3 Authorizing Live

Live is protected against illegal use by a copy protection scheme. This scheme has been designed to meet the highest security standards while avoiding hassles for our customers. If you find this procedure to be an inconvenience, please understand that the copy protection secures your investment: It allows Ableton to provide you with support and to continue developing Live.

Please be aware that the standard Live license grants you the right to use Live on only one computer at a time. You can, however, authorize Live more than once under the legal and technical conditions described later (see ‘Copy Protection FAQs’).

The first time you run Live, you will be prompted to complete the authorization process. The software will walk you through the steps.

If the computer that you wish to authorize is connected to the internet, you can authorize immediately by pressing the appropriate button in the dialog box. If you do not have an internet connection, press the “No internet on this computer“ button and follow the instructions.

3.1 Copy Protection FAQs

3.1.1 Can I Use Live or Other Ableton Products Without a Serial Number?

If you do not (yet) own Live or its add-on products, you can still try them out, but saving and exporting will be disabled.

If trying Live or another product raises your interest in purchasing it, please visit the Ableton webshop (see https://www.ableton.com/shop/). This site contains information about Ableton’s distributor and dealer network. It also offers you the opportunity to buy Ableton products online.

3.1.2 What if I Change My Computer’s Components?

If you change your computer components for some reason, Live may indeed ask you to authorize the software another time. Live does not need to be reauthorized when computer peripherals are replaced (audio or MIDI hardware, printers, modems). But you may need to authorize again if the motherboard, processor or network card is replaced. On some computers, reformatting a hard drive will require a new authorization.

3.1.3 Can I Authorize Live More than Once?

The standard Live license allows you to use Live on only one computer at a time. However, the Ableton server will provide you with two authorizations in good faith that you will use Live on only one machine at a time.

You can therefore run Live on both a studio desktop computer and a tour laptop, but not at the same time.

Should the Ableton server reject your demand for another authorization, please contact Ableton’s technical support (see https://www.ableton.com/help/).

To use Live on more than one computer at a time, you may require a secondary license or a site license. Ableton offers these licenses at special rates.

3.1.4 Can I Play my Set from a Computer That Is Not Authorized?

Even if Live is not authorized, you can still load and perform a Live Set with no time limitation. You cannot, however, save or export your work. When you go on tour, consider taking along your Live USB installer and a backup of the last state of your Live Set(s). In case of an emergency, you can install and run Live on any computer available and play your backup Live Set(s).

3.1.5 What Do I Do About Problems or Questions Regarding Copy Protection?

Please visit Ableton’s technical support page.

Download Live 11 manual (PDF)

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