Over the Christmas holiday, community member Ben Sinclair posted this comment….
Another issue that’s not well publicised is that iLoks can have issues with USB3 ports on newer Macs. The fault can be replicated by unplugging the iLok after successfully using it, then plugging it back in again, after that, the iLok will light up but won’t be detected by any application that needs to access it (this is obviously more of a problem for laptop users). The workaround is to plug it in via a certified USB2 hub (even one of the ports on an Apple keyboard will do). As it stands, there is no fix, but hopefully it’ll get sorted in a future Apple update.
Now I have to admit I was sceptical about this, however, Santa brought me a new MacBook Pro, well an Apple Refurb one actually) and I set it all up over the holiday. When it came to run Pro Tools, it complained that it couldn’t see the iLok. The iLok was lit up OK and I then remembered Ben’s comment and wondered if that was the same problem. Sure enough, all the USB ports on my MacBook Pro are USB3.
I opened the License Manager but it wouldn’t see the iLok. But it showed up on the Apple System Information OK. Next I de-installed License Manager, installed the latest version, but my laptop iLok was still greyed out once I had signed in on the License Manager. I unplugged and replugged imy iLok and then the License Manager saw it, but I kept getting “Unexpected Errors” when I tried to do anything in License Manager including a Sync/Repair. Things were inconsistent, sometimes it would see the iLok, other times it wouldn’t, it was as if I had a dodgy iLok. The License Manager crashed out several times, sometimes the License Manger would see the iLok, but I got Unexpected Error messages when I tried to do anything. Other times the License Manager won’t see it, but Apple’s System Information always would see the iLok and the blue light was always stable. Also as soon as the iLok was unplugged the License Manager opened up fine and was stable.
To try and rule out the iLok, i tried it in my old laptop and everything worked fine. The license that I tried to transfer at one point with the new computer, reappeared after completing a Sync/Repair using the old computer, so it all pointed at something on the new laptop, presumably this USB3 issue.
I got in touch with the team at iLok, explained my experiences, and they confirmed what Ben had said and that the USB2 hub seems to be the best answer. Andrew Kirk went on to explain….
Apple’s USB3 ports sometimes have issues with USB2 devices. They have been addressing this through firmware updates. Make sure you don’t have any outstanding firmware updates (click the Apple in the upper left corner and select “Software Update”). If you have no outstanding firmware updates, try plugging a powered USB2 hub into your USB3 port.
The second-generation iLok is Certified as USB2 compliant. As such, it absolutely should work with all USB3 devices and ports, provided they have the proper level of support for USB2. The problem is, there are different layers of USB2 support in the various USB3 device drivers, and the newer drivers for a particular piece of hardware are more likely to support the proper calls than the older drivers are.
We do try to work with hardware manufacturers to assure that they support the certified and standard USB calls that iLok makes. However, this is dependent on knowing the devices that are consistently showing a problem, and of course on the manufacturer’s willingness to update the drivers.
I checked I was fully up to date, and then I dug out an old unpowered USB2 hub and it worked fine, in fact as you can see from the picture above I tried 3 iLoks all plugged in at once and all worked perfectly, so lets hope that iLok and Apple can resolve this sooner rather than later. In the meantime the work round is to plug a USB hub, even an unpowered one into a USB3 socket and plug your iLoks into the hub.
Your iLok can be worth more than it's weight in gold if you have a lot of software licenses on it. Looking after it and protecting it should be a high priority but we so often don't give it a second glance. In this article, we are going to look at a number of options to consider.
We have a number of iLok related help articles including a tutorial on Tutorial on how to use the iLok License Manager software, Setting Up Your iLok Account, The iLok License Manager And Activating Protected Software, and What Do I Do If My iLok Is Broken, Lost Or Stolen? In this article, we are going to cover some of the other iLok related problems that can crop up.
In this article, we are going to take a look at what you should do if an iLok is broken, lost or stolen. iLoks are incredibly valuable especially when you have a lot of software and plug-in licenses on them and so it is best to look after them carefully but when the unthinkable happens then this is what you should do....
Since 2013, the iLok License Manager software has been at the core of how we manage the iLok licenses, that protect a lot of the software we buy. This article and the video from Avid cover how to use the iLok License Manager software to manage for iLok licenses.
If you have never used an iLok before you will need to buy an iLok, create a free iLok account and transfer the iLok license onto your iLok or computer. Existing Pro Tools owners with Pro Tools 9 and above will have had to set up an iLok account and own an iLok as the Pro Tools Software is protected by an iLok license that is required to be on an iLok license.
New Pro Tools owners and anyone that hasn't got an iLok are advised to follow the instructions in this guide. This guide will also help if you have received an activation code from a software publisher.
PACE, the makers of iLok, are announcing the new 3rd generation iLok. Its half the size of an iLok2, its twice as fast as the iLok2 and can hold 3 times as many licenses as the second generation iLok.
Got Pro Tools installed on more than one computer? Find yourself swapping iLok and Waves USB hubs between your systems? Got an Arm / Linux based NAS server? Want to be able to use your Pro Tools anywhere in the world, even if you've left you iLok behind? Alan Sallabank takes a look at the VirtualHere Server.
Anyone who opens their iLok License Manager, as I did this morning, should be presented with this rather unfriendly warning that you need to update your License manager software.
Community member Michael Boettcher wrote to us to tell us about his experience of Ebay problems when buying iLok licences.
As you can imagine life at Pro Tools Expert can get complicated when running a Pro Tools computer. We test a lot of gear, that includes hardware and it also includes more than one Mac. Right now I have a Mac Pro running El Capitan and a Mac Mini running Pro Tools on Yosemite for testing which I have to jump between, so I wanted to find a solution that gave me the greatest flexibility with the minimum of pain. A few things needed addressing, screen, keyboard and mouse sharing, audio and MIDI input and also plug-in licences, this is the solution I came up with.
iLok have updated their website to respond to user concerns about getting information. It includes; A cleaner UI and routes to info, Easier to use supports tools, Better store experience and New how-to videos - what is ZDT and TLC
Community member Nathan Ruyle has reached out to us asking if we would share his experiences after buying an iLok protected plug-in on line.. I just had a recent experience with an iLok software license that I thought I would share with you as a cautionary tale about purchasing software from individuals rather than a vendor.
An issue that has not well publicised is that 2nd generation iLoks (iLok2) can have issues with USB3 ports on newer Macs. The fault can sometimes be replicated by unplugging the iLok after successfully using it, then plugging it back in again, after that, the iLok will light up but may not be detected by any application that needs to access it (this is obviously more of a problem for laptop users). The workaround is to plug it in via a certified USB2 hub (even one of the ports on an Apple keyboard will do).
Following a question in Podcast 81 from Michael Lux asking now to get a copy of Pro Tools 11HD software, because he wanted the surround features that are now only available in Pro Tools HD. We talked about how it was possible to buy it secondhand but that the seller would need to put it on an iLok and send the buyer the iLok as Avid have now blocked transferring Pro Tools HD licenses from one iLok account to another. In the podcast we also discussed how the iLok would show up on the buyer’s iLok License Manager.
Mike showed his modified iLoks at the end of his post about how to label iLoks, and a number of the community have asked where you can get the Star Wars caps from.
Did you know you could label your iLok? Take a look at the photo above. On the underside of an iLok is a little button, if you push that in and then pull the translucent collar, the collar will come off to reveal a grey plastic area which you can write on.
A first look at the new iLok Licence Manager App for Mac and PC. Manage your iLok from your desktop and more!
To access and manage our iLok licenses users for many years now have used a web browser and a special extension, which worked well, but has been plagued with browser compatibility issues, especially with Firefox which hasn’t been supported for quite a while now, and there have been a number of things we couldn’t do like delete expired demo licenses.
Software protection gets a bad rap on the whole, not just from those trying to find ways to get software by not paying for it, but also from those who have paid for the software but sometimes find themselves locked out of our own software because the protection isn’t working as it should.
In this week’s podcast we had a question from Craig Shimmon about recommendations for how to make iLoks secure in a computer lab environment. I had two suggestions, a diecast box which Neil Hester suggested trashing the lid screws once fitted and screwed to the desk, or a product called a Roklocker. We have had an excellent solution which takes my diecast box idea and moves it on many stages to an excellent solution and so with Neil and Fred’s permission we bring you the Fredbox Mk 2. They also offer an improvement to my our ideas for a Mac Pro.