Unlike License Key that encodes the Key ID, Program ID, and Key Properties, Activation Key is simply an ID number of the activation account in the Activation Server database. When receiving the activation request, the Activation Server checks against the database if the received Activation Key is a valid account. If it is, the Activation Server processes the received Registration ID and generates the License Key on-demand to be returned to the application.
The format of Activation Key is by default a 20-digit hexadecimal number (e.g. 3CB9-EE94-FA7B-49F4-5D62). However, you can customize the format of Activation Key in any way you want. As mentioned earlier, Activation Key is an ID number in the database. You can easily modify the provided source code of the Activation Server and the database to support your own format of Activation Key.
An advantage of the license activation method is that you can pre-generate the Activation Key. Using the license registration method, you cannot pre-generate the License Key. You must receive the Registration ID before you can generate the License Key to be returned to the user. The pre-generated Activation Key allows you more ways to distribute and license the application. For example, you can pre-generate Activation Keys in bulk, and print them as labels for software package distribution such as CD and DVD. You can also provide bulk Activation Keys to partners or affiliates that can help you to sell your software.
The demo version of the Activation Manager is available online for tests at the following URL:
User Name: Administrator