Activation FAQ

Q. Which products will include Product Activation?

A. Product activation will be required in retail packaged products. In most instances product activation will not be required for licenses acquired by a customer through one of our volume licensing programs.

Q. Which customers will be required to activate?

A. All customers who purchase retail packaged products or a new PC from an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) will be required to activate the software. The software on a new PC from an OEM may be activated in the factory. Product activation will not be required for licenses acquired by a customer through one of our volume licensing programs. More information on volume licensing.

Q. Can a product be remotely disabled through product activation?

A. No, the product cannot be remotely disabled through product activation.

Q. Why are customers being asked to activate their software?

A. Product activation is a simple way to verify the software license and stop the spread of software piracy. Over time, reduced piracy means that the software industry can invest more in product development, quality and support. This ensures better products and more innovation for the customer.

Q. How will your Product Activation help stop piracy?

A. Product Activation will help reduce casual copying by ensuring that the copy of the software product being installed is legal and has been installed on a PC in compliance with the End User License Agreement (EULA). Installations beyond those allowed in the license agreement will fail to activate.

Q. How does the customer benefit from this approach?

A. Product Activation also helps prevent unsuspecting customers from purchasing counterfeit software. Customers who purchase counterfeit products could find they are missing key elements, such as user manuals, product keys, certificates of authenticity and even software code. They may also find that the counterfeit software contains viruses or does not perform as well as the genuine product.

Q. Will Product Activation make it more difficult for customers to install and use the software?

A. Product Activation is designed to be simple and unobtrusive for customers who legitimately acquire the software license. For those who obtain a copy of the software illegally, Product Activation will make their inappropriate use of the product more difficult. Most customers have used Product Activation to date with little or no difficulty.

Q. Will customers be notified that they have to activate?

A. Yes. Customers will be notified of the activation requirement on the outside of the box when they acquire a retail version of the product. They will also be reminded each time they log in up to the end of the activation grace period (5 tries) before they are required to activate. If they have not activated the product within the specified number of launches, they will need to do so to continue using the product.

Q. Is there a grace period during which the product will work without being activated?

A. Yes. The customer may opt out of activating the product 5 times before they are required to activate. If a customer chooses "Activate Later" at the end of installation, they will then only be able to choose "Activate Later" 4 more times.

Q. How does Product Activation connect over the Internet?

A. Activation over the Internet requires users to have their own Internet service provider (ISP) connection. Users who do not have an ISP connection will be asked to activate when the system connects to the internet. Please see the "How to Activate your Nuance Product without Internet Access" section of the Activation Tour web page.

Q. How does Activation respect customer privacy?

A. Nuance highly values respect for and protection of customers' private information. User privacy was a paramount design goal in building our product activation technology. Nuance product activation is completely anonymous, and no personally identifiable information is collected. Activation is different from product registration. If customers wish, they may voluntarily register their product by providing their name and contact information. Registration is for those customers who want to receive future communications on product updates, service releases and other special offers. Any information provided remains secure and private and is used only for the purposes specified by the customer.

Q. If a reinstallation of the software is needed, must I purchase a new license?

A. In general, no. If the same version of the software is reinstalled on the same machine or is not concurrently installed on any other machine, no new license is required. Additional licenses are generally required for installations above and beyond those allowed by the product's EULA.

Q. If I don't have internet access can I still use your product?

A. Not unless you are able to activate the product. You can activate the product manually if you go to a computer with internet access and provide your machine fingerprint and serial number to the Nuance activation server. You will need to write down the activation key and enter it in the "Activate Key" field of the "Enter Key" dialog box on your computer to unlock your software.

Q. Will the product ever need to be deactivated?

A. Yes. If you want to move your license onto another computer, or are planning to upgrade any hardware or the operating system (since activation may see this as a new computer), you should deactivate your software. For the product to be correctly deactivated your computer must be connected to the internet during the uninstall process in order to free up an activation so it can be reused when you reinstall the software with the new hardware.

Online Activation

Online activation is a quick, one-time process. Activation occurs right after you enter your product serial number and machine fingerprint. More