License errors and question

So on my work machine, I am using the older stand alone license model, not the newer system. Every once in a while, I will get the following license error:


This usually happens when I already have an instance of Rhino open, and if I wait a few seconds or minute, Rhino will successfully launch, but it will forget almost all toolbar positions, window positions, things like layer and properties pallets will be closed. All further instances of Rhino I open will open in this incorrect state, until I close them, then close the correctly working Rhino last (so correct toolbar / window position win). It doesn’t happen all that often (perhaps once a week in all day everyday use), but enough to be annoying.

Is the idea to completely get rid of the stand alone license and transfer them all to the “cloud” log-in license system? Am I getting these errors because I’m using a depreciated license system?


@brian has repeatedly stated that support for offline users is a high priority, and by definition these users will need a “stand alone” license system. It would be valuable to know whether the computer under discussion is connected to the internet, to a LAN but not permitted to connect to the internet, or truly not networked at all.

It is connected to a LAN and permitted to connect to the internet (I’m typing on it now). My not switching licenses on this machine is just due more to pure laziness and not wanting to mess with something that was working, and fear I might take a job in a location with no internet access; but part of me thought I would keep the stand alone on this one, and use the dial-in licensing on my home machine to try and observe the differences. It is however now belatedly occurring to me that using the same license under different licencing schemes might be a problem for RMA. I am only using one machine at a time, and both are solely under my control, but using one license under different license schemes might be problematic, so clarification on that point from RMA would be appreciated.


While the Rhino End User License Agreement has not changed, we have changed how it is enforced so Rhino V6 licensing
options have changed.

There are now three ways to use your license:

  • Stand-alone on a single computer
  • Floating on a company network using the Zoo [legacy]
  • Rhino Accounts [New]
    Add your license to your account and it will float to any computer you have access to using the Internet instead of a local area network
    Create Teams, add multiple licenses, and invite users to join the Team to share the licenses over the Internet

Thanks for clarification. I guess I’ll deactivate my home license until I decide if I can justify purchasing another seat for home. But this still leaves the original question of the license error on the stand alone license.

Thanks again,

I haven’t seen the stand-alone initialization error like that before in V6.
I’ll see if @brian has any ideas on that.

Every time I have to look into this error, which isn’t very often, I realize the problem is that Rhino fails to load the licensing code because it fails to load the .NET framework. It’s strange that no other instances will successfully launch until all of them are closed.

As may be clear from other responses, this has nothing to do with our licensing policy, and instead has to do with a failure of critical core systems to load in Rhino. You’re welcome to keep your standalone license on your computer. But when Rhino 6 ships, standalone licenses will strictly only be allowed on one computer at a time.

You shouldn’t need two licenses if you choose to either use the Zoo or put your license in your Rhino account.

My concern is that their are often times when we move into an office and I’m expected to start drawing right away, and they may not have facilities (phone and internet) fully set up for a week. In those cases I need to be able to start Rhino without being able to contact my Rhino account. It is kind of a bummer to have to pick up a seat to cover myself for those rare instances, but you guys have been very generous with your licensing in the past, so I just want to make sure I’m doing it right.


You should be OK. A Rhino account does not need a continuous Internet connection. The “Lease” is good for some time and before it times out, you will get a warning. Before the lease expires, you’ll need to renew it with an Internet connection.
I’m not clear on how long that Rhino Account lease will last.
Maybe @brian or Andres can chime in here with more details.

You’ll have between a week and a month in ordinary circumstances, and Rhino will give you days of warning that you need a connection before it refuses to run.

I’m not sure I understand what’s happening here. It sounds like there is no change in your decades-old fundamental policy of “one license => run on as many computers you want, but only one at a time”. But now this won’t be true for those with standalone licenses.
It seems like you are OK with trusting your customer to abide by this for one computer, but not more. What has decades experience taught you that you can no longer trust your customer with several computers to abide by your policy? I think the original approach has been very handy for users with two or three computers, and I’ve always assumed that users with more computers would be running more than one at a time and would buy additional licenses. Not so?

I believe that each new installation needs to be “authenticated” at installation, doesn’t it? This gives you control and knowledge of who is using their standalone license on additional computers. Why is it necessary for the 2nd computer to be on the network, at least periodically, when the first one does not? It would seem to me that you can either trust your customer or not.

I converted to a ‘cloud’ license yesterday and see that I have a week. What makes this sometimes be a month?

It’s short now because it’s still in development.
With user’s help, we are beating up on it.

That’s correct. If you want multiple computers running Rhino with a single license within a private network, you’ll need to set up a free Zoo server on one of your computers. It’s really easy to do, and will simplify your license management.

It’s not about trust. It’s about making it easier for users to self-serve their licensing needs across all of our offerings. It turns out that if we allow you to use a standalone license on multiple devices, then it’s quite cumbersome to move that license to a Zoo or to a Rhino account.

One of the most expensive support issues we have as a company is helping customers understand where their licenses are. This happens for individual users and large companies alike. We don’t really like having to answer so many phone calls about license usage, so we’re redesigning our licensing (the way we redesign much of Rhino) to get rid of questions. Using a Rhino account will, we hope, make it much easier for companies and individuals to use their licenses in flexible ways without having to be burdened by standalone license installation, license validation, tracking where licenses are installed, and tracking which licenses have been upgraded.

That said, I understand that you use a standalone license in an offline environment. If you need to use one license on two computers, the Zoo is your only viable option with Rhino 6.

All changes have intended and unintended consequences. This time, the unintended consequence is that licensing gets harder for you personally - and for organizations that have similar network requirements. I’m sorry if that causes a hardship for you. And know that it’s not going to change for V6 release.

There are a bunch of heuristics on the server side that decide how long a license is good for on your client. Those heuristics change all the time, and will continue to change. Our intent is to make it so you never need to care how long your license will last - that it will be long enough for ordinary outages (plane flights, local connectivity issues, or server problems on our end). Also, setting up teams versus using an individual account changes the behavior. And having more than one license in either case also changes how things work.

Rather than trying to describe all the conditions and options, our goal is for it to quietly work in your favor if you’re within the license agreement. Please let us know if you see something happening that doesn’t work well for you.