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I applied for the 90 day trial license and got an email with a download link and trial license key.

Today installed the application. On first start it wanted to be activated - of course. Now I had a few problems:

  • First I wasn't sure what to enter in the "E-Mail/Organization" field and choose a wrong email. OK, I figured I have to use the email to which I received the trial licence key.
  • Then I entered that email and the code. I got the message that the license info is correct but it could not be written to "C:\Program Files\Affinity\Photo\ ..." (don't remember full path). I tried this twice or three times with same result. No idea why this path poses a problem ... it was the default path chosen by the installer...
  • Then I thought I might need to start the application initially as admin and did so. Now the application complains again I entered the wrong values. I have already checked there are no superflous spaces and such. See screenshot.

Unfortunately the application doesn't tell my what the actual issue is. Maybe the failed requests (for which the key could not be written to the HDD) already counted towards a limit that was now exceeded? What should I do?

InvalidRegistration.PNG

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44 minutes ago, matthiasbasler said:

Then I thought I might need to start the application initially as admin and did so. Now the application complains again I entered the wrong values. I have already checked there are no superflous spaces and such. See screenshot.

If the application has already processed the product key for the trial successfully, you do not need to (and cannot) enter it again. Rather, you click on "Continue Trial". The only time you enter a product key again is if you choose to purchase, and then you get a different, non-trial, product key.

When you start the application, how many days does it say you have left in the trial.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 2004 (19041.388),
   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 1.8.5.703 and 1.9.0.734 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.8.5.703 and 1.9.0.734 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.8.5.703 and 1.9.0.742 Beta.

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On the dialog that comes up first when starting the application it asks me if I want to enter a product key or test it for 10 days. I assume that if I click on "Start my test period" then it will go into the normal 10 day test period without the 90 day extended test license. => OK, I clicked on "Start my test period" and it says "0 Days left".

Now I have an idea what might be the issue. Some years ago I already tested Affinity Photo when it was released for PC. So I guess I simply cannot do another test with the new version in order to check if the issues I had back then have been resolved... At least I cannot do it on this machine, it seems.

I wonder if Serif really thinks I should never test their software again, because I certainly will not buy it without knowing that the RAW processing workflow meanwhile lives up to my expectations.

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7 minutes ago, matthiasbasler said:

Now I have an idea what might be the issue. Some years ago I already tested Affinity Photo when it was released for PC. So I guess I simply cannot do another test with the new version in order to check if the issues I had back then have been resolved... At least I cannot do it on this machine, it seems.

Your use of a Trial a few years ago would not impact your use of a Trial now. You can get a new Trial with each new major version (that is, if you had a Trial with 1.5, you could get a new one with 1.6. If you had one with 1.6, you could get a new one with 1.7. Etc.)

So something odd is happening.

The "0 days left" could mean that either you first activated it over 10 days ago, or it could indicate that since the first time you activated it your system clock (date or time) has moved backward. A few users recently have had that problem when using Network Time Protocol (NTP) to set their clocks, and experienced an issue with different NTP servers giving different results which falsely triggered the appearance that the user was trying to cheat and run the Trial longer by resetting their clock. Perhaps you've had a similar problem. If so, getting your clock set correctly may resolve it; it has for one or two other users.

Or, perhaps it is in some way related to your problem with getting the license.xml file properly written. A few users have also reported that issue recently, but I haven't seen any definitive answer from Serif yet about that.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 2004 (19041.388),
   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 1.8.5.703 and 1.9.0.734 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.8.5.703 and 1.9.0.734 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.8.5.703 and 1.9.0.742 Beta.

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A big thankyou for your attempts to help. Being able to test every major version once is actually what I expected from other software - and what makes sense imho.

I can rule out the first things you brought up:

  • I got the license email about a month ago, so even if the time started from there (which I don't think) I would have like 60 days left.
  • I only installed the new version on the day I posted this ticket and thus did not have any activation attempty earlier.
  • I did not manipulate the system clock and as far as I can tell the clock in Windows was correct all the time.

So I hope Serif can shed some light on the issue. If I need to provide some log files, let me know.

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Hi matthiasbasler, sorry for the delayed reply.

Can you check to see if you have a licence.xml file in C:\ProgramData\Affinity\Photo\1.0 ?

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6 hours ago, Leigh said:

Hi matthiasbasler, sorry for the delayed reply.

Can you check to see if you have a licence.xml file in C:\ProgramData\Affinity\Photo\1.0 ?

Indeed it is there, created and modified on 2020-05-09, the day when I tried to activate the 90 day test licencse.

It contains the correct product key and email address as shown in the first screenshot. Compared it again with the license key email I got.

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Thanks for getting back to me and checking ProgramData. Well, it's definitely not been 90 days yet. Can you try renaming the Licence.xml to Licence.xml.old to see what happens when you next launch the app?

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1 hour ago, Leigh said:

Thanks for getting back to me and checking ProgramData. Well, it's definitely not been 90 days yet. Can you try renaming the Licence.xml to Licence.xml.old to see what happens when you next launch the app?

History repeats itself ...

The funny thing is, the application did write the new license file as seen on the screenshot. But maybe it is not complete?
Also funny: The dialog title says "Invalid details", but the dialog text says the product key is valid. Maybe you know how to interpret this... I don't.
If I confirm the dialog I am back at the product key dialog.

I closed the dialogs, deleted the license file again and started the procedure over again, this time running the application as admin user.
Same result.

(Win10 Home, 1909 update, default installation path, nothing fancy imho.)

ProblemsWritingLicenseFile.png

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Thanks for trying this. It seems like it's a permission issues on the folder in ProgramData. Can you try renaming the 1.0 folder to 1.0.old and try running the app again but not using Run as Admin?

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Same result, as expected.  I mean, running it not as admin was what I initially did ... and it did not work back then.
This means: Folder is created, license file is created, message about writing problem pops up. License file is not recognized: Dialog querying me about whether I do have a license comes up on next start.

I repeat my earlier question: Are there any log files which might help you finding the root cause of this issue?

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On 6/4/2020 at 11:49 AM, matthiasbasler said:

I repeat my earlier question: Are there any log files which might help you finding the root cause of this issue?

No log file, sorry. This is a permissions issue - can you remember if you ran the installer as Admin?

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On 6/9/2020 at 3:40 PM, Leigh said:

Can you remember if you ran the installer as Admin?

I am sure I didn't. But the installer itself triggers the Windows UAC dialog which requests for admin permission, so it gets the required permissions anyway.

Just for completeness, I uninstalled Affinity Photo and re-installed it in a folder outside the somewhat protected "c:\programs" folder, in C:\Affinity\Photo. But the result was just the same: The program claimed it couldn't write the license (although, again, it did write the XML file). Maybe it wants to do something with the file afterwards and fails to do so?

I also wonder if there's a timing issue in the application, so the program tries to access the license file when it is actually still in use by another thread or something of this sort. Maybe related to the fact that i have a very fast Samsung SSD960 Evo (NVME) inside the notebook? Just thinking loud. (In terms of permission issues, I simply cannot see that I have special circumstances on my machine. So to me this seems unlikely unless lots of other people have the same issue.)

I don't think I want to pursue this issue any further. I actually spent more time on this problem than I intended to spend for the whole test.

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Sorry for the delay in replying and the additional information. Normally the "The product key is valid, but there was an error writing the licence file" is resolved by running the app as an Admin, so it's strange that you're still getting this issue. I can understand your frustration in trying to get the app working correctly :( If you have some spare time and feel that you would like to try again, you could try temporarily creating a new test account on the machine to see if it works in that account - it can be deleted when no longer needed. You could perhaps take some screenshots of the permissions for licence.xml file, it might provide some useful information.

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