Windows reinstall and Adobe fun

I never got around to posting it, but a few weeks back the hard drive of my PC with Windows on it died … a little bit. Technically a large chunk of the harddrive is simply unaccessable. after poking and pushing I at least got windows to boot up again, but a large part of the software was dead. I bough a new drive and went through the fun process of installing a fresh windows, patching it, and then installing all the software again.

I didn’t get around to installing my video and picture software on the new windows until this morning, and it turned out to be lots of fun. Due to pure luck I found the license key for sony vegas (it is shown in the splash screen when starting up, shortly before it crashes due to my harddisk malfunction). Any Photomatix was where I keep most licenses stored. But my Photoshop license was more of a challenge. Adobe only allows 2 activated copies of the software per license, activated copies are bound to hardware … you probably see where this is going. I couldn’t deactivate the old installation since the harddrive was kinda dead, and the new installation says “different hardware (new harddrives), must be a different computer”. Yay, fun. The bright side was that the support was easily contacted and they could reset the activation counter (after lecturing me about using it on “2 computers” and deactivating, bla bla bla). I learned one thing: the more expensive the software, the more problems you have with licenses. A shame I never liked Gimp for photo editing.

POV.1 and Sony Vegas

I own both the POV.1 Helmet Camera and Sony Vegas 8 (Movie Studio). Now, one would think editing videos made by the helmet cam would be no problem with Vegas … For some stupid reason, Vegas won’t read the video part of Xvid encoded files.  It obviously isn’t because of missing codecs, since vlc has no problems playing the files. After a bit of digging in the internet I found 2 tools to help fix the problem. The first shows which codec is used in the .avi (and can help if your problem is “only” a missing codec). It is called gspot. The second tool is called AVI FourCC Code Changer.

The solution to the problem is to start up the FourCC changer, open the POV.1 video (or any other Xvid video), and change booth fields to DIVX, press “apply” and that was it. Now Vegas stops behaving like a dork and reads the files.