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Maretron N2KView licensing
I'm building up quite the N2K network for my electronics refit on the Christina B (OK, maybe it pales in comparison to some other installations, but it's an undertaking for me).... hardware from Chetco, Yacht Devices, Martron, Lowrance, Garmin, and many others.
I've stumbled upon a bit of an issue, and I'm hoping the seasoned veterans here might have some insight or suggestions.
I like my Maretron hardware (IPG100) and so far it is serving me well. I like N2KView also, although I think there are a LOT of opportunities for improvement. I have it running on a TSM800C (Maretron/Carling), a Hatteland "all in one" 15" touch screen PC, my HP Spectre, and the lower helm dedicated PC driving a 49" curved "glass helm" monitor.... and my iPad.
My primary issue has to do with the licensing model. You can run it on your mobile device "for free" (yay!), and on your other devices for about $1000 a seat (Yikes! But it is what it is...). I have ONE floating license/seat on my USP dongle that is plugged into the IPG100. The problem comes when I want to add additional seats. Maretron no longer supports adding seats to an existing dongle.. so that obvious solution is *out*. Their recommendation is to buy another dongle for each seat that I want to add, and plug that dongle(s) into one or more of my PC-based units on the boat. In order to make this work, I will need to run the N2KServer service/app on those PC's. BUT... as near as I can tell, the N2KServer service/app eats up about 20-30% of the CPU on those units when it is running... making them somewhat lethargic. It seems outrageous that the server app would require those kind of resources... but I have checked this on my machines running both Windows 7 (64 bit) and Windows 10 (64 bit) and that's what I'm seeing.
I don't know if I can plug a simple USB hub into the IPG100 with two dongles and have it recognize both. If I wanted to run a $1000 experiment and test, I guess I could buy another license.. !! I'd like to avoid that if there are other options that I haven't considered.
Anybody have any input on this?