Friday, August 27, 2010

Plimus versus Avangate

I got tired with Plimus and theirs nonexistent support so I decided to look for something better. Here are the results of a short survey of mine (the topics below are the most important for me):


What happens in the case of chargebacks?

If a customer makes a chargeback, Avangate offers the necessary assistance to solve the incident with the issuing bank free of charge.  Avangate will return the perceived commission in all cases except the case where the chargeback is done due to a customer complaint about the purchased product.

What happens if a client returns the products or requests a refund?

In such cases stipulated by law, the client may return the purchased products and solicit the refund. In these situations, Avangate will assure the transaction reversal, returning the money to the customer, retaining only the commission perceived for the initial payment transaction.  All refunds are done only after prior approval from software author.

How do you deal with VAT?

Avangate acts as a reseller for your products. According to EU regulations, independent of seller location, all customers located within the EU are required to pay VAT unless they have a valid VAT ID, in which case they are exempt from VAT. The typical VAT rate is 19%, but this may vary from 15% to 25%, depending on the buyer location and Avangate location. All customers outside the EU are exempt from VAT.

Do you have additional taxes for customers?


Do you accept payments in a foreign currency?

Yes. 36 currencies


Standard Pack:  4.9% + 1.95 EUR/2.5 USD   or  8% (minimum charge is 1.95 EUR or 2.5 USD)
Business Pack:  Secret/Not disclosed  (it must be bad since they keep it secret)

How do you deal with VAT?

As of July 1st 2003 we collect VAT from EU consumers who do not have a valid VAT ID for electronically delivered products. We collect this VAT and pay it to the authorities; you do not need to do anything special for this to happen.

Do you have additional taxes for customers?

Yes. We have sales taxes for California customers.

What happens in the case of chargebacks?

Plimus deletes the details of the order. The vendor cannot see the name of the customer and has no clue why the charge back appeared or why the bank accepted the charge back.

Plimus fines the vendor with $25 for each chargeback if the charge back ratio is higher than 0.1%!

What happens if a client returns the products or requests a refund?

Plimus lets the vendor deal with the customer. If the vendor does not solve the issue in 2 weeks it takes over and refunds the order "in order to prevent an imminent chargeback".

Do you accept payments in a foreign currency?

Yes. Over 70 currency types.

WireTrasfer fee!!!!!!!!!

The bank on Plimus' side will charge a fee for wire transfer (up to $30) even if the customer is from EU where the wire transfer fee is 0. The fee will be deducted from the amount the customer sent for the product it purchased. This means that when amount arrives to you it will be short with about $30.


All started from here:


Recommended download:


Friday, August 20, 2010

Search engine for Delphi developers

Delphi Developer Search Engine

This page provides a Google search engine specifically focused on Delphi related content. The engine includes over 60 different Delphi related websites and may provide more accurate results than a standard Google search.

Click here

How fast is your compiler?

Is your compiler like this: 

or like this:


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Putting the computer in energy-saving mode is evil?

On Toshiba support forum a kid name Bob sustains that two Toshiba tech guys sais to him that is dangerous to keep your computer in stand-by/hibernate mode. So he would like to start his computer faster but without using the stand-by/hibernate mode:
> The holy grail for me would be to use sleep mode 100% but I'm worried that would be too much extra wear and tear on the machine (energy consumption is not a factor). Opinions please.

So, here is my answer to that kid:
Bob is time for you to learn some stuff about computers. Go buy a good book instead of listening to Toshiba support tech.
First of all if you really care about your computer you should care about ENERGY CONSUPTION! Decrease the energy consumption to half and you will expand the life of your computer with few years! How? Simple. Keep your processor to 100% utilization and it will start to overheat so badly that your mainboard will turn brownish. Probably I should post some pictures from my old Toshiba laptop (though this is true for all laptops) to see how the heat affected the main board. The next to fail is the coolers because they will start to work at maximum speed in order to remove the heat from your laptop. Also, don't care about power saving and keep your hard drive always on and if possible, working (transferring data). The heat literally kills the hard drive! The tubes that are illuminating the screen have also a limited life. Keep the laptop on overnight and I guaranty that you will get a "nice" milky/dark image in only one year.
If you have a powerful graphic card just don't use the utility provided and keep it at maximum power all the time (even if you don't play games) and if will suck A LOT of power which of course will generate even more heat.
All these power sucking devices will drain a lot of power from your power adapter which will also start to overheat and when you are mobile they will empty your battery in 50 minutes instead of 2-3 hours. The more discharge/charge cycles you put on your battery the sooner it will die.

So, all this was the receipt for killing your laptop by not carrying about power consumption. Now, if you make your computer to live long (and prosper) all you have to do is to choose a power saving profile in control panel. Just few clicks and you have hundreds of dollars on energy and hundreds of dollar on hardware (you won't have to buy a new laptop next year).

Toshiba, Energy Star program, Microsoft are struggling to make computers to consume less energy for a reason. IF you think you are better than them you should write a book on how bad is to have a eco-friendly computer.

If two Toshiba guys said that conserving power (by keeping the computer in standby/hibernate) is bad (which I doubt) it was just a mistake. Some other people here are saying the other way. Actually my Toshiba laptop has a green button which puts the laptop in eco-friendly mode where the hibernate and stand-by modes are active. In hibernate mode the computer is 100% switched off. In stand-by mode only the RAM is receiving power. However, the RAM does not wear and tear and the power consumption is so small that almost doesn't count.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Toshiba Qosmio – Fire hazard

One month ago, my OS froze and I had to forcefully turn off my laptop by pressing the power button for 4 seconds. The laptop cut the power off but after few seconds it rebooted and started to load the BIOS, then Windows. So, I pressed the power button (and keep it pressed for few seconds) again and again. It only rebooted. I just let the laptop to fully load Windows and then turn it off, this time using the 'Turn off computer' software button in Windows.

I was not really bothered by this, so I totally ignored. However, few days ago, in the plain, at landing my OS froze again so again I pushed the power button and put the laptop in my backpack. Some 30 minutes later I heard noise from my back pack. The laptop was running and it was hot like hell. The entire case, including the screen (the lid) was terribly hot and the coolers were screaming while trying to cool the laptop - which was obviously impossible in the well enclosed compartment of the backpack.

So, today I have managed to reproduce the issue. It seems to be a bug in BIOS (Power Management) - a dangerous one. The only way to turn off the laptop is to press the Pause key immediately after you press the Power button. This will make the laptop not to load the OS. Disconnect the power cord (if connected). Flip over the laptop and remove the battery.

Lesson learned:
  • After turning off the laptop, wait next to it and see if it is really off.
  • Don't let your backpack with the laptop inside overnight
  • Don't let the laptop connected to AC overnight (in case of accident, it will not run more than 2 hours)
  • Make sure your house insurance covers you for fire hazard.

This should not be treated lightly. I had a Toshiba laptop before (a Satellite) and I remember that my model was also a fire hazard. Something with the power adapter connector. I think they I think they recalled some power adapters.