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support > Product FAQ > Desaware Licensing System > Hosting Solutions
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Hosting the Desaware License server on a dedicated server (where you have full administrator rights and can configure the server at will) is simple, but we're often asked about hosting solutions.
We have two current recommendations for low cost shared hosting.
The first is to use the shared web hosting at Intermedia.net. Their Windows Basic plan is sufficient to run the server using a low traffic Access database. Upgrade to the standard plan to use SQL server. We have detailed instructions for installing the license server on a new Intermedia.net shared host.
The other is to use an entry level VPS (Virtual Private Server) solution. We have had success with the plans at vpsland.com. The Starter plan is fine for use with an Access database and would probably be fine with Mysql as well. We recommend going to the Value or higher plan for use with SqlExpress. We have detailed instructions for installing the license server on a new vpsland.com VPS.
We can't guarantee operation of the licensing server on any particular host. Different providers offer various features and place various restrictions on software installed on their servers. Problems do occur at times with shared hosting services. The key issues we've run into so far are as follows:
We've heard of customers having success with verio (www.verio.com). We also know of several customers running successfully on Intermedia (www.intermedia.net) and have ourselves configured systems on this host.
The licensing server is known not to work on shared hosts at 1and1.com, bcentral and current web.com shared hosts.
General Precautions for Hosting Services
Regardless of what server you use (dedicated, in-house, VPS or hosted), backups are critical. But you already know that.
Hosting services and hosted dedicated machines generally provide a higher level of both security and reliability than most businesses (especially small businesses) can achieve in-house. Nevertheless you should take precautions. Hosting services do experience disasters and financial problems (as do any business).
1. Visit vpsland.com and sign up for a Windows VPS plan. We recommend and have tested our software on their Value plan. During checkout, please request that they install the .NET 2.0 framework and SQL Express 2005.
2. If you forgot to do so during signup, submit a support request asking them to install the .NET 2.0 framework and SQL Express 2005. This should be a free service.
3. Once you have your account, log into your VPS using Remote Access.
4. Open IIS Manager (Control Panel- Administrative Tools). Start the default web server.
5. Using Internet Explorer, download the licensing system server software. You can use the link provided during your purchase, or download the latest server components from our download site. The only difference between the trial and full version is the use of an installation code during the install. You may need to add desaware.com to your list of trusted sites, as IE is in high security mode by default.
6. Unzip the downloaded zip file, placing the 2.0 installation programs in a directory of your choice.
7. Run setup.exe to install the licensing server.
8. During the installation you will be prompted to choose the database. Choose SQL or Access as you prefer. Enter your licensing code if you purchased the product.
9. Go to computer management (Control Panel - Administrative Tools - Computer management) and choose "Local Users and Groups". Create a new group called "LicenseAdmin" (or name of your choice). Add the administrator to this group, and/or create an additional user account for this group. This will be the user account you will use to manage the license server.
10. Open the IIS Manager again. You will see under "Default web" a new web application called "LicenseServer". Right click on on the application and select properties. Choose the ASP .NET tab, and make sure the version of ASP .NET is set to 2.0 (the default is often 1.1).
11. Using IIS Manager, click on the file management.asmx. Select the "Security or File Security" tab. Click on the "Edit" button at the top right. Uncheck the "Anonymous access" check box and make sure the NTLM (Windows) authentication is checked.
12. Bring up the Services settings (Control Panel - Administrative Tools - Services), select "World Wide Web Publishing Service" and right click to show the Properties window. Change the Startup type from Manual to Automatic.
13. Open the web.config file using Notepad (navigate to it using Windows Explorer - it will be under c:\inetpub\wwwroot\licenseserver. Make sure you have an entry under the application settings as follows:
<add key="allowedroles" value = "YourServer\LicenseAdmin" />
Where YourServer is the name of your VPS server, and LiceneManagers is the name of the group you defined earlier in Local Users and Groups.
14. Run your license manager software on your local system and use the Set Server command to connect to your new server. The URL will typically be in the form nnn.nnn.nnn.nnn/LicenseServer/management.asmx (where nnn are the components of your IP address.
If there are problems connecting, you should see a dialog box with diagnostic information. Please copy the information and include it with your support inquiry. Also, go through the check list in our server configuration guide - this will help you to resolve any issues.
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