The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 All  This Thread  Reviews  Gear Database  Gear for sale     Latest  Trending
What is the big deal about dongle hate?
Old 15th June 2009
  #1
What is the big deal about dongle hate?

I'm a bit confused about this. I've been using Cubase4 for two years on my main machine and a laptop. I find that having to use a dongle is no big deal. Yet, I've read people who hate dongles with so much venom that you'd swear that the only thing worse than a dongle is total nuclear warfare. 90% of the time I never even see it, as it is plugged into my machine. If I need a quick remote recording on my laptop all I have to do is pull the thing out of my main machine and make sure I don't lose it.

The only downside I see is if you lose it or somehow break it and can't get it replaced. What's the deal here? What am I missing?
Old 15th June 2009
  #2
Moderator
 
TonyBelmont's Avatar
 

It's the internet and people like to complain.
Old 15th June 2009
  #3
Gear Addict
 
tlennon's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyBelmont View Post
It's the internet and people like to complain.
LOL Tony.
Old 15th June 2009
  #4
ark
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kpaw View Post
The only downside I see is if you lose it or somehow break it and can't get it replaced. What's the deal here? What am I missing?
If you don't think that's enough of a downside to avoid, I doubt I can convince you. Nevertheless, I will add that my laptop has three USB ports, and dongle manufacturers often design dongles so that they will refuse to work with a hub. If I have software from two vendors that use two different dongles, that leaves me a single USB port for everything else.

So as far as I'm concerned, the optimum number of dongles is zero. So far I have had no difficulty maintaining that state of affairs.
Old 15th June 2009
  #5
Lives for gear
 
deuc647's Avatar
its cuz it takes up another USB u could have tied up already, i remember when i bought the SSL bundle waves recommended that i use that license on its own dongle, that 40 that could have went to mogami instead of hosa lol.
Old 15th June 2009
  #6
Gear Addict
 

Given a choice, and all else being equal or thereabouts, the app that's shackled to the dongle will lose out to the unencumbered app
Old 15th June 2009
  #7
Lives for gear
 
macr0w's Avatar
 

I don't have any problem with the dongle.

I don't travel around and I don't use a laptop.

My machine has 12 usb ports.

I've still got the original ilok that came with my ptle system when I upgraded from a 001 to a 002 at least 5 years ago.

I don't know, I guess Tony's right.

It's the internet.

But of course this is just my experience. heh
Old 15th June 2009
  #8
Gear Addict
 
greyskull's Avatar
beats me...
Old 15th June 2009
  #9
Lives for gear
 
JustinAiken's Avatar
 

Complaints fall into these categories:

-High resale fees ($25 for ilok apps!)
-Takes up a USB port on a cramped laptop
-Break easy
-Horrible situations if it breaks or gets stolen and is full of thousands of dollars of software
-iLok/PACE drivers are like a virus on the machine

Not everybody complains about all of them... I only complain about 1 and 5 myself.
Old 15th June 2009
  #10
Lives for gear
 
Mike Brown's Avatar
 

I -LOVE- having a dongle.

I just call/fax the list of plugins I want installed the day before a session... then I show up with my iLok and have everything I have at home PLUS the gear & plugins the studio has.
Old 15th June 2009
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Washington's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kpaw View Post
I've read people who hate dongles with so much venom that you'd swear that the only thing worse than a dongle is total nuclear warfare.
As Tony said, it's the internet. What people mean when they howl for murder, whether it be about dongles or mixing ITB, is that it can be "rather annoying". It's the style of the place, we can get used to it while not necessarily jumping on the bandwagon. Oh, well...
Old 15th June 2009
  #12
Gear Guru
 

methinks they doth protest too much

reminds me of the student who wrote on his course evaluation form:

"I hate how he takes attendance at the end of the class"
Old 15th June 2009
  #13
Lives for gear
 
James Lehmann's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kpaw View Post
What am I missing?
You are missing the other 1568 threads in which people volunteer their opinions on dongles.
Old 15th June 2009
  #14
Lives for gear
 
ScottBrio's Avatar
Bought a PT Plugin Dongle (whatever they're called, can't remember) and it stopped working after 2 weeks.

Bought Logic 7 and somebody stole it at a party thinking it was a USB flash drive... they probably got it home and threw it out because it didn't do anything.

Besides all of this, I have a PowerBook G4 with TWO usb drives... the last thing I need is a dongle...

Can you tell I'm jaded?

*edit* if "Dedicated" USB ports could be had with USB hubs, this would be a non issue, but things like my MBox only run right out of the onboard USB.
Old 15th June 2009
  #15
Why hate dongles? Because they're abusive copy protection that has been rejected by users of every other kind of software there is - piracy in graphics software is FAR more rampant than in pro audio but you don't see Adobe and Autodesk using it. Why? Because their customers won't stand for it.

Why don't I like dongles? Because I don't like having my ability to use the product I paid for tied to a little device that is easily lost or stolen, can fail (all active electronic devices can fail), costs extra (companies used to GIVE you the dongle - now you have to buy it), and lends itself to insane protection schemes such as that currently used by Waves that can result in extreme cases of having to pay for re-registering your new product if you blow the initial installation - paying a second time. I also assist companies in instituting "forced upgrade" policies - where installing the latest version of one of their products disables all older versions of their products, forcing you to pay again for what you already paid for - even if there's no benefit to the new version beyond the "upgraded" protection.

Because if your laptop with your dongle gets stolen most companies will not re-authorize your software on a new dongle and system because "there's already one copy in use".

Because if something happens and the company does actually accept that you have a legitimate problem and agrees to help you're still out of business for several days instead of just being able to re-install on a new system.

There are lots of other reasons as well, but you'll have to look them up in those other threads......

DON'T BUY DONGLE PROTECTED SOFTWARE - IF WE REFUSE TO USE IT, IT WILL GO AWAY.

Old 15th June 2009
  #16
Moderator
 
TonyBelmont's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Eppstein View Post
DON'T BUY DONGLE PROTECTED SOFTWARE - IF WE REFUSE TO USE IT, IT WILL GO AWAY.

No they won't... it will just limit the tools these people have access to if they don't want to use them.

You can't even open a pro tools session without an ilok.
Old 15th June 2009
  #17
Gear Nut
 
olivialand's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kpaw View Post
The only downside I see is if you lose it or somehow break it and can't get it replaced.
Hold on a second, there. Are you telling me that if I put a license for a software program on a dongle, and that dongle breaks, that I can't return the broken dongle to the software maker (to prove that it broke and that I didn't give it to someone else), and then just buy a new dongle device to put the license on (which I assume would cost under $50)? Are you saying that I would, instead, have to buy the software (probably costing hundreds of dollars) again from them?

If this is true, this is astonishing, and really abhorent.

Or maybe I just misunderstood you.
Old 15th June 2009
  #18
Lives for gear
 
Mike Brown's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Eppstein View Post

DON'T BUY DONGLE PROTECTED SOFTWARE - IF WE REFUSE TO USE IT, IT WILL GO AWAY.

?

Not gonna happen.
Old 15th June 2009
  #19
Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyBelmont View Post
No they won't... you just won't be able to use the best tools available.
Of course it will - if sales drop the companies will respond - just like they did in the graphics and business software fields. We only stuck with dongle protection through our own complacency.

I've been guilty of it too - I bought Nuendo - but never again. I'm currently looking for a dongle- free replacement. I've been considering Sonar (the guys at Cakewalk I talked to at AES assure me they will NEVER use a dongle), but I'm waiting to see the new PreSonus StudioOne program that's due out at the end of the summer - it looks like a much easier interface and it does VST3 and switches from 32 bit to 64 bit float on the fly, even under a 32 bit OS. Projected list is around $400.

Which reminds me of two other big reasons why dongles suck:

A) they drive up the cost of software development and make the product more expensive for the consumer.

B) they put a big load on the system and waste a lot of cpu and clock cycles with incessant calls to the dongle hardware. The dongle can, under certain circumstances, hog as much as 30% of you available cpu. Without the dongle programs would run significantly faster and you could run more iterations of plugins.
Old 15th June 2009
  #20
Gear Addict
 
mitchiemasha's Avatar
 

I lost my dongle when I moved but lucky for me I found it again 3 weeks later. I was just about to buy a new cubase when I found it in the jeans I was wearing when I moved. funny enough where I had put it to be safe so I didnt lose it.

now I keep it on a very large keyring.
Old 15th June 2009
  #21
Quote:
Originally Posted by olivialand View Post
Hold on a second, there. Are you telling me that if I put a license for a software program on a dongle, and that dongle breaks, that I can't return the broken dongle to the software maker (to prove that it broke and that I didn't give it to someone else), and then just buy a new dongle device to put the license on (which I assume would cost under $50)? Are you saying that I would, instead, have to buy the software (probably costing hundreds of dollars) again from them?

If this is true, this is astonishing, and really abhorent.

Or maybe I just misunderstood you.
It will take you at least several days, and often as much as several weeks to get it sorted out. If the dongle actually breaks it's not so bad - the worst you're looking at is shipping for the broken dongle to the company plus their response time - but if you have authorizations from multiple companies it could be a problem.

However if the dongle is lost or stolen you have a much bigger problem, as certain companies refuse to authorize another dongle if there is still a functioning one with authorizations on it in existance - they regard it as the same as if you had sold the software with the dongle and will not re-authorize.

Yes, it's abhorrent.
Old 15th June 2009
  #22
Gear Addict
 
mitchiemasha's Avatar
 

Quote:
new PreSonus
not seen this, sounds intresting.
Old 15th June 2009
  #23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mayor999 View Post
?

Not gonna happen.
Only if complacent fools continue to sell the rest of us out.

I remember in the '50s and '60s the southern white supremacists said we'd never get rid of the Jim Crow laws.

Same exact thing.
Old 15th June 2009
  #24
Quote:
Originally Posted by mitchiemasha View Post
not seen this, sounds intresting.
Yeah, check it out on their website.....
Old 15th June 2009
  #25
Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyBelmont View Post
No they won't... it will just limit the tools these people have access to if they don't want to use them.

You can't even open a pro tools session without an ilok.
Which is totally stupid because you can't run PT without the hardware, anyway.

One of the many reasons I don't run ProTools.

There isn't one dongle protected program that can't be replaced by a non-dongleized program of equal quality or a hardware device (in the case of Waves' X-Bass)
Old 15th June 2009
  #26
Gear Addict
 

The funny part is that dongles are ment to make life harder for the pirates but instead it's the ones who pay for their software that suffers. Ironic.
Old 15th June 2009
  #27
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Because I don't like having my ability to use the product I paid for tied to a little device that is easily lost or stolen, can fail (all active electronic devices can fail),
I've run various software programs and plugins for well over a decade using various types of copy protection, including various types of dongles, and the biggest problems I've had have been related to hard drive failures. I've had one problem relating to a dongle and the license was easily replaced.

And I've never lost one, or had one stolen...I can see how theft can happen, but I have a hard time imagining how someone could just up and lose something so valuable...but if they do, I don't see how the software or dongle manufacturer could be to blame.

Quote:
costs extra (companies used to GIVE you the dongle - now you have to buy it),
Dongles were never free...one may have been included with the software you were buying, sure, but you were still paying for it. Nowdays I get a little annoyed when I purchase a product that comes with an iLok, specifically, as I have so many of them already...

Quote:
and lends itself to insane protection schemes such as that currently used by Waves that can result in extreme cases of having to pay for re-registering your new product if you blow the initial installation - paying a second time.
I'm not aware of any such scheme...as far as Waves is concerned, you're covered for all upgrades for a year after you register your software, and at worst after that you'd have to pay an upgrade fee, which is not nearly as much as buying the product again...but maybe there's a particular situation I'm not aware of?

Quote:
Because if your laptop with your dongle gets stolen most companies will not re-authorize your software on a new dongle and system because "there's already one copy in use".
Well, sure, that seems reasonable to me...especially as it may well be that the person who stole your laptop knows exactly what they were stealing.

Even so, though, how is the dongle to blame? I would say that depends more on the software vendor than the fact that their software is authorized to a dongle. There are certainly companies who use dongles for protection who will give you new authorizations if your dongle gets stolen, and there are certainly those who don't use them who won't give you new authorizations if the laptop your software is on is stolen. I'd imagine that companies that aren't helpful in those situations that use dongles still wouldn't be helpful in those situations if they stopped using dongles tomorrow.

Quote:
Because if something happens and the company does actually accept that you have a legitimate problem and agrees to help you're still out of business for several days instead of just being able to re-install on a new system.
That also doesn't relate specifically to dongles as well...it could be the same with some other sort of authorization, and if you use a dongle you may well be up and running the same day if you have a spare dongle around. Again, it depends more on your specific issue and software manufacturers that are involved.

Quote:
Are you telling me that if I put a license for a software program on a dongle, and that dongle breaks, that I can't return the broken dongle to the software maker (to prove that it broke and that I didn't give it to someone else), and then just buy a new dongle device to put the license on (which I assume would cost under $50)?
Typically no, that's not a problem...if the dongle breaks you can usually send the dongle to the manufacturer of the dongle (rather than of the software) who can verify that those licenses are valid.

Quote:
I remember in the '50s and '60s the southern white supremacists said we'd never get rid of the Jim Crow laws.

Same exact thing.
Please, please tell me that you did not just compare dongles to Jim Crow laws?

Quote:
You can't even open a pro tools session without an ilok.
Which is totally stupid because you can't run PT without the hardware, anyway.
First off, you can open up a Pro Tools session (LE, at least) without an iLok...you just can't run any third-party plugins in that session that do use an iLok for copy protection without an iLok.

And, regardless, why is that "stupid"? A huge part of the reason that Digidesign adopted the iLok was because of the number of people who were using cracked plugins on Mix systems...which had an entry price of about ten grand, and required that hardware to run...which just shows that even people who have the means are more than willing to spend money on what they have to, but if there's a way to steal stuff they will.

Quote:
There isn't one dongle protected program that can't be replaced by a non-dongleized program of equal quality or a hardware device (in the case of Waves' X-Bass)
That depends entirely on your perception of what "equal quality" is. Way too subjective to make a blanket statement like that.
Old 15th June 2009
  #28
Lives for gear
 
Mike Brown's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Eppstein View Post
Only if complacent fools continue to sell the rest of us out.

I remember in the '50s and '60s the southern white supremacists said we'd never get rid of the Jim Crow laws.

Same exact thing.
Are you kidding?

You compare software liscensing to Jim Crow laws?

Complacent fools? Grow up.

An iLok is essentially an IDEAL situation for me.

I could not do my job as a audio engineer as effectively & efficiently as I do now WITHOUT the ability to load any software I have a liscense for onto any computer in any studio I want and authorize it INSTANTANEOUSLY by just inserting an iLok dongle.

From all your posts I can't decide if you are serious or if you are just trolling these forums for laughs.
Old 15th June 2009
  #29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Revmen View Post
The funny part is that dongles are ment to make life harder for the pirates but instead it's the ones who pay for their software that suffers. Ironic.
My point exactly.
Old 16th June 2009
  #30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Duardo View Post
I've run various software programs and plugins for well over a decade using various types of copy protection, including various types of dongles, and the biggest problems I've had have been related to hard drive failures. I've had one problem relating to a dongle and the license was easily replaced.

And I've never lost one, or had one stolen...I can see how theft can happen, but I have a hard time imagining how someone could just up and lose something so valuable...but if they do, I don't see how the software or dongle manufacturer could be to blame.


Dongles were never free...one may have been included with the software you were buying, sure, but you were still paying for it. Nowdays I get a little annoyed when I purchase a product that comes with an iLok, specifically, as I have so many of them already...


I'm not aware of any such scheme...as far as Waves is concerned, you're covered for all upgrades for a year after you register your software, and at worst after that you'd have to pay an upgrade fee, which is not nearly as much as buying the product again...but maybe there's a particular situation I'm not aware of?


Well, sure, that seems reasonable to me...especially as it may well be that the person who stole your laptop knows exactly what they were stealing.

Even so, though, how is the dongle to blame? I would say that depends more on the software vendor than the fact that their software is authorized to a dongle. There are certainly companies who use dongles for protection who will give you new authorizations if your dongle gets stolen, and there are certainly those who don't use them who won't give you new authorizations if the laptop your software is on is stolen. I'd imagine that companies that aren't helpful in those situations that use dongles still wouldn't be helpful in those situations if they stopped using dongles tomorrow.


That also doesn't relate specifically to dongles as well...it could be the same with some other sort of authorization, and if you use a dongle you may well be up and running the same day if you have a spare dongle around. Again, it depends more on your specific issue and software manufacturers that are involved.


Typically no, that's not a problem...if the dongle breaks you can usually send the dongle to the manufacturer of the dongle (rather than of the software) who can verify that those licenses are valid.


Please, please tell me that you did not just compare dongles to Jim Crow laws?


First off, you can open up a Pro Tools session (LE, at least) without an iLok...you just can't run any third-party plugins in that session that do use an iLok for copy protection without an iLok.

And, regardless, why is that "stupid"? A huge part of the reason that Digidesign adopted the iLok was because of the number of people who were using cracked plugins on Mix systems...which had an entry price of about ten grand, and required that hardware to run...which just shows that even people who have the means are more than willing to spend money on what they have to, but if there's a way to steal stuff they will.


That depends entirely on your perception of what "equal quality" is. Way too subjective to make a blanket statement like that.
Well, obviously you're an apologist for the dongle companies.

It's pretty obvious that you never work where your system is exposed to the public, or even to numbers of musicians - things walk off, expecially small things. I'm glad you never lost one or had one stolen - you're lucky.

Concerning Waves - their "upgrade policy" is a sham, considering that they are on a one to two year upgrade cycle, which means that if you but their stuff shortly after it comes out you get no upgrades. And forcing you to upgrade ALL your Waves plugins just because you bought a new one of a newer software generation is unconscionable and dishonest. Should I have to replace all my compressors in my rack simply because I want to add a new piece of hardware? This is especially egregious since Waves has not actually upgraded the actual PROGRAM of many (perhaps most) of their plugins for a long time - the only "upgrade" is the new version of the copy protection!

If I have a non-dongleized program and my laptop gets ripped I can simply re-install. The worst that might happen is that I might have to email a scan of my software package to the company to get a new online registration - but that's not likely as I never use online registration because my DAW is not on the internet - ever - and I keep records of my authorization codes, usually written on the CD with a Sharpie.

Yes, I absolutely did compare dongles to Jim Crow laws. Pro Audio people are the "N-words" of the software market and I, for one, happen to resent it deeply. You should too.
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump