Bravo. I fully agree. My package was delivered on October 2nd. Do I get ATS
free for a year? I assume so, but what about next year? What's the ratio of
pre October 1st users to post October 1st users. Quite high, I should think.

As you state, one of the big plus points of Protel was the free support. The
users should revolt. I know Protel is pretty buggy, but that didn't bother
me too much, because of this free support. That was what swung the decision
for me - I already had OrCAD Capture and Layout, and this year decided to
stop paying the maintenance charge, which I offset against the Protel
purchase. I wouldn't have done that if I'd known about this move. I'm not
too pleased about this, as one of my arguments was that Protel would pay for
itself over the next two to three years, compared with the Cadence
maintenance costs.


> The bottom line is "the bottom line" Are you money ahead in the old system
> or the new? Their info is a bit misguiding. On one page it says: "ATS
> membership cannot be purchased on existing Protel 99 SE licenses." On
> another page is says: "Altium Total Support is annually renewable and is
> priced at US$1995. for P-CAD and Protel full suites." So what is it?
> They also say: "The annual subscription makes it easy for the customer to
> budget for product upgrades and support by ensuring that they do not
> encounter any of the unexpected expenses that can accompany a new product
> release, and by removing the need for capital expenditure in
> order to update
> software."
> Yeah right, just plan on handing over $2000 every year whether or not you
> get anything for it. Thanks. One of the biggest draws to Protel
> was that it
> was free of maintenance fees. I would go from job to job getting
> them to buy
> Protel. I don't think I'll be such a proponent any longer if this ATS
> becomes permanent.
> I don't know about most of you, but I never call Protel support anymore. I
> did in the early days, especially when I was a beta tester (three
> locations
> ago). These days, I have a pretty good handle on their tools, and there is
> always this group to answer questions.
> I know all of us have not spent $2000 a year for the past ten
> years. Where's
> the upside to this? I don't see it yet. We must revolt.
> Tony

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