version 13 portable installation

rconn

Administrator
Staff member
May 14, 2008
11,454
110
Anyway, I register the product and restart TCC a few times - always from the USB key, and always it comes up registered. So far so good.

Then I plug in ANOTHER, removable USB key, and copy the TCMD13 folder from the first USB key to the second one, including the registration key file.

In the current TCC session (first USB key) type: SHRALIAS /U & EXIT.
Start TCC from the SECOND USB key. It says that my evaluation period has expired. So it seems like the portable folder is bound to the first USB key only.
What gives?
WAD -- the registration key is bound to the USB drive where it was installed. (Otherwise, you'd have a universal version which could run on a billion different machines -- which some people would like, but wouldn't be very good news for JP Software.)
 
Jan 24, 2009
36
0
One way to think about this is free marketing. I've had thumb drives go bad. What then? S.O.L. ?

It's never good to alienate customers. Good products have failed when bean counters take over.


Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4GLTE smartphone

----- Reply message -----
From: "rconn" <>
To: <rob@drrob1.com>
Subject: [Support-t-3206] Re: version 13 portable installation
Date: Fri, Sep 23, 2011 12:08 pm


---Quote (Originally by Stefano Piccardi)---
Anyway, I register the product and restart TCC a few times - always from the USB key, and always it comes up registered. So far so good.

Then I plug in ANOTHER, removable USB key, and copy the TCMD13 folder from the first USB key to the second one, including the registration key file.

In the current TCC session (first USB key) type: SHRALIAS /U & EXIT.
Start TCC from the SECOND USB key. It says that my evaluation period has expired. So it seems like the portable folder is bound to the first USB key only.
What gives?
---End Quote---
WAD -- the registration key is bound to the USB drive where it was installed. (Otherwise, you'd have a universal version which could run on a billion different machines -- which some people would like, but wouldn't be very good news for JP Software.)
 
D

drrob1

Guest
I'm confused.

How do you avoid this:

WAD -- the registration key is bound to the USB drive where it was
installed. (Otherwise, you'd have a universal version which could run
on a billion different machines -- which some people would like, but
wouldn't be very good news for JP Software.)


--rob


On 09/23/2011 02:40 PM, rconn wrote:

> ---Quote (Originally by drrob106)---
> One way to think about this is free marketing. I've had thumb drives go bad. What then? S.O.L. ?
> ---End Quote---
> You register again on the replacement drive -- the same thing you'd do if your hard disk failed and you registered using the Windows registry.
>
> Rex Conn
> JP Software
> http://jpsoft.com
 
Jan 24, 2009
36
0
From what I've been reading.here, that won't be allowed.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4GLTE smartphone

----- Reply message -----
From: "Charles Dye" <>
To: <rob@drrob1.com>
Subject: [Support-t-3206] Re: version 13 portable installation
Date: Fri, Sep 23, 2011 1:58 pm


---Quote (Originally by drrob106)---
One way to think about this is free marketing. I've had thumb drives go bad. What then? S.O.L. ?<rob@drrob1.com>
---End Quote---
You buy a replacement thumb drive, and re-register on the new drive.

</rob@drrob1.com>
 

ron

Aug 19, 2008
147
0
Avoid what? The key being bound to the device? You can't avoid this, hence WAD.

I recently had a Patriot XT go bad and received a replacement from Patriot. Another product I use has a similar licensing mechanism and I was unable to 'activate' it on the new device. A quick email to the vendor and 12 hours later I was able to activate it.

So you're not doomed if a device fails and the vendor is not doomed by software that can be installed a 'billion' times on different machines.
 
D

drrob1

Guest
I sort of expected this would turn into arguing about religion.

I could name lots of examples where software companies were helped by
having their software on a 'billion' different machines.

In the days of copy protection of floppy based programs, companies soon
learned that the costs exceeded the benefits and all copy protection
went away. The same recently for music.

And I can name companies that were killed by pissing off their loyal
paying customers. Ever hear of Xandros?

Treating all customers as dishonest criminals is not a way to make
friends and influence customers.

Some companies have the luxury of getting away with this; I would not
put a comopany like JPSoft in this category.

I am of the religion that hassling all customers because of the actions
of a few will ultimately cost more than its worth. I already see lots
of support talk here because of activation issues. I don't know whats
going on w/ the phone support, but I'd venture that support demands and
costs have increased because of activation. And I doubt there has been
much revenue increases to offset the increased support costs.

And there are a lot of silent customers that don't bother doing what I'm
doing now. They merely vote w/ their feet/wallets.

Bean-counters don't understand human behavior; we are driven by our
emotions far more often than is freely admitted.

Beans have no emotions. We do.

Tcmd is a great product, but it stopped adding features useful to me
several versions ago, I kept upgrading because of a warm fuzzy feeling
that I no longer have.

I may be wrong for you, but I know I'm right for me. Time will tell if
I'm in the minority or the majority.

YMMV





On 09/23/2011 06:58 PM, ron wrote:

> Avoid what? The key being bound to the device? You can't avoid this, hence WAD.
>
> I recently had a Patriot XT go bad and received a replacement from Patriot. Another product I use has a similar licensing mechanism and I was unable to 'activate' it on the new device. A quick email to the vendor and 12 hours later I was able to activate it.
>
> So you're not doomed if a device fails and the vendor is not doomed by software that can be installed a 'billion' times on different machines.
>
 

ron

Aug 19, 2008
147
0
First, I do NOT favor activation. But, it's become a necessary evil - although not evil in purpose. I personally buy a decent amount of software each year. The first thing I check these days is whether the software requires activation. If it does then I'm more careful when considering whether to purchase it. I'll wait and pour over forum traffic to learn what others who have the product have to say about it.

There are nightmares to be had in the activation world - Scansoft for example. Apparently just plugging in a USB drive to your system causes the software to require re-activation. I'm currently 5 versions behind on this particular product for that reason.

My biggest fear is with software I use everyday and depend on. Suppose the proverbial bus hits the company and it ceases to exist. Although not documented publically or discussed often (if at all), I expect measures to be in place to protect the customers. I think it was last year a software company whose software uses activation and I still use to this day simply closed operations. Within 24 hours they posted information on their web site that will allow me to install the software in the future without the need for activation.

So let's say Rex is not hit by a bus but by a $200 Million lotto ticket. I'd hope that 5 years from now I could install v13 on my next computer without worrying about whether I could activate it.


I could name lots of examples where software companies were helped by having their software on a 'billion' different machines.
Just for grins, name one.

In the days of copy protection of floppy based programs, companies soon
learned that the costs exceeded the benefits and all copy protection
went away. The same recently for music.
The cost of implementing activation these days is within the reach of smaller companies.

Treating all customers as dishonest criminals is not a way to make
friends and influence customers.
Requiring activation is not treating someone as a criminal. It's a method of making sure the user adheres to the license agreement. If over time I end up needing an extra activation (or two) because of a change in hardware and I'm given the runaround, then I'd feel as though I were being treated as dishonest.

The few times I've had to do this it was almost stupid how easy it was - no questions asked and I walked away a happy customer. If you end up needing a dozen activations over the course of a year, expect to be questioned at some point.

You're not the target. The few that might buy one copy and install it on 100+ workstations is.

I am of the religion that hassling all customers because of the actions of a few will ultimately cost more than its worth.
As I mentioned earlier, the cost is not as great as it used to be.


I already see lots of support talk here because of activation issues. I don't know whats going on w/ the phone support, but I'd venture that support demands and costs have increased because of activation. And I doubt there has been much revenue increases to offset the increased support costs.
If JPSoft starts loosing money due to the costs of using activation, I expect it would go away. Otherwise I'd assume they see a benefit to using it.
 
May 31, 2008
382
2
WAD -- the registration key is bound to the USB drive where it was installed.
It makes sense. Will it work if the same drive takes on a different drive letter when inserted?
I backed up the TCMD folder, reformatted the USB key and restored the folder. Now TCC says that the trial period has expired. Is the portable key file bound to the file system ID on the USB key? I reformatted from FAT32 to NTFS.
 

rconn

Administrator
Staff member
May 14, 2008
11,454
110
I backed up the TCMD folder, reformatted the USB key and restored the folder. Now TCC says that the trial period has expired. Is the portable key file bound to the file system ID on the USB key? I reformatted from FAT32 to NTFS.
It's bound to the serial number, which you obliterated when you reformatted the drive.

(This isn't any different than the normal registration; if you reformat your C: drive you'll wipe out the Windows Registry and you'll have to re-register.)

For the 0.001% of the users who will actually do this, they just need to re-register. If you've run out of activations, email us & we will reset your activation key.
 
May 20, 2008
9,905
71
Syracuse, NY, USA
On Sat, 24 Sep 2011 10:21:57 -0400, rconn <> wrote:

|For the 0.001% of the users who will actually do this, they just need to re-register. If you've run out of activations, email us & we will reset your activation key.

I have done a lot of farting around with TCMD/TCC ...
installing/registering/uninstalling ... sometimes successfully, sometimes not.
As far as I know I have two successfully registered installations. I'm curious
about what my registration count is.
 
D

drrob1

Guest
For me it does exist.

I create and delete VMs a lot. I've learned how to do this very easily
using VirtualBox. I have a disabled son who does not understand when
WinXP gets infected or screwed up for any other reason. So I have that
box running Ubuntu as it's main OS, running VMs full screen so he
doesn't know or care or understand what's really going on.





On 09/23/2011 07:32 PM, rconn wrote:

> ---Quote---
>> I'm confused.
>>
>> How do you avoid this:
> ---End Quote---
> You're trying really hard to create a problem that doesn't exist.
>
> A single-user activation key allows three activations. If you register and
> destroy three USB drives, just email JP Software, and we'll reset your
> activation count.
>
>
>
>
>
 
D

drrob1

Guest
When I say "cost" of activation, I'm not talking only money.
Time/effort is a cost, and unhappy customers is a cost. Let's say a
user needs support for an activation issue over a holiday weekend; I
work in healthcare so we are a 24/7 business. A long weekend for some
is 5 days without support or activation to us. This IS treating me as a
criminal in that a product that I paid for is not usable because of
something the vendor is doing to help him and not me. Does it really
help the vendor? Well, that remains to be seen but it sure doesn't help me.

I was one of those supporters of Xandros, buying version 2.5 and 3.
When version 4 came out needing activation, mine would not activate on
the evening of July 3. I did not get a resolution for that issue until
after the long holiday weekend, 5 days later. If you've never heard of
Xandros, that merely reinforces my point. A lot of people felt the way
I did.

I fear you assume too much by saying that if a company fails, it's
products that require activation will still function. I assume the
opposite for if a product tries to communicate w/ servers that went
away, I assume that will fail and the product will be useless. I won't
buy them.

For larger sites, having to track individual activation numbers is a
real cost to a company user, and a dis-incentive to use the product.

I am old enough to have used Lotus 1A. I personally knew at least 100
"users" who got copies of those disks w/ the copy protection defeated.
I would estimate that maybe 20% eventually bought later versions. I
think maybe 5% would have bought if they had not had a long test drive.

I personally started using UltraEdit because I saw on a site how to
overcome it's install code scheme. After using it for a few months, I
bought and have kept current with subsequent editions.

Hence, my religion.



On 09/23/2011 11:26 PM, ron wrote:

> First, I do NOT favor activation. But, it's become a necessary evil - although not evil in purpose. I personally buy a decent amount of software each year. The first thing I check these days is whether the software requires activation. If it does then I'm more careful when considering whether to purchase it. I'll wait and pour over forum traffic to learn what others who have the product have to say about it.
>
> There are nightmares to be had in the activation world - Scansoft for example. Apparently just plugging in a USB drive to your system causes the software to require re-activation. I'm currently 5 versions behind on this particular product for that reason.
>
> My biggest fear is with software I use everyday and depend on. Suppose the proverbial bus hits the company and it ceases to exist. Although not documented publically or discussed often (if at all), I expect measures to be in place to protect the customers. I think it was last year a software company whose software uses activation and I still use to this day simply closed operations. Within 24 hours they posted information on their web site that will allow me to install the software in the future without the need for activation.
>
> So let's say Rex is not hit by a bus but by a $200 Million lotto ticket. I'd hope that 5 years from now I could install v13 on my next computer without worrying about whether I could activate it.
>
>
>
> ---Quote (Originally by drrob1)---
> I could name lots of examples where software companies were helped by having their software on a 'billion' different machines.
> ---End Quote---
> Just for grins, name one.
>
>
> ---Quote---
> In the days of copy protection of floppy based programs, companies soon
> learned that the costs exceeded the benefits and all copy protection
> went away. The same recently for music.
> ---End Quote---
> The cost of implementing activation these days is within the reach of smaller companies.
>
>
> ---Quote---
> Treating all customers as dishonest criminals is not a way to make
> friends and influence customers.
> ---End Quote---
> Requiring activation is not treating someone as a criminal. It's a method of making sure the user adheres to the license agreement. If over time I end up needing an extra activation (or two) because of a change in hardware and I'm given the runaround, then I'd feel as though I were being treated as dishonest.
>
> The few times I've had to do this it was almost stupid how easy it was - no questions asked and I walked away a happy customer. If you end up needing a dozen activations over the course of a year, expect to be questioned at some point.
>
> You're not the target. The few that might buy one copy and install it on 100+ workstations is.
>
>
> ---Quote---
> I am of the religion that hassling all customers because of the actions of a few will ultimately cost more than its worth.
> ---End Quote---
> As I mentioned earlier, the cost is not as great as it used to be.
>
>
>
> ---Quote---
> I already see lots of support talk here because of activation issues. I don't know whats going on w/ the phone support, but I'd venture that support demands and costs have increased because of activation. And I doubt there has been much revenue increases to offset the increased support costs.
> ---End Quote---
> If JPSoft starts loosing money due to the costs of using activation, I expect it would go away. Otherwise I'd assume they see a benefit to using it.
>
>
>
>
>
 

Charles Dye

Super Moderator
Staff member
May 20, 2008
3,966
53
Albuquerque, NM
prospero.unm.edu
I create and delete VMs a lot. I've learned how to do this very easily using VirtualBox. I have a disabled son who does not understand when WinXP gets infected or screwed up for any other reason. So I have that box running Ubuntu as it's main OS, running VMs full screen so he doesn't know or care or understand what's really going on.
I'm not familiar with that particular one, but most virtual machines store the entire virtual hard drive as a single file in the host OS. Once you've got it set up the way you want it -- including activating Take Command and any other software that needs it -- it's easy to back up the virtual HD: just copy the file.
 
Jun 2, 2008
319
1
I'm not familiar with that particular one, but most virtual machines store the entire virtual hard drive as a single file in the host OS. Once you've got it set up the way you want it -- including activating Take Command and any other software that needs it -- it's easy to back up the virtual HD: just copy the file.
Either that or use a snapshot. I haven't used the actual VirtualBox, but I do use VMLite Workstation on Windows, which is based on VirtualBox, and it has a snapshot function. You get the machine all set up the way you want it and then you take a snapshot. No matter what happens to the machine after that, all you need to do is revert back to the snapshot. That's next to zero investment with no reinstalling/rebuilding necessary.
 
D

drrob1

Guest
True.

But my religion still does not allow me to buy anything that requires
activation. When a product turns user-hostile, I'm out.

Too bad, It's a great product.







On 09/24/2011 09:44 PM, TEA-Time wrote:

> ---Quote (Originally by Charles Dye)---
> I'm not familiar with that particular one, but most virtual machines store the entire virtual hard drive as a single file in the host OS. Once you've got it set up the way you want it -- including activating Take Command and any other software that needs it -- it's easy to back up the virtual HD: just copy the file.
> ---End Quote---
> Either that or use a snapshot. I haven't used the actual VirtualBox, but I do use VMLite Workstation on Windows, which is based on VirtualBox, and it has a snapshot function. You get the machine all set up the way you want it and then you take a snapshot. No matter what happens to the machine after that, all you need to do is revert back to the snapshot. That's next to zero investment and no reinstalling/rebuilding necessary.
 
May 20, 2008
9,905
71
Syracuse, NY, USA
On Sat, 24 Sep 2011 23:20:37 -0400, drrob1 <> wrote:

|But my religion still does not allow me to buy anything that requires
|activation. When a product turns user-hostile, I'm out.

What about Microsoft Windows?
 
D

drrob1

Guest
It's related to repeated activations.

Slight context switch there.





On 09/24/2011 11:55 PM, rconn wrote:

> ---Quote---
>> For me it does exist.
> ---End Quote---
> How is this related to repeatedly destroying a USB drive in Windows?
>
>
>
>
>
 
D

drrob1

Guest
Ah. The elephant in the room.

I said in an earlier post that I have gotten very good at installing
virtual WinXP's. That also means that I've gotten very good at
overriding the activation scheme.

And the 2 newest computers I've bought run Ubuntu. In my house I have 9
computers; only 2 primarily run WinXP. I have a mac for my younger son,
an old thinkpad that now runs Peppermint, a netbook that runs ubuntu
(after I removed WinXP basic), desktops that run ubuntu x3, Fedora, & Mint.

One of the new Ubuntu desktops have a Vista VM in which I overrode the
activation requirement. I even activated Office 2010 in that.

Rexx has rallied here about how old XP is. He is probably complaining
about the need to still support it. After all, in surveys I've seen
WinXP still has more market share than the later windows do. I have to
use an old vpn client that only runs on XP for my job. Hospitals here
in the NYC area are always short on cash, so I don't foresee any windows
upgrades in the near future.

Windows is also a good example for the indirect costs of activation.
The IT guys at work have to track activation keys for WinXP. And we
still use Office 2000 which is before activation. They decided that
tracking keys for thousands of PC exceeded their resources for Office.

There are a lot of reasons why WinXP market share still exceeds that of
later windows. I venture to say that for many business, the costs of
activation (direct and indirect) exceeded any benefits so it's a No-Go.

Only recently have I seen the market share of WinXP fall <50%, and
that's because Mac OS share is rising, not that Win7 is rising.

I think even microsoft shot themselves in the foot (or higher) when the
bean counters thought activation was a great idea. They run a 24/7
phone line for activation issues. That has to cost them. And WinXP
activation is very easy to override; Vista and Win7 also can be
overridden.

So those who want to steal Win can still fairly easily do so. But
activation has increased the costs so that legitimate customers have
decided to not upgrade. I believe even MS has found that activation
reduced net profit on windows but won't admit it. MS's own data show
that the rate of "illegal" windows copies in the wild is around 1/3.
Activation has not changed that, but merely made it much harder for
paying customers.

Microsoft has made stealing windows a challenge, and hence more fun.

I could go on about the psychology of this and why activation enrages so
many. But this post is already too long.

--rob


On 09/25/2011 12:49 AM, vefatica wrote:

> On Sat, 24 Sep 2011 23:20:37 -0400, drrob1<> wrote:
>
> |But my religion still does not allow me to buy anything that requires
> |activation. When a product turns user-hostile, I'm out.
>
> What about Microsoft Windows?
 
May 20, 2008
9,905
71
Syracuse, NY, USA
On Sun, 25 Sep 2011 10:37:52 -0400, drrob1 <> wrote:

|MS's own data show
|that the rate of "illegal" windows copies in the wild is around 1/3.

Imagine what that proportion would be if getting the latest/greatest Windows was
as easy as borrowing a friend's distribution DVD. Piracy would be so common
that it wouldn't seem particularly wrong; even "honest" folk would be doing it
(like cheating on one's income tax). I'd bet their activation program is a
success.
 

Charles Dye

Super Moderator
Staff member
May 20, 2008
3,966
53
Albuquerque, NM
prospero.unm.edu
Ah. The elephant in the room.

I said in an earlier post that I have gotten very good at installing
virtual WinXP's. That also means that I've gotten very good at
overriding the activation scheme.
So this is not some philosophical opposition to activation in general; you're upset because you can't crack Rex's? Interesting.

For whatever it's worth, he did continue selling and supporting 4DOS well past the point where it was profitable for him, and eventually released source code. Which is no guarantee of what he'll do in the future, of course, but at least it gives me warm fuzzies.
 
D

drrob1

Guest
On 09/25/2011 12:28 PM, Charles Dye wrote:

> ---Quote (Originally by drrob1)---
> Ah. The elephant in the room.
>
> I said in an earlier post that I have gotten very good at installing
> virtual WinXP's. That also means that I've gotten very good at
> overriding the activation scheme.
> ---End Quote---
> So this is not some philosophical opposition to activation in general; you're upset because you can't crack Rex's? Interesting.
>
Yes, Chuck. That must be it.

Whatever makes you happy.
 
It's bound to the serial number, which you obliterated when you reformatted the drive.

(This isn't any different than the normal registration; if you reformat your C: drive you'll wipe out the Windows Registry and you'll have to re-register.)
If Rex goes out of business and forgets to tell us how to generate keys for systems we may buy in the future, can't we change the new hard disk's serial number to what it was when we last installed?
 
May 30, 2008
225
1
If Rex goes out of business and forgets to tell us how to generate keys for systems we may buy in the future, can't we change the new hard disk's serial number to what it was when we last installed?
Should not be that hard. Just ask Google.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=change+hard+disk+serial+number

These hits seem most interesting:

http://www.codeproject.com/KB/system/change_drive_sn.aspx
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/20864-35-risk-change-hard-disk-drive-serial-number

(Note that the actual serial number of the hard disk cannot seemingly be changed, but the one generated when the filesystem is created/formatted can. And this is the one used by TCMD as I understood it.)