Software doesn’t start, runs slowly or crashes often

Your software doesn’t start, crashes often, or is not performing as expected in terms of speed? That may be a sign of a system issue, either Hardware or Software. Software doesn’t start Before spending time looking for the source of the problem and if your computer has not been rebooted recently, make sure to reboot it before following. You will very likely save time since a simple reboot uses to fix most problems. If it is not the case, continue reading. Below are steps for macOS and MS Windows users that can help fix problems and speed up the software …

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Is Maxprog selling user-friendly software?

Is our software user-friendly? What does that mean? I spend a lot of time doing support, mostly helping people to overcome problems using Maxprog software. This task is interesting as it allows us to gauge the usability of our software. Why don’t you take our survey? In software engineering, usability is ‘the degree to which a software can be used by specified consumers to achieve quantified objectives with effectiveness, efficiency, and satisfaction’. Usability goals must address those three components but what about ‘Ease of use’? Ease of use Ease of use is the most talked about and least-understood aspect of …

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How to synchronize a website with local files

How to synchronize a website with local files as fast as possible? It turns out that a few days ago I posted a quick update on maxprog site HTML5 upgrade, Updating an old HTML site to HTML5 and CSS3 about how I managed to perform the task quite successfully during the last months. After reading it again today I forgot an important part of the process, file synchronization! How to synchronize a website with local files Each time you touch a file you have to upload it to your web server in order to publish it. Usually, if I modify …

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Update plans versus subscriptions

Update plans versus subscriptions Update plans are not subscriptions. Regularly Maxprog software users ask me about if our update plans are subscriptions, about how they work, how long a user can use the software once he has purchased one and how it can be extended. Well, we do not sell subscriptions at all, none of our software needs a subscription to operate. Actually what we sell are Update Plans. This is a whole different thing. Let me explain. Software licensing When you purchase a software from us, what you actually purchase is a software user license. Actually you purchase the …

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Unusual but frustrating support requests

Sometimes I receive unusual but frustrating support requests. I help people using maxprog products mainly by responding to support tickets. That use to be a routine task I do every day with enthusiasm. It is almost the only contact I have with maxprog customers. However, sometimes I get unusual and frustrating requests. Unusual because hopefully, they are rare and frustrating because I really can’t do anything to help because of the nature of the problem. Unauthorized Purchases First of those problems is fraud, somebody, somewhere with someone’s credit card buying something on the maxprog store. Imagine who the victim will …

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How to fix software problems by yourself

This post will give you some directions on how to fix software problems by yourself. Actually, all Maxprog‘s products include a ‘hidden’ menu with some DIY support tools you may need at some time. That menu is inside the ‘About’ window, you know, the ‘About MaxBulk Mailer…’, ‘About iCash…’ and so on. On the top right you will see a menu button with a cog icon. That is it! What do you get there? Well, it actually depends on whether your application copy has been registered or not. If you haven’t registered the application yet you will be able to …

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Maxprog software company 20th anniversary

Maxprog just turned 20 years old a few days ago. Believe me or not, it has been a quite pleasant journey. That’s very likely because I do what I always wanted. Who am I? My name is Stan Busk. I am a french-born self-taught vocational software developer. I started programming when I was around twelve. In my place computers were like UFOs so no one could help you or even understand you. I have always been fascinated by algorithms (and spinning things), I started very early and never stopped however, being fascinated by something and creating a company are two …

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Xojo xDev Magazine Marc Zeedar interview

Xojo xDev Magazine Marc Zeedar interview for the xDev Magazine Tell us a little about your background. Where did you grow up? Where did you go to school? Despite my name sounds English I was born and grew up in France. Actually, my great grandfather was American so my parents decided to name me after him. Perhaps it was premonitory as nowadays most of my customers are American. I left France when I finished studying electronic engineering and moved to Spain where I reside since then. How did you get interested in computers and programming? My first contact with programming …

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What is the GDPR and why does it concern us?

The European Union (EU) introduced a landmark regulation called the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR in short) on the 25th of May. The goal of GDPR is to give EU residents drastic improvements to their privacy rights and control over their personal data, and to protect them from privacy breaches and leaks. Every organisation that handles, markets or tracks the personal data of EU residents is concerned, even if they are not based in Europe. In the case of software companies which typically sell their products globally, this means that this new regulation will apply to everyone, no matter where …

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Entitlements and SandBoxing

This week we have finished porting all our products to 64-bits. We also updated the App Store versions accordingly following Apple new requirements regarding Entitlements and SandBoxing. But do you actually know what Entitlements and SandBoxing are? Even if you are not a programmer it is always interesting to have a small idea about security concepts since we are talking about security. macOS has supported Sandboxing since OS X Lion, which was released in 2011. The Mac App Store has required apps to be sandboxed since March 2012. Windows does not natively provide app sandboxing, but some apps (such as …

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macOS 64-bits versions of maxprog products available

Most modern operating systems like Apple macOS, Microsoft Windows and Linux are all 64-bits operating systems. For that reason we have been working on 64-bit versions of all our products for months. At WWDC 2017, Apple announced new apps submitted to the Mac App Store must support 64-bit starting January 2018, and Mac app updates and existing apps must support 64-bit starting June 2018. macOS High Sierra will be the last macOS release to support 32-bit apps without compromise. The next release of macOS after High Sierra will begin to restrict 32-bit apps and will feature “aggressive” warnings about the …

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All Maxprog products have been updated

Maxprog has released new versions of all its products. Those versions work on macOS 10.9 and higher and MS Windows 7 and higher. If you need a version for a previous operating system you can download it here. You will find below the release note of each product: MaxBulk Mailer 8.6.2 MaxBulk Mailer is a bulk mailer software and an e-mailmerge tool for Macintosh and Windows that allows anyone to send out customized offers, press releases, price lists or any kind of text or HTML message to a list of subscribers, friends or customers. What’s new in this release: – …

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The customer is always right, oh… really?

You have heard that sentence often for sure but did you know that there are people that blindly believe in this idea? Actually this sentence is about respect and politeness, nothing more and nothing else. And yes, by default, a customer deserves respect, no doubt about that but what if a customer doesn’t respect you, do you really have to maintain that respect? In my opinion, there is a limit nobody should cross. I have been working doing support uninterruptedly for 27 years, mostly by phone and by email. I have been doing support worldwide in English, French and Spanish. …

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Paypal, why not?

Regularly I get asked about the maxprog store, specially about how to buy without creating an account. By default we use the Paypal checkout system in order to process cards. There is a wrong assumption that Paypal requires the buyer to open an account in order to make a payment. That’s not true at all! Opening a Paypal account is completely optional however, in my opinion, it is better to get a Paypal account and use it as often as posible. Paypal is accepted almost everywhere on the internet and it is much better and secure to share your card …

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That’s the last straw…

Last week I talked about the Apple Stores and not only what I think about them but what they really are, everything but stores selling computers. Today was the last straw! Apple has made there new iMac Pro available for orders thru the internet with prices starting at $6’000 and up to $15’000 for full equipped configs. Uh? Really? Sorry all but I am flipping out. What can that be possible? An iMac for $5’500! Wow, I hope you will become an Apple VIP member with such a price. I have been using Macs for 3 decades, they have always …

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What’s happening to Apple computers?

A few days ago I went to an Apple Store. I spent quite a lot of time without the opportunity to do so but you know what? I got out in less that a minute. Apple Stores are no longer computer stores, they mostly sell phones, luxury watches and iPads. I only saw a couple of notebooks and 3 desktop computers on a solitary table far away from the entrance. I found out Apple has no interest in computers anymore, well, I actually checked it out. Remember, Apple removed the word ‘Computer’ from its name. Since Apple has no real …

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New software doesn’t like old operating systems

Did you know that if you never update your operating system, the last version of your favorite applications, one day, will no longer be supported? Do you realize that this situation will become an uncomfortable impasse soon or later? and the more outdated you are the worse? Let’s have a look. The computer industry is in constant motion and evolution. As the time goes on, we usually purchase new hardware, we very likely update our operating system to enjoy all the new features and we try to get all our software up-to-date. But sometimes it is not that easy, mainly …

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Why is our software in the Apple App Store outdated?

It has been a long time since we last updated the software we have available for sale in the Apple App Store. People may wonder why the versions we have there are more than a year and an half old. There is an explanation for that, Apple rules. Indeed, when you post a new application or an update to the App Store, Apple performs an in-depth review of your submission. If you pass all filters and match all Apple guidelines, your application will be available for sale, otherwise you will get it rejected and you will receive some kind of …

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Not all software should be ported to smartphones

During the last decade we have been witnessing the smartphone revolution. Mobile phones have become multi-purpose tools, they can do much more than handling calls. At the very beginning we were all filling our new toy with all kind of stuff and it was really funny. Smartphones are great and you can do lots of things with them. Actually there are tons of apps that can take advantage of the portability of such type of device. Some of those apps are the result of its success and would not have existed otherwise but I believe not everything can or should …

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The reason why Maxprog software icons are now black and white

Sometimes people ask me why all those beautiful and colorful Maxprog software icons have suddenly been replaced with black and white icons: Actually I already posted a note about that a few months ago. It has to do with HiDPI (retina) support. Indeed as part of our commitment with our users we decided to give support to HiDPI displays. To do that, and among other things, we had to redesign all our icons since they were not ready for HiDPI at all. HiDPI needs two different sizes per icon, for example the toolbar now needs 64×64 icons in addition to …

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Why is PayPal so slow to refund?

If you have contacted us to get a refund thru our refund page we usually process your request in a few hours. If you have contacted any of our card processors directly either to get a refund or to open a claim we will accept your request as fast as we can. In either cases as soon as the refund has been initiated you have to wait for the process to clear. It can take from a few minutes to a week for the fund to be back to your bank account. Why is PayPal so slow to refund? When …

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64bits versions of maxprog products

We are currently working on 64-bit versions of all our products. Apple macOS, Microsoft Windows and Linux are all 64-bits operating systems (note that MS Windows has also a 32-bit version available). Let me explain a bit what’s that about, the terms 32-bit and 64-bit refer to the way a computer’s processor handles information. A 64-bit operating system handles large amounts of memory more effectively than a 32-bit system. While 32 bits of information can only access 4 GB of memory, a 64-bit machine can access 17.2 billion gigabytes of system memory! That means that your video card and other …

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Month of work but no visible changes

There are times when you work for months on a software but at the end it can hardly be appreciated by the user. This is frustrating when actually those users are waiting for new features to be added and they contact me complaining the product is being abandoned (again). Unfortunately (for the user) it is not all about new features. I believe that the most important thing of a software is its continuous maintenance. Do you imagine a software working for decades on dozens of different operating system versions without compatibility issues? Well, this is exactly a big part of …

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Software system requirements

In order to move forward, we sometimes have to say goodbye to older technologies. As a result maxprog software new versions will no longer support macOS 10.7 nor macOS 10.8. Last versions supporting those systems will be available here as usual. That means that new system requirements for any version released from now on will be macOS 10.9.5 and higher and MS Windows 7 and higher. That affects: – MaxBulk Mailer 8.6.2 – eMail Extractor 3.7.2 – eMail Bounce Handler 3.9.1 – eMail Verifier 3.7.1 – iCash 7.6.2 – Loan Calc 2.8 – Web Dumper 3.4.1 – FTP Disk 1.4.1 …

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HiDPI (retina) support

A few months ago I upgraded all maxprog applications to support HiDPI (aka Retina). HiDPI displays are becoming more and more popular on computers so I had no choice. It took half a year to perform the task since all the icons had to be redesigned from scratch, indeed, HiDPI requires several resolutions for every single graphic. None of the maxprog applications were prepared for that because absolutely all the icons were available at a single resolution only. Let say that maxprog applications are much older than the HiDPI technology. At the heart of HiDPI is pixel doubling: drawing an …

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Updating an old HTML site to HTML5 and CSS3

The maxprog web site was originally created in the late nineties with Adobe PageMill, later replaced by Adobe Golive and finally Dreamweaver. I used to edit code manually with TextWrangler quite often because it was faster and to say the true, the code was quite simple, at least for me. WYSIWYG editors are fine for given tasks but if you know HTML, writing code manually is far better! In July 2016 I decided to move everything to HTML5 and CSS3. The first step was to take some random pages and pass them thru the Nu Html Checker. Well, the result …

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MLM mySQL to mySQLi migration

MLM has been fully updated to use mySQLi calls rather than mySQL. That was done during summer 2016 and fully tested during 12 months for problems. None were found so the procedure below is quite secure. If you read this and you are about to update your PHP file to use mySQLi calls the best is to prepare you work thoroughly in advance. Check which functions are used and what is the mySQLi equivalent, the name use to be the same but with a mysqli_ prefix instead of mysql_ however most function calls require more parameters to be passed and …

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Comodo sha-256 certificate installed on Window production machine

Microsoft has forced all developers to use a code signing certificate that uses the SHA-256 algorithm in order for signatures to be recognized on Windows 7+, as of Jan 1 2016. See http://aka.ms/sha1 for the full details but the consequence of Microsoft’s decision means that our SHA-1 certificate that we received needed to be replaced. Today SHA-1 certificate has been replaced by new SHA-256. kSign version has been updated as well to support that new certificate. As a test MaxBulk Mailer distribution file has been built successfully! — Stan Busk – Software Engineer at www.maxprog.com

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