At the company I work for, we plan to build an appliance to simplify the deployment of our products. We will probably run a VM with docker containers underneath (containing the products) and a web application to manage those (run them, stop them, etc).
But, on top of that, we also need to have some level of security, concerning unauthorized copies. We need some way to prevent (or at least make it hard) for someone to clone the virtual machine somewhere else and use the appliance for free.
In other words, we need the most portability we can get, but we need this portability to be restricted to our manipulation only. Is there some fancy techniques or a standard that we could use? Is there a established way to provide this kind of protection?