Abandon the USB dongle

I have a total of 4 USB slots on my computer. A separate slot should not be used on such an antiquated anti-piracy measure, nor should the user end be responsible for any anti-piracy measures of which the Steinberg corporation should wholeheartedly be responsible for. I’m not the first to say something about this. I won’t be the last to say something about this. There will probably be a slew of other users who post topics in a similar manner. But, as Steinberg has shown for quite a few years now, they are willing to ignore their userbase’s very simple request to aim towards an anti-piracy measure of which is less invasive and forceful upon the users.

I will be looking at competing products if this does not change in the future. To Steinberg, that’s going to be a minimal loss in comparison to what they will probably believe will be a mythical number of potential piracies which can only be speculated upon, but never actually measured in factual statistics. However, most every other audio software developer has found a way around this issue without being so disrespectful to its customer base, and doing so in a modern and less invasive fashion.

Please stop patronizing myself and other customers. It’s insulting.

This subject is getting really annoying. If you don’t like the dongle, you can change the DAW. There are enough other DAWs.

I also have a USB hub with eight ports on my computer and in one of them is the Steinberg dongle - it works great. The dongle is a simple and very good solution. Once the license on the dongle and you can use the software forever.

All other solutions are too complicated, especially if you have to set up the computer again and then activate all the licenses again.

The excuse that the dongle can break doesn’t count either, a hard disk can break just as well and then the licenses are gone.

The time and investment has already been made when I managed to get it within the budgetary constraints of which I did with my audio interface. I wish to be given convenient solutions to problems and not be told to “deal with it”.

Good for you and your USB hub; it’s a solution that works for you. Not others. But, that would be considered if you considered the possibility of a viewpoint which isn’t your own, wouldn’t it?

There is no solution which is “too complicated”, unless you’ve potentially thought out every solution. Furthermore, if you prefer to use the dongle in your device, then that is a solution which you should be allowed to deal with if you wish to. However, I’m saying that the mandatory usage of it, instead of using the software installer as a base, or some other measure of verification which does not require the end-user to take responsibility for the business’s shortcomings in a mythical problem is a ridiculous statement to have.

I wholeheartedly encourage you to remain annoyed as well; if I’m not the first to bring up that this is a problem, then it means that it just might be a problem for anyone bar the tech illiterate.

I do not know any complicated authorization process for any major DAW.

Studio One: Login to your account and done. Up to 5 authorizations. Your computer died? No problem you can de-authorize it from your account page.
Same with Bitwig
Ableton Live: Login and done up to 2 authorizations at the same time. Your computer died no problem just authorize the new one.
Logic: Apple App Store Account.

++++1 doubt this will happen but I support it… be great to not have to go around with a USB everywhere or worry about losing it and not being able to work…

If, when Cubase 11 arrives, it continues to require a hardware dongle then I’m afraid turning my back on Steinberg. I’ve used the programme for many years and I think it’s the best daw around for midi editing. However, I have a MacBook laptop and I have the dongle connected to it using a USB C adaptor and it sticks out the side of it like a sore thumb. It looks rediculous. Also, I’m having so many e-licenser error messages when starting the app up it’s becoming a joke. Oh, and sometimes Cubase Artist starts up instead of Pro 10.5. It’s such a pain.

I had a look at Logic Pro today to see what I’m missing. No dongle and wow, the app starts up at lightning speed, and I think I’ve found a way of editing multiple midi controller data easily which I thought I couldn’t do. I’ve always enjoyed the way Cubase allows you to have multiple controller lanes. Maybe Logic is the way forward now. Fingers crossed for Cubase 11.



A producer’s lifestyle today is much different from what it used to be.
Last year I made a client very unhappy because I couldn’t work on a song real quick, reason being the dongle was in London and I was on tour in French Guiana. I am not bringing the stupid dongle on a two week long trip “just in case”
I also made another client unhappy because they needed a super quick correction on a Dorico score, which I could easily have done on the tube with my laptop literally thirty seconds after she asked, but I didn’t have the dongle on me because my day was block booked for a rehearsal.
Clients don’t care about Steinberg’s policies. they want a job well done and ASAP.
If you feel like the dongle is the bomb, more power to you. I would like to have an alternative way to authorise Steinberg’s products that’s hardware free
I’ll wait for Cubase 11 and if they don’t take action in that direction, I’ll find another DAW and it’d be a shame because I really like Cubase

You’re going to turn your back on Steinberg because they don’t want to take a financial hit from piracy?

I’d rather get rid of the ‘get rid of the dongle threads’. It really is getting boring and the excuses for getting rid of the dongle are as limp as week old lettuce. There are advantages as well as disadvantages so work that out and if you are still not happy then go nyquist68’s route. Nothing worse than having your Macbook looking ridiculous, Steve Jobs will be spinning in his grave.

Agreed. The threads are getting tiresome. “The dongle was in x and I was in y, didn’t have it on me, the clients were unhappy etc” kind of sounds like your fault. They don’t care about Steinberg’s policies but they also probably don’t care about your excuses. If Cubase doesn’t suit your needs as a traveling producer then maybe it is not for you.



Sorry, I don’t understand this attitude. It’s not like Steinberg’s CEO is my dad.
Their policy gets in the way of my productivity and I am frustrated by it. Moreover, i don’t understand why this militant protectionism about the USB dongle.
If they ditch it tomorrow, what difference does it make to you? I am not trying to be confrontative: the lack of USB dongle would invite in a lot more people who are put off by it. It’s an archaic way of protecting your software.

you know what. you’re right. I’m done here

Nothing to do with protecting the dongle. I doubt if anyone here would be complaining about the dongle disappearing. “Please, please save the dongle” is never going to be heard anywhere.
This is all about the same threads over and over complaining about the dongle. It’s all so petty. My God!, imagine having to carry a tiny piece of plastic and metal about with you. Not enough pockets? Demand more pockets instead. Get the placards out.
If the dongle is such a pain for people the shouldn’t they be chucking their phones, cameras, watches, Fitbit’s or any other tech you carry about with you.
I’d rather get rid of phones myself but I’m not complaining about it. I might start though. get the placards out. Down with stuff! :wink:

I also don’t understand the backlash against requests to have a no-dongle option. The request is valid. Run Cubase on a modern laptop in a mobile environment and that’s where the concerns appear. The dongle could be snapped off, resulting in damage not only to the dongle, but also to the laptop itself.

And many modern laptops, including all Apples, do not have a single USB-A port, which is what the dongle uses. They have all moved on to USB-C, so an adapter or hub is required to even use the dongle at all. That makes it all the larger, hence making it all the more likely it will be inadvertently touched/hit in a mobile environment.

I don’t understand why there is angst against these requests. It’s entirely reasonable. Anybody setting out to make a new DAW today would not require a USB-A dongle. It is a legacy solution which does not fit today’s laptops. And the problem has been solved by all other DAWs and plugins in the form of software based authorization.

You don’t get the attitude that I like Steinberg and want them to do well? Am I suppose to dislike them and want them to lose money because they are a company with a CEO?

People think these companies can just flip a switch and have their entire structure changed overnight, software re-codded, new server system, new user database systems, etc, etc. The dongle saved the company from bankruptcy, and there’s still no better method of anti-piracy for a user marker who of whom many keep their computer unplugged from the internet.

But, they could make Elements non-dongle or something, so people can demo.

Elements does not require a dongle.

Well, there you go!