The Robot licensing was changed in 2018.1 version and a new Robot type was added. I hope this topic will shed some light onto these changes.
Now, when we refer to the Development robot, we are speaking about the Robot on the machine where Studio is installed, named from here on the Local Robot. From the 2018.1 version, you can only Debug in Studio if the Robot on that machine is licensed as a Development type Robot.
The Development Robot type allows you to license Studio through Orchestrator.
If you connect the Local Robot to Orchestrator, when you open Studio it will be already licensed (the pop-up that enables you to choose Start free/Activate license will not be displayed anymore). Also, in the lower part of the Robot tray you will see the confirmation message: “Connected, licensed”, as shown in the screenshot below:
If you previously activated Studio license locally (through the Activate license wizard) and then you connect the Local Robot to Orchestrator as a Development type Robot, it overwrites the local license. The correct expiration date is the one from the Settings > License tab in Orchestrator. A known issue here is that in the Studio > Help section, the displayed expiration date is the one corresponding to the local license, not the one from Orchestrator.
If you disconnect the Local Robot from Orchestrator, Studio will then pass to the local license - if it was activated before, if not it will ask for a license key.
If you upgraded from 2017.1 to 2018.1, the Local Robot is connected to Orchestrator as a Non-Production Robot and you try to run an automation project in debug mode from Studio, the following error might occur:
“Cannot start a job in ‘debug’ mode for a non-development robot”. The workaround is to stop the Robot service before starting the debug and restart it when you have to run the process. This is a temporary solution so please contact our support team to make the necessary changes in the license so you don’t encounter the issue anymore. You can find more details about the error in this post:
Here are the up-to-date user guide links regarding the Development Robot: