I have had quite a journey wrt getting a machine on which to run M15. After many months of trying other computers, I have installed it on a desktop to which I have infrequent access, and it has actually run for two days in a row!
In my discussions with PTC, there has been frequent mention of my computer "MAC hardware address." AFAIK, there is not one, and thereby hangs the tale. I think that this is the end of my relationship w Mathcad, because I have spent many hours loading M15 (which removes M14), removing M15, and installing M14. I am pretty fed up with the attitude of companies such as PTC toward licensing.
During the last year, I went through month's of the same sort of licensing problems with another product, but only because I was being paid to do so. The folks paying me rolled their eyes every time they saw me coming, but they really wanted to run the other product, so they put up with the hassle. We eventually wound up with a "work around" after several months of working with their technical support. I have another licensed product that I have upgraded for years, and it, too, fails to license properly. The only way I can get it to run is to configure my firewall to not let the license program run, and then not be connected to the network when I launch the program. I won't be upgrading that program, either; I'll find an alternative.
I am unwilling to invest that much time in getting M15 to run. I just upgraded Maple with no problems. If someone can sell me a $4000 piece of software (I have several) and rely on me to respect the license, then so can PTC, Maple, MATLAB, etc. I should be able to install it on a dozen computers, as long as I respect the license. The current situation is very much like PTC saying "We figure that you are a criminal, so we will treat you that way from the beginning." At a secure facility at which I worked, the security folks decided one day that we all needed "assume the position," pat-down searches on the way in. One of my co-workers went through the pat-down search, immediately turned around and left the facility, went to the VP's office and quit. No discussion. Figured he didn't want to work at place where folks were treated as criminals.That policy lasted as long as it took the VP to call security to and tell them to stop before more folks quit. (As a result, I missed getting one by "that much.") Well, increasingly, with software licenses, that is the way I feel.
When I buy a book, the publisher doesn't tell me that if I begin reading it in the front room, then I can't continue to read it in the office, because that is where it is "licensed" to be read. Yet, this is precisely what is happening to programs such as Mathcad. It seems to me that once I buy the software I should be able to run it wherever I wish, with no hassles. With some products, one can "borrow" a license, but even that means that one must have access to the "licensed" machine. No access = no joy. If you are in someone else's office and want to show them something, yer outta luck. I recently showed a tensor calculation and plot to an other researcher by hauling my laptop w M14 on it to his office. He was interested in having it for himself - the only way I could show him what I had done was to haul my computer to his office. Funny isn't it; while we become an increasingly mobile society, companies such as PTC are locking us to a SPECIFIC desk.
So, where I have been an advocate for Mathcad for years, I have stopped advocating. My reputation means too much to me to recommend a product that has so much overhead. This is unfortunate, because Mathcad holds a unique niche in the technical software market. I know that this is nothing new to the folks at PTC, and that there are many frustrated folks around, so I am just spitting in the wind. But I think that a public voice needs to be sounded when things go wrong, as they have here. Fortunately for many of us, there are alternatives.I've always believed that companies have a right to chart their own course. I'm irritated because I have a lot of time invested in Mathcad over the past 25 years, and I now must look to learning a new product. By voicing my opinions, I am giving PTC an opportunity to consider them, but I agree that PTC - and other software companies - must decide for themselves how to best spend their time, just as I must.