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MacDaddee
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After Effects cs5.5 aerender.exe Serial Number Problems

Jun 27, 2011 2:37 PM

We upgraded our company from cs2 to cs5.5 Windows 7 OS.

 

We are trying to get our renderfarm machines to install render-only versions of the after effects render engine. We've have got it to install.. but when we send the command line renders we get the error:

 

"Unable to obtain a license. Please run the full application to correct the problem or get a more detailed message."

 

When we run the full app, it tells us to register with our serial number.

 

The problem is we only have a certain amount of serials for our workstation computers, and don't want to use up all the activations on the render-only units.

 

I attempted to call phone-support over the last few days, and the only answer that comes back is that you DO NOT have to enter the serial number.. although my error message tells me otherwise.

 

HELP!

 

Thanks,


Brad

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 27, 2011 4:22 PM   in reply to MacDaddee

    You do need to enter your serial number. Each instance needs to be activated. The person who told you otherwise was mistaken.Would you mind giving the me the case number for your support call so that I can give the person who misinformed you the correct information?

     

    If you're activating more than a few instances, then a volume license might be the best way to go for you.

    http://www.adobe.com/aboutadobe/volumelicensing/

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 19, 2011 9:43 AM   in reply to Todd_Kopriva

    Hi,

     

    We're also looking into use aerender through Thinkbox's Deadline to render after effects files on the renderfarm.  I've tried to find some decent information anywhere on the adobe website regarding licensing for network rendering and have so far come up with very little information.  Am I to understand that in order to run AE on a renderfarm I need a full license for every machine?  If so this seems pretty ridiculous.

     

    From experimentation with previous versions of AE I was under the impression it just worked without a license?

     

    Nick

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 19, 2011 9:59 AM   in reply to nickweeden
    From experimentation with previous versions of AE I was under the impression it just worked without a license?

     

    Correct. You simply install AE (or the suite it comes with) without a serial number.

     

    Mylenium

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 19, 2011 10:16 AM   in reply to Mylenium

    No, you do need to activate (enter a serial number for) the render nodes, too.

     

    That was made explicit in After Effects CS5.5. It was true for eariler versions, too, but it wasn't enforced in the same way.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 19, 2011 10:17 AM   in reply to Mylenium

    Yes that's what we've done,  I installed AE only (although we've got the Production Suite) on the renderfarm machines and then sent a job to them from a studio machine, the job didn't actually error but no frames appeared in the folder and I got the message:

     

    After Effects Error: Unable to obtain a license. Please run the full application to correct the problem or get a more detailed message

     

    We then tried putting in an additional serial number that we had on one of the machines but didn't activate it, AE loaded said it was installing some additional files and then once we quit out it seemed to work...  I'm just a bit concerned if we do that on all of them this is just going to re occur in 30 days time once the trial period expires...

     

    Nick

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 19, 2011 10:18 AM   in reply to Todd_Kopriva

    So does that mean I need full licenses to run the render nodes? Or do I use the license we already have for the workstation machines?

     

    Nick

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 19, 2011 10:19 AM   in reply to nickweeden

    You need an additional license for each machine.

     

    See my post earleir on this thread about volume licensing, which is the most cost-effective way to do this for more than a few machines.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 19, 2011 10:24 AM   in reply to Todd_Kopriva

    To be perfectly frank that's ridiculous! We've already paid thousands of pounds for the Production Premium Suite.  I could understand maybe if there was a render license but nowhere does it say that you've changed your rules to prevent people from using the software on a renderfarm.  This makes it a totally uneconomic and useless feature!

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 19, 2011 11:37 AM   in reply to nickweeden

    After Effects has always allowed you to install AE (standalone or part of a suite) on 2 workstations per license.  This was not always enforced as part of aerender until CS 5.5, which requires you to enter a valid serial number per workstation.  As Todd mentions in a previous post - you should contact us to gain the best pricing - as you simply want to render on your farm.

     

    Again - this has always been part of the AE license, yet was not fully enforced until CS 5.5.

     

    Steve

    Sr. Product Manager - After Effects

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 7, 2012 9:57 AM   in reply to steveforde

    To the folks at Adobe -- this licensing requirement has NOT always been a part of AE. Please review the text in any manual from CS4 or earlier: the network rendering engine is free to use on as many nodes as one wishes. So, stop with the revisionist history, please. And consider a _reasonably_ priced render license option for the people who keep you in business.

     

    thanks,

    Jeff B.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 9, 2012 5:14 AM   in reply to JeffreySBrown

    > To the folks at Adobe -- this licensing requirement has NOT always been a part of AE. Please review the text in any manual from CS4 or earlier: the network rendering engine is free to use on as many nodes as one wishes.

     

    I'm the person who wrote the document that you're citing, and I'm also the one telling you that the licensing requirements have always existed. We simply made a mistake by allowing the render engine to be installed on any number of systems. Once we dicovered our mistake with regard to MPEG licensing, we had to fix our mistake.

     

    Yes, we are currently working on how to enable the functionality that you describe, while still honoring our licensing agreements for MPEG codecs.

     

    See this from the After Effects product manager:

    http://blogs.adobe.com/sforde/2011/12/07/render-engines-and-the-joy-of -legal-obligations-part-2/

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 9, 2012 8:46 AM   in reply to Todd_Kopriva

    Todd, I'm pleased you're all taking a look at the situation.

    My memory certainly is not perfect, and I wouldn't expect yours to be; but here's a cut and paste from pg. 625 of the CS3 user guide:

     

    "You can render one or more compositions from a project using multiple computers over a network in a fraction of the time that a single compute rwould require. Network rendering involves copying the project and source files to a networked folder, and then rendering the project.If you have a full licensed copy of After Effects, you can set it up to work with render-only versions of After Effects called render engines. Your license entitles you to install as many copies of the render engine as you want on your network, as long as one activated copy of After Effects is installed on that network."

     

    -Jeff

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 9, 2012 8:49 AM   in reply to JeffreySBrown

    Yeah, I know what it says. I wrote it. But that was based on an incorrect understanding of our licensing obligations. Once we had a correct understanding of our licensing obligations, we made them more explicit in CS5.5; we had to do so. That's the gist of Steve's two blog posts on the issue.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 9, 2012 9:05 AM   in reply to Todd_Kopriva

    So -- it was always that way, then it was never that way 'till now? You can't have it both ways. And Adobe has had an incorrect understanding of licensing for about 18 years? (whenever Adobe bought AE from CoSA, or MPEG was introduced)?

    Steve F's text indicate this is a new issue: OK, things happen. But trying to slide it past the users with no notice, and only obfuscation, gets people steamed. Rightly so, in my opinion. I think the somewhat crude phrase is "don't piss on us and tell us it's raining."

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 9, 2012 9:09 AM   in reply to JeffreySBrown

    We aren't obfuscating anything. It's simple: We were never allowed to have an endless number of instances installed with only one license for the MPEG codecs. We didn't realize that. When we did realize that, we were forced to turn off the ability to do so.

     

    Steve's post indicates that the new thing is that we were made aware of the licesing restriction.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 14, 2012 6:10 AM   in reply to Todd_Kopriva

    Todd.

     

    I just had a chat with Adobe support on this issue with CS5.5 and the support told me that with my master collection I have only 2 nodes for rendering. Is this the truth? If it is I´m really shocked! The free network-rendering was a major feature that had big influence on my decision to switch to AE.

     

    Does this limitation still apply to CS6?

     

    I think you have to understand the angryness regarding to this - I really am! So many people spent money in their renderfarm - and now they cannot use it. Noone told me that something changed. I just spent 600 bucks for a new machine and BAM - worthless... - ...and I really have to struggle for the bucks...

     

    If MPEG is the problem, then just block it for aerender! I only do image-sequences via renderfarm and I´m sure most people do so. The final compiling to MPEG is done in the Media Encoder. And please do this for CS5.5 also, because I cannot upgrade to CS6 or spend the extra money for the cloud.

     

    Hope something´s moving here.

     

    Kind regards.

     

    Sascha

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 14, 2012 6:36 AM   in reply to Sascha Selent

    If MPEG is the problem, then just block it for aerender!

    Exactly! That would be a reasonable solution. Even better than a net-render-only license. But, AFAIK Sascha, things have not changed with CS6 in this regard, so it seems there is neither option at the moment.

     
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    Dec 14, 2012 7:08 AM   in reply to JeffreySBrown

    Hi Jeff.

     

    The AE CS6 help tells something different:

    After Effects CS5.5 had to be serialized on render-only machines (e.g., in a render farm) due to licensing issues. In After Effects CS6, you can now run aerender or use Watch Folder in a non-royalty bearing mode, so serialization not required.  To enable non-royalty bearing mode:�Place a blank file named ae_render_only_node.txt into one of the following locations, depending on the user account type:��  Install After Effects on the render-only machine.  Place a blank file named ae_render_only_node.txt into one of the following locations, depending on the user account type:  Mac locations:  /Users//Documents/  /Users/Shared/Adobe/  Windows locations:  C:\Users\\Documents  C:\Users\Public\Documents\Adobe

    ?

     

    Do you use CS6?

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 14, 2012 7:41 AM   in reply to Sascha Selent

    Hi Sascha- Thank you, I need to look into this! I do use CS6 (upgraded to the "Cloud" subscription). Would have been nice if they included this info in the "What's New" section; though maybe I missed it. Sidebar: I really dislike Adobe Help as implemented via AIR. Slow, locks up frequently, and generally not very "helpful."

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 14, 2012 11:25 AM   in reply to JeffreySBrown

    See this for details of the limitation in After Effects CS5.5 and how it was addressed for After Effects CS6:

    http://blogs.adobe.com/aftereffects/2012/06/codecs-and-the-render-engi ne-in-after-effects-cs6.html

     

    > Would have been nice if they included this info in the "What's New" section

    This was mentioned in the "What's new and changed" post:

    http://blogs.adobe.com/aftereffects/2012/04/after-effects-cs6-whats-ne w-and-changed.html

     
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