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Guardant Sign
A family of classic hardware keys for licensing and protection of software in Windows, Linux and macOS operating systems.
List of solutions,
that include the product
Desktop and server software
1C configurations
Protection of software from reverse engineering
Software sales management
Prevents unauthorized reading/modification
of license, debugging and analysis of the logic of the key
at the hardware level
update mechanism
Allows to update a license key remotely without the possibility of substituting license parameters
exchange protocol
Uses encryption based on unique session keys when transferring data between the application and the hardware key
on request
The basic model in the classic form factor.
Sign micro
on request
A model in a miniature form factor for use on laptops and tablets
Memory stick
Sign SD
on request
A model with a removable microSD flash card for software distribution
on request
A model with a battery to limit the software operating time
Work online
Time Net
on request
A model with a battery to protect network software and limit its operation time
Key operation scheme

Application protection scheme

The final application protection scheme depends on the specific task. However, the basic principle can be represented as follows:

  • The application is "linked" to the license using automatic security tools or a special API;
  • The license is securely stored in the key memory;
  • During operation, the protected application constantly exchanges information with the key. If the key is missing or includes unsuitable or expired license, then the software does not work.

Thus, copying a protected program makes no sense, since without a key it becomes inoperable.

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Principle of network protection

The mechanism for protecting and licensing applications in the network is as follows:

  • A special intermediary program, the Guardant network license manager, is installed on a dedicated server or workstation;
  • A network hardware key is installed on the same server or station;
  • The application is protected either with the help of automatic protection tools or with the help of the Guardant Licensing API;
  • The license manager and the key will strictly control the number of connections according to the licenses programmed by the developer.

Data protection in the network protocol is carried out at the hardware level, that is, it is encrypted on session keys generated between the protected application and the electronic key without any intermediaries.

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Licensing models
Number of launches/uses
Limitation on functions/modules
Number of network (competitive) licenses with counting copies of the program / workstations/ connections
for "Net" models
Limitation of operation time
for "Time" models
Security mechanisms
Unique Key ID
in the key memory and on the case
Symmetric AES-128 encryption
Digital signature on ECC160 elliptic curves
Tunnel encryption of exchange protocol traffic
Operating mode
Supported Drivers
WinUSB, HID, Guardant driver
Supported OS
  • x86 and x64 versions of Windows XP and above
  • x86 and x86_64 versions of Linux
  • macOS
USB interface
1.1 and above
Protected memory for licenses
57 Kbytes
Independent flash memory
up to 64 GB in "Sign SD" models
Data storage period (protected memory / flash)
10 years
Number of rewrite cycles (protected memory / flash)
at least 1,000,000
Real-time clock
for "Time" models
Average battery life
5 years
Clock error
up to 15 minutes per year
3 years
1 year
Independent flash memory
1 year
Physical characteristics
Case color (standard)
  • green for Sign models
  • black with green inclusion for Sign micro models
  • blue for Time models
Key size
  • Full-size models 47x16x8 mm
  • "Sign micro" model 18x16x6 mm
Key weight
  • Full-size models 6.3 gr.
  • "Sign micro" model 4 gr.
Air temperature during storage/transportation
from -40 to + 70 °C,
for "Time" models from +0 to +45 °C
Air temperature during key operation
from +0 to +45 °C
Relative humidity of the air
from 0 to 100% non-condensing

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