Running FRED in the Cloud

It is possible to run FRED on cloud virtual machines (VM's) offered by vendors such as Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS), and this offers an inexpensive way to access greater computational power for raytracing calculations.

The same windows operating system (OS) requirements also apply to cloud machines. Due to the way OS licensing works in the cloud, it is common to set up Windows VM's with Windows Server and FRED runs fine on this OS. Once the VM is running in the cloud the same installation guides as found elsewhere in these articles can be followed to install FRED and the licensing protection software, the final step is to make the license available to the cloud VM.

Using Softkeys with Cloud VM's

Using softkeys is the easiest and most natural approach for licensing cloud VM's as the softkey license can be rehosted to the VM. One word of caution is that it is possible to lose softkey licenses on cloud machines unless care is taken, as cloud VM's can be destroyed, or access details lost, before the license is rehosted back to a local machine.

For those with Network Softkey licenses a safer option is to temporarily detach a license, this is also possible even with single seat network licenses although it may be necessary to update the licensing configuration setting in the detachable licenses area of the Sentinel Admin Control Center (ACC) to reduce the reserved licenses to zero.

Using USB / Hardkeys with Cloud VM's

Using USB / Hardkeys with cloud VM's is generally not directly possible because typically you will not have access to the underlying host machine of the VM to plug the USB key into it.

One option to step around this issue is to add a USB sharing device to your network... several vendors offer these solutions, such as USB Over Network, AnywhereUSB, Flexihub, Net USB, and VirtualHere (note we are not endorsing any of these products), which will need to be configured to be visible to the cloud VM over a VPN. Once set-up correctly the USB key can be plugged into the USB sharing device and will be visible to the cloud VM. This type of configuration will most likely need support from your IT department and is not something Photon Engineering can provide support for.

Alternatively, it is possible to trade in a USB / Hardkey for a softkey and enquires to do this should be directed to

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