Common Licensing Errors with NI Vision Software

Updated Aug 1, 2023

Reported In


  • Vision Development Module
  • Vision Assistant


  • Vision Acquisition Software
  • NI-IMAQdx

Issue Details

  • I am receiving multiple errors when I try to run my Vision VI or executable that indicate a software licensing problem. What do these errors mean and how can I resolve them? 
  • I am receiving errors when trying to activate the Vision Development Module Runtime Engine and I have the development environment already installed on the computer. 


The following are some common errors that can arise if NI Vision products are not activated correctly:

Missing DLL Error

One error that could arise is that your executable, when run, will complain about a missing DLL file. This error is usually the result of not having the NI Vision Runtime Engine installed.
To check whether the run-time engine is installed:
  1. Go into Control Panel»Add/Remove Programs»National Instruments Software.
  2. Look through the installed programs and verify the presence of an entry like NI Vision Runtime XX.
Note: Missing DLL errors can also indicate that the Vision Acquisition Software (VAS) drivers are not installed.

Invalid License Error

This error can occur if you have both the Vision Development Module (VDM) and the VDM Run-Time Engine (RTE) installed, but VDM is not activated. To resolve this error activate or uninstall VDM.
Note: The VDM RTE does not require activation on computers with VDM activated. However, if VDM is installed but not activated, executables using VDM VIs or functions will not execute and will give an invalid license error even if VDM RTE is activated. If VDM is installed, the NI Vision software only confirms that VDM is activated and does not check the status of VDM RTE.

Unlicensed Copy Error

The following error message only may arise when you have not properly installed the Vision Development Module Run-Time Engine on the target machine.

This unlicensed copy of Vision may be used for demonstration purposes.

To solve this problem, try the following:
  • Manually run the Vision Run-Time Engine installer on the target machine (for example visionXXrte.exe for Vision Development Module X.X, where XX is the version of the Vision Development Module) and the error message should go away.
    • For Vision 8.0 and later, you can include the Vision Development Module Run-Time Engine in your LabVIEW installer. Additionally, ensure that if you are using VIs from the Vision Development Module that you have the Vision Development Module Run-Time Engine, not just Vision Acquisition Software.

Technical Problem During Activation

If you see an error message similar to the following when activating using your serial number, try going to and generating an activation code, and then activating using that code.

Error Message
We have encountered a technical problem.
Please try again later or contact us for assistance.