GrapeCity’s ComponentOne controls use a two-part licensing system. The first part requires the activation of a serial key. This allows you to build with our controls. The second part is licensing the individual project. With ComponentOne's 2019 v2 release, we have created a few tools to integrate into Visual Studio. This will make licenseing your project easier. You can access these features from the Tools > GrapeCity menu in Visual Studio.
In this article we will discuss:
- Activating and deactivating a license
- Creating an app-based license for ASP. NET Core, UWP and Xamarin projects
- Creating or updating a licenses.licx for WinForms, WPF, and ASP. NET projects
These tools help you manage all licensing aspects from one convenient location.
Activating and Deactivating a License
When you purchase a license from ComponentOne, you will be issued a serial number that needs to be activated. This will enable your machine to build projects using our controls. To activate a license, launch the GrapeCity License Manager and select Activate License.
This will launch the C1LicenseActivation utility where you can enter your name, company name, and serial number. If your dev machine has internet access, you can immediately activate online or select one of the three options to perform an offline activation.
If you’re evaluating our controls, this is also how you would activate a Trial Key to extend your trial by 30 days.
ComponentOne licenses are sold per developer and can be activated on up to three machines at a time for that developer to use (for example, a desktop, laptop and VM). If you’re decommissioning a machine, you can deactivate the license from that machine and free it up to use again. To do this you, would select the Deactivate License option from the menu.
Enter your user name and company. Click the “?” button to view the ComponentOne serial numbers activated on the machine. Select your license and click Next. It will free up that license to use again on a new machine.
You can also check the active licenses in Visual Studio by navigating to Tools > GrapeCity > License Manager and selecting View Installed Licenses.
Creating an App-based License
If you’re working with a UWP, ASP. NET Core or Xamarin project, our controls use an app-based licensing model. This means you will generate a long licensing string that is included in your project and provides the runtime license that allows the application to run. It also suppresses the evaluation message nag screens. It stores the string in a file called GCDTLicenses.xml, which it adds to the root of your project.
To license one of these projects, open the project and select "Create RunTime License" from the GrapeCity License Manager. It will prompt you to log in using the same login credentials as the GrapeCity website.
Then, it will ask you to select your serial key. If you are doing an evaluation, you can select “Eval,” which will allow your project to run, but with evaluation messaging. If you have already activated a license on that dev machine, you can select it from the list to allow your project to run without evaluation messaging.
Once you have selected your key, select the project name and click the "Generate" button.
A green checkmark will appear next to the projects’ name and a new file containing your run-time license will be added to your project called “GCDTlicenses.xml.”
Your project is now licensed and you can close the GrapeCity License Manager.
Note: the license is tied to the app via the name of this project. You will need to create a new GCDTlicenses.xml for any other projects. You cannot just reuse the same one. If you change your app’s name, you will also need to generate a new runtime license.
If your dev machine is offline or you can’t access the service via the GrapeCity License Manager (usually due to proxy or firewall issues), you can generate app license keys on our website.
Creating or Updating a Licenses.licx
If you’re working on a WinForms, WPF, ASP. NET Webforms or MVC (.NET Framework) project, our controls utilize the Visual Studio model for licensing. With this system, Visual Studio will add the necessary references for the control when you drag and drop from the toolbox to the design surface of a form, etc. Then, it will create or add a line to your licenses.licx text file in your project. When your project builds, Visual Studio will check that there is a ComponentOne license on the dev machine and that all controls instanced on a form appear in the licenses.licx. If both pass, the project will not display the Eval nag screen at runtime.
The challenge with this system occurs when the licenses.licx and the controls used in your project get disconnected. This can happen when you’re upgrading to newer versions of the controls, instancing a control in code, in the XAML without dragging from the toolbox, or some other way.
We have two tools that can resolve nag screens issues. The first can be used when you update your project from one version to another. By default, Visual Studio includes version information in the licenses.licx entry. However, our DLL’s can be set to Specific Version = False in the Reference Properties and you can remove the Version, Culture, and PublicKeyToken information from the licenses.licx.
To use this tool, launch the utility via Tools > GrapeCity > Update Projects > Make ComponentOne References non-version specific.
Select the project(s) you want to update and click the Update button.
This will update all the C1 References to Specific Version = False and also remove all Version, Culture, and PublicKeyToken text from your licenses.licx.
Note: this is the updated version of the C1ProjectUpdater utility that we provided in the past.
The other issue that can occur: when you have controls used in your project but they are not referenced in the licenses.licx file.
We have created a new tool that will scan your applications’ references and fully populate the licenses.licx with all possible controls that could be used in your application.
To use this tool, open the utility via Tools > GrapeCity > Update Projects > Add missing entries to licx file.
You will then select the project(s) you want to fix and click "Update."
This will create a line entry for every possible control for ComponentOne DLL’s referenced in your project. It is not necessary to use all those controls in your project, but this covers all possible scenarios, and will ensure the nag screen is suppressed. Also, you cannot have licenses.licx entries for DLL’s if they are not referenced in your project, as this will cause “Unable to resolve type” errors. The new entries will also be added without Version, Culture, and PublicKeyToken to avoid the issues from above when updating controls.
These new tools are all included with the 2019 v2 release of ComponentOne Studio and will work in both Visual Studio 2017 and 2019 versions. Older versions of Visual Studio will still have the older version of the tools installed.
Visit License Manager for more information.
The older version works the same but requires a login to access any of the tools.
2019 v3 Update:
We have added the Visual Studio tools to the C1ControlPanel so they can be installed and updated independent of the ComponentOne controls that have been installed.
If you have any questions or are still having nag screen issues, please contact our Technical Engagement Team and they will be happy to help resolve any issues you are experiencing.
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