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Greg Hile

Purchasing App from the Microsoft Store

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Yesterday I purchased Publisher through the Microsoft Store. The app has crashed every time I opened it. I get a BSOD and a cldfit.sys failure error message. I tried repairing, resetting, uninstalling and reinstalling, all to no avail.

I then deleted the app again and downloaded a trial version directly from Affinity and it seems to be working as it should. I then asked Affinity to honor the Microsoft Store purchase and give me credentials to convert my trial into a full license. Affinity says, without any explanation, that it "would not be possible" and that "[w]e are not able to provide for customers who have bought from other companies."

Aside from the fact that we all know it IS possible to simply issue me a product key, does anyone have any suggestions on how to fix this mess? I provided Affinity with proof of purchase, my computer is fully up-to-date and has never had any of the issues caused by the Microsoft version of the Publisher app.

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Problems with cldfit.sys has been reported before in these forums.

You may need to remove a Windows update to fix the problem

See this thread for starters and post back if you do not resolve the issue

https://forum.affinity.serif.com/index.php?/topic/99825-windows-10-bsod-with-kb4517389-installed/

 

I'm not on Windows 10 so I have not personally experienced the problem


Due to the fact that Boris Johnson is now our Prime Minister, punctuation, spelling and grammar will never be worried about ever again.  We now have far bigger problems to be concerned about.

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Yes, I saw the previous posts but nothing has worked so far, except for downloading and installing Affinity's trial version. My biggest issue is the lack of customer services on Affinity's part. They claim it's all Microsoft's fault but the original files that Microsoft is selling through its store had to come from somewhere, and it seems that somewhere is Affinity. So why couldn't Affinity stand by its product or at least say they would work with Microsoft to resolve the issue? Strongly considering moving back to Adobe. I've got a major product due by Christmas and don't have time for this shit.

BTW, I loved your comment about Johnson, but, really, now, you think you've got problems?

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Affinity did reach out to me again with apologies and a little more substance, but it was essentially only to refer back to the previous posts and to say they were waiting for Microsoft to offer up a fix. I am a Microsoft Fast Insider currently running Windows 10 Insider Preview 19018.1 (vb_release), and while I am aware of the comments and issues with the recent Windows 10 update that's not what I am running and I never experienced any of the issues previously reported with regard to that troubled release anyway. With the exception of the Microsoft Store version of Publisher, I still have not experienced any of the issues described, and I have recently installed other software, both from the Store and directly from the developer, again without incident. The trial version of Publisher I downloaded directly from Affinity also worked just fine.

Microsoft offered to have their people look into it further, or refund my purchase of Publisher, which is what I did. I was a long-term user of the Adobe Creative Cloud and dropped it in favor of Affinity after I retired and just didn't use CC enough to justify its expense. However, I am now embarking on a project with a relatively short time frame, such that I need reliable software and I just don't have the time or inclination to mess with all this. To that end, I downloaded a trial version of CC and now must decide which direction to go in -- Affinity or Adobe. Right now, I am leaning towards heading back to Adobe.

I have read about Affinity Photo being dropped from the Microsoft Store because it did not meet the requirements for the new line of Surface hardware. I have no idea whether this might be related to the Publisher issues but I might suggest a more proactive approach on Affinity's part than simply waiting for Microsoft to provide a fix would be a better approach.

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51 minutes ago, Greg Hile said:

but I might suggest a more proactive approach on Affinity's part than simply waiting for Microsoft to provide a fix would be a better approach.

But consider that:

1. The Affinity applications cannot, themselves, cause a BSOD, and

2. We have seen other instances where recent Windows updates have caused issues in cldflt.sys (a Microsoft program) in various customer configurations, running various applications, and even caused failures of various parts of Windows 10, itself.

I, personally, have seen this on my system. Install a particular MS update, and start getting consistent BSOD's running Affinity applications. Remove the update, and the failures stop. Put it back on, they start again. Take it off, they stop.

I think it's perfectly fair to blame MS and want them to fix their problem.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1909 (183623.476),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop:  8GB memory, Intel Core i7-3625QM @ 2.30GHz, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.514 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.514 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.523 Beta

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Okay, fine. Maybe it's all Microsoft's fault, but they solved their problem, which was me asking for a refund. My problem was solved because I can now either purchase the product through Affinity or switch back to Adobe or whatever. The only people left with a problem is Affinity because they have a product that doesn't work for some end-users and a totally self-inflicted reputational loss. All I suggested was that they might want to be a bit more proactive in dealing with Microsoft. I don't know what your official connection is with Affinity but you certainly haven't helped the situation or the company any.

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4 minutes ago, Greg Hile said:

. I don't know what your official connection is with Affinity but you certainly haven't helped the situation or the company any.

No official connection at all, as you can tell from the lack of a Staff badge on my posts or my forum profile. I'm just a user who had seen what appears to be the same problem as you, and seen a solution that works: removing a Microsoft update.

An alternate solution found on the web is to stop the cldflt.sys service, but I haven't tried that one myself, yet.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1909 (183623.476),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop:  8GB memory, Intel Core i7-3625QM @ 2.30GHz, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.514 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.514 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.3.481 and 1.8.0.523 Beta

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Sorry but I am not willing to start rolling back Windows updates or turn off services for the sake of a problem that has already been resolved to my satisfaction. If I want Publisher I’ll just get it through Affinity instead of Microsoft. However, Unless something radically changes in the next few days, I think I’ve been convinced to go the Adobe route. 

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On 11/8/2019 at 10:36 AM, Greg Hile said:

Yes, I saw the previous posts but nothing has worked so far, except for downloading and installing Affinity's trial version. My biggest issue is the lack of customer services on Affinity's part. They claim it's all Microsoft's fault but the original files that Microsoft is selling through its store had to come from somewhere, and it seems that somewhere is Affinity. So why couldn't Affinity stand by its product or at least say they would work with Microsoft to resolve the issue?

Serif has no way of resolving issues like this because just like with Mac apps bought through Apple's store, they have no way of determining what apps a user bought through Microsoft's store. This is because for security & privacy reasons neither Apple nor Microsoft share any personally identifiable purchase information with any third party vendor (not just Serif/Affinity) that sells their apps through either of these two stores.


Affinity Photo 1.7.3, Affinity Designer 1.7.3, Affinity Publisher 1.7.3; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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I agree concerning Microsoft or Apple security and privacy reasons, which is why I provided Affinity with proof of purchase. Again, that’s not so much the issue as was Affinity’s refusal to even try to work with Microsoft.

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6 minutes ago, Greg Hile said:

I agree concerning Microsoft or Apple security and privacy reasons, which is why I provided Affinity with proof of purchase. Again, that’s not so much the issue as was Affinity’s refusal to even try to work with Microsoft.

Assuming it was a form of proof of purchase acceptable to Serif, how specifically would you have wanted or expected Serif to work with Microsoft to resolve your issue with your MS Store purchase?


Affinity Photo 1.7.3, Affinity Designer 1.7.3, Affinity Publisher 1.7.3; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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There were a couple of options. One, since the trial version did work, Affinity could have just issued me a product key. Two, since we know I was not the only person who had this problem, Affinity could have reached out to Microsoft, and, from a customer relations standpoint, told me they were doing it. I am no software developer but it did seem somewhat strange to me (and to my son-in-law who is a software developer) that one version of the software caused so many problems and the other presumably identical product did not, nor did anything else.

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5 minutes ago, Greg Hile said:

I am no software developer but it did seem somewhat strange to me (and to my son-in-law who is a software developer) that one version of the software caused so many problems and the other presumably identical product did not, nor did anything else.

To get this out of the way, I do NOT work for Serif nor am I an apologist.

I'm going to dive in on this part only because it may be useful for any non-developers reading, either for this specific topic or generally.

App Store versions (both Microsoft and Apple) of any app are NOT identical to self-distributed versions of those same apps in two critical ways:

  1. There is extra code involved to support the delivery of the app (security & receipt checking, etc) through the respective app store as well as potentially dealing with the environmental differences because of delivery method (see the next point).
  2. The "rules" of what an App Store version of an app can do by default are increasingly different than what a self-distributed app may do, predominantly centered around asset and resource access security. "What can you open?", "Where can you save?", "How do you talk to other apps?", "What hoops do you have to jump through to achieve a particular action?", etc.

Neither of these is meant to be a "get out of jail free" card for Serif should there be bugs or uncaught misbehaviors due to restriction cases that weren't clear. However, the nature of software development is that the results are imperfect and the more variations there are of an environment, the more likely there will be errors that are only discovered "in the field". Serif, I'm certain, tests for as many of these as reasonable and when something breaks or is missed, works diligently to identify, isolate, and correct those issues.

Add in the nature of App Store business agreements (which effectively are determined by MS and Apple, NOT Serif) and it's understandable that some audiences may feel slighted when there are issues. It's unfortunate, both that those feelings are incurred and that the remedies are fewer for Serif when working with the App Stores but that's the state of the situation in cases like these.


https://bmb.photos | https://vocallength.com | https://khonsuapp.com Focus: The unexpected, the abstract, the extreme on screen, paper, & other physical outputTools: macOS (Primary: Mojave, MBP2018), Canon (Primary: 5D3), iPhone (Primary: X), Epson

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Thank you, Brad, for your very helpful and insightful comments. My point is that it would gone a long way for Affinity to have said what you just said up front and then take at least some proactive measures to deal with the problem instead of just saying they were waiting for Microsoft to fix it. Again, what I’m mostly peeved about is their self-inflicted reputational sabotage.  

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2 minutes ago, Greg Hile said:

My point is that it would gone a long way for Affinity to have said what you just said up front and then take at least some proactive measures to deal with the problem instead of just saying they were waiting for Microsoft to fix it

While I can understand and appreciate this, Greg, I doubt there's anything Serif could have done except explain it better. 

I cannot speak on the MS side but as an Apple developer, had this situation been on the Mac side, there's no one for the developer to talk to. Apple specifically tells developers they CANNOT initiate refund requests. The user/customer MUST do so. I suspect it's similar on the Microsoft side.


https://bmb.photos | https://vocallength.com | https://khonsuapp.com Focus: The unexpected, the abstract, the extreme on screen, paper, & other physical outputTools: macOS (Primary: Mojave, MBP2018), Canon (Primary: 5D3), iPhone (Primary: X), Epson

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Once again, I didn’t ask Affinity to refund my purchase. That was for Microsoft (which it did). What I asked Affinity to do was honor the faulty Microsoft purchase by giving me a product key to convert the trial into a full version. Certainly Affinity had the ability to do that.

I do find it hard to believe there is no way for a developer to communicate with the seller about the defective roll-out of the developer’s product. Not talking about refund requests.

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6 minutes ago, Greg Hile said:

I do find it hard to believe there is no way for a developer to communicate with the seller about the defective roll-out of the developer’s product. Not talking about refund requests.

Given the ways the App Stores intentionally separate developers and purchasers with basically the only line through that medium being reviews and developer responses, it's challenging.

There is, as you found, a way to interact with Serif directly here and hopefully your feedback about the content of their responses will be taken into consideration for future messaging.

I don't think I can add anything useful further to this so cheers for now!


https://bmb.photos | https://vocallength.com | https://khonsuapp.com Focus: The unexpected, the abstract, the extreme on screen, paper, & other physical outputTools: macOS (Primary: Mojave, MBP2018), Canon (Primary: 5D3), iPhone (Primary: X), Epson

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