I see with much regret that you miss the point of my posts, i am a programmer, i work for a company to get money, in order to eat, have a roof above my head, and having the possibility to party with my friends a couple of times a month, spoil my girlfried with some thoughtfull and unexpected gift, so i completely understand the matter from the programmer's point of view, and maybe from time to time I'll succeed in managing my time more efficiently so i could contribute to the freeware and open source comunity. So the need for money, the fact that programmers need to eat, drink, and otherwise enjoy life aside computer related activities (which also require founding for electricity, internet, maintenance, etc) all this is not an issue. I completely understand this. And the desire to create free software.
But i am also a power user, i have knowledge on software and hardware internals, I've met with situations that require tools, i track, download and test software (free software) that can help me with a problem or other hassle-free (or with minimum effort) and i consider myself quite familiar with software terminology and purpose. I also developed some principles that i adhere to it and much is learned from experience and some i developed by myself, and yes, i feel very strong about the right and wrong.
The problem is with terminology. The software found and Donation Coder (the one that requires a 6 month licence and registration to obtain it) is not freeware or donationware in the strict sense, its free software
(which is not the same as freeware).
I've spend the last few horus reading on alt.comp.freeware (google groups) and i come to understand some of your points but i still agree with them freeware is freeware and must remain the same, freeware is free software, but free software is not freeware, let me explain a little on that, maybe you'll understand me better ..
Freeware (aside the definition from alt.comp.freeware) is software that you plug and play no hassle no question asked without the need to visit author's page, without guaranties either (I've had my share of bad experiences with purely written software) but it's freeware, that is the purpose of it, no need to register, do something more then run application and expect to run without me being required to license it or anything else. Rest assured that i have enough experience recognize a good application and it throughly browse the author's webpage because i generally find more stuff there, that way i learn about the author, the software, his thought, articles he's written, websites and software he recommends.
Free software covers a larger area (ad-ware, spyware, requestware, registerware) so technically your software is registerware i.e. free software and not freeware.
Donationware, is free software that is released and the user is called upon to support the developer if he wishes, with a donation, but it is not forced upon it in neither way, not by spaming him with requests into persuading him to donate, not by forcing him to give something (like information, by registering on the DC's forum) this solely ejects it from the freeware category.
OK, maybe you can extend the donationware, to make it more .. persuasive to the cause (after all is free software, with the condition that the user has to register on the forum) but it's definitely not freeware!
I have nothing with the programmers, or the software, or the idea to bring users and programmers together, but i fell the freeware and possibly the donationware concepts are threatened. I'd hate to see some time from now the download.com advertising freeware that you can for free 30 days then you'll have to pay if you want to use it for free
(some freeware). As for the donationware probably some time from now we're gonna have to buy software (by donating of course) anyway, so you're just a link on the chain.
Rest assured that you have my respect for what you've build, for the comunity you've created, and probably I'll spend some time on the forum as this guy's (app103) testimonial for DC posted on alt.comp.freeware convinced me to look again with a more relaxed eye at the DC comunity.
As for the software, if the tools could have been packed in one exe with one chm, if necessary one general purpose dll, using one ini file to store settings (were appropriate) and no other requirements (like a license key) you would have had a most than satisfied user in me. Now this license stuff is OK, is part of your fidelizing strategy, but its complicated, even wen I'll get the license key, I'll have to carry it around with the program and 'register' the software in every computer i insert my USB Stick .. that would be more than annoying.
Aside the alteration of freeware and donationware concepts in DC's comunity, this i don't like. And in the beginning when I've discovered DC, i didn't like the fact that i had to register in order to use the software, i didn't used it anyway, not even to see what's capable off, as a form of protest (maybe childish and then maybe not) and yet i registered to tell you what was on my mind. I'm glad to see that you welcomed my criticism with ease and even put an effort to explain to me your point of view, but man, leave the websites alone, many accepts a wide range of descriptions and, as an alt.comp.freeware poster said, you could accurately describe your software so the user knows what to expect. (Now, on download.com only ProcessTamer I've seen to have such a disclamer
Anyway, today before my previous post I've downloaded some of the software and I'll test drive it, maybe in time (since from now on it seems I'll have more free time on my hands) you'll find me an active user on the forum.
PS: DonationCoder is an inspired name "Will code for donations"
but as you already know, i don't think the same for your donationware