As your software inventory increases, it becomes all the more important to prepare a proper record of all your software in one place.

If you have been buying software CDs for some time, you know how difficult it is to maintain a record of all those product license keys and serial numbers – they are printed on software boxes, inside email messages, at the back of CD jewel cases, while some software vendors provide registration details in loose paper that’s so easy to misplace.

As your software inventory increases, it becomes all the more important to prepare a proper record of all your software in one place. It need not be an Excel spreadsheet here are some alternatives: ? Belarc Advisor is a free utility that creates a detailed profile of all software installed on your computer including their current version numbers and serial numbers that you entered while installing the software.

Belarc can even identify product keys for OEM software that came pre-installed with your desktop. ? When you purchase a software through a webstore (like eBay), always store a copy of the online receipt (that has the registration details) as digital image using the print screen or any screen capture program.

Adopt a standard naming convention for these images like Vendor_Software_Version (example: Symantec_Norton_360.jpg) – that makes it very easy to sort and locate software licenses in future – and since we are using real screen captures, the chances of making typo errors are almost null. ?

If the software key is printed on a physical medium like CD jewel case or paper, use your camera phone ora picture of the digital camera to capture license key and archive the picture adopting the same name convention as described above.

Finally, we have one file folder that stores all our software licenses in either text or image format. To backup all your license information, simply zip and archive this folder.