I can understand that VirtualAcorn uses a copy protection, but the way it is done was the main reason for me to NOT buy this product. Since I publishin the German RISC OS magazine GAG-News I was inclinde to buy it (in addition to my IYONIX pc) but thanks to VirtualAcorn's copy protection policy I saved quite some money. If at least VirtualRPC would run for some 14 days after installation so that I can use it if I run into one of the aforementioned problems on a week end, get it for x-mas ... it would make things better but by now it's for sure that I'll not buy and product needing that kind of registration before being able to use it.
For registration lots of more user friendly solutions are out there. And if you want to force it linked to hardware then do it like it is for some product I have on Windows: Installation works and then I have a 3 week free use. In that period I register online and get an online-key which I put into the software to remove the time limit. The software expects to be able to connect for key validation every so often (with inernet access there no problem, for other users offline-keys are offered). When I move to different hardware my key is invalid ... but I can install, have the 3 weeks again and can reregister online at ease (or ask for a new offline-key).
I don't want to say that VirtualAcorn is't trying to be quick in furnishing activation keys - the problem is due to the fact that the chance that no one is in at VirtualAcorn (week end, holidays, ...) coupled with the fact that unregistered VirtualRPC won't run at all.