Licensing confusion




First, I've already opened a support case but I don't understand everything. As English is not my mother tongue, it's a little bit difficult for me to deal with such complicated licensing issues.




At the beggining of April, I downloaded a trial version of F-Secure AntiVirus from F-Secure website. 

I decided to remove this product from my computer after only 1 day of use. I have understood that the trial version can only be used 1 time on a computer and won't work again after an uninstallation.


Then I came across a full F-Secure Internet Security licence from Ebay, for only 10 Euros. I have received the "Service Key" which is good.


When I tried to install F-Secure Internet Security, my key was recognized and I was able to install the product, with a 1 year validity. However, my TRIAL license was still listed in the product, and its expiry date was moving forward with each day (for example, 05/16 then a day after, 05/17...).


So I tried to uninstall and reinstall the product again to get rid of this trial key, but the more I install the product (on the same machine), the more "Trial License Key" were added to my product GUI. The valid 1 year key was still listed at the bottom of the list, but everytime I try to enter it into the "Activation wizard', it tells me that my key is valid but when I click on "Install", it tells me : "The trial license key was already used on this system" so I cannot get my key working.


Furthermore, I noticied that each time the "Device ID" for my account was different with each reinstallation on the same machine.


I've already opened a support ticket, tried Uninstall with UninstallationTool, tried the different Installers, without success.


I ended up buying an official license from the F-Secure WebStore and my new key is now working perfectly. But I still have my old key inused. Can you help me to recover the 1 year period on my old key, merge it with the new key or add it to the end of my other 1 year subscription ?




  • Simon
    Simon Posts: 2,667 Superuser
    You've already done what I would have suggested, by using the Uninstallation Tool, which should have removed all the licenses, so you should have been able to start again 'clean'.

    I think you can only wait for your support ticket to be responded to now, and hopefully they can sort things out for you.
  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    Thanks for the reply.


    I've contacted the support again with a French-Speaking technician who helped me.


    We have merged the two license keys, so I've got 2 years of protection now.


    In fact the solution was to (after contacting the support and checking the licenses) :


    - Uninstall all the F-secure products with Add-Remove programs.

    - Install the latest F-Secure product with the installers at the URL /support/installers.

    - Activate F-Secure with my old license key.

    - Update F-Secure

    - Add my other key to the product.


    It works, it have "added" the two subscriptions, so I have 2 years of protection, but under my first licence : "Licence1 : Installed on this device : Expiration date : 04/13/2016" (which is ok), I have three other lines :


    "License 2 : available"

    "Licence 3 : available" 

    "Licence 4 : available" all with an expiration date set to  : 05/18/2014.


    How can I remove those 3 licences ? (they were added when I have entered my "old" ebay key, the first one I bought).

  • Simon
    Simon Posts: 2,667 Superuser
    Was the eBay license for more than one machine? I guess it's possible that it will just 'disappear' when it expires on May 18th.
  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer



    No, the key was for 1 PC only. But I am not sure that the key is fully legit that's why I've purchased from F-Secure too (my fault...). Now I've got 2 years of protection (1 if the eBay key turns out not to be legit).


    For the 3 other keys, I guess it's because I've tried a few time to install/uninstall the software on the same computer with the Trial version.


    I don't know if they will disappear after may 18th, anyway those keys are useless now.


    I've asked the support technician if it's possible to remove those keys from the software.


    The licensing is a bit confusing with this product, but It's good to know that there is a great support :)


    The keys in question are highlighted in my picture.

    "Installée sur cet appareil" means "Installed on this device."

     "Disponible" means "Available".

    "Expire" means "Expiration date".


  • Simon
    Simon Posts: 2,667 Superuser
    Product licensing is usually fairly straightforward, but we have had issues posted here before regarding multiple licenses appearing after using a license bought off eBay.

    I'm not saying they're all dodgy, but personally, I don't usually purchase just license keys on their own from eBay, as I guess you can never really be certain of their origins or legitimacy.
  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    Yes, sure.


    However we can see that the 3 licenses have an expiration date set to 30 days so I think they are related to old "trial" keys. It's curious that they're not cleared. They were added when I have entered my ebay key.


    Furthermore, the technician said that it's normal for the "Device ID" to change after each installation, even on the same machine. That's curious because normally a Device ID must not change that easily.



  • Simon
    Simon Posts: 2,667 Superuser
    I think the Device ID thing is related to the license being transferable to another machine, or when you purchase a multi-machine license.

    If you wanted to transfer your current (single) license to another machine, you would use the same subscription code, and the license would be activated on the second machine, and deactivated on the original machine.

    I think the Device ID is more for the purpose of the product identifying the active license, than for the user to identify the machine with. :)
  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    OK, thanks ! The support guy told me that the "trial licenses" will be removed automatically after the trial period.


    I enjoyed my experience with the F-Secure support. Both Forum and Technical support were helpful and kind. :)

  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    Hi !


    May I ask you another question again ? Smiley Tongue


    I just have noticied that in fact my three "trial" keys expiration dates are moving forward each day, so they will never expire.


    Is it possible to "cancel" them ?


    For example, today (04/20/2014) the expiration date shown is : 05/20/2014.

    Tomorrow (04/21/2014) it will be : 05/21/2014 etc.


    Thanks !

  • Simon
    Simon Posts: 2,667 Superuser
    I think you'd need to ask the Support guys if they can remove them.

    Failing that, a full uninstall with the Uninstallation Tool should remove all of your licenses, then you can reinstall just using the one genuine legit license. That should tidy things up a bit. I say *should*, because I can't remember the outcome of the last person who had trouble with an eBay purchased license. From what I recall, he ended up with hundreds listed (!), so you might want to check with Support first. :)
  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    I've just mailed the support and I'll wait for their answer.


    I'll keep this thread updated :)


    EDIT : after further research I have noticied that in a file of FSDIAG.ZIP archive there is the following information :


    So I think the support can remove those 3 trial subscriptions from the server (with the help of AgentID). I've hidden some information to prevent confidentiality issues.
  • Ukko
    Ukko Posts: 3,634 Superuser



    You can also check situation about "subscription-key" - what if it's new key with new each day.

    One trial-key for three devices, but each day - new one :) Like if it was "buy" - it's can be like service "one year" with protection :)


    Anyway - how already was tips about uninstallation by Control Panel and than (or without that) by F-Secure Uninstallation Tool (but here.... here trouble.. if your already to use another "system" - re-install system or something like that);

    It's must to fix your current trouble - if that some kind of stuck with your current system (not device);

    And if it's not a fix - probably just need to be certainly installation-process without "installer by trial-versions" (need to use - just already new one about two year protection) and certainly without step about "add old one key" - if it's possible.

  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    I am stuck.


    Now, F-secure won't recognize the Ebay key, and when I try to put my F-Secure Store Key, it tells me that the Trial version is already installed.


    I've uninstalled with the uninstallation tool, but it's the same thing when I try to reinstall.


    Now I'm stuck as none of my two key work.


    Everytime I try to install the Trial, another "TRIAL" get added to my licenses keys, but the software says that "A trial version was already installed".


    Everytime I try to reinstall properly, my device ID changes and the keys keeps being attached to the "old" installation ID (even if it's on the same device).


    Now one of my two keys is not recognized at all by the system, the other is recognized but won't let me install as : "A trial version was already installed".


    I'm lost, I've sent another request to support but I'm going nowhere...

  • Ukko
    Ukko Posts: 3,634 Superuser



    Sorry for ask - but just for more understable in situation.

    On current time.. you have:


     - "Number-key-license-code" for F-Secure IS by not F-Secure store/website (potentially it's for three devices, one year... and potential can be "trick")


     - "Number-key-license-code" for F-Secure IS by F-Secure official store (for one device (?!), one year);


     - "Number-key-license-code" for F-Secure IS by F-Secure Support/Care team (for one device, two year) - but it's can be already "not-split" with "second one";





    Now about situation:


     - Device ID - that mean ID for Device (System and current installation); Not related with Hardware ID (it's can be used by F-Secure, but in another meaning);

     -  User ID - that mean ID for Client (User and current license-code);



    If you did install of F-Secure IS in first time:


     - It's installed and create a User ID / Device ID for that installation;


    For normally remove F-Secure IS and dropped any active-license:


     - Need to use Control Panel (default by Windows) for uninstalling F-Secure IS;

     - Than you can use F-Secure Uninstallation tool (for any situations, when something goes wrong);

     - You must do that with "network connection" (and here I mean - first step)



    If it's already broken... and one of licenses are stuck (not matter which reason: uninstallation without network, wrong uninstallation, re-install operation-system or other situations):


     You can not to fix that (but maybe F-Secure Support/Care team can to fix that); Except "replacing"-feature - which work.



    Stuck in that situation mean - that you can not to use "license code-key' - because it's already "in use";


    But here... you must able to see prompt about "re-placing" license-code-key for new system/machine... during new installation.



    If it's stuck on system - when installation give alert about "already installed something on current system" - you need to clean system.... probably here.. totally must to help F-Secure Uninstallation tool.



    ANYWAY that text was just for "understable" situation.


    Now about your latest information:


     - You must to stop using Trial-installers (if your words mean that... and you do not mean trial-key);


     - You need to use "installer" without any "connection" with key-license-code - just installer, where you can or able to add during installation (for example); Or... with installer about your "stable' license-code - which can to help with replacing also;



      - Changes about "Device ID" - almost normally. That situation did not give any new troubles... if installation/uninstallation was without wrong-steps;


     - If you have "second valid" key about two-year subscriptions for one device and that "key" give alert about "already installed trial-version";

    Try to use else one time.... steps (or check... if all that steps already was done);

        - Control Panel (default Windows panel for remove/uninstalling any software) - remove F-Secure (all programs); after "graphic-dialog-uninstallation" will be "dropped" your license key. all other actions will be about "cleaning for trash and other things";


        - You can to use F-Secure Uninstallation Tool after that... for checking.. that all.. are good.


        - Try to install F-Secure IS with your valid-key for two-year one-device (which you receive by Suppor team) - and use for that - certainly "good" installer (if you have special installer for that..... use that; if not - use any "installers" without connection about licenses... and type your valid-key during prompt);


         - Must be work... and installing without troubles.

    If not - you must to clear/clean something in system by hand - for example.... registry by "F-Secure"-query;

    Or be certainly.... about situation.. that in any places of your system... did not have folder with installation.



    If you want use "your new valid-key for two years and one device" and "trial-key" or "ebay-key" - it's probably can be about various or different versions of F-Secure - and it's can be a reason for troubles. Or... just trial-key/ebay-key was revoked. Or.... ebay-key was just trial-key.

  • Simon
    Simon Posts: 2,667 Superuser
    I can't add to that...

    Except to say that you can only install a trial version once, so that may explain one issue.

    I agree with Ukko - if you can get your system cleared of all licenses, only use the one(s?) issued by F-Secure, as the one from eBay could well be the reason for all the trouble.
  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    From now :


    - With F-Secure uninstalled.


    - I ran : UninstallationTool.exe in order to make sure every instance of F-Secure is Uninstalled.


    - Then, after rebooting, connected to Internet, I ran :


    -  F-Secure IS asked for the Key. There is a problem here now.

    ===> When I try to enter my eBay Key (F-Secure Internet Security), the installer shows a red text saying that the key cannot be validated (this is a new behavior).

    So the installation cannot continue.




    ===> When I try to enter my F-Secure "legit" key (purchased from F-Secure eStore), the key is validated, but when I try to continue it says : "The Trial version was already installed on this system". It's curious because I am not using the TRIAL installer.

    And the installation cannot continue.




    Under "My Subscriptions" I have now... 6 licenses, because of many installations attempts.




    My correct licence is n°4, with two years licence : 1 year (ebay) + 1 year (f-secure).


    I want to remove all the other licenses and keep only my n°4 license...


    Heeeelp :)

  • Simon
    Simon Posts: 2,667 Superuser
    Unfortunately, we can't see any of the screenshots at the moment, as they currently need to be approved by a forum moderator.

    What I'm confused about is why you initially used the eBay license again, rather than the one from F-Secure. I really feel that isn't helping, and that you should only be using the known legit license.
  • Ukko
    Ukko Posts: 3,634 Superuser



    About screenshots - it's not visible yet;

    It's not a trouble - just because it's waiting "moderation"; But anyway.. probably I will know about which prompts that pictures.




    It's, of course, doesn't matter... but in any other steps - try to use that installer - (probably not big different, but anyway);


    In current your situation (if you did not anything else yet) - my steps will be :


     - Go to Windows Control Panel - Remove F-Secure Launch Pad (or something like that);

    It's can be with "graphic-mode" or already with "service enabler uninstalling"; When it's done.....


    I can to do next steps.... but for best "perfomance"....


     - Will use "F-Secure Uninstall Tool" - it's not give any improve-points, but... why not.

    Also.. I do that with "network connection - turn on" (both steps; uninstallation certainly with network connection turn on);



     So, after what next steps will be:


     - Installer from link; Or installer from valid-key-special-view;


    During installation it's can to give alert about window with "uninstalled status" or with already "in use" and etc.

    If all nice - I go to "F-Secure Launch Pad - My Subscriptions" - "Installation" - click "Install" - it's must to give prompt about "replacing";



    OK.. here I stopped potential steps about situation :)


    Some words about your information:


    Just because - pictures not visble yet - just because if you have "available" to check "My Subcriptions" and here visible six subscriptions..... already something wrong. I not sure.. that can to certainly understand... reason about.... that.

    Need to check screenshot.


    Also about "trial" - it's can be trial-time for guarantee-money-back :) But anyway... it's must be able to replacing from "potential steps";


    If on screenshot... have another licenses...  I recomend to try check situation about manual "cleaning" registry for "query" - F-Secure and maybe... folders.

    It's not really possibly... to be so big stuck... after all steps :) And anyway... if you had experience with "system restore" - it's anyway.. must be fixed by uninstallation or new installation - uninstallation and replacing for subscription.

  • Simon
    Simon Posts: 2,667 Superuser
    I didn't notice you were using the 'upgrade' installer. I would certainly recommend using the full retail installer that Ukko linked to above, with the license issued by F-Secure.
  • Ukko
    Ukko Posts: 3,634 Superuser

    Yes, but probably link about "upgrade-installer" are normal too.

    Just because - it's link from main-page about downloads.


    But - in my experience - current "upgrade-installer" work normally time to time - but in some situations with strange-results :)

    It's different, but anyway... both of installers... must to work like need (but indeed... I recomend to use "simply" installer from my link for checking that situation);

  • Simon
    Simon Posts: 2,667 Superuser
    I was under the impression that the 'upgrade' installer was to upgrade an existing installation. If the installation has been fully removed, then the full installer should be used. But, I could be wrong. Smiley Wink
  • Ukko
    Ukko Posts: 3,634 Superuser

    Yes, it's probably need to do :) but on current main-page about "downloads/installers" able to download just upgrade-version of installer - if visit "as default"; And people, who need to use installer of F-Secure, will be download that version (like upgrade from previously version to F-Secure IS 2014);


    And in fact... if system don't have any installation - current upgrade-installer "dropped" on system "any required files" and start installation-process :)


    Practically without any different with "normal"-installer - but.. how already note - in some situations... that "upgrade-tool" give a strange results (different strange-result).


    Without so big different - because both of them "network-installers"; Probably indeed full-installer will be just offline-installer.


    Anyway - maybe here indeed can be trouble about "installer" - if "upgrade-version" don't have or do not give "prompt/feature" about re-placing subscriptions (but it's hard to understand);


    Also..... about current situation - in any steps about with using "system restore point" - can be any troubles, which create a stuck (if "restore-point" was before "upgrade/update" - will be totally "crash" for installation - but possible to use uninstallation-process;    If "restore-point" was before "any installation" - will be already "stuck" for installation - because it's not possible to use any uninstallation-process and already need to use "replacing);



  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    By using : F-SecureNetworkInstaller.exe ie the full installer, after entering my legit license key from F Secure, the program tolds me again that the trial version was already installed...


    But the setup file is not for trial and the key is legit.


    I'm going to wait for the support...

  • Ukko
    Ukko Posts: 3,634 Superuser

    Yes, probably... need to check your screenshots.


    But... anyway - can you go to "F-Secure (or Launch Pad)"-picture -> My Subscriptions - > Installations


    If there.. have any information "Install..." and "not installed/not installed" - try to click "Install" (for "replace-prompt");

    If without that..... so, probably... trouble in "trial" or in "some files, which still on system" (but if uninstallation-process after "try to install" -  not fix that... it's mean - something another).


    Anyway - I will try to repeat your situation now. :)


    But - answer from F-Secure Support / Care, of course, be helpful.

  • Ukko
    Ukko Posts: 3,634 Superuser

    Some results of my try:


    First step was "Download and install Trial-version" (just trial-installer without any license-key-codes);

     All nice and installed without any troubles;

    Not wait for totally downloaded definitions or installed some modules - remove installation by Windows Control Panel;

    Here choose "Remove all programs" - after what...... restart for system.



    Second step was "Try to install Trial-version again" (just again with that trial-installer without any license-key-codes);

     After start of installing - receive alert about "already installed trial-version on that system - buy a full version";

    Also that "part of installation" was with another "Device ID and Account ID" (first installation was with another IDs);

    Here - go to Windows Control Panel - remove F-Secure by "all programs" - after what - launch F-Secure Uninstall Tool - after end of "process" with required about restart system - did that.



    Third step was "Else one try to install Trial-version" (just again with that trial-installer without any license-key-codes);

     After start of installing all nice and good.

    Current trial-license-key-installer still active and I can to continue use that trial-time.



    But.. I will try to repeat... some other setting, which more related with your situation.


    Anyway - maybe that results also can be helpful.

    And also - did you use current F-Secure Uninstall Tool (after remove by Windows Control Panel) - ?

  • Ukko
    Ukko Posts: 3,634 Superuser

    Sorry for over-posting.....


    Addition information about my try:

     - probably because I can not to use "ebay key" or "specific key by support-team" - I do not have any experience about "repeating" (maybe some other require is missing);


    All my other tries... fixed after "previously noticed steps" or with other "default steps";


    Anyway... just about all current story with some dreams:


    Various version of installers, which related with installation-type:

     - trial

     - "casual"

     - SAFE

     - any providers/operators versions

     - any other version of F-Secure  

     - other


    Required "license-code/key" certainly for "version of installer" (logical) or in some situations for "automatic"-process.


    During trial-version can be installed some of other "versions" without troubles (like trial-version too); It's mean - any "another" installation will remove "other" installation and did that for replace on system. Any "troubles" about "already installed current "type" of installation" - must be fixed with uninstalling by Windows Control Panel / can be restart for system / F-Secure Uninstallation Tool / restart.


    If nothing of normal steps not helped... and give new "strange actions": maybe trouble in "license-key" already;


    But... just because it's visible "six licenses", "trial-prompt"...... some kind of trouble with uninstallation or "files in system" (which already not recognize by tools).


    Trial-installer and Normal-installer are same (different just on "automatic"-allow for key; but maybe it's can be different trial-installers too; previously was another type of). It's explanation for "prompt/alert" about "trial already installed" during use installer (without trial-related in "download-source");


    But... current situation must be fixed by - F-Secure Uninstallation Tool (or.... go to Control Panel - Remove F-Secure;  after that step - use F-Secure Uninstallation Tool);


    If it's not help... it's so strange.


    About keys....



    Dreams about (unavalaible to see screenshots yet) Six licenses = 3 devices (from eBay) + 1 device (from F-Secure store) + 1 device (from trial) + 1 device (from support);


    And all of them stuck on system......I not sure.. that can to understand "why" :) except "added" it with new installation (need to try just add "one valid key");


    In all "close to same settings" - using remove by Control panel and F-Secure Uninstallation tool.... repair that. Or must be able option for "replace" license.


    And probably just one normal explanation can be about current story with "license":

     not about "installation" (which normal explanation was about "stuck" and required for use Control Panel - restart - F-Secure Uninstallation tool - restart).

    - during situation, when new valid key (from support) be activate with active-installation - will be added else some licenses (ebay, trial and from F-Secure store);


    - it's maybe related with "possible" situation (or certainly was like that);


    - that action give for "new" valid license/key/code (from support) - super-feature about "remember" new adding and use it always.


    In meaning like - Current installation have valid license.

    You go to "My subscriptions" and for current license click "Add new one" - which just "go over-the-bonus" for that license. And it's already "remember-style";

    But that situation not explanation for prompt about "trial-already installed";

    Maybe you need to use "installer" about your new key-license (which different with trial-installer and "casual"-installer); And during use "simple" network installer (or trial-installer) from that "super-featured" license-key takes.... license about "trial"-one - which create a prompt about "trial already installed"; Which can to fix by.... good uninstallation, but looks that it's not work in your situation (but should be work).


  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    So :)


    To sum the whole topic up, we have only 3 elements: Two Licences Keys + F-Secure Internet Security + A Single Computer.


    And that's so much trouble ! Man Embarassed


    I've escalated yesterday the FSDIAG.ZIP file to the support. I tried to contact them by chat this morning but "unfortunately" it was the same person which asked me for the file yesterday, so I must wait for him/her to analyze the logs. Anyway, everything is in the file from product installation log to licences issues.


    I ran UninstallTool once again, and I am not doing anything more until I hear back from the support.


    I'll keep this thread updated.  And thanks again for being so supportive !

  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    I've contacted the phone support once again.


    The technician was the same I chatted with yesterday evening.


    He has reset my licence, and now everything works using the "legal" F-Secure eStore key. My protection is available for 2 years. But F-Secure still shows 5 licences on the GUI.


    However, the technician said that they will be gone automatically after a while, when the server will "update" itself.


    So, problem partially solved, I am going to wait for the licences to expire.


    And sorry for my english, it's not my first language.

  • Simon
    Simon Posts: 2,667 Superuser
    Your English is fine, I'd never have guessed it isn't your first language. :)

    Glad it's sorted. I suggest you get rid of that eBay key so that it doesn't get used again. Smiley Wink
  • TheBugChaser
    TheBugChaser Posts: 24 Explorer

    In fact I don't know how it works. Because my F-Secure Store Key is valid for 1 year only, and it's the key used for the installation process in FSIS Installer.


    My eBay key is also valid for 1 year.


    And now I have a valid subscription until 04/2016 (2 years) so I guess they added the "time left" of my eBay key to my genuine F-Secure store key.

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