Why are serial numbers tied to names?

Discussion in 'Indie Basics' started by Sybixsus, Mar 2, 2005.

  1. Sybixsus

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    Just curious really. Most of the indie games I've tried or bought that used serial numbers seem to tie it to the customer name. I just wondered why you would tie it to the name ( which is admittedly *fairly* unique ) as opposed to an email address, which is completely unique.
     
  2. ggambett

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    Maybe it's easier to supply a fake email address or a mailinator address than supplying a false credit card name and have the transaction approved. Just guessing, honestly I don't know.
     
  3. mahlzeit

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    To deter people from spreading the serial number: it's easy to break the law when you're anonymous, but when your name is all over it you'll think twice. Of course, this doesn't stop people to steal credit card numbers or to use fake names like "Team WeCraxoredYou".
     
  4. Sybixsus

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    I'm not sure I follow why Bill Smith xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxxx-xxxxx is any more of a deterrent than Bill.Smith@shaw.ca xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx. In fact, I would have thought having anyone who downloads the crack able to email you would be more of one.



    I wondered about that. If they're getting the key via email, though, it would have to be genuine, though it needn't be a long term email address.

    I was just thinking about it in general and thought it would be easier to track the customer who's key was leaked by the email address than by their name. No big deal either way, I suppose.
     
  5. luggage

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    Because Bill.Smith@shaw.ca could just by mytempemail@hotmail.com. Whereas the name Bill Smith is tied to the credit card and can't be faked (apart from using a fake credit or stolen credit card)
     
  6. Sybixsus

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    Yes, I mentioned that elsewhere in the same reply. I don't allow purchases through free email accounts though, so this is less of an issue.
     
  7. JPGinLA

    JPGinLA New Member

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    We do it so the serial number causes the name to be really big on the start screen with the idea that no one wants someone else's name in big print on the start screen of their game.

    -JPG
     
  8. PoV

    PoV
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    I've got to admit that's an interesting idea (e-mail + code). Given that I go by "Mike" though my legal name is "Michael", the whole relating it back to a credit card number doesn't exactly work for me, where as the e-mail would be the perfect link. Given that we didn't all used to have the convienience of an e-mail address when people started using keycodes, today is another story. Nice.

    Though, I do have a bit of an issue with a similar setup, my old e-mail address was associated with my previous UltraEdit registration, and the old adress used to be required to get an upgrade. Though they've aparently fixed their upgrade process so if I can just find my old codes, I can now upgrade. Sweet.
     
    #8 PoV, Mar 3, 2005
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2005
  9. oNyx

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    It's a psychological thing. It's more personal. It's your name and not one of your email addresses.

    It's also easier for the customer, because they only have one name. Heh. Imagine you want to unlock a product you bought some years ago... duh... which email adress did you use? There is no trial'n'error with your name ;)
     
  10. Sybixsus

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    Good point. I was looking at it purely from the stolen keys side of things. I register all my software with one or two addresses, but I'm quite sure others are using many more addresses, changing addresses, etc, so it could well be difficult to remember. Certainly it wouldn't be hard to look up their details and resend the key, but I know I don't like having to "beg" ( which is how it feels ) for a new key from the developer. Names are probably more convenient for the legitimate user.
     
  11. BoX

    BoX
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    Serial number generator algorithms based on customer name are easier to reverse. I've seen plenty of games that simply hand you key generator if you just disassemble the exe file...

    I wouldn't recommend use of such algorithms.
     
  12. Sybixsus

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    I'm using a custom build of Armadillo Pro. Good luck to anyone wanting to disassemble that.
     

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