License Management

Recode licenses are assigned per organization and have a number of user keys associated with them. During initial licensing, you choose how many keys to purchase. Later on, if you need more keys, they can be purchased and assigned to your existing license.

Recode keys are assigned by a key server, which can be:

Most licensees use the cloud key server since configuration is trivial and it avoids the overhead and complexity of maintaining private key servers.

Recode User Keys

Recode user keys are automatically requested by Recode and assigned by a Recode key server. A single user key is reserved by a user for a fixed period of time after which (if the key reservation isn’t renewed) the server is free to reassign the key to another user.

You can manually extend, manage and check the time remaining on your user key at any time by going to Recode -> Recode License.... This will also show you how long the current license subscription is valid for and will remind you when it is approaching time to renew your Recode subscription.

Cloud Key Server

The cloud key server is hosted and maintained by Indefiant and uses the recode.lic file to identify the organization requesting a Recode key.

Provided enough keys remain, a key will be assigned to a user for a 30-day period. When a user key has less than 8-days remaining another 30-day reservation will be requested automatically (or as long as the license period has left remaining).

Recode License File Management

Recode will sequentially search for a Recode cloud license file (recode.lic) in the following locations:

  1. %APPDATA% eg. C:\Users\bob\AppData\Roaming\recode.lic

  2. The user’s Documents directory eg. C:\Users\bob\Documents\recode.lic

  3. Next to currently loaded .sln file eg. W:\MyProject\src\solutions\recode.lic

The first recode.lic found will be used when requesting a key from the Cloud Key Server.


You can check the currently loaded recode.lic by opening the Recode License dialog in VS (Recode -> Recode License...). The loaded license path will appear as a clickable link at the top-right of the dialog.

Retiring Key Reservations

If a user is no longer using their Recode key reservation (for instance, if they have moved to a new computer) it is possible to explicitly retire it. This avoids having to contact support if an abandoned key reservation is preventing another user from allocating a key and using Recode.

To view and retire an abandoned key reservation, click Recode -> Recode License... within Visual Studio. Then click Buy or Manage License and once the Recode admin site has loaded, click Active Users. The active user list should now be visible along with the option to retire keys as needed.

Enterprise Key Server

The enterprise key server is available to enterprise licensees when requested for managing their key distribution. For further information on the enterprise key server, please contact

The key reservation period on the enterprise server is a minimum of two hours but can be longer - depending on the enterprise licensing agreement.

Enterprise Key Server Installation

Installation of the server should be done on a private and secured Windows 7/8 or Server 2012 image. The server operates as a WCF Windows service with restricted user privileges. Recode clients will use http to access to it on the standard http port 80.

  1. Run the RecodeKeyServer-X.Y.Z.N.msi installer to installer the enterprise server.

  2. Open the Recode Key Manager application from the Start Menu.

  3. Copy the Server ID string and send it to the to request the encrypted license.

  4. Once you have the encrypted license from Indefiant, click Install License and select the license.dat file.

Enterprise Fallback Key Server

Recode can support a fallback enterprise key server to allow for planned or unexpected downtime of the main key server for short periods of time (up to 48 hours). If the fallback server is in use for longer than 48 hours it will stop serving Recode keys and will enter a recovery mode for 48 hours after which it will be available again.

If you wish to have a fallback key server, please follow the steps for Enterprise Key Server Installation but indicate that the server will be a fallback server when you request the encrypted license.

Enterprise Client Configuration

Enterprise users need to be configured so that the correct Recode key server can be located. This can be done via:

  • Registry key: HKLM\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Indefiant\Recode Value: KeyServer (REG_SZ)

  • Environmental var: RECODE_KEYSERVER

The value should be a semi-colon separated list of key server host names. For example, if you had a main key server and a fallback key server then the value would be:;


Recode clients configured to use an enterprise license server will not attempt to use the cloud key server and will ignore any recode.lic file.

Enterprise Key Server Management

The Enterprise Key Server can be started, stopped or restarted like any other service from the Windows Services control panel.

Current key reservations and license status can be reviewed via the Recode Key Manager application installed with the server. Checking Hide Expired will show only the currently active keys, hiding any keys that have already expired.

The Recode Key Manager also includes a Show Logs... button to allow access to the CSV logs produced by the key server which contain a full record of key transactions including any failed key requests and the reasons for the failures. The log output directory can customized within the Recode Key Manager to point at a directory of your choice.


If you customize the log directory output path, ensure the Network Service user has full access to the directory, otherwise log creation will fail.

To get a usage overview use Export Usage... to export all requested user keys (including expired ones) and the total reservation time that has been requested by a given user over the lifetime of the server instance.

Enterprise Key Server Troubleshooting

Detailed error reports for the Key Manager are written to the Windows Event Viewer. To see logs relating to the Key Server, open Windows Logs -> Application and filter by the RecodeKeyServer event source.

For any further assistance, please contact