Vmware Cpu Id

Nov 04, 2021

Problem

I run a program that stores an installation key that is generated based on the CPU ID and motherboard serial number. I installed it into my virtual machine using VMware, but now, when the program starts up it says registration is needed because the hardware has changed. I'm wondering if this may be because this doesn't see my actual system's hardware, or whether it only sees virtual hardware? And does VMware also have a serialization process? "I'm wondering if this software might be showing something kind of confusing with how to recognize what kind of machine type its running on. Really interesting - I never thought about that."

Solution

"VMware or any other virtualizer" does not have anything to do with the host operating system. In fact, you can copy a VM from one physical machine to another and the software inside the VM will have no idea that this happened. This is largely what a virtual machine is for. The hardware serial ID that VMware generates (which is actually a GUID) is only specific to that VM, and this serial ID stays inside of it when it moves between machines. VMs are hard for software-based licensing because you can't detect whether it's running in a virtual environment or not easily enough. However, if you know that the software is running in a virtual environment, then you can reject execution based on this.
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