Debugging User Saved Files - Hardware Locking Enabled


#1

Can we debug, view and edit a user’s saved file if hardware locking was enabled on their personal files?

The spreadsheet I am building is a fan club tracking database. Users add information to their version of the master file and save it as their own local file.

However every three months their version of the spreadsheet will expire and they have to renew their subscription AND provide me with THEIR LATEST SAVED VERSION OF THE FILE.

Then what I do is correlate all the data from all my spreadsheet subscribers and then paste all the currently available data back into their copy of their saved file.

I then will provide them by email with their new 3 monthly subscription key after they have paid together with their latest updated new version of their saved file.

When they receive their updated file back they then have to overwrite their old version, put in the new 3 month subscription activation code and voila! They have all the data contributed by other subscribers!

So here are the questions, issues and my logic regarding the security option to hardware lock their saved file:

I like the option of hardware locking because it means they cannot share their personal version of the data they have collected with their friends as their file will only open on their computer. In theory this means their friends will then also want to subscribe rather than " share" their friend’s sheet.

However, every three months I have to retrieve their personal file and update it with all the data I have collected from other subscribers. So the BIG question is if I compile with the hardware lock option activated, when they send their file back to me am I able to open it as the original author of the database or am I also locked out of THEIR file?

Logic tells me I should be able to open any user file regardless of the hardware locking status on user saved files because otherwise - for example, I would not be able to debug their sheet if say for example something goes wrong and they want me to look at their sheet to see a problem?!

Otherwise the only other option I have is not to activate hardware locking?


#2

I just found part of the answer - i use the Decrypt save file then copy the data to my master file and then re-compile.

The updated compile will include all the shared data but be missing their own personal notes and statistics.

So how do I re-encrypt their original file because some of their data is personal, while other data will be shared across all subscribers.

Please don’t tell me I have to compile an individual master file for every subscriber?!


#3

XLS Padlock comes with a feature named “Decrypt Save File”. It lets you decrypt all saves made by your customers with your EXE file. Even if saves are hardware-locked.
So the answer to your question is yes.


#4

Yes and I have also figured out I can lock the application to a subscriber’s machine instead of locking the file.