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Why ALL Act! Users need to update their software NOW

Sorry to sound so dramatic, but this is kind-of urgent.

There’s a 3rd party application in Act! that controls licensing. It’s called Protexis and for the last 14 years or so it’s been happily doing just that.

Periodically, Act! software asks Protexis if this user has a valid license and Protexis goes out and checks. If it finds a valid license registered to the user it tells Act! all is wonderful in the world and you go on using the software, oblivious to this process going on in the background.

Last week, the company that owns Protexis announced that it no longer wanted to be in the License validation business and was shutting down the service with effect from 31st December 2018. No prior warning. No discussion. It’s just closing down. Now Protexis is used by a whole host of software suppliers to control licensing, including some VERY big names, so it’s an industry-wide problem.

To their credit, the nice people at Swiftpage have a fix ready to go, which is going to be rolled out in the next few weeks, but only to users on a supported version of Act!

From 1st Dec 2018, the supported versions will be V19, V20 and V21 as per the long standing Act! Obsolescence Policy that’s been in place for the last 20 years or so.

Since at the time of writing, users of V18 are still supported for the next three weeks, a decision was made that this fix will be made available to V18 users as well, with the caveat, that no other fixes or updates will be made available for this version going forward.

So, where do you download the fix then?

Well, at this moment in time you don’t. It’s being rolled out over the next few weeks, with different release dates for different versions. It’s a really tight schedule since there is a great deal of behind the scenes testing required for each version of Act!  And it looks like the concessionary update to V18 won’t be available until Jan 10th 2019 which is ten days after it might stop working.

So, to summarise, if you are on subscription, the best thing you can do is upgrade to V21 after 20th November, when you will get V21 with the license fix at the same time. If you are on V18, V19, V20 or V21 look out for the license Update when it becomes available and install it on every PC running Act!, including the server. If you are using Act! Premium Cloud hosted by Swiftpage they will take care of the update at their end but if you have a local “Off-Line Client” installed in the office then you should download and apply the fix to that when it becomes available.

If you have Act! V17 or any earlier version, your software WILL STOP WORKING AT SOME POINT AFTER 1ST JANUARY 2019, so to continue using Act! you MUST UPGRADE TO V21 before 31st December 2018.

Just to restate, this is not a marketing trick or a scam to force people to upgrade, it’s a genuine problem with the software environment with a simple solution.

If you have any concerns, questions, or would like to discuss your Act! upgrade options, please get in touch: jeff@bigbluemarketing.co.uk or call me 01902756836