Autodesk Moves EAGLE to Subscription Only Pricing

EAGLE user? We hope you like subscription fees.

Autodesk has announced that EAGLE is now only available for purchase as a subscription. Previous, users purchased EAGLE once, and used the software indefinitely (often for years) before deciding to move to a new version with another one-time purchase. Now, they’ll be paying Autodesk on a monthly or yearly basis.

Lets break down the costs. Before Autodesk purchased EAGLE from CadSoft, a Standard license would run you $69, paid once. The next level up was Premium, at $820, paid once. The new pricing tiers from Autodesk are a bit different. Standard will cost $15/month or $100/year, and gives similar functionality to the old Premium level, but with only 2 signal layers. If you need more layers, or more than 160 cm^2 of board space, you’ll need the new Premium level, at $65/month or $500/year.

New Subscription Pricing Table for Eagle
New Pricing Table for EAGLE

This is a bad deal for the pocket book of many users. If you could have made do with the old Standard option, you’re now paying $100/year instead of the one-time $69 payment. If you need more space or layers, you’ll likely be up to $500/year. Autodesk also killed the lower cost options for non-commercial use, what used to be a $169 version that was positioned for hobbyists.

The free version still exists, but for anyone using Eagle for commercial purposes (from Tindie sellers to engineering firms) this is a big change. Even if you agree with the new pricing, a subscription model means you never actually own the software. This model will require licensing software that needs to phone home periodically and can be killed remotely. If you need to look back at a design a few years from now, you better hope that your subscription is valid, that Autodesk is still running the license server, and that you have an active internet connection.

On the flip side of the coin, we can assume that Eagle was sold partly because the existing pricing model wasn’t doing all it should. Autodesk is justifying these changes with a promise of more frequent updates and features which will be included in all subscriptions. But sadly, Autodesk couldn’t admit that the new pricing has downsides for users:

“We know it’s not easy paying a lump sum for software updates every few years. It can be hard on your budget, and you never know when you need to have funds ready for the next upgrade.”

In their press release, they claim the move is only good for customers. Their marketing speak even makes the cliche comparison to the price of a coffee every day. Seriously.

[Garrett Mace] summarized his view on this nicely on Twitter: “previously paid $1591.21 for 88 months == $18.08/mo. Moving to $65/mo? KICAD looks better.”

We agree [Garrett]. KiCad has been improving steadily in the past years, and now is definitely a good time for EAGLE users to consider it before signing on to the Autodesk Subscription Plan™.

403 thoughts on “Autodesk Moves EAGLE to Subscription Only Pricing

  1. Thought this would happen, KiCad (and a steep learning curve) is the way forward. I refuse to go subscription. If you buy something it should stay yours. They are ransoming access to your own data. Shame, If there was a decent 4 layer 160×80 purchase license, I would go for it, Just not every year :0)

    Hackaday, how about Eagle->KiCad Import/conversion tutorials, could be popular…

    1. There’s no “ownership of your data” and it’s unfair to spread rumor which isn’t in fact isn’t accurate (though I take your point on the 2ly/4ly difference…that is something we thought long and hard about and we’ll see how this shapes up).

      To be fair, EAGLE is the only mainstream tool to provide an open file format (XML + DTD) that ensures you consistently have access to your data and portability to any other tool. The fact that you can migrate to KiCAD is facilitated by exactly this capability. There will continue to be an open format, continue to be linux support and continue to be a freeware version which gets the same or similar improvements to routing, hierarchy, DRC, design rules, design reuse, etc. on my watch. This is the beginning and I know it’s annoying, but if the only thing keeping you using EAGLE was a perpetual license, that’s a pretty tenuous relationship the begin with. :)

      1. Sorry, but that’s a common view on software you RENT, versus software you OWN.

        Subscriptional software is renting, outright buying it with no strings attached is owning.

        So it’s fair to have such mindset, don’t like it? then tell Autodesk they’ve made a massive blunder.

      2. Although I don’t use Eagle, I would say it the other way round. The permanent license can not be the only thing to hold somebody with a software packages. But the subscription model is for sure a no go and can be the only thing which throws somebody off.

    1. Indeed, they are two words. :) Perhaps it’s not clear that under the subscription model, the pricing actually goes *down*. And likewise, this model serves those that do design once in a while and always want access to the latest tools. They can pay for a month, crank out a project, drop off for another month, pick it up again later and always have the complete set of features.

      1. The price does go up for many people, and it also removes the flexibility to pay for upgrades when it fits my schedule.

        But the pricing itself is not the main concern. I’d average $500 a year for the level of support and improvements you’re problems, that’s the truth…maybe I’d end up spending $1000 one year and $0 another year, but I’d want access to the improvements you’re making.

        The main concern is that internet-tethered license. My software is one business decision away from being useless, much like all your ideals for the project are one business decision away from being something on your resume in the “Previous Employment” section. Will the software be usable next year? Three years from now? Supported on Linux? Still use an open format? Servers still operational in seven years? It will not be available forever, and if we’re going to have to find another solution someday, we’d rather make the transition at our own pace.

        I’ve done 2-day super-extreme-rush projects and it worked because I didn’t fail on Step 1 when that’s the day the license servers are down and my application is due for a license update.

      2. I agree with macegr. Pricing is not so much the issue with me. I have obligations. I have built up much trust in Eagle over the years. It has served me well. I will pay for new features. I have an extremely uneasy feeling about “logging in” to my cad software. Autodesk has essentially taken over a product that felt like it was mine as I paid for it and turned it into something that is not mine even if I do pay for it. I like to know that if I have to, I can run a virtual machine or whatever in the future and support the existing files that I have and be confident that the file format will remain open as it is now. I had a sinking feeling the day that I read about Autodesk purchasing Eagle that my 20 years of invested time on cad that runs on Linux was under threat. I’ve been waiting to see what would happen before I let anything past 7.6 touch MY files. It takes a long time to gain trust. Not only in how the producer of software will act, but trust in the quality of output from something like cad software. I hope Autodesk will reconsider the subscription licensing and allow us to gain some trust that they can deliver. KiCad is compiling while I write this.

        1. It’s about knowing that, in addition to the usual hardware problems, there is a non-zero chance that I would start up Eagle and for some reason beyond my control it would no longer work. I can switch to a backup computer if mine breaks, but I can’t fix a license server problem (something that, based on the Autodesk forums, is already causing problems for new users. I saw one where the authentication failed because the user had an accented character in their name due to being located in Europe).

    1. David Cook’s Copper Connection is no more. He sold it to ExpressPCB, who, I’m sure, acquired the rights to it so they can removed the feature that allows one to convert an ExpressPCB PCB file to Gerbers and Excellons.

      In my opinion, Cook cheated users who purchased a license from him, as none of the support functions in Copper Connection work any more. Users paid for functionality and support, and can no longer get it. As far as I’m concerned, Cook is a thief.

  2. Time to find and download the last free versions and spread them far and wide.
    Screw AutoDesk, all they did was buy an existing product and then barely maintain it.

    I should be able to run long enough with the last free version until I get good at Kicad.

    They were 95% hobby users almost nobody was using it in a professional company.

    1. We’ve owned it for less that 6 mos and have released new routing features, design reuse, better wiring, better rework tools. In fact the SW has moved forward faster than it has in years and we’re continuing this trend. Hopefully you’ll give the v8 release it’s due and actually try it before slinging insults.

      1. With a software licensing model that’s renting with a different name? fat fucking chance on that happening with the open hardware & hacking crowds general “sharing is caring”, “access for everyone” and “I paid for it, I OWN it” mindset.

        Good job, now you’ve only gotten those who managed to lock themselves into the Eagle ecosystem left, and the stragglers staying on perpetual 7.7.0.

        If you wanted Eagle to be better, why did you made it inexcusably worse in one fell swoop?

  3. I’ve been an EAGLE user for about 13 years and have maintained my Windows and OS X schematic + layout professional licenses for about 9 of those years. I’ve been following the blog posts on the old cadsoft.io site and was extremely excited for the new features Autodesk was proposing to bring… all of which evaporated as I learned of the new subscription ONLY based service being presented today. I really hope Autodesk reconsiders this decision or at least comes to their senses and offers a maintenance based license so I can at least own (perpetual license) the software I purchase. I really have a lot of time and energy invested in the configuration and custom libraries I’ve written in EAGLE over all of those years so it pains me to no end that this is probably the end of the road for EAGLE updates for me – I may even consider alternate commercial options. Autodesk’s decision is truly short-sighted marketing/profit based thinking with little consideration for the existing EAGLE user base.

    We are all at the mercy of someone else – in this case Autodesk. I encourage every one who visits Hackaday and sees this post to make some noise about your dissatisfaction with Autodesk for this. Be polite and civil, but speak your mind to all comers of the internet on this. Change will only happen if we work together and make our dissatisfaction known on this. I highly recommend dropping Dave L. Jones of EEVblog.com an email (email address can be found in the contacts section of his website) and request he do one of his famous video blog rants about Autodesk’s choice to force subscription based software down our throats. Maybe if he gets enough requests he’ll help spread the word and maybe, just maybe, Autodesk will listen.

    -Jesse

  4. I’m a little surprised by the reaction, considering just who Autodesk is and what they’ve done for the industry. Firstly, when I joined Autodesk (from Supplyframe, who mind you owns Hackaday) I did so because here’s a company that provides *100% of their software FREE to students*. Yes…Inventor? 3DS Max? Maya? Fusion 360? Fusion 360 is free to startups. They own Instructables which is the largest, largely free site, for content creators and people learning to do “stuff”. My team is responsible also for Tinkercad, Circuits.io and these all are investments that we make and make available to the community…cough…for free!

    They have made a dent that has transformed education and industry in ways that NO other company has dared to do (I implore you, name *one*).

    WRT to EAGLE, yes the software is moving to subscription. That won’t change. And if the only thing keeping you using EAGLE was the perpetual license, then that’s a pretty tenuous connection to try and hang on to.

    When I joined we made a promise *to the community here*, on Adafruit and elsewhere: we would improve routing, hierarchy, wiring, rework, design reuse, DRC and rules, rename the bloody “Wire” tool (which we did btw)…We agreed we would listen to users and deliver real value and do it at a price point that is fair, transparent, AND still offer free versions to the student community and startups as we do with every other piece of software. We have begun this process, released 3 releases in less than 6 mos (2 for the previous version) and we will continue this process. Why? Because we use the software, we care about the community, we knew if we had the code base we could build something amazing, and we want to deliver the best damn tools we can at the best price point humanly possible.

    Did the price go up? Perhaps it appears that way, but it also went down for the occasional user and largely the community. For most freeware users, we agreed we would also change the licensing in the next release to only call home once, when you install a new version. That’s coming but it’ll take a little while.

    Regarding upgrades, we will release the upgrade pricing some time next week and it’s *exceedingly fair*.

    If the complaint is that the SW calls home to fetch your license? So does every website you interact with, so does Hackaday.io, so does your copy of MS Office or Adobe or Upverter (Eric?) or Altium or Cadence, Google, Docs, etc. This is not a new model. And it has zero – yes *ZERO* – to do with your data or us owning your content.

    In fact, EAGLE pioneered – amongst mainstream tools – the first open, documented file format. And we, Autodesk, preserved that and committed to this community, that we would. We agreed the software would have a free license. We agreed that we would support linux. And we have done each and every one of these things, happily and without regret. We will continue to do them…because it makes sense.

    All of autodesk’s products are subscription, so what’s missing in this discussion and in and amongst the mire of FUD, is that if we “kill” a tool or take down a license server: ‘what does that do for our revenues from these other products?’. What would that do for a user considering another product (driving substantially more revenue) were we to demonstrate that we have a habit of breaking that promise.

    Sorry guys, but the whole sensationalization of this is disconcerting. The 3 dollar signs in Eric’s banner, the fact that most folks have benefitted from free or low cost SW from Autodesk or Cadsoft for years. The fact that many of you have come to depend on Instructables or Tinkercad or Fusion 360 every day without hesitation. I feel like we’re getting the “fair and balanced” treatment and I can tell you it can be pretty demotivating to see a community devolve into this without taking the time to reflect before their impulses fly.

    1. Maybe we are just tired of suffering commercial leeches. Everywhere you turn nowadays there’s microtransaction models, subscription models, and all manner scientifically engineered methods of removing money from out wallets in a misdirecting, clandestine manner. Lying overpriced printer cartridges, planned obsolescence, DRM coffee FFS. Enough.

      We pay, you give, it’s ours – not yours, end of transaction. Stop being leeches.

      I find your “we own everything, including the product you purchased from us – so deal with it” condescension insulting. If you want to keep telling your customers that they are wrong and you are right, you will quickly find you’re talking to less and less people holding out money for you. That’s how the free market works. If that’s too “disconcerting” for you, there are plenty of jobs out there in both the janitorial and food service industries that may be more compatible with your mindset.

      1. And lets remind them that there’s many, many, hungry people with ideas just waiting for those Atlases to shrug, heck any sign of weakness they might push you, never mind wait.

        1. Take a good long look at what is going on here Berggren, and for god’s sake read your own damn post, its dripping with condencension and your own superiority complex. This is a active betrayal of consumer trust and you know it. If any of the following questions results in the answer “No”, you are doing something anti-consumer. don’t do that.

          A) Does this change improve your product for your userbase in a tangible way?
          B) can the product continually operate normally withot a network connection after the change?
          C) do this change hamper the use of your product in it’s normal work eviroment? What about abnormal or secure work enviroments?

          The answers here to all 3 are a big fat NO. Face it, this is bad business practace, same when this was done to 3DSmax, same with Microsoft Word, and with Adobe and their whole software suite. The high-level professionals with $$$ backing will begrudgingly pay for it, but the average joes like those of us who use HaD can’t afford it, thats why we Hack a Day.

          We’ll move on, we moved to Daz3D and the like when 3DSMax went subscription, we switched (hardly noticably) to OpenOffice (then LibreOffice) when Microsoft Office went subscription, and we went to Paint(dot)net when Photoshop went subscription, and we’re doing the same here now. Your product is disposable, we’ll move on somehow, be it to Freeware alternatives or to straight-up piracy of your software. You have to give us reason to stick around, instead you gave us reason to leave. I wish you good luck, may you come out of all this with a job somehow.

    2. Autodesk and many other software companies have been providing professional software to students for free or nearly free for decades; Autodesk did not pioneer this. And while the side effect is access to nice tools for students, the reason for it is completely transparent: get students (who couldn’t afford the software anyway) using your tools, and they will want to keep using those tools when they enter the industry.

      It’s a very common decision done for business reasons, not the goodness of any company’s heart. It (educational discounts / freebies) continues because it’s a policy proven to jack up the company’s profits and lock-in their software from the very onset of careers, making sure that no upstart software company can gain a toehold in their market sector.

      And, as a student, I did use (and lose) access to programs like AutoCAD 2000. One major takeaway from that experience: no subscription or phone-home licensing was necessary. I believe MATLAB required a network license server, which was definitely a pain and certainly taught me a lesson about staying away from programs that required something that wasn’t on my computer.

      This is all academic (ha) because I have not been a student for the past 15 years, and I’m talking about the paid subscription situation. Whatever Autodesk chooses to do for students has zero actual impact on my relationship with Autodesk as a paying customer. I will not suddenly be happy about things I consider problematic, simply because you have reminded me that Autodesk provides free software to people who really couldn’t afford to buy it anyway. Why should that be a factor in our business relationship? I don’t care how you do your advertising.

      I have not upgraded to any other Autodesk subscription products, nor do I subscribe to Adobe’s cloud services, nor do I use a subscription to MS Office or Upverter. I use Google Docs infrequently and use my own domain and email server. In short, I (and apparently, many other engineers) consciously avoid cloud-based services, or use them only for non-critical / ephemeral applications. I can in absolute fact do productive work without an internet connection.

      Your surprise at this reaction is surprising. Since you did not actually ask the community what it wanted, you should have accepted whatever reaction you got. You should have recognized it was a shot in the dark and that anything can happen when you don’t do market research before making major changes to product licensing. I’m surprised that you even care what we think now, since the decision was made over factors more important than our opinions.

      1. Of course we want students to graduate knowing our software, so they’re prepared to enter the industry and companies have qualified candidates to choose from. And yes, this benefits us financially. So clearly there is a quid pro quo there but it’s not something anyone endeavors to hide. What’s the alternative? Charge the student? Provide them with inferior software or something nobody in industry uses?

        WRT to you’re limited use of Office or Google Docs or the like, we understand, not everyone uses software this way. That’s fair and we wont push you to use EAGLE. Rather, we hope you find the software you’re after with a licensing model that suits your preference and if at some point you like what you see, perhaps you’ll try it out.

        1. I’m specifically saying I don’t give a ratsnest what you do for students. Nor did I make any suggestions as to what you should do. It’s advertising and has nothing to do with our business relationship. If you continue to insist on bringing in the non-paying users of your software on this discussion, it only serves to highlight how out of touch you are with your actual customer base.

        2. (The above is in the context of this discussion, which is about the transition to a subscription model for paying customers. Outside of this context, I do care that students and non-commercial hobbyists have access to a PCB CAD tool that I have used for many years and still love to use. It’s just not relevant to the discussion of subscriptions.)

    3. Not all of us are students, not all of us have big bucks for our hobbies, not all of us have big needs and mission critical timeframes for bugfixes.

      It’s time to suck it up and reap what you’ve sown, and in this case it’s your good image that’s been cut down to its roots and afterwards slathered in pesticide.

    4. Hello Matt:

      I was skeptical of subscription models at 1st but my Experience with Adobe and Microsoft Office 365 has been a good one. I like the flexibility.

      While I am an Altium user, it is nice to see that Autodesk has resources to put behind the product. I used Eagle in the V4 and V5 days but had to leave as the development simply stopped. Even through V7 before Autodesk the updates were rather trivial. I don’t think that people in this community get that it takes a continuous feed of money to improve a product. While I think there are loud opponents on this forum, the 6-sigma case of users will be rather happy.

      I have a soft spot for eagle as I like the simple scripting and ULP language. If Autodesk does some rework to the UI you may even get a subscription from me to play with. :-)

      To me tools are important so spend a bit of cash to get good ones makes my projects even better.

      Keep plowing forward. While I also use Solidworks at my day job, I use Fusion360 at “night”. Autodesk has supported the education community extraordinarily well. I have asked Dassaut to offer a Fusion360/Inventor type subscription model but they only want to offer the expensive one-time buy model. This is the reason my resources are with AutoDesk.

      The only valid point I can see is the long term availability of Autodesk to keep the system “up”. Given that Autodesk has been around for 34 years, I think that most of the companies worried about longevity with vanish before Auto desk…

    5. So, basically, you and your company are the mythical drug dealer that gives away free samples to get people hooked (I never met one with that business model). Then you use familiarity with software as way to financially rape everyone who ever touched your software. Don’t you feel a tiny bit ashamed for being a member of organization that rapes people? Or are you just one of those bastards that want to convince everyone that rape is good for them and they really like to be raped?

    6. Your attitude, Mr. Berggren, convinces me that Autodesk is not a company with which to do business. You people have jumped the shark with your “in the cloud” licensing nonsense. Kicad looks like the winner here.

      1. Because the pirated version is more convenient. It will just work, it won’t phone home, one doesn’t have to deal with all the BS. More than once I’ve downloaded a crack for software I paid for and legally own because the godforsaken security dongle driver crashes or conflicts with the stupid dongle needed by something else.

        Will companies ever learn that making paying customers jump through a bunch of hoops that pirates don’t have to deal with is not going to gain them anything? Copy protection didn’t work 30 years ago and it doesn’t work now.

        1. Exactly.
          DRM is a plague, a curse, a headache and a huge source of frustration, which needs to die as soon as possible.

          I have no problem paying for good software which I like to use, but I am very hesitant when it includes invasive and annoying DRM, like online-only connections and all that other crap.

          If the license server goes down – the software is useless
          If your internet connection goes down – the software is useless
          If the company goes bankrupt – the software is useless
          if the company discontinues the product – the software is useless
          if the company decides to pull your licence – the software is useless

          In contrast, if I buy a pay-once-use-forever licence (remember how software used to come with a serial number printed on the box and once you bought it, that was that?), or if I pirated the software – the software is useful as long as I have a compatible OS and hardware to run it on, and with the advent of Virtualbox etc, that’s practically forever.

          Legal issues aside, pirated software is indeed very appealing from the whole “No need to worry about the DRM\licence\activation servers etc breaking and everything being unusable” problem.

          Open-source is even better, no price and no DRM either, but with the added (and possibly, the best feature) – if the authors ever decide to do something monumentally idiotic, someone sane can just fork the project and continue normal operation.

      2. Because it’s not stable. At any moment, Autodesk can change the terms of the license or the software itself outside of the control of the user and we would be immediately effected, disrupting work, causing us to lose customers, forcing us to put people out of work. You just don’t get it, and that’s why your product is no longer a valid tool. Tools need to be safe, not rolling dice on whether they will remove a hand next week due to circumstances completely out of the control of the operator.

  5. >WRT to EAGLE, yes the software is moving to subscription. That won’t change. And if the only thing keeping you using >EAGLE was the perpetual license, then that’s a pretty tenuous connection to try and hang on to.

    Matt, I can appreciate your disappointment in the reaction. It must suck to add a bunch of new features to a slow-but-steady software base and see that the community really just wanted wanted that same old model to continue. I have to admit, I am drooling a bit at the videos of new routing features, overlays of net names on the copper, etc. Again, as I stated in a previous post with same username in a previous reply to you, I am not comfortable at all with the idea that Autodesk could “pull the plug” on me at anytime… even if you promise real nice that will never happen. I also have gained a lot of confidence in Cadsoft over the years because in 20 years of using Eagle, I have never had a board fabricated with problems due to Eagle Cad output issues. I have done some pretty complex boards in those years. It would take time for me to gain the same trust, especially at the rate that you guys are adding new features. Try and see this from a long-time users perspective. Kudos to you and the Autodesk team for the breakneck pace and cool features. If Autodesk insists on subscription-only model, then I will be moving on…. If I can’t make KiCad work for me, then I might actually have to run Windows for the first time in over 20 years of career using Linux as my OS of choice.

    Don’t take this personal. The software developers look like they are doing top notch work.

    1. I guess I have to take it personal, because I manage this product and have come from the Hackaday community long before I joined Autodesk…however I havent any ill-will toward you or anyone else on this forum for expressing your opinions about subscription licensing.

      We’re working hard on EAGLE and have made a massive investment to hire the best guys we can to help build and expand the development team, with long histories in ECAD and EDA. Having worked at Accel, later Protel / Altium, and now EAGLE…Over almost 20 years I’ve gotten a sense for what makes tools cool, but we really value the opportunity to rewrite the cost equation for the average user. After all, with a great team, features are easy…they just take time. I’ve made commitments in previous articles here and on Adafruit that we intend to keep wrt features and really, I have no hesitation that Autodesk is backing me on that. Were they not, I wouldn’t have elected to take this on. So for me, it is personal.

      I promise though, we’ll tread lightly around quality and try our best also to push out “get well” releases faster than 6 times in 3 years. When the update cycles pick up, there will be a lot more in the way of incremental improvements & feature releases to the SW rather than giant, monolithic service packs. That is part and parcel of subscription and something that may at first feel jarring. I’m hoping its something you’ll give a try and if you have feedback, good or bad, I want to hear it.

      Best regards,

      Matt

      1. As a user about the only thing I hate more than ongoing subscription costs is the godforsaken rapid release cycle that has spread like cancer through the software industry. I want a stable product that is *done* when I get it. I don’t want constant updates and incessant tinkering. I’ve worked in software, I’ve seen first hand how the scrum fad has led to a constant influx of features being added with little to no comprehensive regression testing. The half-assed “don’t worry, we’ll fix it next release” attitude that leads to a perpetually half baked product. Fixes get promised but the focus is always on adding new features and tinkering rather than actually fixing long standing bugs. Useful features go away or get changed, useless features get added, everything is in a constant flux. Look, these are tools we rely on to do our jobs. We don’t upgrade our screwdrivers every month, we don’t keep changing our dishes and silverware or reorganize the kitchen. I’m sick and bloody tired of everything being in a constant state of flux. It is NOT an advantage to the user, it serves only to justify the continued nickle & diming. I’m a customer, not a cash cow.

  6. @ Matt Berggren

    I can understand your surprise by my reaction. It’s a normal thing considering the blood, sweat, and tears you and your software group has put in to improve EAGLE and then to receive such a negative response about it from me and much of the community too. I did not intend to imply that you shouldn’t be compensated fairly for the software and your work. I would be completely okay with paying slightly more for an improved license of EAGLE given it’s licensing isn’t subscription based.

    “WRT to EAGLE, yes the software is moving to subscription. That won’t change. And if the only thing keeping you using EAGLE was the perpetual license, then that’s a pretty tenuous connection to try and hang on to.”

    Apparently this will never be an option so we will have to agree to disagree.

    I understand that my reasons may seem outdated and hostile with regard to subscription based licensing but it matters a lot to me that when I purchase something, I own it – I’m definitely not alone in this sentiment although our numbers are dwindling. I try my best where possible to use tools that I don’t have to perpetually pay for or that don’t require an internet connection to continue to function.

    And by the way, I never meant to imply that Autodesk hasn’t done anything for education or making design software freely available and affordable. I just disagree with the distribution model. I still stand by my thoughts from my original post and hope that the community of EAGLE users can help to influence and change Autodesk’s mind about subscription only licensing in this case.

    -Jesse

    1. Hi Jesse –

      I take your point and I appreciate the feedback, honestly. The market is indeed changing with every new application that seems to be coming out. I know the model isn’t what you were hoping for but it seems to be a trend bigger than me or any of us I’m afraid (sans a massive revolt that includes the consumers which aren’t inclined toward revolution).

      I think the reality is that the model feels like it *should* work but there’s a generational difference (we’re at a turning point) both in how we think about software and whether or not the companies producing it are honest and trustworthy.

      Sadly, I think on that latter point, there haven’t been many great examples of that to instill hope and make many folks, like yourself, feel comfortable that the asset you’re purchasing will be around and available for you to use. Likewise – and speaking from years of experience as an engineer – we tend toward ‘pack rats’ and want to hang on to every copy of SW or every button or every LED or tube or whatnot that we have lying around…And this model very much threatens my squirrel-like instincts.

      Looking at Google Docs, I think were we to be required to pay for it, the model would have met with the same sort of resistance, but for some reason, the trust equation and the cost equation keep us pouring our lives out into script on a system proffered by a company inclined towards technological homicide. (How’s “Google Wave” these days?) Still, any day Google could say “nah…not worth it” and half of the world’s docs could go up in smoke. Not likely, but a possibility. Same goes for big database wipes and other events we all prefer not to think about.

      I, for one, hated the Adobe subs model when it came out, but I likewise hated paying $2500 for an upgrade only to find out that they didnt fix half of the stuff I was hoping for and there was nothing I could do to get that money back. I’d lost all of my leverage at the point of sale, with only marginal improvements. My expectation is that as EAGLE’s features improve (and we need to be 100% transparent in what we’re adding) and we demonstrate value, that more people will see that we’re not just full of hot air and be willing to take the chance. They will still have local files and local data and can fall back on that legacy version they have if they need it. But hopefully there’ll be enough incentive to keep them grounded in the new SW.

      So though I know today this may be a non-starter for you and many folks on the forum here, this is a managed risk. We either ‘put up or shut up’ so to speak and build the features you want, to incline you to take another look if/when you’re ready. That’s the best I can hope for and we’ll try like hell to get things into the SW soon enough that the decision just makes sense and you’re willing to hold your nose and try it for a month.

      Best regards,

      Matt

      1. Paragraph 1.2.1 in your EULA says we can’t downgrade to our legacy versions after upgrading to Eagle 8.0. It says that our old license is no longer valid and that if Autodesk requests it, we are to provide proof that we have returned or destroyed any copy of the previous software. What are your thoughts? Please note that if this is not true for Eagle, we’ll need to see an amended EULA because your comments on a blog will not hold the necessary legal weight. http://download.autodesk.com/us/FY17/Suites/LSA/en-US/lsa.html

        1. This is the real issue here. Clearly Autodesk wants Eagle’s focus to be small time corporate use – people who cant afford Altium but still want a trusted name, and they’re fine with dropping reasonable support the hobbyist community as part of that. However, between the subscription licence model (instead of subscribing to updates), and the fact that you’re supposed to destroy any licence for Eagle <= 8 no more than 120 days after upgrading – it means you need complete faith in Autodesk to persist Eagle as a product, and you need to keep subscribing.
          If in 3 years Autodesk decides Eagle's popularity has waned, and it's no longer viable to continue as a product, then not only do you cease getting updates as you would with Altium, you lose the ability to edit/revise ANY OF YOUR EXISTING DESIGNS. Yes there may well be free viewer tools available to at least *look* at the design, but you aren't allowed to use the old version of Eagle you made the design with anymore, so you can't edit it. This is a completely unacceptable risk for a company to stake its entire archive of intellectual property, on Autodesk's promise that Eagle will live on indefinitely (a promise they haven't even given.)
          Even if a company stops using Eagle for all new designs, they'll need to maintain a subscription to retain access to their old designs, or put in the work to have them all converted to another EDA.
          Worse still for a hobbyist/prosumer – if you bought Eagle in the past, then try the new subscription model, even for a month, you're fked. You're legally locked out from opening any your existing files in cadsoft/autodesk products, and agree to uninstall your old version(s) of Eagle, and destroy the licence.

        2. Here is the text from the EULA posted at the link above by macegr (http://download.autodesk.com/us/FY17/Suites/LSA/en-US/lsa.html):

          “1.2.1 Effect of Upgrades. If Autodesk or a Reseller provides Licensee with an Upgrade to other Licensed Materials previously licensed to Licensee, the Licensed Materials previously licensed to Licensee and any other Autodesk Materials relating thereto will thereafter be deemed to be a “Previous Version.” Except as set forth in Section 1.2.2 (Exception for Relationship Program Licensees), the license grant and other rights with respect to any Previous Version will terminate one hundred twenty (120) days after Installation of the Upgrade. Within such one hundred twenty (120) day period, except as set forth in Section 1.2.2 (Exception for Relationship Program Licensees), (a) Licensee must cease all use of any Previous Version and Uninstall all copies of the Previous Version, and (b) upon expiration of such period, such Previous Version will no longer constitute Licensed Materials but rather will be deemed to be Excluded Materials and Licensee will no longer have a license for any such Previous Version. At Autodesk’s request, Licensee agrees to destroy or return to Autodesk or the Reseller from which they were acquired all copies of the Previous Version. Autodesk reserves the right to require Licensee to show satisfactory proof that all copies of any Previous Version have been Uninstalled and, if so requested by Autodesk, destroyed or returned to Autodesk or the Reseller from which they were acquired.”

          This is extremely concerning and very user hostile. Nothing about the EULA is in the user’s best interest, it’s completely one-sided. This emphasizes the point that EAGLE user’s should NOT support Autodesk and their one-side subscription based licensing model.

      2. “The market is indeed changing with every new application that seems to be coming out. I know the model isn’t what you were hoping for but it seems to be a trend bigger than me or any of us I’m afraid (sans a massive revolt that includes the consumers which aren’t inclined toward revolution). ”

        Wow, just wow, I read that as “suck it up buttercup” and “consumers are our eternal cashcows by divine right and there’s nothing you can do about it.” such arrogance.

        The subscription model has already failed, consumers will not buy a GPS now unless it has lifetime free updates. Spot the tidal wave of discontent before it drowns you.

        1. Yep, I will pay a subscription for my phone, I need ongoing cellular service and it cannot function standalone. I will pay a subscription for Netflix, they provide a dynamic content library and 10 bucks a month is pretty reasonable for entertainment. I pay monthly for my power, water, gas, and garbage collection, again that’s something that requires continued expenditure on the part of the service provider.

          I will absolutely NOT pay a recurring subscription for software. I routinely use a software package I purchase for 5-10 years or more without upgrading. Office 2003 works just fine for example, does everything I need it to do. I realize companies face a dilemma where software has reached a plateau, does everything most people need and the motivation to upgrade regularly is not there for most. Sucks but that’s just how it goes. Innovate and come up with something that entices me to buy and perhaps I will, but I’m going to upgrade on *my* terms and I will not pay a recurring subscription, no way, no how, never, end of story. Open source is finally getting good enough that these companies are going to be in for a rude shock once they realize that they’ve driven people toward completely free products that get better every day and have none of the limitations.

  7. I maintain products that I am contractually obligated to support for a 20 year life cycle. Standard practice for us is to archive the entire development environment, including licenses. That’s mechanical CAD, electrical CAD and software tool chains. Anything that has a “phone home” or subscription based licensing mechanism completely breaks that process.

    This isn’t “being petty” or something I’m “trying to hang on to”. This is something that breaks my contractual obligations to my customers. I CAN NOT use the software with the new subscription based model.

    1. I totally understand this and we have dealt with this for customers using Autocad and other tools & building infrastructure and the like. It definitely places you in the minority but it’s not something worth discussing with support to understand how best to handle this scenario.

        1. Damn, and he’s tried to marginalize you, claim your concerns are of no worth because you’re a piddling little ant under the tracks of the Autodesk juggernaut… you’re a minority, go away.

          We’re all a minority here, the weird kids who played with soldering irons. We’ll stand together here, and not be divided and conquered by some sellout corporate slime, who attempts to stealth his insults and contempt in mannered prose, but forgets that we are also the smart kids that had high reading comprehension scores.

        2. Just make the jump to KiCad, it’s really quite good, once you get the hang of it you’ll never look back. It’s open source so we won’t see a repeat of the Eagle debacle. No license, no copy protection, no fees, does the job, and I believe what Autodesk has done will push some substantial improvements to KiCad over the coming year.

  8. I’ve used Eagle on and off since, hmm, 2003? But it’s been far more off than on. Maybe I’ll use it pretty intensively for a few months for a hobbyist project, then perhaps occasionally to refer to back to the project… then not at all for a long time, until I need it for another project. Given that usage pattern, the subscription model doesn’t make sense for me.

    If I designed a new board every month or two $10/month wouldn’t be hard to justify, but if I only occasionally have a personal project that demands custom PCB’s, the model really isn’t a good fit.

    Since I haven’t used Eagle in some time and I’d need to reacquaint myself with it anyway… time to take a good look at KiCad.

  9. Given that eagle is now going down the path to hell with afterburners at full blaze, (And I say this as an Eagle user since 1995) WHY HAS NONE OF THE HACKER COMMUNITY SUPPORTED AUTOTRAX-DEX ?? Hell the guy gives it away.. I personally have TRIED ti like KiCad, but it basically sucks. (Any cad package that makes back annotation more than one step has missed the Fing point!) I have bought a $50 DEX licence, but in all honesty, since no one uses DEX, I have not really gotten in to it.

    Again, I love EAGLE. I have taught at least 10 engineers how to use it. BUT this “dial in and remote kill” stupid ass model tears it for me completely. And, (pay attention auto-desk!) more and more “serious” design houses (read DOD) do not allow engineers to have their CAD machines on line and happily dialing home.

    I go to bed tonight with a heavy heart, like the feeling you get when you know you have to break up with what was a great girl friend. Eagle, you broke my heart.

    1. I’m right there with you man… I started using it in ’97. It has been a good friend for so many designs. I knew this day would eventually come. I just wish it could have been after I was dead. I’m not looking forward to bring this up at Monday morning meeting. I am the single person responsible for converting all of my current employers new product line designs to Eagle Cad. They used PADs previously, but wanted to get away from the phone-home thing. I got good feedback from the bean-counters for doing so. Now I’m going to look like an idiot. I hope 7.6 will last us to the end.

      1. Man, I just want to cry, vomit, and then start a campaign for the rest of my life against Auto desk. I have called “Ed” at the Florida office no less than a thousand times – and he always answered the phone and helped me with the tough problems. ONE TIME in 20+ years he was not available to help. ONE. Eagle outlasted RadioShack. Eagle outlasted the housing boom. Eagle outlasted the internet boom. Eagle was the rock. Ed outlasted all of that … Beat that shit with your soon t come “cloud help” Autodesk!! Am I going to be charged by the minute for your tech support?? Are you going to re-hash the 900 number services?? What a sad day indeed.. May God forgive me, but I (as a maker) feel the need to OWN my own goddamn tools!! Get this millennial rent-an-iPhone crap out of your heads Autodesk!! Engineers are not as stupid as the rest of the community you have “rooked” into the subscription model crap!! See, we know how the “sausage” is made… Because WE make it..

        On a similar note, I just rented my new ‘scope from Agilent. I just got a GREAT deal on Ebay for a new lease on a kick ass logic analyzer.. I plan to go to home-depot tomorrow and get a lease on a new set of Husky ratchets.. Yes America, this is a brand new day.. I am going to relinquish ownership of all that I relay on to survive and hold dear, in turn for a “reasonable” monthly payment!! Yes !!! the “next” generation has it all figured out !!! own nothing and pay perpetually for everything!! It only took 2017 years for humanity to figure it all out… Thank you Autodesk for helping me realize that I own nothing, and that perpetual payments and required internet connectivity are the path to true enlightenment.

        This is why I (for the moment) still use solid-works.

        PS: Ed, go get a job with Autotrax — they need your help!!

        1. That comment is pure concentrated awesomeness. I’ve only been using Eagle since 2001 (for hobbies until going pro with it in 2009) but my occasional interactions with Ed Robledo agree with yours, absolutely dedicated to the product and making sure the customers got the best support he could deliver, while remaining open to new shifts in the market and the new “Maker” crowd.

          It cheesed me off to see Matt say above basically “well, everyone else seems to be doing this cloud license thing, so we just have to go with the flow I guess although it’s not optimal.” As if Auto Freaking Desk is merely swept along by the vagaries of the software market, rather than leading the charge like the software giant it is. If anyone could buck a trend it would be Autodesk, but they are choosing not to do so.

          1. Buck it, Why? They’re one of the ones that started it in 2015 with 3DSMax, and there was very little complaint then. Seems par for the course for Autodesk to just slap a subscription model on whatever they feel like. /s

    2. DEX is a weird one.. I love using it, but won’t buy it. The guy who makes it comes across as a complete ass. The free version cant output gerbers, he did offer a free hobbyist version on the eevblog forums for about 2 weeks, from which there’s all sorts of mess of him trying to shame people for using competing products, accusing people of piracy, and even revealing people’s personal information as a personal attack in response to a guy editing the gerbers spat out by his free version, so he eventually canned it. The software isn’t bad, but I have less trust in him than Autodesk… Some people just shouldn’t run a business…

      Also, the way it bounces in price from $49 to $99 on a week by week basis doesn’t inspire confidence either. I did once decide to purchase it, but the price had temporarily hiked up to $99, and while waiting for the price to drop back down, I made the design in question in kicad and moved on.

  10. This news only confirms that it was a good choice to switch over to KiCad. (I had many years of custom libraries and designs in Eagle, it took some time to transition) I like the features added to the new Eagle since Autocad aquisition (it was a very long time since I liked any of the features that were being added to the package) but this subscription model is definitely making all that moot.

    I will from now on be donating the money, I would otherwise be spending on Eagle, to the KiCad developers. I think this is a much better way of investing my money. (https://giving.web.cern.ch/civicrm/contribute/transact?reset=1&id=6) As KiCad is open-source there is no chance that Autodesk or anyone else will suddenly decide to pull the plug on the software “bought”. Also the KiCad developers are definitely listening to the community and moving quickly in a very good direction. And if something is important enough I can also contribute and help out. I think this is a great added value.

    I hope to see more of you all around in the KiCad or for that matter gEDA/PCB camp. :)

    1. Reggy,

      I concur. I’ve been using Eagle for about half of my life now. It has served me well. I wish Cadsoft would have given the community a chance to buy Eagle from them. We could have easily raised a couple million. Subscription just doesn’t work for cad software. This is very much like watching an old friend die a slow painful death. A very significant part of my life will die too. I have no idea yet how to replace it. I have hope for Kicad, but for now, it can’t replace 7.6. I guess I will just work on KiCad as hobby for a few boards until I think it might be ready for commercial work.

  11. Having purchased an Eagle license in Australia through Element14 quite recently perhaps Matt Berggren can tell me where I get my refund? Given that it was advertised as having “Free maintenance and support.” included adn no longer does it would appear to be in violation of the obligations required under Australian Consumer law.

        1. We have always provided support for major releases. We provided support for version 6 until version 7 came out. We provide support for version 7 until version 8 comes out. This doesn’t prevent you from using the user forums (all of which we host) and receiving replies either from the support teams or fellow users as necessary.

          1. Yes but I purchased through Element14 at a time when 7.7 was the current release via a web page claiming free maintenance would be provided. Clearly a bogus statement if there are no new version I can use with my license. You seem to be evading that point. Anyway. I’ll call them Monday and ask for my refund.

          2. But here’s what you said in response to my concern about the license agreement:
            ‘This is completely inaccurate but I appreciate you bringing it up, so we can tease out just what this means. When you purchased a previous license, you did so under a Cadsoft license agreement. We have no authority or interest in doing anything to that license as it was a different legal framework by which you made that agreement. Under subscription, there is no “major” release and thus that clause would never apply …i.e. version 8.0 of EAGLE is only a version number for convenience…as we move forward, this is just EAGLE and there is no major “Upgrade” like there was in the past, thus nothing to force anyone to stop using an older license.’

            So in you response to my comment you said Eagle 8 is not a major version upgrade from Eagle 7. But in response to Technics you said that is IS a major version upgrade and therefore you don’t have to keep supporting Eagle 7. This looks like you’re changing the story whenever you want, Matt. This looks like slick, two-faced marketer speak, Matt. This looks untrustworthy, Matt.

  12. Is KiCad another one of these vi/emacs things? i.e. it’s objectively rubbish, but damn it, you made the poor life choice and learnt it, and rather than admitting you made a mistake you have to justify it to yourself, and therefore others.

    “Er, well, actually, it’s good. Whilst those are features are actually entirely indistinguishable from badly thought out and poorly implemented UI practices from circa 3452BCE, er, well, actually, they’re good!”

    No, you’re not cleverer. Yes, it is awful. Shut up about it already – go and rebuild the kernel for your android phone or something.

    1. KiCad is actually quite good and it has made great strides in the last few years. It’s at least as good as Eagle in my opinion. I tried out every EDA I could get my hands on, ranging in price from free to $10K and for my hobby projects I chose KiCad even back before it had improved so much.

      Don’t knock it till you’ve tried it.

    1. I don’t like the library management that requires me to assign footprints post-schematic but otherwise the interface seems fine. I’ve used a lot of different EDAs and they all have quirks, KiCad is no worse than the others, it’s just a bit different.

      1. If you run your own (self-vetted) local libraries with footprints defined (and don’t use the community vetted ones) you don’t need to post-assign footprints to your devices after you made the schematic – you actually don’t even run CVpcb.
        A lot of professionals who use KiCAD run it exactly like that.
        And any company that doesn’t run it’s own vetted libraries is asking for trouble anyway.
        Lot’s of posts about that on kicad.info.

  13. The pricing itself ($500/y) is not “awful” for the “premium” package (used to be ~$1600, so the new price is approximately equivalent to upgrading every 3 years.) That’s less than I expected to pay, should I achieve “pro” status (currently I’m using a paid “non-profit” version with 100x160x6L support.) I can see how they sort-of need to go to a subscription model. There old scheme left a bunch of “reasonably happy” users never upgrading, because the new features weren’t “compelling” enough.
    I’m going to miss the very-cheap low-end version, and the intermediate 6-layer 100x160mm board version, though…

  14. Eagle has been my go to package for years now, I shelled out $800 for it, added thousands of parts to my custom library, it’s not a great tool and has plenty of useability issues but it’s what I’m used to (it may be a bastard but it’s my bastard)

    This pricing is outrageous and they will not be getting a rusty penny from me if they expect me to shell out 500 a year and expect me to have a constant internet connection running around my place of work

    The community needs to get loud and tell autodesk to shove it

  15. So… The free version (http://www.autodesk.com/products/eagle/free-download) says:

    * PCB design software for students, makers, and professionals.
    * Includes 2 schematic sheets, 2 signal layers, and 80 cm2 board area.
    * Available for Windows, Mac, and Linux.

    Does this mean that the free version is equal to the old “EAGLE Standard 1User” license, with no commercial restrictions? I haven’t found any more info regarding the free 8.0 version.

  16. (Speeking to Autodesk, their engineers like to ego-surf so someone there will read this.) The whole “Subscription software” thing is a surefire way to force paying users to pirate your software Autodesk. The same thing already happened to 3DSMax, you should know, because you distributed the cracked copies yourselves, the number of pirated copies spiked, and the number of active customers dipping at the same time. It also happened to Microsoft Word, so why do you think this benefits anyone? It certainly isn’t benefiting you or the paying consumer, you’re just giving pirates a leg up.

  17. Ya know, its not even the pricing that KILLS me — its the damn required internet connectivity an the time expiring license – – Autodesk, this is just CRAP !!! Wake up!! real engineers just don’t “do that” I will GLADLY pay EVEN MORE for Eagle, but I need to be the one in control of it. In fact I have had no less than 15 companies over the last 20 years that I consult with buy licences. — And the “good” ones — I make them buy the full-boat subcription. That day is over. By the way, you are about to loose an order for 15 full-licence seats that was going to be placed this week by a large defense contractor that I am consulting for. No more. No way. This is for 2 reasons… 1) your new rent-to-not-own policy SUCKS 2) This contractor will not, EVER, let their “work” computers touch the internet. If your 20-something’s in your marking department had an ounce of sense they would understand why, I am not going to spell it out for you here.

    By the way, Autdesk, you are welcome for the past sales leads, but I am now switching my “free” referral service to a monthly based subscription model, I will be requiring $50/mo to continue referring my clients to your software — Its the new “thing” just like your new “thing” — Further, after 6 months, I will trash your product to my clients until I am paid another $50 by Autodesk… Its my new 2017 policy — I am sure you understand. If you want to reach me to discuss the matter I can be reached by my new “cloud support” virtual-me pie-in-the-sky help desk..

    See? This sucks for everyone.

    AND lets not forget about the hundreds of thousands of hours this community has dedicated to writing ULP’s that make Eagle even more awesome. I assume that we, the community, also will be recieving monthly checks for our efforts? After all, its the new “thing” right?

  18. It’s been fun, but I am afraid my relationship with Eagle is over. What a shame. I never paid the upgrade (non-profit licence but at least able to do 160×100) to move from version 6.6, and that is the version I have now. I’ve a few projects that are going to need converting over to something else – from other comments, that looks like it is going to be KiCAD.

  19. I don’t do subscriptions (except phone, internet) for the simple fact that I don’t want to encourage the business model. Autodesk are playing a silly game here all this will do is lose them customers and increase piracy. I hope someone cracks Eagle, Autodesk deserve it.

  20. Cripes. I stopped upgrading photoshop when they went to subscription and will never own Office 360 for the same reason. I am NOT going to rent software. I’m sure it doesn’t matter one iota to AutoDesk, but I’ll start looking at Kicad for new stuff.

    1. If it doesn’t matter to Autodesk they will quickly find themselves with no market share at all, at which point what have they gained by buying Eagle? The customer base is almost entirely hobbyist, prosumer and some tiny businesses, almost none of which are going to get on board with the subscription model. Just look at all the backlash here, these are all Eagle users and the reaction is been almost 100% negative. Company reps blow it off with “well it is what it is, suck it up” essentially. RIP Eagle.

  21. Please don’t wreck the tread by making it political. Stay on message. This new rent-to-not-own Auto-Freak’n-Desk idea belongs on the JUNK HEAP with the segment-and-offset registers of the 80’s.

  22. Consumers are getting subscription overload and fatigue. The company I work for has moved away from subscriptions because of that very thing. Customers, like myself are tired of being nickeled and dimed to death, we’re tired of paying for a tool, not knowing that if we lose our jobs or our financial situation changes, it we’ll be able to continue using our tools. We’re tired of not owning our software. We’re tired of not being in control of our tools and when we want to spend money.

    The ONLY side subscriptions serve is the corporation/business offering the subscription.

  23. I just posted the following on the support forums for Autodesk’s Eagle in the licencing thread:

    “Customers are unhappy with subscription models. They have what is termed ‘Subscription Fatigue’. We’re tired of not owning the tools of our trade and hobbies. We’re tired of not knowing if we’ll be able to use our tools if our financial situations change and are unable to pay a subscription fee. We’re tired of being held hostage for tools we need. If I don’t want to renew a licence for a year or two, that should be my choice but my existing tools should continue to work. The company I work for deliberately has steered clear of subscription models for these exact reasons. Autodesk does not have to sink to this level. If you believe in your product and make a quality product, you do not have to force people to pay you; they do it voluntarily.

    I don’t agree with this model of doing business. I have been an Eagle user for about 7 years however, my next move will be to another solution. I will not participate with Autodesk in this direction. I have subscription fatigue.

    Good by.”

  24. +1 JohnnyH

    Also

    I suspect we won’t see the word eagle after say 3 or so updates.

    It really seems vaguely familiar to the Autodesk buyout of Generic Cadd in the late 80’s early 90’s.

    Generic Cadd => Autodesk Generic Cadd => Autocad LT replaced Generic Cadd

    Seems to be the Autodesk way.

  25. There is a version of Eagle floating around called EagleCAD_v7.6.0_Pro_adfree_Linux_Windows_32_64_bit.zip , the last before the Autodesk acquisition, which has all layers enabled, has no ads and will not expire. One can use this until she’s ready to transition to KiCAD.

  26. If I was going to pay a subscription for software, it wouldn’t be for the crap-festival of Eagle’s user interface.

    Eagle smacks of being a legacy product, developed in the 1980s before user interface concepts like the noun-verb action model were developed, then fossilized because too much of the existing userbase had spent too much time learning it warts and all.

    Nobody uses Eagle because they like the way it works. Nobody likes having to select the ‘group’ tool, then select parts, then select an action tool, then right-click to actually perform that action. Nobody likes having to load the same CAM job every time they generate Gerbers because “remembering the last one you used” wan’t a thing in 1983. Nobody likes “you can have exactly one schematic/board open at any time” because the concept of multiple windows was a pipe dream before the original Mac was released in 1984.

    You can tolerate Eagle’s many failings with a one-time license fee, but people who pay monthly rent expect stuff to get fixed. Eagle’s whole UI is so badly dated that the only real fix is, “bury it out in the desert next to those Atari game cartridges and replace it with something new-as-of-at-least-1999”.

    1. Eagle was the first EDA tool I tried, and I almost went back to drawing boards by hand because that was less painful.

      Years later I found KiCad, and realised that EDA software didn’t need to be counter-intuitive and backwards.

  27. I am struggling to remain polite (Canada here). This is disturbing news. To think that I had just upgraded to the 169 US$ hobbyist licence. Talk about pulling the rug out from beneath my feet! And they said they wouldn’t do it!

    One can only hope cutting the cord with the maker community does not become the trend in corporate quarters.

    I downloaded KiCad. I had looked at it a few years back and it was pretty terrible, but it looks like way more mature now that it is backed by the CERN. I think I’ll give it another serious shot.

    In the interim, I’ll use EAGLE 7.7 until I can see the threads.

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