How license activation works in Hosting Controller?

Question: What is license activation and how it works in HC?

Hosting Controller Inc. has introduced additional technological measures in Hosting Controller which is aimed at ensuring legally licensed customers to receive maximum benefits for owning the valid HC license. These changes include product key validation during activation, which eliminates chances of running pirated Hosting Controller installations and denying support for pirated license users. Additional features have been added to improve customer experience including an additional 15 days grace period to re-activate license after significant hardware changes/crash.

Please note that automatic product activation is one-time event and it does not occur again on product reinstall or system reinstall.

How it works?
Each time you run Hosting Controller, the activation module also starts - until the product has been activated. The activation module will automatically detect your Internet connection, and connect to license activation server to transfer your product key and hardware ID to the centralized license management service. No user information is required or sent. An activation code is passed back to your server, automatically activating the application. This process normally takes just a few seconds to complete and mainly goes unnoticed unless there is exceptional case.

Hosting Controller license activation
Hosting Controller is initially installed in trial mode. The trial period expires after 30 days. If you want to use the product after that you need to buy a license and activate the product. The license can be purchased from Hosting Controller online store, just follow the
Buy now link to receive it within minutes!

Once you have the license key, you must activate it. To do this, login to HC panel with account "Host Admin" and go to
 Cluster Configuration :: Manage Servers :: License Activation. Select required server from the drop down list and Enter the license key in Registration Key box and click on "Save Settings" button. The license key will be encrypted and Active link button will appear. Press "Activate" button and then Hosting Controller will contact its license management server. If the activation is successful the "Activate" button will change to "Deactivate" and a success message will be shown otherwise an appropriate message will be displayed in red.

What if activation was not successful?
In case of activation failure, Hosting Controller has a 15-days grace period, after that it is not functional until it is re-activated. Adding a license key activates the license. This Serial Key is obtained from the Internet at the Hosting Controller web site at

What are the common reasons of failed license activation?
Check for the reasons given below, if you get error i-e unknown exception occured or "Error: 70900330: License information could not be updated." on saving your serial key in HC panel:

  1. The server is not connected to Internet: Before entering your license key, make sure that the server is connected to internet and you can browse any site on your server.
  2. The license key was already activated: If the license key is already activated then you will be notified upon entering the license key in ‘Settings’ utility. You need to contact in this case.
  3. The license key is blocked: If the license key is known to be pirated or cracked then you will be notified upon entering the license key in HC panel. You need to contact in this case.
  4. The license key was not registered: If the license key is not found in central authentication server's database then you will be notified upon entering the license key in HC panel. You need to contact in this case.
  5. The serial key entered is not a valid key: If the serial key entered is an invalid key this means that the License key was not purchased from website or from authorized reseller and it's a fraud license key.  
  6. Allowed website limit in license is exceeded: Make sure the existing number of websites created through HC on that server does not exceed the total websites allowed in the serial key. e.g. In case of 100 domains license, the existing number of Any of DNS, Mail Domains, Databases (MySQL + MSSQL) on that server created through HC shall not exceed 100. If 100 domains license is activated on HC database server, then total number of click and install applications installed on the whole cluster through HC panel shall not exceed 100.
  7. HC remoting service is halted: Restart HC Remoting service from Start :: Run :: Services.msc (Hosting Controller Remoting).
  8. Error : 70900330 : License information could not be updated: This happens when there is a connectivity issue between HC DB (SQL) server and the server (which you are unable to activate). Open RegisterServer.exe file located at path X:\Program Files\Advanced Communications\Hosting Controller\Applications. Click on Register to make sure it is connected successfully. In case you see an error it means there is a problem with the communication which needs to be fixed by giving correct credentials. To verify credentials and connectivity you may also make a test ODBC DSN. In some cases when SQL is on remote machine SQL server port needs to be mentioned in SQL server name along with instance name i-e SQLServer\SQLEXPRESS,1433 
  9. Server status shows ‘Down’: In some cases license key does not get activated due to communication issue among servers within cluster. When Edit Server button under My Server is clicked, it throws error Error: 73400260: Unknown exception occurred while communicating with Remote Server in the Cluster. To fix this issue go through article "Server Status Shows Down".
  10. Linux server status shows Down’: If problem is on Linux server then go through article "Linux Server Showing Down in HC Custer"

Concerned about privacy?
We claim that the license activates the product so that we may verify that the product use is in accordance to the end user license agreement. When you activate your license, you are not asked to send any personal information to us. Activation process is completely anonymous.

During activation, the software product creates a unique hardware identification that represents the configuration of the server at the time of activation. The hardware identification is not unique, and it does not include any personal information, any information about software or data that may reside on your PC, or any information about the specific make or model of your PC. The hardware identification identifies only the server and only for the sole purpose of activation. Most of the changes to your server configuration will be tolerated by the activated product. Minor upgrades will not require re-activation. If you replace your PC you may be required to re-activate.

Industry support
The Business Software Alliance supports product activation