Boneheaded software licensing

I paid for SoundConverter when I had my old MacBook Pro. It turns out my license is no longer valid on my new MacBook Pro because it’s tied to the Ethernet address of my old one. Furthermore, the license is non-transferrable.

This is the height of boneheadedness. No other piece of software I own wouldn’t allow me to transfer it to my new system. I could deauthorize iTunes on my old MacBook Pro and re-authorize it on the new one. Even PhotoShop let me deactivate my license on the old system and reactivate it on the new one.

SoundConverter offers no such option and no discounted registration. My old registration is now useless since I’m not using that old MacBook Pro (which I’m still trying to sell, by the way). He’s not getting any more money for me. I’ll look for different software to use instead of SoundConverter.

To quote their FAQ:

I’ve moved to a new machine, can I transfer my license?

I’m sorry if it wasn’t clear, but as described on the license purchasing page, the license you purchased is only for the machine it was purchased for. This is why the cost is so low.

My logic-board was replaced, can I transfer my license?

Yes, if you send me the service receipt and the ethernet address of the new machine (as shown in the application’s license panel).

Why should I have to pay for a new license if my logic-board went bad or Apple replaced it?

Computers destroyed in a fire, lost, broken from technical failure, etc are the responisibility of the owner. I have no automated way of verifying these claims and since my software costs so little, I cannot afford to investigate them. In the future, if Apple provides a URL which I can send an ethernet address to in order to verify that the logic-board is no longer in use due to techincal failure, then I would be happy to support automated license transfers from those machines.

Why do you use a machine specific license?

Because this the only practical way, short of spyware, to ensure that the license isn’t being pirated – potentially on many thousands of machines, which is very common (ISV who have looked into this report more than 50% piracy rate).

Sorry, but this is bullshit. Congratulations, you just lost a customer.

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