A topic I feel strongly about is trial-ware limitation. The most used solution these day is time limitation, and I hate it.

On the MacSB mailing list:

Hi all,

I’ve got a client who really wants me to work up an expiring trial-ware system
for one of their

However, I have to say that I’m always really wary of such solutions. I regard
them as easily
hacked (vs., say, a build that just doesn’t contain certain features) and
bypassable; therefore,
I usually try to steer clients away from them, and don’t use them in my own

But, I’ve known these people a long time, and don’t want to just give them a
“gut reaction”
answer. I thought I’d ask here first to see if anyone has any real-world
experience in favor of
either solution.

For that matter, if anyone is willing to discuss how they created a good
expire-ware solution,
I’d love to hear about it.

Many thanks,


My reply:

I don’t like either expiring demos nor feature limitation because of the following reasons:

Expiring demos: Easily hackable (easiest to hack, infinite demos). Say a user tries out V1.0, but doesn’t like it. When V2.0 comes out, he hears good about it, but can’t try it and therefore will not buy it.

Feature-limited demos: Can’t try out the full product.

What I prefer, and what I do is Nagging.

It works surprisingly well. It’s timeless, and annoys the hell out of the future customer without impairing functionality.

There’s different kind of nagging:

-iGetter/Ambrosia-style nagging. You gotta wait for a minute or so before being able to use the software.
-Exces-style nagging. A nag comes up periodically. The user can immediately close it, but it comes up in front-most ever so often.
-The 3rd nagging style is where a window is constantly open (user can’t close it) reminding the user to register. That’s IMHO the most annoying one.


This entry was posted on Wednesday, August 8th, 2007 at 2:04 pm and is filed under Apple, English, Internet, Programming. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
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