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I just had a motherboard/HD crash and lost all my information, so everything had to be reloaded. I contacted several developers/publishers for re-download information (resetting keys, dates, # of allowable downloads etc) and one company stood out in a very positive way: RealAir simulations. I got a long email from Rob Young with extremely detailed download information - and that on a Sunday! Not only do they have a great product (SR 260) but also fantastic customer service. The same holds true with WilcoPub, no problems with re-downloads. What a difference to other companies such as Cloud 9 who charge the new product price for a re-download or Sim Market which charges 3.99 Euros for a re-download. Why can't companies just add any re-download fees to the the original price, if they have to do that at all?

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Hi,Try this: take your favorite movie DVD and run over it with your car. Then take it to Best Buy and tell the nice people there that you want a free replacement. Imagine the laughs!!Now, take an I-Tunes download and delete it. Then write Apple and tell them you want a new download. What will they say?SimMarket is a software distributer of hundreds of products and part of that fee is for bandwidth usage after the initial download.A CD with all your information and downloads does help also in these situations.BTW, a direct e-mail to us with your purchase information will ALWAYS lead to replacement downloads, even though we sell through SimMarket!Thanks,Jimhttp://www.hifisim.com/Active Sky V6 Development Team Active Sky V6 Proud SupporterHiFi Beta TeamRadar Contact Supporter: http://www.jdtllc.com/AirSource Member: http://www.air-source.us/FSEconomy Member:http://www.fseconomy.com/

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Jim, I appreciate your response and understand your point. I see, however, a difference between a CD and a downloaded product. You do not have to physically send out another CD, pay for shipping etc. That is not even the issue here. I wanted to point out that there are some companies out there which just provide great customer service and who do not nickle and dime you to death with a $3 re-download charge. It is great that you company does not do that and you should be recommended for that. BTW, I learned my lesson about regular backups:)

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>What a difference to other companies such as>Cloud 9 who charge the new product price for a re-download or>Sim Market which charges 3.99 Euros for a re-download.Sorry, but you simply shouldn't make such misleading statements.As everybody knows quite well, almost all of Cloud9 products are available as a FREE download (not even a registration is needed), and a FREE TRY BEFORE BUY version. The Trial version is the SAME of the full version, and can be used both as a Demo, OR as a backup for a lost download, because it can be freely downloaded without having to buy the product first. The purchase is done from within FS9 or FSX only AFTER having successfully downloaded and tested the Trial, the Trial then becomes a full version. If you lost the installer, you can simply download again the Trial, and register again, using the clearly explained reinstallation/reactivation rules.This is done by the means of the Addon Manager module Cloud9 uses, and is valid for all their FS9 and FSX airport sceneries and airplanes products, since a couple of years.There is one notable exception to this: the XClass product is NOT, for sound technical reasons, offered as a Try before buy product, because a Landclass scenery can't be handled the same way of normal scenery and can't be managed by the Addon Manager, like all the rest of Cloud9 catalog. This also means is NOT protected by product activation. The very same product activation that everybody hates, but in this case is doing good, because it gives the chance to offer an UNLIMITED FREE DOWNLOAD and TRIAL. Unfortunately, as I've said, a Landclass can't be handled by the Addon Manager module, so there's no free download available for this kind of product.Instead of the Try Before Buy and the Addon Manager, when the user buys an XClass product, it's presented with a CHOICE how to handle re-download fees. Instead of putting the re-download fee into the product price, meaning overcharghing everyone, the user can freely CHOOSE to buy the re-download fee or not. This way, the concious user that DOES take care of its own backups (we all are, don't we ?), can SAVE buying the re-download fee, and the "lazy" user that doesn't do backups, has the OPTION to buy the re-download fee or not, it's his choice.The option, of course, is turned OFF by default, in order to NOT overcharge users who simply put the product into the basket not checking twice. And, the re-download fees are NOT collected by Cloud9, instead, Cloud9's ecommerce provider, Esellerate, takes almost the entire amount of the re-download fees, in case the user decides to buy it.And, even if the free re-download is not normally possible, because of how the Esellerate ecommerce system works (for products without activation), I'm sure this is not *enforced* by Cloud9, so if you have lost an XClass installer, by all means contact Cloud9 email support and give your Name and Order Number, I'm sure they'll help you getting hold of the installer without any problems.

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>Hi,>>Try this: take your favorite movie DVD and run over it with>your car. Then take it to Best Buy and tell the nice people>there that you want a free replacement. Imagine the laughs!!>>Now, take an I-Tunes download and delete it. Then write Apple>and tell them you want a new download. What will they say?>>SimMarket is a software distributer of hundreds of products>and part of that fee is for bandwidth usage after the initial>download.>>A CD with all your information and downloads does help also in>these situations.>>BTW, a direct e-mail to us with your purchase information will>ALWAYS lead to replacement downloads, even though we sell>through SimMarket!>>Thanks,>Jim>>http://www.hifisim.com/>Active Sky V6 Development Team >Active Sky V6 Proud Supporter>HiFi Beta Team>Radar Contact Supporter: http://www.jdtllc.com/>AirSource Member: http://www.air-source.us/>FSEconomy Member:http://www.fseconomy.com/Ah yes... and SimMarket's mentality towards this issue is why I stopped purchasing through SimMarket. My motto is: "If it's only at SimMarket, I don't need it."

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Back your stuff up!!! I have an external drive just for that, and I back that up.

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Experience is worth a million, for me I don't complain about poor or non product support but be assured I only get burnt once. Recarding RealAir simulations, they have been and continue to be four star rating in product quality and support. Love the SR 260!

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I also had a recent motherboard/HD crash and had a good experience actually with every add on I had-though some were a little more time consuming to get running again than others.However, one thing I'd like to see improve is a better routine for getting updates to internet downloaded software. Many (if not most) of the products I own have no mechanism to inform you when the product has been updated. It seems to be generally assumed that one will be rabidly checking individual websites/bbs's/(with the usual plethora of unique passwords/names that one forgets), and avsim headlines, to eagerly find when an update has been issued. I would appreciate a simple email notification that a new update is available (after all you usually have to give your email when you buy the product)-or better yet an interface like Tracker ir where when you run the program,there is an "update" button. Click on it-and it either says your software is up to date-if not it takes you to the site where you can install the newest version-all elegant and automatic.Now that is cool and helpful-I'd spend my whole life searching the web for updates otherwise with the numbers of add ins I own.http://mywebpages.comcast.net/geofa/pages/rxp-pilot.jpg

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You guys are all correct with making backups etc. This post was supposed to mention good service and not so much companies with not so good service (in my opinion).Virtuali, I was talking about your exception, Xclass for Eu as well as for the US. I did contact Cloud 9 and here is their response:Hello,messages must be address to sales@fscloud9.com as explained in all products documents otherwise we can not give support in short times. Unless you purchased the EDS (Extended Download Service) you can not download again the Xclass products. This is explained during the purchase process and is due to the cost of the band requested by the ecommerce system. An additional download without EDS is allowed after the payment of 7,50 Euros by PayPal. Kind regards Elio BrambillaLike I said, I learned my lessons. Thank you for all your responses.

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>Back your stuff up!!! I have an external drive just for>that, and I back that up. Even backups can fail. Tell me, if your home is under water due to a natural disaster... if all is lost, and you want to regain what you should rightfully have... does your mentality still adhere to "your fault"?At what level of "problem" do you say it's not or is? Who has the "right" to make such a call?

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You've missed the point Ed,It's not about blame, it's about responsibility *gasp*(I know, a dirty word these days).If *you* decide to and then *you* buy and *you* download and *you* install into *your* FS setup, guess who's responsibility it is to keep it backed up? No prizes here....It doesn't matter whose fault it is; or whether it was caused by stupidity, incompetence, the over exuberance of a toddler, natural disaster, hardware fault, software fault or herd of stampeding sheep in green wellies. The fact remains that it's your responsibility.If you don't take sufficient precautions then you are at the mercy of the company who sold it to you. We are lucky in this business, most are pretty good at getting you going again, sometimes charging a nominal fee to cover their costs. Someone already mentioned the DVD and BestBuy example as comparison to the real world.So instead of throwing your hands up and saying "It's not my fault" how about we all take some responsibility and put in place a backup plan. I'm not claiming to have all the answers but I keep a semi regular backup on an external hard drive and it's stored on the top of a cupboard. Not completely fail safe but I'm not prepared to spend any more money on it. *I* am taking the risk, not the company who sold me the products, *I* made the choice about *my* backup strategy so *I* am responsible. If my house blows away in a storm I can't expect some little random FS developer company to pay for my lack of precaution and not having an off site backup store. It's all about risk assessment.This isn't a rant at you Ed, just venting some frustration at the general attitude out there these days that says "It's not my fault".Any choice we make, we have to accept it will come with a risk and it's up to us to mitigate that risk. If we don't it's not our right to have someone else fix/repair/replace it for us (insurance companies excepted obviously).Rant over, must go and backup some stuff now I've tempted fate.....Take care all,Ian

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I have a stand alone hard drive for backups. I also backup all necessary files (serials, registrations, order confirmations, passwords etc) to CD (or these days, DVD). Basically, everything except the download itself. These days these file are miniscule compared to the installation file itself. You could even zip them up and e-mail them to yourself so they are held in the ether, not on your hard drive or permanent storage medium.The only reason I don't usually keep the download as well is because re-downloading should bring the latest version, rather than patching. An exception is for vendors who provide `one time only` downloads, and another is for products which have evolved through patches over a period of time and so haven't got an updated all-inclusive installer. Then it makes sense to have all the files in one place, and install them in order. As has been said, it is the personal responsibility of the purchaser to back up their purchases, and I see nothing wrong in charging a re-download fee if someone can't or won't make their own backups. All it would mean in my case was that I would also save the original installers. Same difference. The choice is ours as customer.Allcott

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>Virtuali, I was talking about your exception, Xclass for Eu as>well as for the US. I did contact Cloud 9 and here is their>response:>Unless you purchased the EDS (Extended Download Service) you>can not download again the Xclass products. This is explained>during the purchase process and is due to the cost of the band>requested by the ecommerce system.> >An additional download without EDS is allowed after the>payment of 7,50 Euros by PayPal.That is of course the standard reply, because this is how the Esellerate Ecommerce system works for product without activation. As I've said, when you originally bought the product, you were presented with the choice to buy or not the EDS "insurance" fees, and you freely chose not to buy it. In this case, it's expected you take the responsibility to do backups using your means.Try to contact Cloud9 again, giving your name/order number, and give a link to this discussion as well. They might make an exception.

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On that positive note, I recently bought a new system with Vista and reinstalled FS9 and FSX with predictable glitches. Several vendors were just great in supporting the process; Radar Contact and FS2Crew really stood out. It is encouraging when vendors like these make it clear that they really care about their customers and products. I have, in the past, also had excellent experiences with PMDG. I wish I could say the same about Hewlett Packard, which might get around to publishing a Vista driver for my printer in July or August.

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