One thing that seems to be constantly in the news is security. It could be protecting yourself from the latest phishing scam, or the cyber theft of a company’s secrets
The protection of a company’s intellectual Property (IP) is a vital concern, even for EDA companies like Aldec. We see this in several areas, such as the ability for users to encrypt their IP, to protect it both internally and externally to their company (see ‘Insights’ later in this newsletter for more details), or down to protecting the IP in the EDA software itself.
Aldec has always used licenses to protect the software tools that their customers buy from them. One of the issues with software licensing, is having a reliable identifier to lock that license to. Much like securing your bike to an eye bolt, for which you ideally want a secure immovable object, it’s the same for software licenses; You need a secure identifier to lock the license to. This could be the address of the Media Access Controller of the computer the license is on (MAC Address), or it could be a USB ID like the FlexID-9 shown in Figure 1, sometimes known as a fish lock, because of its shape.
The FlexID-9 has been used for a long time by Aldec, but unfortunately it is not as secure as it used to be. Because of this, Aldec has been phasing out FlexID-9 support in its products. In fact, the last Aldec product that supported FlexID-9 was Active-HDL 11.1 and with the release of version 12.0 the last remaining FlexID-9 dongles now require replacement.
FirstEDA are in the process of contacting our remaining users of the FlexID-9 dongles and offering the choice to either switch to the new FlexID-10 dongle (Figure 2), or a MAC-Address based license. If you have a current Active-HDL maintenance agreement and a license that uses a FlexID-9 dongle please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.