How to troubleshoot Red or Green USB license issues

This will help identify ands resolve common issues using a red or green USB license on your machine. This includes the license not lighting up and error messages that prevent starting the software. 

Authored By Don Dickinson

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Introduction

Red and Green USB licenses are sold as an option to Opticstudio customers. They contain all the license information needed to launch Opticstudio. This article describes ways to resolve various issues that may arise with your Red or Green USB Zemax license keys. This includes the license key not lighting up, showing an invalid support date, or if Opticstudio or the Zemax License Manager is unable to use or see the license.

Before getting started

Before continuing this article, you should be certain that you have a Red or Green USB license plugged into the machine running Opticstudio. If you received from Zemax an activation code instead of a physical USB dongle, you do not own a USB license. If you possess a black USB license, see "Troubleshooting license issues with Black USB key licenses;" if you possess a softkey license, start with "How to troubleshoot softkey license issues." 

 

Note: to follow the instructions in this article, you will need to have both access to the machine that the license is currently plugged into and have the Zemax License Manager installed. The Zemax License Manager is automatically bundled with OpticStudio. 

 

Error: "no Zemax key found"

Cannot find zemax key. Please enmsure that your hardware key is plugged into the machine.

If no valid license can be used by Opticstudio, it will typically open the Zemax License Manager (ZLM) to allow you to find and select a working license. If you close License Manager without selecting a valid license, it will display the error message, "no Zemax key found." This section  This section covers what to do if you do see a license listed in License Manager, and your license key is lit with a red light, but it doesn't work. If your license is not displayed at all or does not light up, skip to License not available in Zemax License Manager or license key not lit

First, check the license's support expiration date. Open the Zemax License Manager and navigate to the View License tab (ZLM versions dated May 2019 and later). If you have a version of the ZLM dated before May 2019, navigate to the License Information tab. 

 

licensing driver too old - please update the host machine to the latest version of the zemax license manager 

 

error with license runtime version - Jan 01 001 expiration shown

 

If the expiration shows a message reading, "Licensing driver too old...," or displays an invalid date of of Jan 01 0001 (as shown above), there are two possible errors to resolve. 

  • If you are using Opticstudio on the same machine the license is plugged into, these indicate that the Sentinel licensing runtime is out of date. The fastest way to resolve this is to run the OpticStudio Prerequisites Package, located at "C:\program Files\Zemax OpticStudio\opticstudio_prerequisites.exe." This will reinstall all licensing and other Windows components. If that does not resolve it, you can also attempt an update of the licensing runtime only by following the instructions outlined below in Method 3 (all versions).
  • For Green USB licenses only: If you are using a remote control application like Microsoft Remote Desktop to log in to the machine where Opticstudio is installed, then the issue is that your Green USB license is not Remote Desktop compatible. If your license has a current support or subscription agreement, you may exchange your Green USB license for a Red USB license that does work remotely. The Zemax Licensing Policies page has license exchange information.

If the Zemax License Manager displays a valid expiration date for your license, there are also two options to consider, based on whether you have a subscription or a perpetual license.

  • For Subscription Licenses: If the date either displays that date in bold red text or reads, "Key expired at:," before the date, this indicates that your subscription license has expired. It is now inactive, and is not valid to run any version of the software. Contact your Zemax Account Manager for assistance. Note: a date in non-bolded red text indicates a perpetual license which is valid, but with expired support. 

 



 

  • For Perpetual Licenses: Perpetual licenses are eligible to run Opticstudio versions released before the support expiration. If the support expiration is dated before the release date at the top of Zemax License Manager, you will need to install an older Opticstudio release. Check the Opticstudio Downloads page for a compatible release. Note that Red and Green USB licenses require Opticstudio 16 or higher. 

 

 

License not available in Zemax License Manager or license key not lit

If the license is not visible on the "View License" or "License Information"tab in the Zemax License Manager or the red light on the USB does not turn on, there are a few possible problems. To identify and resolve these, take the following steps.

  1.  Try another USB port. If it is plugged into a docking station, USB hub, monitor or keyboard, try plugging it directly into the computer instead. 
  2. Check your OpticStudio version. Red and Green USB licenses require Opticstudio 16 or higher (16.5 or higher is recommended). The version is displayed on the splash screen when OpticStudio opens, but you can also find the version date by opening the Zemax License Manager and viewing the date at the top of the window. It needs to be June 2016 or later. Check the Opticstudio Downloads page for a compatible release if you need to upgrade. 
  3. Restart the computer. This will also restart the license manager service. 
  4. Click Launch Sentinel Admin Control Center at the top of the Zemax License Manager. This should open your web browser to the "Sentinel Admin Control Center Help." If you get an error message instead, this indicates that the licensing runtime is not working. See Repairing the licensing runtime

 

Error: "Unable to apply softkey license..." or "Unable to Find Vendor Library"

This also results in being unable to see your license information in the Zemax License Manager, and you will notice the license key is not lit with a red light. These errors mean that the license runtime stoppepd working or failed to install. Move to Repairing the licensing runtime below.

 

Unable to apply softkey license information to this machine     Unable to find vendor library

 

License not recognized (Zemax 13 or Opticstudio 15.5 or older) 

This section pertains to versions of Zemax software including Zemax 2006 to Zemax 13, as well as Opticstudio 14.2-15.5. These releases will report the error, "Zemax key not found" even if the red light on your green or red license is turned on and the license works in newer releases. Red and Green USB licenses are not compatible with versions of Zemax software that predates OpticStudio 15.5, as they were introduced after these legacy releases were discontinued. See the legacy license compatibility chart on this page for a complete list. These legacy releases required a Black USB Zemax license key to work.

Note: Black USB licenses are no longer being produced by the license vendor, and are no longer available for purchase or exchange from Zemax. 

 

Prompted for a Zemax password

The first time you try to use a given subscription license, you will be prompted for a username and password. Zemax subscription licenses require that you be listed as an End User for the license in order to be able to run the software.

If you are not listed as an End User on the license, contact your License Administrator to request access. By entering your Zemax username (email) and password, Zemax will mark the license as "Activated" in the Zemax License Manager. See how do i add an end user to a license for additional details. 

 



 

Enter your email address and password in the prompt and select Login to access the license. If you do not have a Zemax account, contact Zemax Support and provide the license number. If you receive a "You are not authorized to use this key!" error, see below. 

Error: "You are not authorized to use this key!"

This error occurs when you are trying to use a subscription license for which you are not listed as a license End User. To resolve this error, you will need to have the license Administrator add you. If you have a Zemax account you will find the license administrator in your Zemax Profile.  

If you have not yet set up your Zemax account or want to find out the license administrator, contact Zemax support for assistance. Provide your license number such as L123456 . 

 

 

 

Repairing the licensing runtime

Repairing the licensing runtime software can resolve issues that arise while trying to activate a license, complete a license transfer, or when an activated license disappears from the ZLM. There are several ways to do this. 

Method 1 (Opticstudio 19.4 or newer) 

If you are using a version of Opticstudio that predates OpticStudio 19.4 or a version of the Zemax License Manager dated before May 2019, Skip to Method 2.

For versions of OpticStudio 19.4 and newer, follow the steps below.

  1. Open the Zemax License Manager. TIP: Searching for "Zemax license" from the Windows Start Menu will locate it no matter what Zemax software you have).
  2. Navigate to Troubleshoot...Check HASP Drivers. Selecting this options will attempt to check for and repair a missing vendor library and attempt to restart the licensing service. 

If you get a popup asking for permission to run, click Yes or Allow. Once it is done, you should receive the messages, "HASP Vendor Library: okay" and "HASP Service: okay," as shown below. If you see any "failed" messages at the end of the process, proceed to Method 2.  

 




Method 2 (all versions)

The second method for reparing the licensing runtime software applies for all versions of OpticStudio. To complete this process, follow the instructions below. 

  1. If possible, disable any antivirus software temporarily, as some are known to block the install process. 
  2. If OpticStudio is installed on the machine, open the file "C:\program files\Zemax Opticstudio\opticstudio_prerequisites.exe. If only the Zemax License Manager is installed on the machine (keyserver machines only), open the file "C:\program files\zemax licensemanager\licensemanager_prerequisites.exe." Both of these executable files will reinstall the licensing runtime as well as other components needed. You should see a window similar to that shown below. 

 

 

  1. Restart the computer.
  2. To verify that the licensing runtime installed correctly and is working, move to the "Verify the license runtime" section below. If it is not working, proceed to Method 3.

Method 3 (all versions)

The third method for reparing the licensing runtime software applies for all versions of OpticStudio. To complete this process, follow the instructions below. 

  1. If possible, disable any antivirus software temporarily, as some are known to block the install process. 
  2. Download the Zemax License Repair kit from the Article Attachments.
  3. Open the downloaded .zip file and Extract all files within to a new folder.

 

 

  1. After extracting, open the folder you extracted to, then the file "HASPusersetup.exe." It will walk you through the install. You can simply click Next at each step as there are no special steps required. If it says a newer version is already installed or otherwise fails to complete, move to Method 4.

 

 

  1. Open the file "Restore_vendor_dll.bat" to copy the DLL file Zemax requires to the correct location. It will open a command prompt window for a short time and may ask for approval to run; if it does, click Yes
  2. Restart the computer to complete the setup.
  3. Move to Verify the licensing runtime

Method 4 (uninstall and reinstall)

The final method for reparing the licensing runtime software applies for all versions of OpticStudio. It involves uninstalling and reinstalling the software. To complete this process, follow the instructions below. 

  1. If possible, disable any antivirus software temporarily, as some are known to block the install process. 
  2. Download the Zemax License Repair kit from the Article Attachments.
  3. Open the downloaded .zip file and Extract all files within to a new folder.

 

 

  1. Open the folder you extracted to, then the file "remove.bat" to uninstall the licensing software. It will ask for permission to run the Windows Command Processor. Click YES, and it will proceed to run the uninstaller as below.

 

 

  1. After about 30 seconds to 1 minute, you should receive a message confirming if it finished successfully.
  2. Open the file "install.bat." Again, it will ask for permission to run the Windows Command processor. Click YES.
  3. After about 1 minute, you should receive a message confirming it finished successfully. Make note of any errors.
  4. Restart the computer to complete the setup.
  5. Move to Verifying the license runtime.


Verifying the licensing runtime

 

  1. Open Zemax License Manager.
  2. Select Launch Admin Control Center. This link is either located at the top of the Zemax License Manager (Nov 2018 or earlier), or on the "Troubleshoot" page (May 2019 or later).

 

     

 

  1. Your web browser should open to the Admin Control Center Help page, as shown below. If this completes as expected, your licensing runtime software is working correctly. If this page gives an error message, try another repair option.


 

Getting help

If you are still unable to resolve your license issue, contact Zemax Support.

Please include as many of the following items as you can with your request:

  • License key number (L1XXXXX)
  • Activation or transfer code
  • A description of the issue you are having and any error messages you received
  • What you have already tried to resolve it
  • A screenshot of:
    • The Zemax License Manager "License Information" or "View License" page
    • The "Sentinel Keys" page and "Diagnostics" page from the Sentinel Admin Control Center


       

KA-01794

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