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  • #16
    Today, I received an email from a Final Draft supervisor which included the following:

    We continued to provide activational support (both manual and online) for Final Draft 8 on compatible operating systems until July 1, 2019. We have not had the technology/the physical server since then. It doesn’t exist; it’s gone.

    At least it explains the reason that automated deactivation/reactivation is not available through the software.

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    • #17
      Just to keep everyone informed: Kent answered me about the Parenthetical issue. He said he will fix it for the next update (to be released soon).

      And, for what it is worth, I just want to add a comment about the use of Final Draft. My advice is to stop agitating over the need to have Final Draft. You do not need it. Fade In does everything that you need to write a script, including a production script. It also does things that Final Draft does not do. If you submit a script, it will be a PDF. And if someone demands to look at a Final Draft file, and you are agreeable with that*, just export the .fadein file as .fdx. Such files open just fine in Final Draft. And you can open Final Draft files in Fade In. These conversions really work. I have done them many times in looking at people's works.

      If you really, really feel a need to have Final Draft, just shell out the money for it.

      * agreeable with that Many writers (even people with experience) say not to provide the original .fdx or whatever, but only a PDF, because they fear (apparently) that the recipient will steal the script or change it. Actually, it is usually easy to convert a PDF to text or .fdx or .fadein. And it is not all that difficult to convert even a graphical PDF to text and then to .fdx or .fadein format. So a PDF does not really protect anything. The real value of a PDF is that recipients can read it on various devices with or without the original software used to create it.

      "The fact that you have seen professionals write poorly is no reason for you to imitate them." - ComicBent.

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      • #18
        Fade In, or an alternative software that exports/imports in FDX without the constant need to purchase additional versions, certainly seems to be the best path forward.

        Regarding your comment about not needing Final Draft even for a production script, what about the folks in production who mentioned they were asked to get it?

        I'm not doubting you, I'm simply inquiring.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by PDX.FD View Post
          Fade In, or an alternative software that exports/imports in FDX without the constant need to purchase additional versions, certainly seems to be the best path forward.

          Regarding your comment about not needing Final Draft even for a production script, what about the folks in production who mentioned they were asked to get it?

          I'm not doubting you, I'm simply inquiring.
          Yes, I understand. You seem to be a very polite guy.

          Here is the thing. Nobody can guarantee you that you will never have to buy Final Draft to meet the demands of some jerk. But wait until you have no choice. Get Final Draft if you really have to, but only when you have to.

          I will point out that many professionals use Fade In, which I recommend for various reasons. (By the way, I have no financial interest in the software, and I know Kent Tessman only online). Take a look at the professionals listed on the Fade in website. For example, Craig Mazin, a member of this board, uses Fade In. He won an Emmy in 2019 for his writing in the limited HBO series Chernobyl.

          Also, you might check out my few "Articles About «Fade In» Features" on my website. The articles are old (I am working on updates), and Fade In has changed a bit since I wrote them, but they will still give you a peek at some useful features.

          If you have any questions that you would like to ask off the board, send me a private message or an email: [email protected].

          "The fact that you have seen professionals write poorly is no reason for you to imitate them." - ComicBent.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by ComicBent View Post
            Just to keep everyone informed: Kent answered me about the Parenthetical issue. He said he will fix it for the next update (to be released soon).
            4.0.9 has been released and it's solid on this Chromebook. There had been an issue with Crostini (the name of the Linux VM in Chromebooks) and Fade In. For some reason you couldn't copy text from one script to another — at least not directly (I figured out a work-around using the Fountain editor). But, in the latest upgrade in ChromeOS, the copy & paste in Fade In started working — even before the 4.0.9 upgrade. Definitely an issue in Crostini, not Fade In on that one. I don't know yet if the parenthetical "flicker" is gone on my Linux computer yet, but on the ChromeOS Crostini it's still rock solid (it didn't have an issue with 4.0.8 either).
            STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

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            • #21
              Yes, 4.0.9 is available. I downloaded it today and immediately tested it for the Parenthetical issue. It works properly now. As usual, Kent is reliable in fixing issues that come up.

              "The fact that you have seen professionals write poorly is no reason for you to imitate them." - ComicBent.

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              • #22
                Before purchasing Fade In, I decided to send them an email to confirm that it would function equally as well on Windows 7, as it does on Windows 10. I received the following reply:

                "We don’t directly test on Windows 7 any longer, but technically it is still compatible with that version of Windows."

                I'm curious if anyone is using version 4 of Fade In on a Windows 7 computer and your experience thus far?

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by PDX.FD View Post
                  I'm curious if anyone is using version 4 of Fade In on a Windows 7 computer and your experience thus far?
                  The only version of Windows I have is Vista, which dual boots with Linux on an older laptop. Fade In won't install on that, but I'm guessing it's more of a "flag" in the install program than anything else. I would just download and install the Demo version of Fade In. For testing purposes it's the same as the full version (unless you specifically want to test the features that the Demo blocks, like collaboration).
                  STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by PDX.FD View Post
                    Before purchasing Fade In, I decided to send them an email to confirm that it would function equally as well on Windows 7, as it does on Windows 10. I received the following reply:

                    "We don’t directly test on Windows 7 any longer, but technically it is still compatible with that version of Windows."

                    I'm curious if anyone is using version 4 of Fade In on a Windows 7 computer and your experience thus far?
                    Fade In 4.x works fine on Windows 7.

                    "The fact that you have seen professionals write poorly is no reason for you to imitate them." - ComicBent.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by ComicBent View Post

                      Fade In 4.x works fine on Windows 7.
                      It's a relief to know that this is finally confirmed.

                      A thought regarding Final Draft, before purging their name from my thinking. Regardless of how good or bad their software is, the fact that a company callously replaced their servers without transferring the activation data of customers who previously purchased their software, thereby making it impossible to reinstall it on the operating system for which it was designed, should be considered before purchasing future versions of their software. Especially when they continuously charge for updates and there are many alternatives that are just as good, if not better, and import/export in .FDX format.
                      If push came to shove, I'm able to purchase new software and/or a new computer, but there are countless struggling writers who purchased Final Draft and don't have the ability. Final Draft built their business on the backs of these customers and therefore should show some consideration. Even Windows 7 can still be reinstalled and updated to the point of the last release.

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                      • #26
                        I agree with you about the callous behavior of software companies. I can understand that they will quit supporting an older version of a program, but people should be able to register/unregister installations and continue to use an old version.

                        "The fact that you have seen professionals write poorly is no reason for you to imitate them." - ComicBent.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by PDX.FD View Post
                          A thought regarding Final Draft, before purging their name from my thinking. Regardless of how good or bad their software is, the fact that a company callously replaced their servers without transferring the activation data of customers who previously purchased their software, thereby making it impossible to reinstall it on the operating system for which it was designed, should be considered before purchasing future versions of their software. Especially when they continuously charge for updates and there are many alternatives that are just as good, if not better, and import/export in .FDX format.
                          I've never liked the limitation on the number of activations in software. One of my favorite screenwriting programs was ScriptThing for DOS. Like Final Draft, it came with three activations. I had it on my desktop and an old Toshiba laptop — so two activations used up right away. I think I upgraded the desktop (Windows "upgrade" so reinstalled). One activation gone (I didn't realize I had to go through the process of "unactivating"). Then I upgraded the hard drive in the Toshiba SX200 (or something like that) and (again) I forgot to "unactivate" — or maybe I didn't do it right. Can't remember now. At any rate, two activations gone. Then the hard drive blew up on the Toshiba (and ScriptThing was gone by then — I had gotten the "last" DOS package, or so they said when I bought it). By then ScriptThing was sold to Screenplay.com and was called Movie Magic Screenwriter. So I've still got the manual, the disk and the license and could probably run the program in DOSBox under Linux... but without activations, it's useless. (If ScriptThing had still been in business, however, they would have reset the 3 activations on request, they were pretty good about that.)

                          The way Fade In does it is much, much better.
                          STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

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                          • #28
                            Centos, I had the same shenanigans with changing computers -- when a machine dies it's really difficult to go through the unactivation process! I emailed the Movie Magic folks and explained this, emphasizing that the installations on older computers would never be used again, and they reset my counter to zero right away. No fuss, no argument, just "try it now" and it worked.

                            Nobody knows nothing, and I'm nobody.

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by dpaterso View Post
                              Centos, I had the same shenanigans with changing computers -- when a machine dies it's really difficult to go through the unactivation process! I emailed the Movie Magic folks and explained this, emphasizing that the installations on older computers would never be used again, and they reset my counter to zero right away. No fuss, no argument, just "try it now" and it worked.
                              That's the way it should be. I don't think I would have any trouble "zeroing out" ScriptThing for DOS if Script Perfection was still selling ScriptThing at the time (this was years ago now). They may have even been able to do something about it then — but I just assumed they were out of the ScriptThing business (especially the DOS version) and never contacted them. It's been a long time ago now. I'm happy with all the choices available for Linux (even Linux in a Chromebook) now. If I still used Windows I would probably still be using MMS. But, even when I did use Windows, I did a lot of experimenting with other software and I liked having different ways to write — now if only I had some writing skills. I'm happy that someone here is still using MMS. I always liked it a lot better than Final Draft.
                              STANDARD DISCLAIMER: I'm a wannabe, take whatever I write with a huge grain of salt.

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