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Make a Trial version

Questions about NeoBook PlugIns

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Make a Trial version

Postby Alex » Tue Aug 21, 2012 2:45 am

Hello,

I would like to make a trial version of my application by using date analyze. Is there a plugin or something else to be sure that the user is not trying to change the time/date and that make the application runing fine in trial mode for 30 days for example?

Thanks


Alex
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Postby dec » Tue Aug 21, 2012 6:09 am

Hello Alex,

What do you need exactly? I mean that NeoBook have actions to deal with datetime values, and, the best plugin for NeoBook (of course npUtil, you know :)) have other datetime related actions that maybe can help you too. My npCust plugin, on the other hand, allow you to prepare "serials" in order to use with your publications. I think with this and other actions, plugins (npCiph, npConf, for example) and your imagination you can prepare a trial version of your publication.

But remember that any "trial system" can be cracked. Just take a look at Microsoft, Adobe or whatever you want. For this reason I think that the best way is to worry about your real users, not for users that cannot want to pay for your work. Of course you can worry about to make a system more or less secure, but in my opinion (and not only my opinion) the best thing is to dedicate the time to make happy your real users, and not to try to avoid any possible crack, since this appear imposible and can consume lot of time and resources. Now maybe you can specify some particular details in order to try to help you.
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Postby Alex » Tue Aug 21, 2012 6:26 am

Hi Dec,

Thanks for your answer.

I have a pub that I want to limited in time. I mean, after 30 days, the software close and ask for a serial number.

For the serial number, it's ok, I just log to a server, but for the limited time, that is my problem.

If I use the math function to calculate and dertermine if the 30 days are finished, then the user can just change the windows date and always use the software. How can I do?

Thanks


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Postby dec » Tue Aug 21, 2012 6:31 am

Hello Alex,

Sincerely, I have no fear for users who can change the system date: if you do this, you get lots of problems, not only with a program, but with the system itself. In other words, is not practique to change the date of the system, because this is a source of problems. So, if this is your problem, in my opinion you can pass away and continue to develop your publication without worry about. Of course this is my self-effacing opinion.
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Postby Luiz Alfredo » Tue Aug 21, 2012 6:33 am

Maybe you could put the "First Use Date" and "Last Use Date" in a Registry Key and do not run the app if the Date is before the "Last Use Date". I know the user can find the registry key, but most users, (and real customers, as Dec has stated) will do not have that knowledge.
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Postby dec » Tue Aug 21, 2012 6:38 am

Hello,

Luiz Alfredo wrote:Maybe you could put the "First Use Date" and "Last Use Date" in a Registry Key and do not run the app if the Date is before the "Last Use Date". I know the user can find the registry key, but most users, (and real customers, as Dec has stated) will do not have that knowledge.


Here is a practical possible solution and not mine. Thank you Luiz. ;)
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Postby Alex » Tue Aug 21, 2012 7:08 am

Hi,

Yes that could be a solution.

Does anybody has an other idea?

Dec, I think that people change the date, I tried Norton, and it has a date control.

Thanks


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Postby dec » Tue Aug 21, 2012 7:23 am

Hello,

Alex wrote:Dec, I think that people change the date, I tried Norton, and it has a date control.


And you can convert such people into customers? I think not. But, anyway, maybe the Luiz sugestion can be good. You can use the registry or the file system (remember to use the user application data folder, for example, never use folders that may require administrative privileges to write on them) using some "ofuscation techniques". This mean that you don't write a value on the registry named "StartDate", but "FormPosition", for example, and also encrypting the data before saved on the registry or a file.
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Postby Alex » Tue Aug 21, 2012 7:24 am

Hi,

Thanks, I will try with that.

Thanks


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Postby dpayer » Tue Aug 21, 2012 8:22 am

Luiz Alfredo wrote:Maybe you could put the "First Use Date" and "Last Use Date" in a Registry Key and do not run the app if the Date is before the "Last Use Date". I know the user can find the registry key, but most users, (and real customers, as Dec has stated) will do not have that knowledge.


This brings up a question.

Where is a suitable place in the registry to put such information? If it is in your software's key (HKCR/Software/MySoftware/mydata ,etc), they can manipulate the data, also, if you give a 30 day trial, they can simply blow away that section and reinstall.

What about the idea of creating a GUID ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Globally_unique_identifier ) and using that as a storage place in the HKCR/CLSID area ( http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library ... 24(v=vs.85).aspx ) or the CID or CID.local areas?

This way data is 'relatively' hidden. You could put in a start date that could not be 'easily' erased or blown away. If they try to blow away any visible registry data, when they go to install, your app can then find any previous install efforts and deny the reinstall.

I recently installed CS5 from Adobe on a corporate computer I use. I installed an app to record all Registry changes done in the install. CS5 made 6400 registry changes!!!! You will never find all their install information by looking in one place.

What do you think of this concept?

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Postby Alex » Tue Aug 21, 2012 8:31 am

Hi Dave,

Thanks for the answer.

I didn't understand, do you have any example?

Because I don't understand why I should put it in a protect storage if the user can delete it?

Thanks


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Postby dpayer » Tue Aug 21, 2012 9:07 am

Alex wrote:Hi Dave,

Thanks for the answer.

I didn't understand, do you have any example?

Because I don't understand why I should put it in a protect storage if the user can delete it?

Thanks
Alex


Alex, if we put all information about an application in one place in the registry that the user has access to (such as
Code: Select all
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\NeoSoft\NeoBook 5
etc.) such as when they registered the program, then all they have to do is delete that registry entry when the 30 days is up and they can re-register the program for another 30 days with no problem.

If when they register the program, you also hide that information in a part of the registry that only has GUIDs
Code: Select all
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{37BEC31C-370A-4324-8933-50E30B1C9901}
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{385A91BC-1E8A-4e4a-A7A6-F4FC1E6CA1BD}
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{379E501F-B231-11D1-ADC1-00805FC752D8}

then it is not easy to search for your data. You could have keys that are not obvious names about registration or your program name. In those keys, you could place the registration date. Have your program check for the install date when it starts up, etc. If the trial period is over and the person uninstalls the program, it will not uninstall the registry entry.

If they install again, your app will see that it was installed before because the registry entry tells them in install date that is more than 30 days old. You can redirect to a purchase page on the net.
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Postby Alex » Tue Aug 21, 2012 11:29 am

Hi Dpayer,

Thank you very much for your answer.

What I don't understand is how you get the numbers "HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{379E501F-B231-11D1-ADC1-00805FC752D8}" ?

Is there a special command to have it?

Thanks


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Postby dpayer » Tue Aug 21, 2012 11:51 am

Alex wrote:Hi Dpayer,

Thank you very much for your answer.

What I don't understand is how you get the numbers "HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{379E501F-B231-11D1-ADC1-00805FC752D8}" ?
Alex


Alex, CLSIDs or GUIDS are unique identifiers. When they are generated, there is only a one in hundreds of billions of a chance you will get duplicate IDs.

Here is a a link to a google search to help you find a utility/website to generate GUID or CLSIDs

I do suggest doing a bit of research on the Registry so you feel confident to make changes.

David
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Postby dec » Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:08 pm

Hello,

If you like, remember that npUtil have an action in order to generate GUID's.
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Enhance your NeoBook applications!
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