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Sign-Man Signs
10-28-2007, 09:24 AM
Spoke with the new rep from Flexi at the Orlando Show about having to move the dongle key from one computer to another. Apparently they have addressed the issue and if I heard right, you will now be able, with Flexi 8.5, to open your Flexi program from a stand alone computer connected to the internet, which will go directly to their web site and validate the registration. Hence no more moving the dongle key.
Our shop, we do not network our computers. Reason is simple, virus's that can kill a system. We do keep all of our computers connected to the internet. This new idea for Flexi sounds great to use and will keep us from moving the dongle key for each application. Hope it works!

bob
10-28-2007, 10:34 AM
Just as silly as the hasp key itself. My machines that are used to run Flexi are connected to each other but not the internet. This, for me, is as it should be.

I grow weary of software houses that expect me to alter my behavior to accommodate their paranoia.

Let the tsunami of rationalizations for this sort of behavior begin. A prize to any piece of tortured reasoning that I haven't heard before and the prize of all prizes to any that actually make sense.

GARY CULY
10-28-2007, 11:10 AM
im with bob on this one....no internet on my puters that run machines ..im not risking a virus meltdown or any other internet related problems here....bob speak truth ,,listen gang

Replicator
10-28-2007, 11:12 AM
I am a firm believer that if I spent $3-4000 dollars on a program,
then I own that program and should be able to use it in any way
that I see fit . . . With the exclusion of redistribution of course.

Lunatic Taskbar
10-28-2007, 11:49 AM
Flexi idea is great in theory... However if they happen them selfs to have a melt down or are compromised for what ever reason or even as simple as a power cut for a long period and their UPS's run down then how many shops will be unable to cut or print, due to the unavailability of their server to confirm that the program is legit!!! this would worry me immensely. And with over 20 years in an IT back ground, no shiny brochures, or false promises would entice me to go over to this way of working. No way!!! sorry just my 2c

Replicator
10-28-2007, 11:50 AM
Agree 110% Lunatic

Hope the reps are reading this thread . . . !

Lunatic Taskbar
10-28-2007, 12:16 PM
Agree 110% Lunatic

Hope the reps are reading this thread . . . !

Yup its got problems written all over it.

You have to ask your self who in their right mind would think this was acceptable.

I'm also gonna go out on a limb and say would this system only authenticate current software... so as an example if we all decided to stay on 7.6 or 8.1 and a new 9 came out and we didn't upgrade to the newer one for what ever reason. would our software still be classed as authenticated or would they try to change the EULA to say its only legit IF its current and IF you continue to buy the latest and greatest. It would have people leaving flexi in their droves...

After all what would we stay for the customer support LOL

EULA = End User License Agreement

GK
10-28-2007, 12:42 PM
This is just like Adobe letting Acrobat Pro run that FNPlicensingservice.exe everytime you run an Acrobat product. Not only does it constantly want to suck up resources, it wants a direct internet connection at all times and opens up ports on the computer to connect to the servers at Adobe to validate your license. Open ports = security risk. If all software companies keep doing stuff like this we are gonna need a gig of RAM dedicated to just validation services and enough ports open to welcome a whole slew of attacks.

Lunatic Taskbar
10-28-2007, 01:04 PM
Its all to do with the almighty doller and the more they can suck out of us they think the better it is.

gvgraphics
10-28-2007, 02:09 PM
Leaving the hasp key would make me think that it would be easier for the crooks to crack the program. I'm not so sure this is a good move for SA. I can see it now, our prices go up to accommodate for the added loss of revenue from stolen software.

GK
10-28-2007, 02:16 PM
Software companies that go this far to prevent piracy are usually let down within hours of releasing their software only to find out that there are crackers out there that have way more skill then they think --- only to have millions wasted in their DRM after someone cracks it. Macrovision DVD protection was cracked within 48 hours, Blu-Ray's protection in under a week, the iPhone was cracked by a 17 yr old here in NJ to use it on any networks with any 3rd party software you could imagine. There will always be someone far smarter that can do something faster and better then the next person, so...the software companies will just keep dumping millions into protecting their software, hackers/crackers will keep breaking their protections in record times, and they will just keep offsetting those protection costs to us...the end user.

N2Harpz
10-28-2007, 02:35 PM
Sounds like a bunch of balongna to me. Lower the prices and no one would steal the program. How many people can shell out $4000 for a new program? Now we have to worry about the cable going out or the server going down.

Not only that now they will be filling my puter full of spyware every time I turn it on.

BIG BROTHER thanks for your help.

trakers
10-28-2007, 03:32 PM
Most of us will pay, if we feel we are getting value for our money. Obviously Flexi is ridiculously overpriced, so much so I contemplated not buying it, but my upbringing would not allow me to snag a cracked copy.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p>
<o:p></o:p>
This problem was allowed by all us users. Microsoft started this FBS we now know as Activation and we as users allowed it to happen. I told my buddies way back then that virtually every large SW company would institute this practice and slowly they all are. The era of "phoning home" is here to stay my friends unless we as users make it change.<o:p></o:p>
<o:p></o:p>
The fella above has the right idea. Price something reasonable and most people will not steal it. A few thousand for a program that is not as powerful as the $99 Ulead PhotoImpact I run everyday is ludicrous and moronic. I cuss that friggin Flexi dongle ever day. It is always where I am not. If there were a crack to make it not required I would use it in a second. I PAID for the GD program so I should be able to use it as I please.<o:p></o:p>
<o:p></o:p>
With this activation development, when it comes time to upgrade I may look at alternate distribution channels for the program. It pisses me off that much.<o:p></o:p>
<o:p></o:p>
In the end I'm guessing the Activation development has nothing to do with "convenience for the customer" but more about it, over time, being cheaper than those damn dongles.<o:p></o:p>

Techman
10-28-2007, 03:41 PM
This is the beginning of the subscription system. It won't be much longer when they will just give you a stub of software and every thing else is run from their central server. Why will it goto a stub concept? Because a reverser will simply to override the server check as they have with all other server check softwares around. Why will he override it? because of the challenge.

This system is good for flexi because no more worries about hacked softs. They will sell it as a monthly charge where they simply keep updating the software on the fly. If you ever have a complaint and do not pay even though you are right they will shut off your access. If their servers are loaded, which is a fact that it will happen your access will be slow. If you are multitasking your access will be slow. If their sudden update doesn't work on your system you will be down. Think not? just look at when M$ does an update now and see how many ppl lose production time.

If certain internet providers have their way,,this will become the realm of the rich because the average guy will not have the resources to pay for full time high priority internet access. We will get 3rd priority which means measured and throttled access. Measured means just like the old days when Compuserve charged you for a download by the bit even if your download failed at the 99&#37; point. Throttled means if level 1 wants to use the pipes your speed will fall to whatever they give you.

As far as cheaper because no one can steal it? Never no way not in the books not even on this planet.
Intuit is a prime example. Quicken was a locked software. It was sold as a high priced premium software used by a very small segment. (sound familiar) Yes, it was high priced and hard to get.

One day (version 3) they realized this mistake and unlocked their software and sold it for about $60 bux. No more copy protection. As most of us know that software took off and became one of the most popular and well sold products around. Every one bought their own copy.

The above mentioned paranoia is real. IF their system is down or yours is down you are piped. You think it doesn't go down? mine goes down all the time.

I already tried this system long ago with another vendor with a customer data base system. They tried to hold my data hostage even though they were dead wrong.
Subscription services?? Never ever again.

fozzyber
10-28-2007, 03:45 PM
Obviously Flexi is ridiculously overpriced, <o:p></o:p>
The FULL Design suite of adobe,(With all the bells and whistles is under half the price of Flexi. and adobe WORKS!!! The more I deal with flexi and flexi support, and flexi customer service the more POed I get,
Bunch of ID10Ts in tech, and the national sales rep is a *****.

It is not often I drop to this level of accusations, and speaking, but it is not often I run across a company as bad as SAi and Flexi

Replicator
10-28-2007, 03:47 PM
This is the beginning of the subscription system.

Also Crackable in the real world . . . !

gpzjack
10-28-2007, 04:00 PM
I read that turbo tax was losing tons of money cause they were ridiculous with there software and now i think its kinda open. I just started a while back and i think the dongle is horrible. I have no problem with paying for the software but i can't stand that i can't work at home unless i have that damn dongle and run the risk of losing it in transit. the thing i don't get is that if i had a copy of flexi without the dongle issue i can't really ever see me giving a copy of it to someone...who would i....its not like a universally used program like Office suite that i would have the whole neighborhood using. I just don't get it.

Techman
10-28-2007, 04:00 PM
Also Crackable in the real world

Not when you have just a stub of software and the main parts are on a main server.. Look how the STEAM system works. Central access. And if you cheat they detect it in a matter of hours and they lock you out forever no recourse.

gvgraphics
10-28-2007, 04:06 PM
Also Crackable in the real world . . . !

Everything is crackable! I only think by going the route SAi is going they will be more likely to see a decline in sales and a rise in cracked copies. I have no complaints about Flexi. It works 99% of the time as does most software. You will always have bugs and such in software. They will soon realize that the software most of us run now will do the same if not more than theres and they will have to overcome the challenges involved to get back in the market. A change of this nature can and has closed the doors of software manufactures in the past. They will set their own fate.

Lunatic Taskbar
10-28-2007, 04:28 PM
Bring on the open source and freeware and shareware.

A company with out its customers is nothing. so who do you nurture, and protect Well most would think your customers... and a company that doesn't is doomed.

fozzyber
10-28-2007, 06:35 PM
When I talked to a sales rep, 2 weeks ago, about some issues with flexi, one of the things he said was SAi the (parent company of Flexi) had a few "bad quarters" I have to wonder if some of these changes or in response to that. The stupid thing about it is big companies like SAi think backwards, instead of making a better product that more people buy, they figure out how to get more money from the customers they already have by the balls.

Sad really,

schurms
10-28-2007, 06:52 PM
Flexi is a joke, why do you think they where sold. Why are they having money issues now...............

onesource
10-28-2007, 09:41 PM
I got screwed by the early casmate era, ordered the software no dongle in the box and they would not send me a dongle unless I sent them mine wich I did not have so I cracked it and used it for a short time. The program sucked, I ordered winplot and used that for several years. I was apprehensive about spending a large amount on any software due to the first experience with cas.

Day Sign Co
10-28-2007, 09:57 PM
Gerber got me, I guess I will always use Gerber. I have no need for a RIP at this time, as a secondary solution to output, I ocassionaly use Flexi. allthough I will never upgrade it, Guess that means hitting the books and learning more with Illustrator & Photoshop

stickerguynyc
10-28-2007, 10:17 PM
yes everything is crackable.. i paid thousand for my flexisign 7.5... and also got a craked version for way cheaper that my original one...

somebody was offer me a cracked version of flexisign 8.0 but didn't get it since i don't like it...

Day Sign Co
10-28-2007, 10:45 PM
Not a good idea to advertise user # 1

Techman
10-28-2007, 10:56 PM
yes everything is crackable.

You all are missing the message. There will be nothing to crack. There will not be software on your machine to crack. The software will be on a main server and you access it via the internet. It will do all the work on their server...

If they are smart, they will allow you to access it from anywhere. no need for dongle or cracks.

Day Sign Co
10-28-2007, 11:01 PM
And they just added the last nail to the coffin bye-bye

Steve C.
10-28-2007, 11:03 PM
I would think that this is the way of the future for software use. Either
use it via internet or not at all.

Day Sign Co
10-28-2007, 11:11 PM
We have never had a problem before, They will soon realize the huge mistake they are making. Perhaps it will be too late. Buy the way, Open Office has allready saved me many hours with the usual dumb-*** files like Excel,Word,PPT,etc. SAI Get a clue

fozzyber
10-29-2007, 12:43 AM
Open Office ROCKS!!!! Between that and Google software!!!!

If you have never seen open office, take a look, it is well worth the time you spend, MS Office install = 2+ gigs, Open Office under 300 megs.

MS office, can you say bloated!!!

mark in tx
10-29-2007, 07:23 AM
Will this be a one time authentication?
Will it be everytime the application starts?

Either way, my production RIP computer is not going to be connected to the internet.

Ever.

Is Scanvec Amiable going to pay for the internet connection?
Are they going to pay for a firewall?
Virus protection?
Spyware protection?
Additional infrastructure in my shop?

Time to start looking at Onyx.

Lunatic Taskbar
10-29-2007, 08:08 AM
It certainly doesn't seem like its been thought all the way through!!!! How long will it be till were saying Poor Flexi do you remember them!!! :)

os101king
11-02-2007, 09:50 AM
This is the beginning of the subscription system. It won't be much longer when they will just give you a stub of software and every thing else is run from their central server. Why will it goto a stub concept? Because a reverser will simply to override the server check as they have with all other server check softwares around. Why will he override it? because of the challenge.

This system is good for flexi because no more worries about hacked softs. They will sell it as a monthly charge where they simply keep updating the software on the fly. If you ever have a complaint and do not pay even though you are right they will shut off your access. If their servers are loaded, which is a fact that it will happen your access will be slow. If you are multitasking your access will be slow. If their sudden update doesn't work on your system you will be down. Think not? just look at when M$ does an update now and see how many ppl lose production time.

If certain internet providers have their way,,this will become the realm of the rich because the average guy will not have the resources to pay for full time high priority internet access. We will get 3rd priority which means measured and throttled access. Measured means just like the old days when Compuserve charged you for a download by the bit even if your download failed at the 99% point. Throttled means if level 1 wants to use the pipes your speed will fall to whatever they give you.

As far as cheaper because no one can steal it? Never no way not in the books not even on this planet.
Intuit is a prime example. Quicken was a locked software. It was sold as a high priced premium software used by a very small segment. (sound familiar) Yes, it was high priced and hard to get.

One day (version 3) they realized this mistake and unlocked their software and sold it for about $60 bux. No more copy protection. As most of us know that software took off and became one of the most popular and well sold products around. Every one bought their own copy.

The above mentioned paranoia is real. IF their system is down or yours is down you are piped. You think it doesn't go down? mine goes down all the time.

I already tried this system long ago with another vendor with a customer data base system. They tried to hold my data hostage even though they were dead wrong.
Subscription services?? Never ever again.


yep. i see that coming. glad I have my dongle dangling happliy.

hmm. anyone remember the rules of a haiku? i think i was close.

GK
11-02-2007, 09:57 AM
its when big companies get greedy and try to pull this, that the 16 yr old HS student with the same tech. know-how becomes rich because he doesn't care about subscriptions at that point =P

Jackpine
11-02-2007, 10:49 AM
My design/RIP computer is not going to be connected to the internet.....not ever!

Lunatic Taskbar
11-02-2007, 04:48 PM
Its all so sad that its coming down to this. I agree make the software more accessible and people will purchase it!

Matthew Scher
11-05-2007, 12:09 PM
It is true that Flexi 8.5 can be used without a dongle, but there seems to be some confusion about how it works.

First, you can order it with a dongle if you like, and if you already have Flexi 8, then you keep your dongle and 8.5 will use that.

The dongle-less version is called "softkey" and uses your PC as the dongle. On first launch, it will connect to the internet, then it will connect once a month. So as long as you are connected to the internet at least monthy, it will continue to operate without any errors.

We have no intention of having a server verison of Flexi that you access with a web client. Flexi runs on your local machine, using your RAM and processor. It will only connect to our server to verify the softkey.

The softkey can be moved from system to system - very simular to how it is done in CS2 and CS3. In the help menu is a command called transfer license that will allow you to move it to another PC (you can move it as often as you like - but to transfer also requires an internet connection)

Lets say your PC is lost, stolen, or dies. No problem. We will issue you a new softkey by calling customer service.

The goal is to make the software protection less of a burden, not to put any burden on you. There are certainly some shops that have no internet connection - and those can order the hard key option.

fozzyber
11-05-2007, 12:32 PM
So if SAi closes its doors, burns down, gets hit by an airplane, data lines pulled, flooded, what ever.. Any "softkey" users will only have up to 30 days before product is no longer usable? and will be stuck with the computer it is on for that time.
Is the next step of this process to require every one to have a support contract? and if you don't have a contract your soft key will be denied?
Authorizing my software every 30 days is much more of a benefit to SAi
at the cost of hassle to the user.

threeputt
11-05-2007, 01:00 PM
I am a firm believer that if I spent $3-4000 dollars on a program,
then I own that program and should be able to use it in any way
that I see fit . . . With the exclusion of redistribution of course.


Rep, you might think that way, but it's not so. The 3-4 thou only bought you a license to use the software. You don't own anything more than the disk itself, the tutorial, and the box it came in. Oh..and the dongle.

Others: Flexi doesn't sell as many copies of their sign-specific software as Illustrator and PhotoShop do. Simple rule of economy of scale. They have to bury all their costs into the projected number of sales they'll make. Illy and PS are used by nearly every designer, illustrator in the world, regardless of trade. Many of them print media. So making it really cheap to buy, as suggested, won't help them recoup their costs plus profits. Even if they were to cut their price in fourths. Then what, they have to sell four times as many copies? There simply isn't enough sign shops to make that viable.

Also, anyone that talks about cracking software doesn't have my respect. At all. Sure this software stuff is expensive. And my client's say my sign prices are too high, too. But if they tried to rip me off, I'd be hot. Sword cuts both ways, kids.

threeputt
11-05-2007, 01:06 PM
Bring on the open source and freeware and shareware.


How will that help SW companies invest in upgrading their stuff? Please explain.

Replicator
11-05-2007, 01:12 PM
I have Flexi, I use Flexi with a dongle, and I will continue to use Flexi with a dongle . . .

But I will never upgrade it and/or buy anything that requires internet connection . . . Ever . . . ! ! !

threeputt
11-05-2007, 01:25 PM
Rep, your comments make sense, the part about having a "softkey" or internet access key. I don't think I'd be interested in that either for the reasons mentioned above.

And as far as upgrading, maybe there's a limit to a "draw" program's "usefulness". I mean, once it's capable of certain functions, is there really anything else you need? I'm not certain we need an upgrade to our Omega stuff. I can layout just about anything I need, and with Corel and PhotoShop can do just about anything needed.