License Recovery

Applies to TestComplete 15.64, last modified on May 16, 2024

This page refers to key-based licenses — a legacy license type used in TestComplete until version 15.48. For information on the current, ID-based license type, see SmartBear ID-based Licenses.

License recovery helps you if your License Manager PC is non-functional. This topic provides step-by-step information on the recovery process.

When License Recovery Is Needed

The License Recovery wizard helps you fix issues with licenses that occur for one of the following reasons:

  • The licensing subsystem has detected changes in the computer’s hardware configuration.

    A TestComplete license is bound to the hardware (motherboard and hard disk) of the computer where you activate this license. If the license-critical hardware changes, the license becomes unavailable.

    The License Recovery wizard binds the license to the new hardware.

  • You run TestComplete on a virtual machine, and you cloned this virtual machine or moved it to another physical PC.

    When you activate a TestComplete license on a virtual machine, the license is bound to the physical computer where this virtual machine is running. If you move the virtual machine to another physical PC, the license-critical hardware parameters change and the license becomes unavailable. The same happens if you change a hard disk or the motherboard of the physical computer where the virtual machine runs.

    Use the TestComplete License Recovery wizard to “bind” the license to the new physical PC.

  • The License Manager PC is non-functional, because it was damaged, burned down or stolen.

    Since each TestComplete license is bound to the hardware of the computer on which you activated it, you lose the license if this computer or its license-critical hardware is not available to you or does not function.

    Use the License Recovery wizard to activate the license on a new computer or bind it to new hardware.

Specifics and Requirements

  • License recovery does not work for time-limited and trial licenses.

  • You can recover a license only twice.

  • To recover a license, you need a functioning Internet connection on your computer.

    The network security settings should allow connecting to the SmartBear licensing web server (, port 443).

    If you do not have a functioning Internet connection on your computer, see below.

  • The restored license will be bound to your computer.

  • Do not recover a license if it is active on some other computer. Doing this will cause an unpredictable product behavior on both machines.

License Recovery Steps

  1. Install TestComplete and launch it.

    TestComplete will search for an active license on start. If the license is not found, it will display a message box warning you about the problem.

  2. In the message box, choose to restore (rebind) the license. This will invoke the License Recovery wizard.

  3. On the first page of the wizard, you specify your user name, company, email and the license key of the lost license.

    We recommend entering your user name, company and email, not those of the license holder.

    You can find the license key in the email message that you received from SmartBear after purchasing the license, or in the My SmartBear web portal (

    Click Next to continue.

  4. On the next page, enter proxy authentication settings, if needed.

    In most cases, you do not have to enter anything. If you are not sure, please consult with your system administrator.

  5. Click Restore. The wizard will attempt to restore your license. If the license has been restored successfully, the wizard activates it and binds it to your computer.


TestComplete will display a message notifying you about the recovery result.

Below are typical causes of errors:

  • You misprinted the lost license key. Please make sure that you have typed the key correctly. You can find it in the email that you received from SmartBear after purchasing the license, or in the My SmartBear portal (

  • You do not have a functioning Internet connection, or the firewall or proxy running in your system blocks access to the SmartBear licensing server (, port 443). Change the firewall or proxy settings. Ask your system administrator for help, if needed.

  • You are trying to restore a time-limited or trial license. This cannot be done.

  • You have exceeded the number of available recoveries.

  • The license that you are trying to restore has already been restored on another computer. If the license is unavailable on that computer as well, you need to specify its key, rather than the original license key.

If License Recovery Does Not Help...

If the wizard is unable to restore your license, or if you cannot use the wizard for some reason, contact the SmartBear Sales Team, they will help you resolve the problem. In the meantime, try using emergency license keys. They let you use the product for 14 days, which may help you avoid interruption of your business processes.

See Also

Emergency License Keys
Getting Help With Licenses

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