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Legal / copyright question spreading a file

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Hi a question,I recoded the ATC multiplayer radar. It is completely doing what the original FSX multiplayer built-in radar can do(well almost).My question: Since the multiplayer ATC option is only for deluxe/professional users, if i wanna make my program available here for download and this way everyone, professional edition or not, can play multiplayer ATC, would this be ok with the copyrights?More exactly:a) Am I allowed to pack the simconnect.dll into the package I give out?:( If not (a), would I be allowed to spread my file without the simconnect.dll containing (and so only making my code accessible to professional users, since there the .dll is contained)Thanx for your reply!Sincerely,Chris.

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Hi Chris,No, you can't redistribute the Sim Connect files. But even non-deluxe users can run SimConnect clients locally on the same machine as FSX, its only if you want to run clients on a second computer over a network connection that you need the SimConnect.msi file to install the client bits on a second computer (which is a deluxe only feature).Also, there's more to the tower controller mode than just the radar gauge, so just by shipping your replacement for the gauge you wouldn't be enabling non-deluxe users to now have an ATC mode, just enabling all MP users to have a radar display available (which sounds like a cool thing, I've been this close to doing something similar myself several times :-> ).Is your replacement also a gauge or a stand-alone program that runs outside of FS (just curious mostly :-> )?Doesn't sound like there would be any problem to your releasing your addon without the SimConnect stuff though.

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Thanx for response!If non-deluxe users can also run simconnect clients (on the same machine, thats ok), then why can i not spread the simconnect.dll (just to ensure, its the right version and to ensure, that its inside the program stack)? In other words (just to be sure): I can spread my program, just without the simconnect.dll ... ok .... do you have a link to the MS legal notices affecting simconnect-own-client-spreading? Didnt find them yet. PS: It's not only a radar screen of course. Its a "full" ATC environment. You will see if I publish it (probably next week) here on avsim :)Greetings, Chris.

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>Thanx for response!>>If non-deluxe users can also run simconnect clients (on the>same machine, thats ok), then why can i not spread the>simconnect.dll (just to ensure, its the right version and to>ensure, that its inside the program stack)? >In other words (just to be sure): I can spread my program,>just without the simconnect.dll ... ok .... do you have a link>to the MS legal notices affecting>simconnect-own-client-spreading? Didnt find them yet. >>PS: It's not only a radar screen of course. Its a "full" ATC>environment. You will see if I publish it (probably next week)>here on avsim :)>>Greetings, >Chris.ACES has been asked this question by commercial developers and the response has always been that the DLL is not something you can redistribute.

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If your addon requires a specific version of SimConnect, then the user will need to have that version installed (which the FSX installer does automatically, so all users have SimConnect on their FSX system). As to versions, if you need speficially the SP1 version of SimConnect, then shipping the SimConnect DLL alone wouldn't help as that DLL requires the SP1 version of FSX also, and if they have the SP1 version of FSX installed, then they should also have the correct SimConnect runtime. This is why we don't allow the SimConnect files to be shipped seperately, you would wind up with a real mish mash of files, instead we use the Windows Side by Side (WSxS) facilities so that mulitple versions of the file can exist on the same machine at the same time.So, if your addon uses features that were part of SP1, you just need to make SP1 part of the minimum requirements.There are also ways to determine, at run time, which version(s) of SimConnect are available on the users machine. Pete uses this for FSUIPC I know.I don't know a specific link to legal wordage about SimConnect, but the EULA you clicked on when you installed the app included prohibitions against redistributing any of the files included therein, which would include the SimConnect files.

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Hello again,the problems keep consisting. If I do NOT give the Microsoft.FLightsimulator.simconnect.dll to the user, then the program won't run (an error is occuring, about simconnect not in the GAC(Global Assembly Cache), even though the user has the deluxe + SP1 installed).How can I solve this problem? How can I pack my application, so that it will run without problems and not requiring a technical expert?To show you what I mean (and to collect further installation experiences), you could download the beta of my ATC Radar and report here, if these problems occur with you too. Please note, that you must start FSX first, the program is requiring this. Your feedback will help me to beta test my app. You can download it from www.fsxtools.de!Thank you.Sincerely,Chris.

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Hi Tim,is this restriction of the EULA applies also to stock XML gauges, and to modified stock XML gauges? for example, I take the G1000 or the GPS500 XML code, I change something there and there, or, I rename some variable names, change the order of the functions, add some features. Is this "derived" version also fail under the EULA?

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>Hi Tim,>>is this restriction of the EULA applies also to stock XML>gauges, and to modified stock XML gauges? for example, I take>the G1000 or the GPS500 XML code, I change something there and>there, or, I rename some variable names, change the order of>the functions, add some features. Is this "derived" version>also fail under the EULA?>Technically, yes.

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Hi,to bring new motion in my problem I made now an own Installer, which will try to copy the simconnect.dll (which should be somewhere on the user's PC) to the application directory.So far, I cannot test this really well on my local PC (because I have of course everything installed and so on), so I would be really happy for some feedback about installation:1) Is the simconnect.dll in your directory after Setup?2) Does the application Radar.exe work without error?You can download the Radar.zip with the new installer from www.fsxtools.de!I would be really really happy about some feedback! Thank you!Sincerely,Chris.

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I stongly recommend that no one should even consider running your installer. By your own admission you haven't tested it on a any other PC than your own so how can asnyone know that it will not have adverse effects on their PC.Also playing about with users' existing files shouldn't even be considered as a matter of principle. If there is a second copy of simconnect.dll then a future SP could only update update oonly one; leaving the users' PC in an dubious state.Your installer should find simconnect.dll so that your application can access it directly, thus making no changes to the users' existing files. It also should be thoroughly tested on a range of PC before you release it to the public.

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Thanx for that reply!- So you say, my application should not make a local copy(!) (it does not move or change anything with the original simconnect.dll), but instead search for it on the system, write the location to the registry i.ex. and then read it from there at startup and load it dynamically? Would this be the way you would recommend? Or how do you do it with your applications?- I copied the simconnect.dll only, because beta tests showed, that it is NOT in the GAC for all ppl (as it should normally be, since FSX will install the simconnect.dll automatically - well, normally). If its not in the GAC, the app will look, if it is in the local dir. Thats why I copy it there. - I completely agree about the need for beta-tests. Thats why Im here and thats why my homepage states, that this is only for beta-testers. - I dont understand exactly what you said about upgrades. The original simconnect.dll is not moved or away or anything, so ...? Not completely got you there.But honestly, I'm happy about all tips what to make better! Perhaps you or someone else can help me on, how to solve the problem of the simconnect.dll not in the GAC in a smarter way.Sincerely,Chris.

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I would be unhappy with an installer that changed my registry unless it was a well-proven, industry-accepted one and was supported by a reliable un-installer that would reverse all change,s including those to the registry.A safer alternative would be for the application itself to store the path to simconnect.dll in an .ini file. Obviously, it would have to search for tsimconnect.dll to create the .ini file the first time it ran. It would also need to check for the exstence of simconnect.dll every time it starts subsequently, and also to deal with the situation where simconnect.dll may have been moved. Posts in these forums indicate that users do move FS from its default drive.My point about upgrades is that the user may may left with an upgraded version of simconnect.dll in the default folder and and an un-updated version in another folder. This is not a desirable state of affairs. The user may for some reason copy the un-updated version back and overwrite the updated one. (Users may do anything!). If other associated FS files rely on the updated simmconnect.dll then they wouldn't work properly yogether, and might crash the system.

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Hi Chris,<>If the user didn't have .Net 2.0 installed when they ran the FSX installer (or at least the SimConnect.msi installer), then that won't install the .Net portions of SimConnect because there is no GAC to install into if .Net isn't installed. If they later installed .Net, they need to rerun the SimConnect.msi installer (running a repair install might do this also if the .msi file isn't directly accesible on the DVD). I'm pretty sure there's something in the RTM readme file about this (or maybe in the SDK readme).The whole point of the GAC of course is so apps don't have to go searching for various files or create copies of files that leads to update nightmares (as has been previously mentioned), but since .Net wasn't an actual requirement to run for FSX, we didn't ship the installer for it and just based what files to install on whether it was already installed or not.

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Hi again!Thank you very much for your patience and explaining.I did what you said, so my installer is now "clean" :)My installer does this:-----------------------1) It calls a simconnect function to test, if simconnect is available (= in GAC). 2) If successfully, it is done3) If 1) was throwing an exception, it will scan the PC to check, if simconnect.dll is somewhere available and just not in the GAC. If it is finding it, it will store the complete path to the dll in a file called gac.ini4) My main Radar proggy will at startup check the gac.ini and if necessary load the dll from the path given there.This way there is no new copy of the dll made. Also the user does not need to rerun his FSX installer, if the simconnect.dll is available on his system. Also there is no registry entry necessary. Indeed the proggy should run from just the folder, where you downloaded it to.Again, I would be happy about beta-testers (www.fsxtools.de): Does the installer work for you too and does the program run on your PC? Please also report back successes, since I need to decide, when I can publish my program. Last question: The manifest-files are necessary to spread, too? Or do I not need to pack them in?Thanx,Chris.

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