Licensed To Bill

Several clients have recently asked me about how the Timeslips licensing works so it seems like a good topic to discuss here.  I will try to explain it as simply and clearly as possible so you can figure out how many licenses you may need as we move into upgrade season.

I like to think of Timeslips licenses like books in a library.  The first time you open Timeslips on your computer is like checking the book out of the library.  Even if you close the book/program you still have it in your possession and no one else can read the book while you have it out, so that license is considered “In Use.”  You can open and close the book/program as many times as you like but that license is yours until you return it to the library – or clear it using the Station Administrator.

The Station Administrator is a separate application that allows you to view how the licenses are being distributed.  You can access Station Administrator from within Timeslips via the Special menu, or from outside of Timeslips via the Timeslips program group on your Windows start menu.

When you open Station Administrator the first screen you see will show you the location of the Timeslips database and any users that are currently logged into that database.  These are the people that are currently reading their books.

Click the Options menu and choose Licenses In Use to see how the licenses are being distributed – who has the books out from the library, whether they are currently reading them or not.  You will see the name of the computer that each license is being used on as well as the Windows User ID.  This is a good reason to give your computers descriptive names and make sure each of your users have a unique Windows login.  If two people share the same computer, but use two different Windows logins, they will use two Timeslips licenses.

There is also a column for Session Type, which identifies whether the user is working via a remote Terminal Services connection.  Unlike local licenses, Terminal Services session licenses are released when the user exits Timeslips.

If no one is currently logged into Timeslips (no one is listed on the first Station Administrator screen), you can clear any or all of the licenses in use, making them available on a first come, first served basis.

In the lower right corner of the Licenses In Use screen you can also see how many licenses you have purchased, how many are in use and how many are available.

You may also notice two radio buttons at the top of this screen labeled Full Licenses and API Licenses.  API licenses are licenses used by other programs that connect to Timeslips, such as Time Matters, Outlook, Amicus, PC Law, Peachtree and Quickbooks.  Timeslips provides 100 API licenses.

All of this licensing information is stored in a file on the server called Timeslip.cfg.  Some people make the mistake of using the CD to install Timeslips on each computer and this puts a separate Timeslips.cfg file on each computer.  Two computers cannot access the same Timeslips database if they are using different Timeslip.cfg files.  The second person that tries to log in will get an error message.

If you do install from the CD, you can tell Timeslips to use the configuration file on the server by using the Station Administrator.  In Station Administrator, click the Options menu and choose Change Install Path.  This will then allow you to browse to the Timeslip.cfg file located on the server.  You should then delete the Timeslip.cfg file on your C drive.

When you use the Setup.exe file in the LoclInst folder on the server to install Timeslips on workstations, each computer automatically uses the Timeslip.cfg file on the server.

Still have questions about Timeslips licensing?  Need to order additional licenses?  Contact one of the experts at TriStar Data Systems.

Timeslips 2011 will be released early this summer.  You can save up to $320 if you pre-order before May 28th.

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