Jami,

> That is precisely the problem, but even the "updates" still 
> cause some problems and additionally some related crashes on 
> some systems. The problem only goes away completely, at least 
> as I have experienced it and as I understand it, by not using 
> any version of MS intellimouse, no matter how new.

As I have used 98 and 99 for the last two years with none of the
same problems maybe it is not a Protel problem but a problem with
something else. There have been reports on this list from other
users with the same problem but the new driver from MS, to fix 
there bug whatever it was, has fixed it.
 
> This, as with so many other problems with Protel, seems to be 
> wholly dependant on the phase of the day, and the time of the 
> moon, unless of course you want to consider the alignment of 
> the planets at the time of installation.

Most bugs, problems, issues etc have work arounds and from what
I hear other CAD packages have just as many. Not that that is ok
but you seem to got yourself into a bit of a state. I have in
the past felt the same way with Protel. Ver 3.0 when it came
out had a list as long as my arm of bugs, big bugs the type
that lost files. I was not happy.
 
> The interesting thing here, is that I had been using a 
> Logitech Wheel Mouse with Logitech Mouseware software 
> successfully at another company for a long long long time 
> with Protel98, with never a problem, and had also used Protel 
> at home on my own system with the 99SE Trial version with SP6 
> (which also used the Logitech Wheel Mouse and Mouseware), 
> again, whth never a problem. But when I started at my current 
> position 6 months ago, with a brand new copy of Win 2000 pro 
> with all the updates, on a brand new Dell Dimension 4100, and 
> a brand new Protel CD and License, the first thing that I 
> noticed was that I lost my shortcut keys shortly after 
> starting the program. (Microsoft Wheel Mouse and Intellimouse 
> software, although I did not realize the problem at the time.)

This is looking like a Microsoft problem then.
 
> I called the Protel 800 number in San Diego and always ended 
> up talking to the same sales person (who I will not embarrass 
> by mentioning their name here), and was never allowed to talk 
> directly to anyone in Technical Support, but always had my 
> questions relayed to TS and the answer given back to me by 
> this salesperson.

You get what you pay for and lets hope that now we have to
pay the support gets much better.
 
> Notwithstanding the fact that I later found the problem 
> listed in the Protel Knowledge Base, that sales person was 
> unable to get the problem even addressed by TS, 
> notwithstanding that it is a major bug that was reported on 
> the first day of use of a brand new Protel Licensee.
> 
> I stumbled around for several days until I actually 
> discovered for myself that the problem was in fact with the 
> Microsoft Wheel Mouse, and when I called Protel to tell them 
> what the problem was and ask whether or not there was a fix 
> for the problem, that was when I was told by this Protel 
> salesperson that Technical Support had said that the problem 
> "was not considered to be a problem" and "would not be fixed 
> or even addressed until the next product release"
> 
> Please note that Protel never even told me how to fix the 
> problem, or even appeared to know that the problem had even 
> existed and been reported all the way back in Protel98, and 
> had been in the Knowledge Base since then, and as you have 
> stated here, supposedly has been "fixed" at least to some 
> extent on some installations, for 18 months.
> 
> This bug is a known bug, or at least it appears to be known 
> by everyone except Protel, and even with updated drivers is 
> known to still have other "stability" issues (i.e.: still 
> causes crashes with some systems), and yet Protel tells a 
> brand new user of a brand new license, in essence, to go pound sand.

I can't remember the last time my system had a crash.

> Forgive me if I sound a bit irate, but this is absolute bull****.
> 
> This does not qualify as Product Support in any sense of the 
> imagination.
> 
> In subsequent months, when Altium appeared and the phone 
> systems were updated to reflect that fact, the same 800 
> number now gives you the option of pressing 1 for Sales, or 2 
> for Technical Support, which, as you can imagine, was a 
> definite relief to me as I no longer had to deal with the 
> technical incompetence of the sales people, and I can at 
> least occasionally talk to someone who at least has a basic 
> understanding of the problem that I try to describe.
> 
> Unfortunately, this still has not solved any of the problems, 
> and it has only relieved the frustration of having to go thru 
> the sales people.
> 
> I have subsequently learned that we appear to be stuck with a 
> very expensive piece of s**t that I am forced to use if I 
> want to continue to be employed by this company, since they 
> have a 3 seat investment (with the last seat purchased 7 days 
> after the price increase at full pop).

They had given plenty of warning that the price was going up.

> While I will admit that 99SE is slightly better than 98, the 
> product is still only useful as a tool to do Manual Routing,

There are lots of users using the router. It could be better
but it is very cheap compared the what else is available. I
used it the other day on a board that I had manually routed
and for the 39sec's it took to route the board it did a good
job.

> and it is severely severely severely SEVERELY SEVERELY 
> SEVERELY OVERPRICED for that purpose, and as attested to by 
> other recent posts here in this list, as a Manual Router, it 
> is not much better today in its current incarnation than the 
> original DOS product of eons ago,

I have on my system here, Version 2.8, 98 and 99SE and there
is *no* comparison to the old versions. Go back and try to
use the old software for an hour. I think we forget how many
features have been added. The old software sucks a big one!

> and the "schematic" system 
> is absolute garbage, trash, dung, and not even equal to the 
> old DOS 16 bit Orcad Schematic Capture, which I would gladly 
> use if I could only find a legitimate copy and convince my 
> boss of its superiority.

If you are not happy then this is a great list to say what
features you would like. I never liked Orcad's Schematic
15 years ago when I last was using it.

> Yes, Needless to say, Protel Performance and Support are both 
> really and truly non existent.
> 
> As has been stated over and over and over and over again in 
> this list, the members of this list are the ONLY form of any 
> support for Protel in any form whatsoever.

Sure, this list is the best thing since sliced bread and its
free for the most part. But no amount of money could get Protels
tech support to match it. We are all users with real world 
problems and work to do. They will *never* have that.
 
> I have however nonetheless convinced my bosses to buy me an 
> newer system which might have a little better luck in trying 
> to make Protel dance a little better, if not at least a 
> little faster, and it has already arrived and I get to open 
> the box in my new office tomorrow. It is a Dell 530 
> Workstation with a 2.2 GHz Pentium 4 with 512 MB of cache and 
> 512 MB of regular memory on a 400 MHz system bus with a 40 GB 
> hard drive.

I hope it never crashes and the mouse problem is a thing of
the past. With 512MB of cache you shouldn't need any ram :)
 
> I think the real reason that they bought a new system for me 
> is that they also now have come to realize that Protel is a 
> piece of s**t which they are stuck with that will never get 
> fixed by Protel and/or Altium, and that support is truly 
> non-existent, and that Protel will continue to crash on 
> whatever system that we run it on, but that if it will at 
> least run a little faster, than 

> they don't have to listen to me scream and yell all day long

Here here.

> about Protel running so slow 
> and being such a "piece of s**t",  and I think that they also 
> hope it will run fast enough that I will not kick and beat on 
> the new computer like I do the current 1 GHz Pentium 3 that I 
> have been using, or should I say abusing, up until Friday.
> 
> Yes, another satisfied Protel Customer.
> 
> Sorry to dump, but you did ask.
> 
> Does this shed any insight into why I believe that there 
> should be no covering up or playing down of legitimate 
> problems with Protel here in the list.

I'm all with you, and Abdul just likes to pay father, you
don't have to believe everything he says. (oop's sorry Dad)

There have been some users that feel the same way you do
at the moment. But later found that there problems where
hardware, virus software or some other problem and was not
the fault of Protel. Lets see how you new machine behaves.

Happy installing,
Darren Moore




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