License Troubleshooting

PSPDFKit for Web is a commercial SDK and requires a license to work. We issue one license per explicit domain. Contact if you have any questions related to your license.

Domain Registration and Subdomain Use

The domain you register must completely match the domain where the SDK is used, including any subdomains.

Example: You register but then use In this case, the license will not work.
Fix: Register instead.

Example: You register and access a PDF via This is correct, since the domain and subdomain match. The path — yutani/overview — is not relevant for licensing.

Example: You register and show documents via This is incorrect, since the subdomains don’t match (pdf vs viewer).
Fix: Register instead.

Example: Your production domain is but you are developing via The production license will not work on the development domain, as the domain does not match.
Fix: Register an additional developer license via our Customer Portal for the domain to run the dev instance.

License Types

PSPDFKit for Web can be used and licensed in two variants: Standalone- or Server-based deployment. Licensing is different depending on your choice.

Standalone Deployment (WebAssembly)

Standalone deployment uses a license key, which is passed as part of the PSPDFKit.load() call:

// Activate PSPDFKit for
  licenseKey: 'nX5NbnzGFzYhuWTje1LqC8hWYX1jP_WAqka-8-QcLZgcng4Je_N5got-bmUwN4iUsNIG1npc-HoH44LKxuQySy6P9JokAL0atlESXg8Xcs7fu7kCycgT64ehcgvSUmJpfSOXEs-4qtXWJe_wFPy8k1UI7iPFpMZohIlcGf5QufmFC9u-7fJXIfgihjDsqI7nHzFEjbIJ65k7c8xBb8dE_HhxMupbX-FwX4eKI7LwmR_imk5mPyyI18gRZi5ZSBjkWwAEcV4uKl5WorX4xCpiupXiK6C4-xboonMh_J421qGP7Hg5_4lVnUY08sTLzQMVh-JvPdbBT77mLhn-lBmtel2yAwpYk7zX7TrelRBK6Uj5YpjMpGfcv257WmfQvBYzUo7NsU7P1RQWN7jr8v64irZQ89DdDq6UkMhPnlF-zok16rIcVyY6R5qGBDBMItwAs1yr8DSVtmNeqy8ito7FYDH-j1C_bs-v4LEowKoUB-w60IUjHcmTGh1cNKRTAj4iWY03CpeYJPNc9mnygMJ7Fsk9hg==',

To get a domain license key, register your domain on our Customer Portal with the credentials you received from our sales team.

If you see an error, please check in the JavaScript Console for errors. (If you use Safari, use the Inspector.)

The most likely issues are a copy/paste issue where characters are missing or using a key that does not match your domain.

Learn more about Standalone licensing here.

Server-Based Deployment (Docker)

Server-based deployment uses an activation key rather than a license key. This key is passed as an environment variable for the Server container.

For example, if you’re using Docker Compose, you can add the activation key to docker-compose.yml:

    image: pspdfkit/pspdfkit
      ACTIVATION_KEY: obiWMzt3XouUsAiwyWGSrC7RMdSv5hME

To get a product key, register your domain on our Customer Portal with the credentials you received from our sales team.

The activation key is stored in the connected PostgreSQL database. If you accidentally purge the database, you need to contact to ask us to delete the current installation so that you can activate the new server installation. Once activated, you can no longer change the production key.

You should see the activation key only once: when you choose to activate a new installation via the Activate… button.

Once your installation is activated, the activation key is no longer valid, and you won’t see it in the customer portal again.

Learn more in our step-by-step guide to product activation.

Error and Warning Messages

This section covers the error and warning messages you might receive, what they mean, and how to fix them.

Feature Missing

When you see the red warning message, open the JavaScript Console to see the error details.

PSPDFKitError: Instant feature is not enabled on this server. please set instant to false

This occurs because you’re trying to connect the PSPDFKit for Web JavaScript library to a server with a feature that is not included in your license.

Fix: Set the instant option to false in PSPDFKit.load() or add the Instant feature to your license.

Domain Mismatch (Standalone)

PSPDFKit Licensing Issue: Your license has been registered for a different bundle identifier: “” - not “”. Each PSPDFKit license is only valid for one explicit bundle ID and one distribution method (Enterprise or public App Store). Please contact sales at with your requirements for a new license

If you see this message, the domain you registered in the Customer Portal does not match the domain where PSPDFKit for Web (Standalone) is used. We use the origin domain to check. This is the domain your website is served from (the domain you see in the browser).

Domain Mismatch (Server)

An error occurred while connecting to PSPDFKit Server: PSPDFKit Server is not licensed from the origin

This error is displayed when the domain registered in your license is different than the domain visible in the web browser displaying the page that loads the PSPDFKit for Web viewer.

License Expired (Server)

Invalid license key. Failed to activate PSPDFKit for ‘com.pspdfkit.cli’. Error: The PSPDFKit binary (CLI) is too new for your license. Your license is valid for binaries compiled until 2020-03-24. (Framework Date: 2020-04-28) Contact with your current license details to extend your support/update period.

This error pops up when your PSPDFKit Server license has expired. Please reach out to to renew your license.

Unknown Activation Key (Server)

[error] 2020-05-25 10:43:10.596 Activation failed: Unknown activation key. Please contact with your activation key “

This error means the activation key you used is invalid. Make sure you copy it correctly from the Customer Portal and that you’re not using the activation key for a deleted installation.

This error also happens if the ACTIVATION_KEY environment variable wasn’t passed to the Server container correctly. Refer to our deployment guides to see how to deploy Server with major cloud infrastructure providers.

Invalid Activation Key (Server)

[error] 2020-05-14 10:10:00.1111 Activation failed: Unknown activation key. Please contact with your activation key “fAXSOwWavLxrHZ5_SxydE3jvHv7QZh3C0E485abMDDEGKjswWuzE9gAZLCX4tvhF3oPKyiGBQsXwDta30c-WJkSknOzi4EuS4RiYlA33Z3gybqlC4dggUwrXA-SRDChuLxSvcYnCtAbVWEtbNWnQX5pOyr_9vkVRaNau2M3H_IiXJ-P5Ml9UYUNPMQggeMImrddGxksgqrFw3Rav0RCSwkNVpuRd6Yf6NgkXMRKlTG_CjGe9L9D8cunIn-bQ4u0gD-AZBJfN_MimNZplNtC0uSDMhWa9l3md47dHZ7SeWhpJcVJfZE9ujFRu81q65U3vi10qZDvvXxiwLeR1_DLEib1QeXicKClC2djDCQLyaTj5fFMyRC173AV1ZFHJ1T23NHCCsLKFZ091cMCOtrVdqMw4_EKYNSd8a84HNgj_Zx2EF5ysMyGkkJmc3KMqI_CZDOYuMUVuWcVof_qWmTL537Hn59z0d77OPwUEcPUPibvYC_WJFNa2AdlgKmSqlmgQExYzpZB9RpgKg==”

This error means you are accidentally using the license key — not the activation key — to activate PSPDFKit for Web. The Server-based version requires an activation key:

  1. From your customer portal, you can find a section called Server Installations.
  2. For production, you should activate a Production key using the Activate… > Production dropdown option.
  3. From there, you can pass the activation key to the ACTIVATION_KEY environment variable for the Server container (in docker-compose.yml or another configuration file).

Already Activated Installation (Server)

[error] 2020-05-25 10:23:18.258 A new activation key was found, but changing the license is not allowed because the currently active license is a production license and can only be activated once. The server will be started the with the already activated license.

This error message indicates that the server was started with a different production activation key before.

If you use multiple nodes, make sure to use the same activation key as you do for the first node.

If you need to change the activation key for this server installation (e.g. because you used an activation key from a different installation by mistake), you will need to reset the license information stored in the Postgres database. Please contact us via and mention this guide article, as we will need to delete your installation in the Customer Portal. Then follow these steps:

  1. Stop (shut down) your server.
  2. Make a backup of the PostgreSQL database.
  3. Connect to your PostgreSQL database instance and run the SQL statement DELETE * from apps;. This will only delete data from the license-specific apps table in the database and leave all your document data intact.
  4. Start the server with the new activation key.

If you are evaluating, open the Example Projects guide, where you should see a yellow box with an activation key and a future expiration date. Update your environment configuration and set ACTIVATION_KEY to the new trial key shown in the step above. Empty PostgreSQL or perform the above steps to apply the new key.

Additional Help

Please look through our general Troubleshooting section for non-license-related issues (e.g. incorrect response MIME type).