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Flexi 8.6 v2 stopped connecting to internet..

Discussion in 'Flexi' started by waximoff, Mar 9, 2018.

  1. signmeup

    signmeup Major Contributor

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    What scares me about subscription software is the owner can decide to shut it down or triple the price on a whim. What are you gonna do about it?

    Now every time I open Coreldraw it tells me I'm a criminal using a pirated copy. I'm not. Corel didn't care or have a way to stop this annoying popup so I just suck it up. They said they could fix it for $300... simply upgrade to the new improved version. Feels like extortion to me.

    Adrian
     
  2. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    If you are bound to a certain ecosystem, not much you can do at all.

    I'm just glad that I'm able to have the luxury to migrate to something else.

    Can you keep that box offline? That may fix that pop up from showing up.
     
  3. FrankW

    FrankW Very Active Member

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    I don‘t understand the problem.

    When buying a car, a printer or cutter, a stove or fridge for the kitchen, a TV or any other hardware, we all know that the time will come that it breaks down and needs repair or replacement ... but we don‘t want to accept that with software?

    One time, one of my customers had an old dongle stolen, and I asked the manufacturer for a free or cheap dongle replacement with the licence proofed by the original invoice, and they told me „when your car was stolen, you won‘t get a free new one by the manufacturer either“ ... and they were right.

    More than 30 years ago I worked in a computer store (my first job), and a customer have bought a Mac 512 with Pagemaker 1.2 layout software (a little carton box with two floppies and a brochure), and he was really angry about the need to pay around 1500 bucks for that. I explained to him that if he buys a car which weights 1‘500kg and cost 15’000 bucks he pays 10 bucks per kg. It doesn‘t upset him that he needs to pay much more, in particular around 1‘000 bucks per kg, for his new Mac. Why he have a problem now with paying another 1‘500 bucks for another 200 grams which are useful for him? My boss heard that and nearly collapses ...

    When a fridge or a TV breaks down we often need to dump it to the trash and pay the regular price for a new one ... would any signmaker renew a sign for free after 8 or 10 years only because he have made it 10 years ago?

    We should not forget that software does not arise from nothing, and that there are people wo earn their bread and butter with developing and selling software. And that it might be to much to ask to let SAi spend money to keep an outdated licence server alive just for that you dont need to spend money for an upgrade after 8 or 10 years.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  4. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Not quite the same thing. When purchasing all those physical goods, there is a transfer of ownership that applies to that specific good. There is no such transfer of ownership, never has been even with perpetual licenses. There is just less control with the end user with subscription based.

    Now, with said physical good, we have the option to either repair, replace or get something different. With software, the option to "repair" is actually under the vendor's discretion, not ours. So if they decided that they no longer support it, your out of luck. When any of those physical goods are no longer supported for warranty repair, still have the option to get them repaired or not.

    Paying for a replacement is not my issue, not being able to have that option open to me, like it is in your other examples is. I've got a $15k software, dongle replacement is $300 dollars, but only available as long as that software is officially supported by the vendor. Out of that warranty, no option to fix it. I'm surprised Flexi even offered to do a dongle replacement for those on 8.x.

    I would gladly pay for the ability to have them fix my software is that was what I would do versus replacing (whatever reason that I may have for that). That option does not exist at my discretion like it does in your examples. Sometimes the cost for fixing is more then just replacing and that's when fixing it may not be wise, but I still have that option.

    Having been involved in software development, both contributing code and as a tester, I can attest to the fact that software doesn't arise from nothing. However, having someone spend something is better in some ways then not having them spend anything at all.

    Especially when talking about something as niche as Flexi is.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2018
  5. FrankW

    FrankW Very Active Member

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    Even a manufacturer of physical goods can decide to stop providing you with spare parts (or, what is common too, to make it more and more expensive so that a repair is no longer worth it). Or a company who manufacture or sold that physical good to you could decide to not support it anymore.

    So you would be ok with paying $600 for a fridge repair, but not ok with paying $600 for a software update what not only fixes your problem, but upgrades you to a new, current "fridge"?

    Agree. But you want SAi to upgrade a licence server for outdated software (the successor of Flexi 8.5 is on the market since 2010) at own costs to help customers not to pay for an upgrade. Recognize the contradiction.
     
  6. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Tend to have non-oem repair parts and I've already mentioned what happens when repair is more expensive then just upgrading. The thing is, in both scenarios, the option of repair is still there.

    Also, OEMs tend not to stop producing parts etc within a decade of the goods manufacture. The only exception may be if the good was a dud in the market, but not usual.

    What is the repair cost versus the replace/upgrade of each individual item? $600 for one doesn't necessarily have the same value as $600 for the other.

    For instance, the $15k software I mentioned. Upgrade for X-1 is $1k, X-2 is $2k, X-3 $3k, beyond that, full price. Dongle replacement is $300, but that's only available til the next version hits (when the software I have becomes X-1).

    Not necessarily have to upgrade the server. Provide a means of DRM that doesn't require going through a server (we are talking about the ability to get a dongle for the software). Or, they can do what Adobe did with CS2. After this is legacy software, not going to be sold through them anymore. Make a little extra money by selling that at a discounted price, keep in good thoughts with that customer then when they have to upgrade (either having too modern of an OS or purchases equipment that requires newer drivers), SAi doesn't bring a bad taste in their mouth.

    No matter what someone is going to have to upgrade at some point. They are going to be at such a new OS that it isn't going to install on, or to get it to install on, have to jump through hoops to make it work. I had another software package that was compiled for XP, once 8.1 hit, in order to install, I had to manually move DLL files (only reason I know to do that and where to put them was a popup during install). How many average computer users going to do that? At that point, they are going to upgrade. Here, they may have to upgrade to a newer machine that requires a newer method.

    Even my favorite method of running legacy software that requires legacy OSs, VMing. Still run the risk at some point of the guest OS support being deprecated and removed in the VM software. Emulation may be the only way to handle it then, but the ubber performance hit on that method really makes the C/B of that out of whack to the C part.

    Also bare in mind you said this before:

    This applies to the very server that SAi uses for activating licenses. Expecting them to budget and/or plan for an alternative means should not be out of the question. They chose that method of DRM for a perpetual licensed good, they should have done a thorough C/B of it to make sure that's the way they should have gone.

    What happens if they had an issue with their server at a much earlier time period?
     
  7. visual800

    visual800 Very Active Member

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    I dont like subscription and I cant fathom windows being subscription and they force their updates on you and then flexi stops working and you have to shell out more money for a version to keep up...look what windows 10 did to some softwares. Im glad Im on the downslide of this technology. others may embrace it, I see it as being a money pit.

    Also as wild mentioned when there is an issue with servers then what? you are at their mercy this could halt production in shops.
     
  8. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    For Enterprise customers, it already is. It's a little trickier with prosumers like us as we are still lump in with the general end user.

    I could see individual modules to get more performance being subscription. That I could see realistically being subscription based versus the whole OS.

    But that doesn't mean that the whole OS wouldn't be subscription based. A lot of people are trapped on the Windows ecosystem (much like Adobe ecosystem) that while their may be bellyaching, they still do it.

    Having production rigs on the internet period is no bueno. The biggest vector for headaches is the internet.

    Updates, I have been using Windows since the MS-DOS days when I was a little kid. I do not remember a time when updating/upgrading didn't mess something up on a Windows computer. To a degree, I could understand it as there are a myriad of hardware/software combinations that run Windows. Once they forced updates though, all that sympathy went away.

    As far as what Win 10 did to software, bare in mind, it was also to MS' own software in certain situations as well. Not just 3rd party software, but their own. That's bad.

    I stopped using Windows when Win 10 came out (not much a fan of the direction of Apple either), but my dad still has 1 Win 10 machine and it has had an issue every single major update (and he doesn't use/get the older gear, he typically buys gear just released that still takes a couple of months to have info in the forums to help troubleshoot things if/when the pop up).

    It all depends on how you have to do it.

    I'm fortunate I was able to get away from the 2 main ecosystem and actually computing is fun again. Others don't have that luxury, but thankfully I do.

    I really do like tech, just how some vendors go about it is where the issue pops up.

    I don't have a problem with supporting vendors that provide goods that I get use out of (hobby/commercial doesn't matter, if I have a use for it and it does it's job, I don't have a problem with supporting it), but for some vendors, I don't like the direction that they are going and if I don't need to have them, I'm not going to support a company going in a direction that I don't like.
     
  9. FrankW

    FrankW Very Active Member

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    Agree. But not for free. I can't understand why you are so totally fixed to stay at your old version? Paying for a repair of hardware, or paying for an upgrade, whats the difference?

    Forget that. You can't be shure about that. I remember for example the mutoh albatros hard solvent printer: last units were sold in 2003/2004, and around 4-5 years later no printheads were available anymore. I know people who kicks off a chinese flatbet printer after 3 oder 4 years because they can't get parts anymore. Try to get spare parts for a regular cellphone after 5 years or more.

    Thats your opinion. Lots of people hate dongles.

    But SAi offers the people to buy dongles to let them continue running their Flexi 8. What is exactly your point?

    You should check their licence agreement. Nobody will guarantee an infinite possibility to use software at no charge.

    Its the same as with a fridge: it is a decision of if a repair is still worth it or not. If 10'000 licences are sold, and there are still 7'000 in use when the server crashes, they need to fix it. If there are still 1'000 licences only in use, it could be cheaper to offer the people a dongle, or a cheap update.
     
  10. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    I tried to play devil's advocate here. In honor of Marie LaFollette I tried.

    Go here, if you want to know what I'm talking about, warning it's 3 pages, but that user comes in around page 2, I think. We aren't as divergent as you might imagine.


    However, I will answer this 2 quotes:


    Ironically, I would imagine that they hate activation servers more, especially after this incident.

    I know I'm not a fan of them, especially when they are essential to run a $15k piece of software, but I do prefer them to activation servers.


    This was just merely listing another alternative that could have been done.
     
  11. tcaterino

    tcaterino New Member

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    Went to access one on my flexi files and got the license needs to be re validated. contacted flexi and was told their soft key server is history and I have a choice of paying 50 bucks a month or 1700 bucks to get more current software. as far as I am concerned this is ransom money. when I buy software I expect to be able to use it damn near forever. I think Its time to look at a class action lawsuit. These days of cloud software is bull crap! Pay monthly - late on your payment - sorry you can't run your business today !
     
  12. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    The joys of vendor lock-in on licensed software. Brave new world out there (at least it better be).
     
  13. S11930

    S11930 Member

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  14. player

    player Major Contributor

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    Get Signlab when it's on sale for $750. Full pro print cut version, no fees, you own it. V10 will even open flexi files (not guaranteed 100%, but it does open them).

    Dump Flexsign.
     
  15. S11930

    S11930 Member

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    If you have a problem with flexi 8.6 and im guessing since its at least 10 years old you are probably running windows 95. You are going to freak when you find out you are going to have to go to windows 10 as 7 becomes fazed out. You can't blame flexi, adobe or corel. They are in the software development business. You've made your living off them for 10 years its time to move forward. Think about this you sold a client a sign 10yrs ago, you sold him a quality product, the sign starts to fade do you repaint or re-letter it no you tell him to get a new sign. In your case how long are you going to patch it or carry it. Get a new sign.
     
  16. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    I hope that's an exaggeration as even Win 98 has been EOL since '06 (I miss that OS).

    I actually already freaked out back in 2015 about the prospect of going to Win 10 and actually changed to a totally different platform, because of it.

    I went back through the posts. I'm reading some of these as they had a fully registered copy, didn't try to reinstall, still using it on the same rig and got that message. That would be like Adobe (during the CS days) sending out a kill switch after say CS5 went EOL on already activated and running copies of CS5 (that were activated before CS5 went EOL). I can understand that if someone after CS5 went EOL and tried to reinstall it on another machine. But not a machine with an already activated copy getting a kill switch if they had a perpetual license. I can understand that frustration.
     
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