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Activation error on production server - FIPS compliance

We have thoroughly studied the problem and here are our conclusions.

  1. We can’t move from MD5 to another FIPS-complaint hash algorithm because the PDF standard relies on MD5 with no alternative.
  2. Replacing .NET implementation (System.Security.Cryptography.MD5) with any other implementation in plain source code is not a solution, as it will be even less FIPS-compliant.

Workable solutions:

  1. Move your project to .NET Framework 4.8 that uses relaxed policy and will not through an exception in FIPS environment.
  2. Add UseLegacyFipsThrow switch to your application config file. It will disable the exception:
<configuration>
 <runtime>
    <AppContextSwitchOverrides value="Switch.System.Security.Cryptography.UseLegacyFipsThrow=false" />
  </runtime>
</configuration>

Please check this related Microsoft article: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dotnet/framework/migration-guide/retargeting/4.7.2-4.8

To get Activation.exe work on your server please email our support team.


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