning Nuance sales for a quote - after explaining, was told that I need to contact a re-seller as Nuance could not sell an Enterprise licence to me directly.I got in contact with our corporate software re-seller, they got in contact with their Nuance account manager, another few days exchange resulted in my being told that there is no Enterprise licence, and Dragon is not supported at all in Citrix as it doesn't work.

    Explained that I already have it working, just need a way around the activation, & account manager has now put me in contact with a specialist 3rd party vendor they say might be able to help, as Nuance can't.

    I am now about to contact the specialist supplier to see if they can advise.

    Tuesday, March 4, 2014 12:40 PM
  • You gave the answer yourself; use the enterprise activation tool with the enterprise license.
    If you deploy the app without App-V you have the same issue. The activation-method is machine-based, so you can't swap/roam it around.

    Monday, March 10, 2014 4:46 PM
  • How very odd that you post on a product that was developed by one of the original SoftGrid (previous name for App-V) QA Managers!

    Any way, I don't know the specifics of Dragon, but the general approach is as follows:

    Install the product without activation, start procmon and figure out what files/registries get modified.

    Often, we just remove whatever that is and then activation happens the first time the user launches the app.  Then, those changes are saved for that user and when he/she launches a new VDI session it just layers in.

    In App-V 4.* this worked great as EVERYTHING followed the user.  In App-V 5 some things do not.  So what you want to do in procmon the client when you activate it the first time.  Given what you've said, chances are, unless the user is also an admin, that we are talking about a file that is written to a normally non-roaming area.  In App-V 4.* this would be redirected correctly, but in App-V 5 it is redirected to the user's AppData/Local folder.  So to fix this you create two scripts, one for start of virtual environment and one for end of virtual environment.   End of environment copies the file into the user's home drive/roaming folder.  Start of VE restores the file (if present).  TMurgent has a free tool AppV_Remediation to use in the script that will do this for all files in the package by just providing the package GUID.

    If the changes are registry based AND user is admin, then it could end up in HKLM for the package with a user SID.  You can similarly back this up and restore it.


    Tim Mangan MVP for App-V and Citrix CTP Author of AppV books: "The Client Book" and "OSD Reference Book" (http://www.tmurgent.com/Books )

    Monday, March 10, 2014 10:28 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks all for the suggestions.

    Tiberivs: Unfortunately, as noted above Nuance technical support have not sent me the tool. I have alternatively been told it is not permitted or does not exist, but I'm continuing to push.

    TMUrgent: I've tried to make that happen, but it's either beyond my skills, or the app is using something internal to tell if it is on a new environment and ignoring the changes copied across. Allowing the user to activate and ensuring that any changes are moved to their roaming profile is also not preventing it from prompting for activation as soon as they are on a different VDI (one piece of software I worked on used the machine's serial number to activate. This might be something similar.)

    I've now bee referred to their head office technical team, so will feed back if there are any developments.

    (side note: I'm familiar with your site - the visual OSD tool was a very handy learning resource for a newbie!)

    Wednesday, March 12, 2014 11:07 AM