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Tom Riggs

Demo mode: really? why why why?

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12 minutes ago, azslow3 said:
On 10/15/2019 at 1:09 PM, scook said:

Currently a version of CbB is ~155MB so, keeping a couple of version online does not take much space.

"My" copy of 2019.9 is 600MB...

The full install includes a lot of extra files such as plug-ins, utilities, samples and other support files. The actual DAW is much smaller and that is what the Launchpad copy process works with; that is the source of the ~155MB figure.

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4 minutes ago, Craig Anderton said:

As much as I'm not an iLok fan, these days if I have the option to do iLok, I've found that makes it really easy when it's time to re-install software.

Till it is broken/stolen/forgotten... Sure, not as bad as iLok could, which can be down for a day, without excuse, explanation or reply from support.

For dongle methods, I think Waves is reasonable: no need for dedicated dongle, lost/forgot USB stick - no problem, once per year restore all licenses in 1 minute. Remembered where this USB is? No problem! Reset "once per year" counter in 1 minute.

But I will try to continue selecting my "goto DAW" with completely offline key authorization. Fortunately that is still possible.

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17 hours ago, azslow3 said:

But I will try to continue selecting my "goto DAW" with completely offline key authorization. Fortunately that is still possible.

OK, what is your "goto DAW", if not Cakewalk?

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On 10/16/2019 at 7:47 PM, Noel Borthwick said:

There are no plans for BandLab to charge for the core application. Meng has said on many occasions that BandLab believes in removing barriers to music creation.
We may charge for add on's at some point.

I would love to see some additional prochannel modules or synth updates but for now the core improvements are great.  

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21 hours ago, azslow3 said:

Till it is broken/stolen/forgotten... Sure, not as bad as iLok could, which can be down for a day, without excuse, explanation or reply from support.

For dongle methods, I think Waves is reasonable: no need for dedicated dongle, lost/forgot USB stick - no problem, once per year restore all licenses in 1 minute. Remembered where this USB is? No problem! Reset "once per year" counter in 1 minute.

I totally agree that Waves' method is better than iLok. Unfortunately, Waves is the only company that uses it.

And I hear you about broken/stolen/forgotten...I doubt I would use iLok-protected stuff for live performance. I keep the iLok inside my studio computer to protect it from the outside world.

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5 hours ago, WalkerTalker said:

OK, what is your "goto DAW", if not Cakewalk?

Unfortunately after Sonar X3  Cakewalk has introduced online authorization. I still have X3 installed, also that is the last version which I have manage to run under Wine (I develop under  Linux, with cross compiling).

And now there is  one single DAW which still use completely offline authorization (apart from Ardour, which is not universal). All other want authorization, including free Cakewalk and Traktion. Fortunately, this DAW is multi-platform (Linux version is still "beta", but I have found it way more stable than Waveform "releases"). And it took the lead as an accessible DAW (sharing that with Samplitude and ProTools on Apple, many years Sonar 8.5 had this position... lost with switching to X1 GUI). I in fact had no choice, taking my wished into account 😉

I still launching Sonar or CbB when I want my control surfaces do what I want them to do. And will continue at least till AZ Controller 2 is ready...

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THis is assinine... really unacceptable...

I went to a studio with no internet to record this morning and this demo mode idiocy was sprung upon me.

Real bad form.

This should be re-thought immediately. This is enough reason to bail on this program.

Disappointed.

And now that I have internet I'm getting an error message saying that updates have failed and I have to reinstall manually.

Edited by Vilkas

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57 minutes ago, Vilkas said:

THis is assinine... really unacceptable...

I went to a studio with no internet to record this morning and this demo mode idiocy was sprung upon me.

Real bad form.

This should be re-thought immediately. This is enough reason to bail on this program.

Disappointed.

And now that I have internet I'm getting an error message saying that updates have failed and I have to reinstall manually.

You only have to install the Bandlab app "manually" (all 20 MB of it).

You only need to update the Bandlab app every six months to avoid demo mode. Small price to pay for a competitive DAW you are receiving free.

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Craig, Noel, or those who actually know, how do Bandlab financially benefit from

coding and recoding updates for the Bandlab Assistant and it's demo mode?

And please, just facts or numbers, not spin based on 'gee, it works for me' stories.

Thanks, and happy Thanksgiving, and  safe travel!

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First of all, I have zero business affiliation with Cakewalk, so any answer I would give to this kind of question would be speculation, based on my overall experience industry experience. As to why BandLab keeps updating Assistant, it does more than just update Cakewalk. I assume the updates are done for the same reason any apps are updated - clean up loose ends, add new elements, etc.

Edited by Craig Anderton

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FWIW, I ran into this too this time around.

assistant can not update itself ("something went wrong")

downloaded and installed assistant manually.

Everything from that point on went fine though.

 

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On 11/27/2019 at 3:37 PM, chuckebaby said:

You only have to install the Bandlab app "manually" (all 20 MB of it).

You only need to update the Bandlab app every six months to avoid demo mode. Small price to pay for a competitive DAW you are receiving free.

Was it advertised someplace that this awesome, and free, program will lock up if not updated?

I didn't see it... my bad perhaps.

Software that locks up when you use it offline is a bad idea, Chuckie.

I have a couple albums done on Cakewalk, and have had paid versions of Sonar 1 and 3. So all respect to the people who work on the program.

My issue was with the disorganization and with wasting  studio time. And, if it has been well-advertised that this software will lock up if you don't go online with it,  I even offer my apologies. And, now I know.

Good jamming to all. Peace.

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Activation and updates have always been a requirement. Its also mentioned again in this months release notes.
If you had been regularly updating you would have got an update that changed the application to warn you well before it required re-activation.The software doesn't "lock up". It will give advance notice when reactivation is required. It can be activated without updating the Cakewalk application itself, by using BandLab assistant's reactivate feature.  It's recommended to update as well since there are often important changes and bug fixes. The process is even more streamlined as of this version. 

The only requirement for this free software is that it is updated periodically. Its a small price to pay for a completely free professional DAW.
One of the reasons why we require periodic updates is that we continue to improve the application and cannot support multiple versions of the application in the field. Only the most current version is supported.

Independent of Cakewalk itself, the BandLab assistant app also needs to be periodically updated. Its a web based application and its normal for those to require updates whenever the web back end is changed otherwise it would stop working. We live in a connected world today and completely offline use is less prevalent with most modern applications. Despite some of the pessimistic views on this, there are many ways in which this benefits customers. Users get responsive updates and we as a company get important feedback about how the application is being used, allowing us to improve the application for all.

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I think the words you were looking for was "Gosh. Sorry for the inconvenience, and thanks for using Cakewalk since its been a paid program."

I do IT security, and my policy is to not needlessly update things that aren't broken. Updates are more and more of these types of corporate-convenience updates, and not real consumer assistance or program feature updates. And if the only way I would have known about the pending freeze in demo mode was if I had been updating things that I do not need to update, surely you see why I did not get that note.

But thanks for pointing out its a connected world. Its also a surveillance world, a spyware world, an unnecessary update world, and a privacy violating world, hence my own policies regarding not downloading unnecessary updates.

Case in point... last summer, a wedding photography company updated all their firmwares before a major event because of the manufacturer's "urgent security update" emails. It never occurred to them that the urgent update was not because of protecting consumers, it was urgent because of a manufacturer dispute with Adobe, and this update made certain RAW files incompatible with Adobe Lightroom.  So again... I advise all my clients to eschew unnecessary updates.

Frankly, I advise everyone to not simply do what they are told. Also, everyone should be aware of the high cost of "free".  I suppose now that this is an issue, I need to actually read your privacy policy to know if you are adding anything besides audio software into your program. Any other caveats or small prices to pay for this free software?

But again, now I know your software will stop working if I don't put my production laptop online.

Thanks again for the program. I think its fantastic, and I'm looking forward to creating more with this wonderful product.

Peace to all...

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On 11/29/2019 at 9:32 AM, Craig Anderton said:

First of all, I have zero business affiliation with Cakewalk, so any answer I would give to this kind of question would be speculation, based on my overall experience industry experience. As to why BandLab keeps updating Assistant, it does more than just update Cakewalk. I assume the updates are done for the same reason any apps are updated - clean up loose ends, add new elements, etc.

'Why' was not part of my question, but your speculations are no doubt

often appreciated! I'm asking an accountants question about

financing the coding work needed for maintaining the current regimen of

login, registration, and authorization, and if a user can't complete that,

having a demo mode to fall back on, adding a bit more complexity

to the codebase...

and all this maintained on a product that has no commercial price tag.

So again, how do Bandlab financially benefit from

coding and recoding updates for the Bandlab Assistant and it's demo mode?

Cheers

 

Edited by Frank Cheney

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On 10/16/2019 at 6:47 AM, Noel Borthwick said:

There are no plans for BandLab to charge for the core application. Meng has said on many occasions that BandLab believes in removing barriers to music creation.
We may charge for add on's at some point.

 

That is expected and the error code will reflect that.

Hey, Noel - it might make things a lot easier for folks who are not running online, for whatever reason (like yesterday, for me, as I was recording remotely), if there was some sort of pop-up toaster message giving us some number of days advance warning that we were going to need to re-validate ourselves - like a 10-day out warning that validation would be required in 10-9-8 etc., days, where we/they wouldn't be suddenly surprised that we went into demo mode, when getting instant internet access could be difficult or impossible.

That validation date must be already being examined, to decide that we are out of scope on the date - so it would just need a bit more logic at that point, to compare that validate-required date - 10 or whatever, and then start popping up a message - 4 days left until required validation, etc....

Perhaps something like that would make it less frustrating.

Bob Bone

Edited by Robert Bone
Added a bit of suggested logic

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From the release notes for 2019-09

Quote

Cakewalk must be periodically activated via BandLab Assistant, but will no longer switch to demo mode during a session. A notification will remind you 14 days before the application needs to be reactivated.

 

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Even more coding hours wasted hampering the free use of a free software.

If the Cakewalk daw were actually free, with no extra hoops to jump through, the hoops

man-hours could be invested in creating saleable sound libraries, saleable instrument presets,

saleable educational videos, upgraded and new plugins etc etc etc

 

Use the profits for charity, if profits aren't the prime motive for all this.

Just don't be wasteful of the coding man-hours, which are too great a resource to squander

just because...

 

People are clinging on to Bandlab Assistant like it's a freaking life-raft,

when they are firmly on dry ground.  This is not the 'good connectivity'

that Noel mentions, and on top of that, it's being  poorly handled.

My opinion is that the assistant is a superfluous loser, serving no evident purpose,

while there is low hanging fruit for Bandlab to harvest elsewhere.

Cheers

 

 

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On 11/30/2019 at 3:43 AM, Frank Cheney said:

So again, how do Bandlab financially benefit from

coding and recoding updates for the Bandlab Assistant and it's demo mode?

Good question, actually!

And although I'm not an employee of BandLab, I'm an enthusiastic user of their products and platforms, and not only Cakewalk. I think I can shine some light on how it all fits together.

Technically, BandLab Assistant doesn't have a "demo mode," but I understand what you mean.

BA is a lot more than simply a way for users to download, install, and register Cakewalk, although you might get the idea that's all it does from reading this forum. After all, this forum is for discussing Cakewalk. But if you take 5 minutes to navigate around BA, you'll notice that the Cakewalk-specific parts of it are just a fraction of its functionality.

Yes, it downloads and installs CbB, and keeps it registered, and it also allows you to download and install the Cakewalk add-ons like the Theme Editor and Studio-Instruments. But right up above that, you'll see a panel that says "BandLab," with a button to click on the BandLab website. It serves as a gateway to the BandLab website. Not that a smart user needs that, but it may serve to direct a curious user there. That's the advert, I suppose.

Next, if you click on the Sounds tab, you'll see that it takes you to a screen where you have access to thousands of free loops for download.

The final tab is the most important one, as it takes you to a screen that provides an interface to upload sound files to your Bandlab account, and another to go directly to the BandLab browser-based DAW. Down below those is a list of your BandLab projects which you may manage from BA. I've already used my BandLab account to share audio files. It's great, no limit on the storage, supposedly.

Under the hood in BandLab Assistant are various mechanisms that allow Cakewalk to upload and download audio files/stems/tracks from your BandLab account. This functionality will surely be expanded in the future.

Importantly, BA also allows BandLab to know how many of the downloaded copies of Cakewalk are actually installed, unlike other freeware licensing models which would not provide this information.

Those are just some of the things that BandLab Assistant does for the user and for BandLab. If you can't figure out how they might at least someday make money from any of that, you're probably still expecting them to go broke because they're giving Cakewalk away for free.🤣

CbB goes into a mode where it won't save projects if it either A. hasn't had its subscription renewed over the internet in the last 6 months or B. hasn't been installed properly using BA on an internet connected system.

Why it does this I can only speculate, but numero uno guess is that BandLab Assistant does all of the above stuff and they want people to at least look at it once. As for the 6 month validation, I suspect that they just want to know if people are using it, much like TapeOp wants to know that copies of their magazine are still being read, so I have to re-up every year. BandLab are always improving the thing, and they probably want people to go online and see that there's a new version available with new collaborative features that they may choose to install or not.

An important thing is that Cakewalk is one of BandLab's 4 DAW's, the one that is still least connected to the online service. BA is the connector. Easier ways to get projects back and forth between them are doubtlessly on the horizon. A Cakewalk that could be separated from BandLab Assistant would go against those plans.

I hope this helps.

P.S. As Elon Musk's recent experiences with steel spheres and "unbreakable" windows reminded us, before any important gig, take your equipment on a dry run beforehand. Don't wait until you show up at the studio to run your DAW only to discover that it uses a free subscription license that must be renewed at least once every 6 months. I also defer my updates on critical path systems, but as we see, in these times, leaving your computer unplugged from the internet is not a "safety measure."

P.P.S. I agree that the process by which BandLab Assistant updates itself seems to happen too often and also fail too often, making the user go to the hassle of downloading it from the website. It's broken. They're trying to fix it. I hope. When it's working smoothly, I'm fine with it in principle. I do understand there are people who want/need to keep their systems mostly offline and I have had long conversations with them about working out strategies for that.

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