The Dark Ages get a little brighter.

Subject: The Dark Ages get a little brighter.
From: "Mark Emson" <mt -dot- emson -at- ntlworld -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 19 Jun 2002 20:19:56 +0100

Well, what a response.

Thank you to all who have offered encouragement and
advice, especially those who posted directly to my home address. I think we
ought to now let the topic drop. It's perfectly clear how absurd the company
would look, a point they took on board when I dropped over 40 e-mails on the
MDs desk.

For those who may have an interest, this is the compromise we thrashed out
today. We are buying licences for all software that is currently in use.
However for any new stuff, like the biggies of documenting software,
graphics packages etc we will only buy the bare minimum required at any one

In a bid to annoy the hell out of the various software manufactures, IT, who
despite all the wrangling actually agree that we need the tools, have
volunteered to install and de-install software on a use by use basis. I.e If
I need MegaDocublast 2000 today but someone else needs it tomorrow, I.T.
will remove it from my machine and install it on another. They'll register
it on the new machine and make sure that the software manufacturer updates
their records to reflect this change of user. Tomorrow of course someone
else may need to use it and the process will start all over again. With the
aid of a batch file they reckon they can automate the process so as to take
only a few minutes each time.

I imagine some EULAs will already have some wording that prohibits this sort
of action but we'll have to wait and see. Perhaps a futile fight but it may
make a small point.

The second course of action is to source some sort of self administered
software dongle that can be used to limit the number of copies being used to
the number of licences owned. Where either, the main software is stored on a
remote drive and will only allow so many users at a time or, the software is
installed on every machine but it goes off to check whether or not all the
licenses are in use before it activates for that session. If anyone knows of
such software please let me know.

To be fair, my company are not at all bad. It's not that they can't afford
the software it's more a case of not being taken for a ride. I'm sure we
would all feel the same if the petroleum companies suddenly stopped selling
petrol and switched to some new super fuel. Great we think, this fuel makes
us faster, quieter, and cleaner. Then we find that we need to change the
whole car to use it. In short, the improvements may be great but they're not
so good if we don't need or want them. Despite this, if I want to go for a
drive I don't get a choice about having to pay for them.

All the best,

Mark Emson

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