on 2020-03-1304:50 AM - edited on 2021-11-1006:01 AM by Noemi Balogh
This article is aimed at helping Archicad users with network licenses to be able to work from home.
Graphisoft is actively researching this topic and will update this article with any further possibilities to enable even more flexible options for the home use of Network licenses.
If you are used to working in Archicad strictly from your working space and it was decided that you need to do home office, some preparation needs to be done on your machine along with additional configuration on the server side.
By default the most common scenario is that network licenses are hosted on a machine at the office that acts as the CodeMeter License Server. All computers on that local network can acquire an Archicad license through that server. However, this works great only for machines sharing the same physical workspace on the local network. To extend the access of this CodeMeter Server to remote locations over the internet, additional steps are required. There are a couple of methods to access the CodeMeter Server remotely over the internet and each setup requires different level of software and networking skillset. Let’s try to get a brief overview on each methodology.
VPN access to CodeMeter Server
This is the most secure and seamless end user experience, as the client machine uses a VPN profile or some authentication to connect directly to CodeMeter server over the internet, through a Virtual Private Network. In this setup, you as the end user simply connect through a VPN client to the local network of the CodeMeter Server as if you were physically located in the office. But note that VPN setups can restrict auto-discovery on the connected network so additional CodeMeter setup may be required on client side. However, setting up a VPN server/client workflow requires knowledgeable IT staff and cannot be administrated by an Archicad user.
Public access to CodeMeter Server
That is the easiest and simplest way to share NET licenses across the internet. Once the port of CodeMeter server is open through port forwarding (default CodeMeter server port number is 22350), client machines can access the server across the internet and acquire a license. On this setup, you as an end user only need to enter the IP address or the domain name of the CodeMeter Server on your Server Search List. In this setup, the CodeMeter Server is publicly exposed on the internet. Anyone who knows the IP/domain name of the server along with the port CodeMeter is running, can acquire a license. If you need to restrict the access, you may use the “License Access Permissions” feature on CodeMeter WebAdmin for finer control on who is allowed to obtain a license.
Please note that in all cases described above, unless there is a fixed internet IP address given by the internet provide, the public IP address of the CodeMeter will change constantly. A popular workaround is free Dynamic DNS providers like No-IP, FreeDNS (afraid.org) and similar. Also note that these workflows require a consistent internet connection between the client machine and the server with short latency. Network issues may cause slowdowns in Archicad as it waits for server response to perform operations.
NET Licenses with “License Borrowing” capabilities
If your network key has license borrowing products, you can borrow a license “off-site” for up to 30 days of borrowing duration. Once the key is borrowed, Archicad can be used without the presence of a CodeMeter server. Please note that “License Borrowing” is a feature per license (not per key) and it does not mean that all licenses on this key can be borrowed. For example, a Network key with 10 licenses may have no borrowing capabilities at all (no License Borrowing features), a couple of licenses can be borrowed or even all 10 licenses.
Borrowing can be done as a Soft License where the borrowed license is issued from the CodeMeter Server and downloaded as a file on your computer. This license is “tied” with that machine and cannot be transferred to another machine.
In addition, there is the option of Key License Borrowing, where the borrowed license issued by the CodeMeter Server is programmed into a CodeMeter hardware key. This key can be plugged to any machine and provide an Archicad license.