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Trial Key Internet Requirement - Preparations for a session



So I've been doing my research, reading reviews, watching youtube videos and I'm super excited to start trying out BackyardEOS and do my first widefield sessions in the next few days. Right now I'm just shooting with a Canon 5d Mark II and some decent L series lenses.

Bottom line, the real reason for this post... I'm running a Windows 10 virtual machine under VMWare on a MacBook Pro and everything seems to be great. I build the VM, installed BackyardEOS, typed in my trial key and I'm learning and experimenting with the features... but there is one major problem. I attempted to open BackyardEOS with the laptop in "airplane mode" basically to simulate the total lack of connectivity I'll have in the "almost dark" sites I plan to get to as soon as these clouds clear... but the software won't open and warns me that trial keys require internet access. I'm *super* glad I tested this out before I left as I know there isn't even cell signal out there to tether my iPhone.

Is there any way to provision a trial key that isn't going to require internet access to open the software? Does the full version require internet access, or only the trial versions?

Thanks in advance!



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What you are asking is up to the authors, but it would surprise me if they responded positively  to your request. The reason that the trial version requires internet access is because some people have tried to cheat the trial license by setting their system date back to a time when the license was active. This forced the authors to implement an internet-based solution to validate the license every time the program is launched.. This is not the case with the Classic or Premium purchased license. That is worth repeating...If you have installed a paid license, either Classic or Premium, BYE does not need an Internet connection to work.

If you have validated that BYE works for your workflow and with your camera then I would suggest paying the modest amount for the Classic license. Then validate your permanent license before you take it out to an off-the-grid dark sky site.

I would also say that there have been instances where BYE has asked me to re-validate my license when I went to the field. The important thing seems to be that you have changed the timezone. It doesn't need to be connected to the internet, but you may need to re-enter your license key and identifier (username) so it may be useful to have that information in a text file on your computer.


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I completely understand that as I actually work for a software development company myself... and you're right, the cost is peanuts compared to the amount of gear I'm driving with it and the cost of the laptop it's running on!

I think I'll take it outside tonight a little closer to home and give a try where I do have some internet access... it won't be the best test shots, but at least it will be something. I'm just getting started, so I'm trying to learn not only the shooting, but how to use stacking, dark, flat and bias frames, etc...

The only thing I might suggest that would be kind of cool for the future is something I did with some of our mobile apps with trials like that. Make it so that you can open the app, validate the trial, then look at some other way of counting running seconds like the number of frames being taken, delays, shutter times, etc... and just make it a counter regardless of the actual clock time. Then have it only be able to run for 24 hours worth of seconds or something. This way, even if someone tries to cheat, they're going to have to have the application open for long enough to take a ton of frames anyway... so they might be able to squeeze a few freebie days or something, but it might be a decent compromise.

Another thing we've done is use a SHA1 key to encrypt the last system time an application sees and store it in an internal licensing database... and since nobody, other than Doc Brown, has actually invented a time machine... if the app sees time go backward (which could be based on UTC to avoid time zone changes), than invalidate the license immediately and make them hit the internet again.

Just my two cents... but so far from all of my research and very limited daytime functionality testing so far, BackyardEOS is amazing!

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