The company was founded in Vienna in October 2000 by Herbert Tucmandl. In the 1990s, Tucmandl, a former cellist, later cameraman, director and composer used some of the available first-generation sample libraries for the creation of his own film scores. He was unsatisfied with the sonic results of those products, so Tucmandl began to develop a concept for a more realistic sounding orchestral sample library. He realized that note transitions (e.g., legato) and multiple note repetitions were also needed to enhance playability.
The ViennaKey is a USB protection device by eLicenser that is required to run any Vienna Symphonic Library product. It is not included in any library or software product but has to be purchased separately.