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Thread: New 3DFA registration policy

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  1. #1
    Senior Member kusco's Avatar
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    New 3DFA registration policy

    Ever since 3D Flash Animator was first released in the year 2000, we have had a simple registration policy - once you've paid for registration, upgrades to new versions will always be free.

    Anyone who purchased version 1.0 seven years ago can still request a free registration number for version 4.x

    Other products charge for upgrades for significant new versions, but 3DFA releases new versions regularly, so one-off upgrade fees would be inappropriate.

    At the end of October though, 3DFA.com will be implementing a registration time limit.

    Soon, when you pay for registration, you will be entitled to free upgrades for a period of 2 years after purchasing. After that, you will need to re-register.

    This new policy will apply to existing users. So if you purchased more than 2 years ago, you might be asked to re-register before receiving any more ‘update registration’ numbers from our website.

    At the same time, exporting to the Flash 8 format will soon be free. We will only be charging for Flash 9 export, which is required for the 3D features and advanced actionscripting.

    If you have any concerns or comments about the new policy then this is the time and place to express yourself before anything changes.
    Last edited by kusco; 10-14-2007 at 04:34 AM.
    Cheers,
    kusco
    (3DFA Support Team)

  2. #2
    Senior Member SirN's Avatar
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    I do understand that it cannot be an free upgrade forever policy.

    I will certainly buy a new 2-year registration, I would wish for:
    an more solid user enviroment When version 5 comes I wish it would stand with full functionallity in v5.0 at least 6 months or just an fast v5.01 released or something... Just my 5 cents on the matter.

    On the other hand it's a lot to be said about constantly getting version updates with fixes and new functionallity... It's more alive, and it's perhaps better... It also chases the software pirates away a bit.

  3. #3
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    "On the other hand it's a lot to be said about constantly getting version updates with fixes and new functionallity... It's more alive, and it's perhaps better... It also chases the software pirates away a bit."

    I guess, but its also what drives people to become pirates, i bought 3dfa because i believed i would be supported for as long a i required. I understand the need to make money from the program but 3dfa could also do with becoming more wide spread, and wowing existing customers is what leads to new customers being referred.

  4. #4
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    I have no problem to pay re-registering if it gives me more features,.. 2 years sounds ok.. depends ofcource how much it is for 2 years I'd like re-registering price to be little lower than initial purchase price but if features match the price... no problem with $50.

    Related story about "yearly cost"... I use the 3impact 3d game library for a "hobby programming", I purchased it few years ago. (3.xx version, $100, with one year updates free, after that $50 / year update fee ) No problem there, but some time wents and I lost intrest + some difficulties in my art pipeline, so I did not update the product after one year. Still, couple of years went and product was updating enough to justify the update price.. so it started to be interesting again

  5. #5
    damned...
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    hello all,
    When I bought 3DFA, it was written "Upgrades are free for registered users. " then, for several years, not any development was done, no news, no bugs were fixed, NOTHING !I still use it and am glad to see that several new features are developped. BUT ! Still a lot of bugs not corrected, and a 0 value documentation with no examples, no explanation about how to use the new features.

    When I bought this product, price was ok for me, with the feature "Upgrades are free for registered users. " Now you want to change that, that is not FAIR ! If I change my computer, I would like to get a registration key without having to pay a new fee.
    You can maybe do it for the new coming users, not for the existing one because it was not specified in the initial contract.
    I tested several features and did report it to the support team (with my original name) and a special "price" for this kind of users must exist too, not only for the new that come and see a great tool only now !
    That's my idea.
    Hope several old users think the same and that 3DFA team will take into account this answer.
    Last edited by Glops; 10-15-2007 at 07:36 AM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member kusco's Avatar
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    As previously mentioned, 3DFA's Flash 8 export will be made free.

    The difference between Flash 8's Actionscript 2 and Flash 9's Actionscript 3 is so significant, that to begin with, we considered having two separate products.

    Fortunately, we managed to successfully merge the two formats. No other toolmaker will probably ever attempt this. Only 3DFA translates AS3 language into AS2 bytecode.

    Flash 9 itself uses separate incompatible project formats for AS2 and AS3. Flex is Adobe's only true AS3 product. Flash 9 is still limited in many ways by its roots in AS2. Other Flash tool vendors like Swish will be forced to release entirely new tools for AS3.

    We haven't released our final Flash 9 functionality yet, and 3DFA's free Flash 8 features will continue to be developed over the coming years. So in this respect, we will have kept our promise of free upgrades.

    Existing customers will only be asked to pay for what is essentially an entirely new piece of software. If you don't see any value in 3DFA's new Flash 9 features, then you don't need to re-register. You can continue to export your projects using the Flash 8 format. There is no real moral issue here.

    By re-registering every few years, you'll be helping to ensure that 3DFA continues to develop new features that are worth paying for. When the software stops paying for itself then we’ll have to stop developing it. And if that ever happened, rest assured that the final version will be freeware.

    The advantage to you of us changing our registration policy and releasing the Flash 8 features for free, is that the community of users will grow significantly, and therefore, so should the community support.
    Last edited by kusco; 10-15-2007 at 10:24 PM.
    Cheers,
    kusco
    (3DFA Support Team)

  7. #7
    damned...
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    I have nothing against paying a fee for your work (if not too expensive) and if the version is stable, and samples and documentation are updated.
    Show us how to use the new features with action script 3 samples, how to use the transmit. Stabilize the version before to ask the existing users to pay for features that "nobody" can use.
    And, if you change the registration algorithm...don't forget to allow a user to use the 3DFA program on a USB key. I would like to use my software everywhere because I paid for it, without having to ask a registration key. I have no fixed PC at work, and when I have 5 minutes, I cannot test 3DFA or use it for my home work because I cannot play with it and its all features. And that's really not cool.
    But continue, 3DFA is on the right way !
    Last edited by Glops; 10-16-2007 at 07:03 AM.

  8. #8
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    Good point glops, that has really wound me up about the registration process, i'm not always in one place and its annoying when i have to email off for a serial each time i format my pc. Surely in addition to the current method you could add some sort of feature to call home and check the email address no matter what computer its running on.

  9. #9
    Senior Member kusco's Avatar
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    One of the unfortunate reasons for changing the registration system is because many registrations, older registrations in particular, are being abused.

    There are cases where entire villages in China are using a single registration. Or more commonly, where companies around the world are operating dozens of computers on a single license.

    We need to put some limit on the number of times that you can change your computer. If you need to use 3DFA on more than one computer, you can do that using our existing system. You just need to apply for a new registration number each time. This is very easy to do, so there are no grounds for complaining about inconveniences.

    If you are asking for a single registration to allow you to instantly use the software on any computer you like, then that is simply not practical. We may as well just post our own cracks on PirateBay.

    There are only two choices. You can have strictly registered software under full-time development, or freeware that is going nowhere.

    Having said that, as i said before, a large part of the software (Flash 8 export) is becoming freeware. And as was mentioned before, we are open-sourcing the interface code, allowing users to create their own elements, features, actions, actionscript classes, etc.

    So no matter what happens, 3DFA will always be under community development now. You should expect to see hundreds of new elements and features appearing over the next few years. And ultimately there should be no current or future Flash feature that 3DFA users cannot immediately implemented themselves.

    Our developers hope to be able to focus their development efforts more on the core of the application.
    Last edited by kusco; 10-16-2007 at 09:15 PM.
    Cheers,
    kusco
    (3DFA Support Team)

  10. #10
    damned...
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    I understand your point of view, but, imagine..I buy a new 2 years registration...I got a new release with new features after 1 year 11 months...one month later I have a new pc, or I work in another company, or...do I need to pay again for a registration ? It's hard to believe..may be this version was enough for me and I don't plan to buy a new future release but still want to use my software !! will that be possible if I change my PC ? etc

    I have other tools like Revolution IDE (www.runrev.com" that I paid (price is more expensive than 3DFA), and I can use it everywhere. And I will never give my registration key on a site or give the software to other people. I can give them the link and they can download it, test it and eventually buy it !
    And with your system, I cannot use 3DFA everywhere, and since the begining, as I work far from my home, with pc from the customers, I cannot use it when I want. that's really not cool.
    Please think to users like me that are not pirats, that are using 3DFA from a long time, and would like to use a software not only 10 mn a month at home because they cannot use it at work (I work in several companies) . I'm sure you can understand my point of view and that you can try to propose something with your new registration process.

  11. #11
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    Your new registration policy is not very good. What happens if there are no updates or bug fixes within the 2 year period?
    It would be better to charge for major updates, like from version 4 to version 5 and only for the price difference between the to versions. I hope you are planning to charge more for version 5.

  12. #12
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    I can understand the need to implement this new policy. I'm a little torn on this issue. I can see the need and wonder why it wasn't implemented sooner. But, when I bought the product I was under the impression that this was a forever upgrade allowance. Ok, with that said, I still have an issue that when I have to reload the core of my software, because of some corrupted system software or a bug in the system, that I need to reload along with it 3DFA, which dosn't call my computer by the same "computer number". For some reason my computer ends up with a different number, even though it's the same computer reloaded with the same system software to get it back to factory specs. so that the machine runs normal again.

    Most commercial software gives you a key and says have fun this is your software to load on this computer again and again if it breaks down and provides free upgrades to fix bugs. You only pay for the real big and major upgrades. Of course, now the bigger software companies,like Adobe, are making sure that you unistall your software (unlicense the software to that machine) or it will only give you a limited amout of times to install it before it says the licence to use that software is all used up.

    I guess what my point is, there should be a similar direction in how the licence is applied. Give one unique licence that can be reapplied, but tracked if it appears on more than one machine. I have heard of some companies (though I don't know if it is true) even having the abilty to disable the software on those machines if they are found to running more than one copy.
    I would like to know that the copy I bought is mine to use with a key that will work each time. The major upgrades understandable. Though, I do feel a little let down when I feel that the upgrades are not continual as I thought they would be. May be the new upgrade policy should apply only to new users.
    PW Ihms

  13. #13
    Senior Member kusco's Avatar
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    I am very sorry that there are so many complaints. And yes, there is room for improving the ease with which registered users can freely share their registrations across many different computers. But as for charging for major upgrades, thats just not our style.

    We will be implementing the new policy. We may lose a few old customers, but we will probably be gaining millions of new users. Ex-customers will always be able to upgrade to new free versions of our software. And those who can afford a meager $50 every two years will get a premium product.

    In the end, once the version 5 changes are finished, i think everybody will be happy.
    Cheers,
    kusco
    (3DFA Support Team)

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