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JeremyWolf
9th December 2006, 19:52
I've been using PDS 3.0 for a few months now and really like it. I converted over from another development platform. I have had really bad experiences with hardware keys in the past and PDS seems to follow that history unfortunately.

My key died today when I was trying to make an update to one of my programs. Tried it on my laptop which also has PDS on it and it too no longer detects the key. I did a fresh install on another computer which has never had PDS and it too does not recognize the dongle. Windows detects the key as an unknown device on all computers.

I'm not stuck and all the project I planned on finishing for a customer this weekend is now on hold until I can recieve a replacement key which will probably take over a week since I'm in the US.

P.S. I've read all the threads about the common sparkey issues and none of them cover my issue. This use to worked fine for several months and this morning it will no longer detect and light up.

Tim
9th December 2006, 20:25
You have my sympathy. I really wish I could help, this is the situation were having a spare key would save the day.

Unlike most times I disagree with the Crownhill policy on this, if the compiler is a vital part of a company business then you should be able to have a fall back safety standby. If this involves being able to buy a spare key then I think it would be a good idea.

The policy would be you have up to 2 keys on the one licence (extra key is paid for) should you lose or damage one of them then that's it, no more keys.

I notice another compiler is offering this, it makes sense. If you pass one to a friend and he loses it you would have to pay for a new compiler should something happen to yours.

The other option would be to ensure a very rapid replacement service were you paid in advance to have one sent next day but were refunded for the replacement when you sent the original faulty one back.

dmTulsa
9th December 2006, 21:17
I agree with Tim. I live in fear that my key will die at a critical point, like this weekend when I'm working 24/7 for a project due on Monday, and tired to the point of asking stupid questions here, sorry again.

I'd be more than willing to pay for an extra key. If one of the two dies, send the dead one back and get a replacement but keep on working. Two good keys is the limit, past that I agree that you pay for a full copy.

I bought two copies already just for that reason but the company paid, most do not have that option

JeremyWolf
10th December 2006, 02:07
Having two keys per license would be an absolute life saver in these situations. I'm not sure how often these keys have died, but I carry my key with me from home to work all the time and it's probably just a matter of time until it gets damaged or lost.

Like most people I don't want to spend the money for a second copy of proton since it's all coming out of my own wallet. I'm really bummed that I'm not able to complete this project on schedule :(

cgriffin
10th December 2006, 06:46
I had a key die on me...it was a poor solder joint inside it. Since the case was also glued together very poorly, the board popped right out. The crystal was only soldered on one side.

Two issues of poor quality on one key... I guess the one thing I don't like most about PDS is the key.

Lester
10th December 2006, 14:27
Tim Suggested:
"The other option would be to ensure a very rapid replacement service were you paid in advance to have one sent next day but were refunded for the replacement when you sent the original faulty one back."

This is something that we already do, entirely at our descretion. Although you would not know it unless you contacted us by telephone or email and explained that you have a faulty key.

As i've said before, the majority - not all - comments about lost keys, faulty keys, replacement keys etc on this forum have been made by people that have never expierienced our service regards that subject. The ones that have, have aired no complaints!

joesaliba
10th December 2006, 15:57
Tim,

While I agree with you 100% there is one point that I cannot agree with you.


The policy would be you have up to 2 keys on the one licence (extra key is paid for) should you lose or damage one of them then that's it, no more keys.

Please correct me if I misunderstood you.

So if I damaged the key (the dog chewed it), then no more keys. 100% with you.

Now, lets make an example. Let say I have 2 keys.

One get faulty.

One key left. After some months it get faulty too.

I have to buy another copy of PDS?

If this is your meaning then sorry, but makes no sense.

In realty it already happened to me that the computer recognises the key but it will not compile. Sent the key and Crownhill replaced it in a super fast way considering overseas shipping.

With your statement I would like to know, if the key developes a fault it will be replaced or considered as damaged and I have one last chance before I buy another copy of PDS.

One must consider, if PDS bought a bunch of these keys, and these keys where not 100% (humans and machines are doing these keys) and a user buy a copy of PDS with 2 not 100% keys, then that user wasn't lucky?

N.B. I agree that if one has damaged the key or the dog chewed it then no more keys:) :)

Regards

Joseph

Tim
10th December 2006, 16:24
I would say that any faulty key gets replaced. If the dog chews the key then as long as it can be seen to be a Proton key then a fee to cover the replacement.

If you have 2 keys and lose both then you have to buy another copy of Proton.

Crownhill provides excellent service, If you have a problem then contact them, they are very flexible and have never let any body down.

What needs to be covered is the emergence situation. Were your making a living out of the product. It does not have to involve having a spare but the knowledge that when needed you can have a replacement in double quick time, even if that means paying for a new dongle at full price to prevent the wait for yours to get to them before they ship the replacement out. They send one out asap but refund when your faulty one is returned to them

joesaliba
10th December 2006, 16:29
Thank Tim for this clarification.

I think the need for dedicated topics is a must on this forum. I already wrote this in another thread.

This is one example. There are 10's of threads regarding this matter, one of them is mine.

Regards

Joseph

JeremyWolf
10th December 2006, 17:12
Lester, I have already sent an e-mail to support@crownhill.co.uk explaining the situation. I'm hoping to hear back from them monday since it is the weekend. Was this the correct action?

I originally got my copy from Reynolds Electronics here in the US.

Lester
11th December 2006, 14:34
Hello Jeremy. In the fisrt instance, since you purchased your copy of PDS form Reynolds ( and reynolds have been given spare keys) you shoudl contact them and they sould be able to support and if necessary send you an exchange key.

Ultimately the spare keys that resellers have been given should be shipped back to us. If they have been exhanged for faulty keys, we can then diagnose the problem, in case we were ever to have a batch issue.

If Reynolds is unable to assist we will replace your key, please let me know how you get on.

Reynolds should be able to service you a lot faster than us, as they are at least on the same continent and they carry some spare keys.

bruce
11th December 2006, 15:54
Hi Lester,

We had "1" spare key. That was sent to a customer over a year back, so we do not have spare keys at present.

Lester
11th December 2006, 16:27
Hi We have contacted Jeremy and we are shipping him a key "Express".

JeremyWolf
11th December 2006, 17:41
Spoke with Lester today and he has been very helpful. I'm very glad to see that the support is as good as I've heard :cool:

analogdevice
14th December 2006, 04:00
Do you leave the key in all the time? or only use it as you need it?

JeremyWolf
14th December 2006, 20:10
Do you leave the key in all the time? or only use it as you need it?

I use the key between 2 different computers fairly often.

I recieved the replacement key from crownhill today and it fixed the issue. I'm sending my old dead key back to them so they can do a post mortem. I'm very curious to why it failed suddenly after working great for 8 months.

analogdevice
14th December 2006, 20:21
I use the key between 2 different computers fairly often.

I recieved the replacement key from crownhill today and it fixed the issue. I'm sending my old dead key back to them so they can do a post mortem. I'm very curious to why it failed suddenly after working great for 8 months.


I see you are in LV. I once attended an exhibition there, we had a lot of problems with static.

JeremyWolf
14th December 2006, 21:00
I see you are in LV. I once attended an exhibition there, we had a lot of problems with static.

That was my first thought actually. Lester said that they have had very few instances of dead keys though. I live in a VERY static prone environment. It's not unusual for me to be able to build up a charge significant enough to jump over 1" (2.5cm). I try to be careful with grounding myself before touching sensative devices and parts.

analogdevice
14th December 2006, 21:20
That was my first thought actually. Lester said that they have had very few instances of dead keys though. I live in a VERY static prone environment. It's not unusual for me to be able to build up a charge significant enough to jump over 1" (2.5cm). I try to be careful with grounding myself before touching sensative devices and parts.


I think this is the problem. It might be a better investment to get two keys to avoid constantly switching them between computers.

Sparky1039
16th December 2006, 18:41
On a similar subject;

One odd thing I see with my Sparkey is that when I plug other devices in and out from an external USB hub, either ext powered or bus powered, the Sparkey sometimes goes on the blink. It does this with different brands and styles of hubs too, so it's not limited to just one type of manufacturer.
The LED indicator goes off and PDS can't find it when I go to compile. It seems the Sparkey is very sensitive to USB power supply glitches. Perhaps a larger filter cap on the Sparkey circuit will help deal with this transient problem. Granted it's a minor nuisance having to unplug and replug the key to reset things, but my fear is that one day it won't come back alive again. :(
Has anyone also experience this kind of behavior before?