The Licensing and Activation Community has merged with the Cloud and Web Services Community. Read more here.
I am sure most of you are aware and most likely have used Temporary Site Activation Keys. They allow for you to sub-divide your sites' license pool for distribution to contractors, departments, divisions or any group you deem fit. Whilst this technology provides this ability, it falls short of providing reporting against the sub-division.
This is where Custom Activation Groups differ from Temporary Site Activation Keys. Once set up and the Custom Activation Group keys distributed, the administrator can report on usage reported to the Custom Activation Group. The possibilities are as vivid as the imagination of the organization of your company; project-based, departmental-based or even combinations thereof. The bottom line is your organization is no longer limited to reporting by a site defined by Bentley. However, the reports that are sent back to Bentley are still site-based. That is important for two reasons; 1. The reports for Bentley sites and Custom Activation Groups are separate in the interface so the two are not confused; 2. No intervention from Bentley required. The Custom Activation groups can be as fluid as your company requires. They may even be archived so they will no longer accept usage, but will still show up in reports.
By design, the creation and administration of Custom Activation Groups is almost identical to that of Temporary Site Activation Keys. Start by picking a site to create the key against, give it a name, expiration date (or set it to automatically renew with your contract) and restrict products as necessary. Really the only difference is the automatic renewing key. ...Actually, not anymore; we added that to Temporary Activation Keys too.
So set a few up, try them out and let us know what you think and how we can improve them!!!
There is no expiration date setting for Custom Activation groups. There is an enabled/disabled state so you can prevent users from using the group any more. For example if you are using a Custom Activation Group to track the usage of applications on a given project, you might choose to disable the group when the project is over. Disabled groups will still show up in Reports but won't be avaliable for product activation.
Note: If you delete a Custom Activation Group that has had usage recorded against it. Those usages will no longer show up in the reports.