InStep V2 License & Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)



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Trials / Licenses: Questions & Answers


Question: Can I use the same trial license on multiple computers?

Answer: Each license key can be used for 5 days (after the first use/activation) on one computer. If you have multiple computers, you can move from one machine to another and thereby increase the amount of time (though we rather you didn't). Licenses are generally valid for less than 30 days.


Question: I requested a license and had it sent to my personal email but now want to use one with my work email account. Can I do that?

Answer: It depends. You can have one license per email and per computer. So it doesn't matter how many email accounts you use, if the license is to be used on the same computer, you will only be able to use it once.


Question: I received and installed the license and then ended up not using it (or didn't try out the things I wanted to), can you send me another one?

Answer: No. That would be unfair towards those users who either planed ahead or paid for a license.


Question: I got a notification that the license was sent, but I never received one. What is going on?

Answer: Did you check your spam/junk mail folder? About 9 out of 10 requests (more like 99 out of 100) we get regarding 'didn't get a license' are simply answered by 'did you check in your junk folder?'... If you really can't find it (and refreshed your email client and waited for more than 5 minutes), send us a note and we'll look into it. But if it turns out that you just couldn't be bothered to properly check, we'll be inclined to do the same next time you have a question/bug/request/etc. If something goes wrong, please let us know, however you will get far better support if you first make sure that the 'obvious' items have been checked. Receiving information in addition to 'it doesn't work' is of course always a good starting point.


Question: Will I be able to get a new license once a new version is released?

Answer: Upon release of a new version (so going from V2.3.x to V2.4.x or at our discretion), we will reset the database that holds the user/computer information that prevents new licenses from being issued.


Question: What happened to the Free/10-Day versions/Why did the costs change for the licenses?

Answer: Unfortunately, we have received far more requests for simple support (see above) than we anticipated. Far too often were we asked to spend time answering emails related to 'where is the license' (in your spam folder) or 'I've activated it X times, why can't I activate it any more' (see limits below) that a (very) low price license started to cost us more in time than we received from the sale. Similarly for users that purchased a trial license and then requested their money back because the application didn't do what they 'thought' it would/should.
This forced us to remove the low cost & shorter term licenses so that we could focus more on getting newer features developed and support the existing users with actual support. At the same time we have introduced a one-time trial license so that users can try-before-you-buy.


Question: How many computers can I install the Trial/Temporary/Permanent key on?

Answer: You can install the Trial key on as many computers as you have access too (or how often you feel like re-formatting the machine). If we find that users start to abuse this freedom, we will take measures to prevent it, so please don't...
The Temporary Keys (limited duration use) are good for one (1) installation. If you find that the machine isn't sufficient to support your needs, we can deactivate the key and move it (in the application go to Settings>Configurations>Deactivate).
The Permanent Keys can be activated twice to allow users to move to a different machine or use two machines at the same time (home/work) or alternatively if they lose the key/machine...
We are here to help for cases where something occurs beyond your control. In those cases, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are happy to help with any request (provided it isn't something along the lines of 'I'm too lazy to look through my email, can you send me the key again').


Question: What do you do with the information I provide during the Trial request / Purchase?

Answer: We log the data, that is about it. We never have access to your credit card information so that is not part of the log. We hate getting the 'your trial has expired, please click the link to..' emails just as much as the next guy... so we simply don't do it. The email is really the only thing required during the trial request since that is where the key is to be sent. If you enter an invalid email, well, that is on you. There is a reason we ask you to enter it twice and don't allow copy-paste...
The simple fact is that we like to know who our customers are, where they are from and so that we can check on someone's history with us (did they purchase the full version, trial, etc.? When? Where are they from/What language do they speak?), beyond that we really have no use for this information.


Question: I received a key awhile ago but then never installed/activated it. Now it says the key has expired. What does that mean?

Answer: The keys have a built in expiration which is usually around 30 days or so from when it was delivered. It is expected that you activate and use the key within this amount of time. Why? Simply to prevent people from continually re-installing their OS or finding some other way around re-using the key indefinitely (such as virtual machines or some way of resetting the clock that we don't know of). That kind of behavior is a real nuisance and something we will try hard to discourage since it is essentially stealing.


Question: The application states "(xx min remaining)" in the title. Why?

Answer: The Trial Keys are, as the name implies, for trying out the application for 5 days before making the decision to buy a product. They allow users to try out the application free of charge and without limitation to what can be done as far as access to the tools/features. What they are not intended to do is provide users with a way to get small projects or odd work done for free (though that can still be done and we didn't want to be too restrictive on this policy - though we reserve the right to remove capabilities if this becomes an issue). By adding a time constraint on each session (30 minutes from when the application loads) we feel that we give users sufficient opportunity to load and work with files but not so much that very large projects can be completed (the 30 minute limitation will interrupt whatever is occurring, perhaps crashing the application depending on what it is doing).


Question: I tried to get a trial license but got a message that my email address is on a banned list. Why?

Answer: There are some services that allow users to send and receive emails anonymously. This obviously defeats the purpose of providing a key as a trial. Using this approach, people could continuously get new trial keys (well, actually not really, there is a second layer of protection, but that is a different matter). We are really trying to give users the chance to try-before-you-buy, not to allow some tech savvy users to avoid contributing to further development of the application (since, as you may have guessed, if the income drops to zero we'll stop doing this altogether which you could argue hurts everyone). Only a few commonly used email accounts are blocked this way though we reserve the right to add unruly users to a 'black list' should that become an issue.


Question: What else can you tell me about upcoming changes?

Answer: We send out occasional (and I really mean occasional, perhaps a few times a year, usually when something is big happening or changing) emails to users on a newsletter distribution. You can be added to this group simply by going to our InStep page and entering your information in the relevant field or by clicking the 'subscribe to newsletter' check box when activating a license. If you accidentally enrol, you will get the option to unsubscribe when each newsletter goes out.


Question: From the About menu I see that this is Version 2.3.10 Build 161. What do these numbers mean?

Answer: To the average user, this probably means fairly little. The Version number will follow a V2.x.y format where the y value (the revision level) is increased as we fix outstanding items that were intended for the current version (x value). The number system is perhaps a little confusing since most applications will have a version-revision-compilation format whereas ours is a product-version-revision with the (released) compilation being provided in the build number (which does not get reset; we are currently 161 published compilations into this development (though most of those were either internal or to a select group). All you really need to know is that the higher the number, the newer the application. The first number (the '2') will remain for the foreseeable future unless the application drastically changes to be a different product (which it did once where it went from being a command-only application to being a GUI driven application a few years ago).


Question: The application mentions that the files are located in the /user/me/appdata/solveering folder. But that folder does not exist.

Answer: The /AppData folder under the (normally) c:/user/current_user/ folder is hidden by default. In Windows 7 and similar operating systems you can easily access it by clicking in the title bar (where it gives you the current location) and simply type in the address you want to go to. If you are in the /current_user/ folder, simply click in the title bar (which will shorten the location display to show it in a more compact form) and then simply add the '/AppData' to the end which will then take you there.


Question: I am planing on using the application on a remote machine through my work. Can I do that?

Answer: Basically, no. The license key is set up to prevent a remote session. The intent of this is that we want to discourage corporations from buying one key and then give everyone access to the application. There are (possibly) some packages that will nevertheless allow you to do this, but that is in violation of the terms. If you have a need for such a license, we would be happy to discuss a special license key for this use.


Question: I am using this in a lab where there is no internet connection (allowed)? Will the application work or will I need to be online?

Answer: Trial licenses will not install on offline machines since the application verifies that the key is valid through our server. Full licenses can be used in such a situation however. Please contact support for assistance with setting up a license for a case like this.


Question: Does this run on Windows machines only?

Answer: The application is designed for use on Win32/64 machines. Some users have reported good performance on Mac using Parallels. We do not offer support for such installations though you are welcome to try the application in such a configuration.