SportsTracks 3- no more

golden CheetahWell. I have to say I’m hacked off about this.

First it was Google Earth requiring payment from developers that meant my images on SportTracks had watermarks all over them – I did find a workaround that involved giving Google my credit card details.

Then it was finally figuring out after two years that it was the TRAININGLOAD plugin that was slowing down the startup of ST3.1.

Now it looks like SportTracks is being frozen in time.

I think frozen is a better way of saying it. It sounds better than de-supported. I assume ST3.1 will still work. It’s just that if there is some errant tweak in .NET or on Google Earth then you’re stuffed.

Announcement from Zone Five Software…below. Grrr.

If XERT can create a multi-sport environment I’d probably switch to that and use some of FINALSURGE’s upcoming functionalities for other stuff.

Final Surge

I’ll still use Golden Cheetah for weird stuff. Either that or set decent amount of time aside to really understand all of it…there’s a lot to understand.

Maybe I should just accept that 2019 has arrived and stop living in 2009.

Training Peaks. nah. You might want to have a look at STRAVISTIX/ELEVATE

STRAVISTIX – ELEVATE – Deeper Analysis with ELEVATE for STRAVA aka STRAVISTIX

 

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Zone Five Software strives to provide useful and innovative solutions for technically focused fitness athletes training with data. Achieving that goal requires we focus on where the future tech trends and customers are going. In support of that goal Zone Five Software announces the end-of-life and end-of-sales dates for the SportTracks 3 (ST3) Windows PC software app. The last day to purchase a license for the ST3 product is June 30, 2019.

The ST3 product will reach end-of-life on March 31, 2020. Before the end-of-life date Zone Five Software may continue to provide software patches for issues assessed as urgent or critical in nature. At this time there is no software patch planned.

After March 31, 2020, we will no longer take support issues, offer software updates, or provide any support infrastructure for online services related to the ST3 Windows PC application operation including the support website, license management, or plugin registry.

We invite all customers to transition to our SportTracks online product [LEARN MORE]. Customers with an existing ST3 license can use the free Cloud Sync feature in ST3 to migrate their workout history, fitness health metrics and gear details in a few easy steps. The SportTracks online product has a 45-day free trial offer.

To maintain the integrity of your data and fitness tracking workflow we strongly recommend that you transition to our SportTracks online solution or another fitness tracking solution and de-install the ST3 software on or before the Software end-of-life date.

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54 thoughts on “SportsTracks 3- no more

  1. Disappointing but not unexpected. I was determined to stick with ST3 – really didn’t want to trust my data to the Cloud, would much rather have my own store. Became a pain when direct sync from Garmins stopped working, but I persevered, doing manual export/import, just to get the data store.

    however, gave up a few months ago, as finally accepted they couldn’t care less about the product as they fully committed to the mobi site.

    though I know everything is going Cloud, not sure it’s a great strategy for them – they’re now competing against bigger and better companies, where they had a unique proposition for desktop software – which I imagine plenty of folk are keen on.

    • yeah i agree. unfortunately at the last point you make i think it falls over. not sure there really are that many of us left. let’s hope they open source the code.

      • I still care about having a desktop repository for all of my running data. ST3 is actually a perfect case in point. Imagine if all of my data were on the cloud right now and the company decided to change the terms of service ($$$) or had to shut down unexpectedly? At least with ST3, I have an XML based logbook that I can get all of my information out of + my original .FIT files. Can’t say that for the cloud.

        Just not sure where to go next…all I really need is the basics and a training load calculator.

          • Thanks for the tips, 5k! I use Garmin Connect, which is free and provides a nice, portable interface for eyeballing my progress, but nothing to get into the nitty gritty that I’m looking for. Golden Cheetah looks interesting, but mainly geared toward cyclists. That may be worth checking out, though. If the reporting is good out of the box, that may work as I gather my bearings. There’s another one called TurtleSport that looks good. Hasn’t been updated since 2017 and I didn’t see anything about reporting in the screenshots, but it’s open source and looks very similar to ST3. The others I found appear to be cloud based, which I totally understand from the perspective of a developer (full control of updates, a continuous revenue stream, not having to troubleshoot a user’s computer, etc.), but I won’t be going that route, mainly because I want full control of my data and don’t want to pay a continuous revenue stream for something that should be a one-time purchase.

            I may actually put something together for myself, starting with the raw data and statistics, and some charting. There appears to be enough information online for the training load calculations to do it myself. It’s really a nice, polished frontend that would take time, but I think I could do something quick & dirty for myself.

            ST3 is pretty much out for me. It’s unable to import the .FIT files from my FR935, I believe ever since I added the Stryd ConnectIQ plugin. I’m sure I can work around that, but the writing is on the wall. Time to find something new!!

          • it should be able to import them
            tho you might have to use the OMB iFIT importer…which may no longer be available for purchase 🙁
            ciq files will always cause some platforms issues who have not implemented the full fit file spec
            one option is to always use (paid for) fit file repair tool to repair/change the format of workout files eg to tcx, which would, for example, put cached hr data back in the right chronological place.

          • Thanks for the tips! I downloaded the FIT SDK and I’m on my way! They have a sample decoder in c# and all of the data I’m interested is there in the files for the taking! I’ll have no problem converting to other file formats. I’m pretty much convinced that I need to come up with my own system. I always wanted more control over the reporting, and now is the time to make it happen!!

        • And that’s a real risk these days. So many companies are moving to the cloud but don’t have good data security plans in place (some don’t even seem to understand the issue.) Nor do they understand how going to the cloud can break the value of their product for at least parts of their customer base.

          These companies are literally dumping the loyal customers because someone in the company thinks “the cloud’ model is better for business, but unfortunately it means a product that works more poorly, especially if one is without web connectivity.

          Neat is a great example of how bad this can be. Fantastic product but created a market for competing products over night by moving to a cloud based analysis and storage model: for a product you us to scan financial data! Only a fool puts his financial data in the cloud… and worse yet, now I’d have to make sure my internet connection is solid so that all the back and forth of analyzing my data and making it available to me works. Bad internet connection = Useless product.

          Sadly, it looks like Sport Tracks is going the same way. Time to start researching an alternative.

          • it’s a tricky thing to monetise. I suspect sporttracks ditched the one-off desktop payment in favour on an annual cloud subscription. i can certianly see the attraction of that
            I have talked to st3.1 plugin developers and they said that ‘people jsut want free stuff’ …give them the option of paying ‘if they want to’ and people simply don’t, on the whole.
            golden cheetah is the free desktop software to go to.

      • Maybe, but I’m not sure – anecdotally I know a lot of people (admittedly in a running club) that would much prefer local storage, I know that is quite a niche market, but certainly when you replicate that out, I’d say there would be enough for something viable. I’d be very tempted to pick something up if it got Open Sourced, but starting from scratch would be too much of an undertaking…

    • Yep – not just the cloud issue for me… I find the desktop version has a much cleaner interface, where the smaller fonts and distinct panels with clear demarcations make it much easier on the eye for viewing, Never really got on with the web version which just looks too “busy” to really focus on anything.

  2. So its all because of Training Load plug-in?? How did you fix this? just uninstall the plug-in? I really like it and there is no equivalent except for Stravistix…
    thx!
    6co

  3. Disappointed!! like you guys. Windows 7 support ending next year too. A double whammy for me. I tried Golden Cheetah, but geared towards cycling if you excuse the pun and a bit too complex for my liking. Turtle sports seems to work quite well, simple to use. I am also testing training lab. Which has a limited direct watch sync, but my Garmin 230 can be accessed and fit files downloaded. Like you guys, I have 10 years worth of files to download, individually through SportTracks using the file converter plugin. It’s a shame, as SportTracks 3.0 does everything I need from a running/bike/weight training/swimming log. Without the security risk of loosing information or personal information being misused. That’s so called progress for you. Kind regards Mervyn, a veteran 68 years young runner.

  4. After several years using ST, this definitely didn’t come as a surprise as ST was slowly getting stale.
    After much research, I have adopted MTB (http://mytourbook.sourceforge.net/mytourbook/).
    GC being too much geared towards cycling and at first glance it seems that one needs a PhD to be able to use it 🙂

    MTB is a great alternative to ST and is VERY actively being developed.

    While I understand most of the industry players are moving to the cloud, I am not sure that every customer is wanting that marketing model and I am sure there should be choices so every athlete can make their own and not be forced down their throat something that doesn’t fit them.

    I personally want to own my data locally and want to be able to analyze my athletic endeavors deeply

  5. ST3 is dead and GC is not user friendly at all – and this comes from a statistics nut. I’m also not convinced that it has the power to interrogate the data in the ways that I would like.

    Is anyone out there analysing their own data rather than relying on applications? There are loads of ways to get your data downloaded to your desktop automatically as tcx/gpx files, and from there the world is your oyster if you’re into sports and statistics.

    I have a few ideas that I want to explore, assuming nobody else has already done the legwork (I don’t think they have, or at least they haven’t published their work online). I’m currently trying to work out how to import tcx files into a RDBMS. It should be relatively straightforward to get just one publisher’s “handwriting”, but I am struggling to figure out how to handle multiple namespaces, as I don’t have any prior xml knowledge. Once I’ve figured out the import, from there I plan to create a series of cubes to cut the data in different ways, allowing all sorts of ways to interrogate the data. I’d really like to be able to analyse the patterns of what I did prior to good performances so I can replicate in the future.

    In an ideal world, I’d then go cloud-based (I KNOW!) and pool data from many athletes. I’m just spit-balling here, there are lots of hurdles to get over to get to that point, let alone actually getting a website up and running, security being the main issue for a web-based athlete data-sharing platform. But if it existed, instead of relying on Strava coming up with boiler-plate analysis whenever they feel like it, which is too generic to be very helpful, you could just interrogate the data. “I want a 5k PB, here are my current PB, age, BMI and fitness level.” The system then finds patterns within the best performance improvements over 5k among athletes that share those characteristics (training hours, distance, proportion of running in different HR/pace zones etc.). It’s actually incredible that this doesn’t already exist. Your only option is pre-packaged analysis, whether that’s Strava, SportsTracks, or one of the manufacturers’ own websites. Even TrainingPeaks doesn’t provide this.

    By the way, if anyone is reading this, feel free to steal this idea. I’m only interested in using it, I’d rather someone other than me developed it!

  6. I’m going to use the ST3.x Desktop as long as I can and as long as the add-ins I have for it run.

    I can do some of what I want in Excel and will likely move the data itself to Access or SQL Server Express.

    OTOH, hopefully they might open-source Sport Tracks. Though I doubt it. I will look at this Tourbook tool as well. But keeping my data on my machines and in my backups is more important than some company profiteering off the cloud.

    • OTOH…nah 🙁
      i’m going to reinstall just before the EOL date. hopefully that will then delay the next auto licence check for as long as possible
      if you do that you’ll also need to downgrade to a slightly earlier version. I can get hold of one nearer the time…ping me if you want it (feb/mar2020)

      • The reinstall before EOL date isn’t necessary. An install after EOL is problematic though because the license server (which verifies that you bought the product) will also be taken down.

        Luckily it’s extremely easy to patch the SportTracks.exe to remove the license check if you use a tool called dnSpy ( https://github.com/0xd4d/dnSpy/releases ). All it takes is to browse to ZoneFiveSoftware.SportTracks.Util and edit the class Licensing

        • Fine, thanks for sharing it.

          I did wonder what would be the legal stance of ST3 after the day of EOL. Whether its code would be freely change because it would be dead from a legal point of view, so no restriction to modify it would be applied. Or just the opposite? Copyright will be intact, EOL will have no effect on it?

          But my wondering was deleted by ST3 team, see my story under the nickname of Z here: https://www.dcrainmaker.com/2014/10/sporttracks-connect-automatic.html

          It also makes some sense to check just the last dozen posts or so.

          By the way today I spotted that another user of ST3 used a word of Fraud, because he had had problem with licensing. I just wanted to check the user clicking on him, but the ST3 forum engine said:” the user does not exist any more” or sthing like that

          Cheers,

          Zoltan

          • FYKI I also patched the .exe and changed it to 99999. And saved the change and checked the .exe re-opening it in the editor.

            I also made a test and launched my ST3 directly after my old laptop booted. Thus I gave no time for my laptop to fully boot, alunch all the Win7 services and get the internet connection.

            I still got the trial mode. See https://kepkuldes.com/image/e3HUSg

            So I guess changing the RevalidateLicense number is not enough. Mayb somebody else to test it, too?

  7. When reading this, I do not find it strange that software suppliers use a pure subscription model (with the cloud) at one end and that users discuss how to use what they have purchased on the other.

    Anyway, we need a communication channel when the ST forum has closed.
    This thread is a start.
    As long as GitHub allows, I will keep my plugins there, but eventually they will be hard to build.

    • I think setting up this community channel is a great idea. We probably should download the setup and plugins and host them somewhere else as these will otherwise disappear…

      As a community we could survive this and take SportsTracks beyond end of life.

  8. Great discussion.

    I patched the executable to 99999 days as Tex suggested. I do not know how to change the Class Licensing as Edwyna suggested. I have also created a VM that contains my fully installed and activated ST3 with all my plugins as a backup.

    I have been testing WKO5 as a desktop replacement and while it does have impressive data analytics, it does not have any equipment tracking which seems very odd, and it also has no weather integration. For online platforms I have also tested TrainingPeaks and Runalyz. Neither one provides all the functionality to replace ST3 🙁

    Dan M (aka ViDi0T)

  9. It still hurts me that Aaron called my behaviour poor and the fact that he made my posts under a control.

    But having seen that both here and on dcrainmaker.com there are ST3-users, who would like to become “ST3 survivals” gave me some sort of remedy.

    Zoltan
    aka
    Tisztul_A_Visztula

    • As I mentioned earlier in a comment, I have tested several applications.
      I’ve now migrated to Traininglab Pro Windows PC only application.
      Downside: this application can not completely substitute Sporttracks, but most of my needed tasks can be. And it isn’t freeware, but the cost for a license is moderate.
      Pros: the developer is a very kind person. I’ve had a problem importing my fitlog files, sport types haven’t been assigned correctly. After I had emailed him, he implemented a bulk sport type switcher, so that all my former activities could be well typed. The user interface is very intuitive, the application is very easy to handle .
      There are many other apps like the mentioned Golden Cheetah, Mytourbook and WKO5 for example, so leaving the sinking ship is not a big deal.
      Thanks Aaron for developing and maintaining Sporttracks this long time, but the end respectively the handling of the end is realy very unpleasant.

  10. So yesterday my Windows 10 Home finally updated to v1903 and after that there were two updates for .NET framework 3.5 and 4.8 and I don’t know which update caused this.

    Today when I launched ST3, I have to validate my plugin licensing for OMB and mechgt. I have valid licenses for these plugins so for today it was no problem.

    Of course, this lead me to wonder what will happen post 3/31/2020? Will the plugins still work? Will they need reactivating once in a while? Can it be patched as well?

  11. You can edit the plugins as well. The dll files for the plugins are located under the hidden folder c:\programdata\zonefivesoftware\…..

    • Btw I also edited the frequency of update availability checking. It seemed that ST3 looked for updates once a month. Changing the parameter 1 to 1200 means 100 year of relax and ver6879 will not find out that there are newer versions published. Although it seems to be unneccesary, since the server will be shut down inn6 months, but any attempt to communicate with the server might give an error in case the server was not available.

  12. One thing I am not sure to understand from this discussion.
    Are most of you trying to continue to use ST as long as you can ?

    Personally, I just want to be sure I can use ST until I am done migrating my data to the new software I chose but maybe you intend in continuing to use ST as long as possible ?

    What deterred me initially from ST (even before the EOL announcement) is that big files are not supported (in a nutshell, due to the fact that ST uses .NET 3.5. See here : http://www.zonefivesoftware.com/sporttracks/forums/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=11001). And even if i don’t encounter an OutOfMemory exception yet, my 10+ years of data make ST really slow….

    • that’s a pain.
      you should archive off 8 of those years of data and just work with 2 years, that is what I do

      yes I would like to use sportacks as long as I can

      • Because we’re in 2019 and that just sounds too heinous 🙂

        On top of it, I feel like it is inevitable that ST will stop working one way or another one day so i might as well make the switch as soon as I can.

          • I am not aware of anything that does all that ST3 does, especially since ST had so many plugins that every one is using it differently.

            I have personally switched to MyTourBook and have been really happy so far.

    • With the license server issue resolved I see no reason for moving away. Migrating to other software will mean some kind of data loss for sure.

      So yes, I’m staying.

    • My intent was to only keep using ST3 until I migrate all my data to another platform, however, I still have not found another platform (PC or cloud based) that provides all the functionality I am seeking for multisport (Triathlon). After EOL, CloudSync will cease to work so it will mean manual loading of the Garmin fit files, not too much work, but certainly not convenient.

      I don’t mind paying for a good product, and I asked Aaron many times to come up with a business model and pricing to keep ST3 going (sigh). I was quite disappointed with WKO5, was expecting much more, thank goodness for the free trial!

      ST3 loads super slow for me too, 12+ years of data, and Training Load takes even longer!
      I am also not confident that ST3 and the plugins will keep working indefinitely. I am not a coder so trying to patch my plugins is proving to be a bit of a challenge!

      Dan M

      • ” am also not confident that ST3 and the plugins will keep working indefinitely.”
        That’s exactly my thoughts so I prefer running away from ST as soon as I can…
        Did you check out other PC apps ? Pytrainer, Runner’s studio, turtlesports, Mytourbook, WKO5, Goldencheetah…. there is choice!

  13. We’re at a crossroads. Either SportTracks dies (as planned) or SportTracks is revived by the community.

    If no one sets up an alternative community where there can be SportTracks user to user support I’d say it’s likely of SportTracks being truly at it’s end of life as the zonefivesoftware forum will be taken down soon.

  14. I’ve fixed Dobrou Extensions to function with the latest version of SportTracks. The patched version is available here: ufile.io/jicboabt

    This plugin allows you to do:
    * Extended KML export
    – Gradient colored track – color based on activity data (speed,elevation,grade…).
    – Dot-racing
    – Dynamic track width,height,opacity – based on activity data
    * Display currently selected activities immediately in Google Earth :
    – When you click “Export -> ENABLE/DISABLE instant export to Google Earth in current view” – when ENABLED – every time you select some activities in current view in SportTracks, they are immediately shown in Google Earth application. (Latest version 6 of GE is recommended)

    All features work in “Daily activity” and “Activity Reports” view.

    (Plugin needs latest version of Google Earth installed, download this from http://www.google.com/earth/ )

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