CVB dongle/licence not detected

Hello I am installing a repeat system of a CVB 2011 application. There were no changes to the application but the dongle was not detected.

I have explored the Codemeter Control Centre a little, but that doesn’t see the dongle either. Are there any further diagnostics I can try?

There is one quite likely explanation with a straightforward fix.

You are using the WIBU Codemeter dongles with CVB 2011. When this version was current, the Codemeter dongles had serial numbers starting 2xxxxxx. This number can be found at the base of the USB plug. This indicates the security chip version. New dongles (at the time of writing) have serial number 3xxxxxx, indicating a newer security chip.

The Codemeter runtime (including the Codemeter Control Centre) had no knowledge of the future hardware version, so it is simply not detected. However installing a newer version of the Codemeter runtime will give you backward compatibility for the 2xxxxxx dongles as well as the 3xxxxxx dongles.

Codemeter runtime is not listed as a separate program to uninstall in Window, but you can install a newer version over the top. See here for the latest version:

This has implications only for the detection of the hardware dongles, so once they are detected, any CVB licences that are on the dongle will be visible to CVB.

I hope that helps (I also hope that is the issue…)


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That sounds useful. I will investigate.

Thank you for the quick answer.

That worked, thank you!

Allow me to add a few (admittedly only semi-interesting) details to the discussion… :wink:

The issue that @LincolnshirePoacher describes seems to match something that WIBU Systems introduced with the 5.x CodeMeter runtime versions. Originally the WIBU CodeMeter dongle always mimicked as a mass storage device: If you plugged one of them in it would take a few seconds and a new drive named “CodeMeter” appeared in the Windows Explorer (or whatever other file browser you are using) under the next available drive letter. In the case of the :cvb: dongles this drive invariable has 0 bytes free memory, but if you enable the display of hidden and system files you can actually see pseudo file system entries behind which the IC with the license information listens and responds to the queries of the CodeMeter runtime.

This system of the dongle doubling as a regular USB flash drive is very elegant in that it does - unlike previously used devices - not require a system driver to be installed on the machine, making the installation less intrusive and easier to author. However, the mass storage device can have undesirable side effects: Some versions of Windows repeatedly pop up a low disc space warning when a CodeMeter dongle with 0 bytes free is attached, and on some versions of Windows 7 the presence of a CodeMeter dongle with 0 bytes free can disrupt the operation of the system’s trashcan (to be more precise: The trashcan continues to work, but the contents are no longer visible).

(Click arrow to see a remedy for these issues)

Both issues are fixable:

  • To get rid of the low disk space warnings, you can modify the behavior of the CodeMeter dongle so that it presents itself to the operating system as a removable disc (for which the low disc space warning will not be shown). To do that, you will need to know the serial number of the dongle - this is not the CVB serial number, but the one lasered on the USB plug and visible in the CodeMeter Control Center. These numbers have the format 2-xxxxxxx or 3-xxxxxxx. Once you know the serial number of your dongle, open a CodeMeter Command Prompt from your start menu and enter the command

    cmu32 -s 2-xxxxxxx --set-config-disk RemovableDisk

    where xxxxxxx needs to be replaced with the proper serial number. After that you should not be bothered any more by warnings about this particular dongle.

  • The trashcan issues should also be resolved by switching to removable disc mode, however Microsoft also provides a patch for Windows 7 that fixes this bug:

I guess because of these issues, WIBU systems implemented a new approach, the HID or _h_uman _i_nterface _d_evice mode in which the CodeMeter dongle acts as a human interface device (like mouse or keyboard). This preserves the advantage of not having to work with a dongle-specific system driver and eliminates the side-effects of the mass storage device mode (however some virus scanners are wary about previously unknown input devices due to the inherent malicious potential).

Around 2015, well into the 2-xxxxxxx serial number range, WIBU Systems started shipping their dongles with the communication mode set to “HID” by default. This unilateral measure rendered the :cvb: versions that were shipped with 4.xx runtime versions unable to communicate with the dongle, very much like you, @LincolnshirePoacher, described. Therefore, starting in August 2015 Stemmer Imaging modified their processes such that all the shipped dongles are now switched back to mass storage device mode prior to shipping so that users of the version ranges are still able to use the dongles out of the box.

My guess is, that for reasons unknown to me you may have ended up having a dongle that is - unintentionally - still using HID communication mode, and that you are trying to use it with a :cvb: version that is based on the 4.xx runtimes (basically all versions of :cvb:). You can easily verify this: Open a CodeMeter Command prompt

and enter the command

cmu32 --serial 3-xxxxxxx --show-config-disk

(of course xxxxxxx will need to be replaced with the proper serial number of your dongle which you can read from the engravings on the USB plug). For a dongle that is using HID mode, the output will look like this:

If your stick is indeed configured for HID communication mode, this command line will switch it to mass storage device mode:

cmu32 --serial 3-xxxxxxx --set-config-disk MsdCommunication

If the change was successful, cmu32 --serial 3-xxxxxxx --show-config-disk will output something like this:

Another possibility to get a HID-configured dongle to cooperate with older versions of :cvb: is to simply install a newer build of the CodeMeter runtime over the one that came with your version of :cvb:. I consider this to only be the 2nd best solution (but that’s just my opinion) because the release tests also cover the cooperation between :cvb: and the CodeMeter runtime, and by installing a newer CodeMeter runtime over and older :cvb: version you are bringing components together that were never tested together. But in principle one should be able to simply download and install the latest build of the CodeMeter runtime from WIBU System’s download page.