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Helix login/password feature


mikeyselb
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Due to the potential amount of hours undertaken to create your own presets and the ease by which the Helix is turned on and immediately open for anyone to access any of the settings and change/delete them, let alone the unit being stolen and, again, easily accessed for use by another person, would it be advantageous to have a login/password setting similar to other devices e.g. Computers, mobiles etc..?

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In my personal opinion, not just no, but heck no! I just don't see that this is much of a risk at all. The vast majority of people are going to see the Helix and have no idea what it is, how it works, or anything. There may be a small number of informed guitarists who know about it, but I just can't imagine anyone trying to mess with it. In all my years playing live, I've never had anyone mess with my stuff like that.

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I would like to see a "lock" of the presets that just disables the ability to save over a final.   Patch based of course, so when you are ready, you just save and then from a separate menu do a lock.   If you want to unlock a preset, that's fine..  or you can just copy it to a new spot.    I can actually envision dumping all of the built in pre-sets at some point and just having a nice clean array of pre-sets I use, locked so I can't accidentally overwrite them.   Again, this would not even prevent editing, just overwriting.   Lets say you were at a gig and you needed to adjust something on the fly, no problem, you can make the change and if you want to keep it, save it to an empty preset, or if it was just a one-off change...  don't worry about it.

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That really has to be some very very hard tape to work. Lol. 

Put a coin beneath it with the coin edges extending past the button edge.  :lol:  You will never find a coin worth more than the cost of implementing a software lock feature. :lol:

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Well, you have to hit the save button twice to actually save a preset... Seems like a relatively small chance that you'd do that by accident.

 

I don't know about that. The weak point might be when you're actually going to save a preset and your mind is elsewhere. By the time you've hit the save button twice it's too late, because that's when you're mind returns and you've realized what you've done. :lol: Good reason to keep backups.

 

But I don't think there's any amount of programming they can do to account for something like that.

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I don't know about that. The weak point might be when you're actually going to save a preset and your mind is elsewhere. By the time you've hit the save button twice it's too late, because that's when you're mind returns and you've realized what you've done. :lol: Good reason to keep backups.

 

But I don't think there's any amount of programming they can do to account for something like that.

 

Nagging mode - Hit save button a second time "Are you sure you want to do this?". Hit it again, "Come on... Are you really sure?". Once again, "That preset was fine you really don't want to overwrite it, do you?"

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Nagging mode - Hit save button a second time "Are you sure you want to do this?". Hit it again, "Come on... Are you really sure?". Once again, "That preset was fine you really don't want to overwrite it, do you?"

 

Ha. That would actually work in the rare instances when you're not paying attention to what you're doing. In addition to the nagging, they should initiate a random pattern and color LED flashing mode.

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Well, you have to hit the save button twice to actually save a preset... Seems like a relatively small chance that you'd do that by accident.

 

If you do a lot of editing, this is actually easy.  And if you're at a gig and accidentally do it, you might be screwed.   I (and I assume many others) are in the habit of essentially double-clicking the save button.  Once I found out I didn't have to click the OK button I thought this was a cool feature, but now it's second nature. Make a change... tap-tap.   I can totally see wanting to save to a location, maybe forgetting for the moment you already put something in that location.  With me, it would be gone at that point.

 

I certainly don't want any EXTRA steps... Save should work as save...    But nearly every other programmable effects unit I have owned enabled you to lock a preset from being edited.  This is the first I've seen without that feature actually.    With most others, you start programming by "recalling" one of the locked presets into the user patch area.   The Helix is far ahead of others in that you can use the entire unit if you want, which is awesome, so a way to lock specific patches.

 

And if I haven't "made the case" yet.... one word...  ROADIES !!!!   he/she may get fired for accidentally overwriting the patch, but that may not make recreation any easier if it happens at sound check...  Of course, I guess you could just drop in the backup unit at that point.. but that seems a bit extreme.

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Nagging mode - Hit save button a second time "Are you sure you want to do this?". Hit it again, "Come on... Are you really sure?". Once again, "That preset was fine you really don't want to overwrite it, do you?"

Lol, love the helix vista concept (just kidding)

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If you do a lot of editing, this is actually easy.  And if you're at a gig and accidentally do it, you might be screwed.   I (and I assume many others) are in the habit of essentially double-clicking the save button.  Once I found out I didn't have to click the OK button I thought this was a cool feature, but now it's second nature. Make a change... tap-tap.   I can totally see wanting to save to a location, maybe forgetting for the moment you already put something in that location.  With me, it would be gone at that point.

 

I certainly don't want any EXTRA steps... Save should work as save...    But nearly every other programmable effects unit I have owned enabled you to lock a preset from being edited.  This is the first I've seen without that feature actually.    With most others, you start programming by "recalling" one of the locked presets into the user patch area.   The Helix is far ahead of others in that you can use the entire unit if you want, which is awesome, so a way to lock specific patches.

 

And if I haven't "made the case" yet.... one word...  ROADIES !!!!   he/she may get fired for accidentally overwriting the patch, but that may not make recreation any easier if it happens at sound check...  Of course, I guess you could just drop in the backup unit at that point.. but that seems a bit extreme.

 

It seems to me that the concept you're talking about of having a static set of factory presets and another set of user presets is kind of outdated when it comes to things like multi-fx and keyboards. I can't think of any other recent product that work that way. I think there are two things driving that. Users don't want to have a bunch of memory slots for presets that they never use, plus with flash memory and USB connections, restoring factory presets and backing up your own presets is pretty easy. I suppose if someone was really worried about it, they could have the same setlist saved in multiple slots in the Helix and keep one as an archive/backup, and the other as a working/live version (assuming, of course, they have the extra space).

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It seems to me that the concept you're talking about of having a static set of factory presets and another set of user presets is kind of outdated when it comes to things like multi-fx and keyboards. I can't think of any other recent product that work that way. I think there are two things driving that. Users don't want to have a bunch of memory slots for presets that they never use, plus with flash memory and USB connections, restoring factory presets and backing up your own presets is pretty easy. I suppose if someone was really worried about it, they could have the same setlist saved in multiple slots in the Helix and keep one as an archive/backup, and the other as a working/live version (assuming, of course, they have the extra space).

 

I guess I didn't explain as well as I thought, but you almost hit on it near the end of your comment.  Helix has potential to be a "best of both world" where rather than "factory presets" I would like to create my own set of "locked presets".   Yes, what I do now is copy them to another bank that's only used for back up.  I have them on the computer, but just in case I don't have the computer with me... I have the originals in another bank.    It's really not a big deal...  like many things I consider this "lock" idea a creature comfort and nothing more.   But it might be a low hanging fruit implementation that one can choose to use.... or not.   

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Nagging mode - Hit save button a second time "Are you sure you want to do this?". Hit it again, "Come on... Are you really sure?". Once again, "That preset was fine you really don't want to overwrite it, do you?"

Phil,

 

I can't help myself ...

 

Hmmm, how about a proximity sensor so when your finger or any other appendage gets close to the save button a sounding "Danger Will Robinson" (or fill in username) just to let you know your about to set the Helix on fire ... :wacko:

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Due to the potential amount of hours undertaken to create your own presets and the ease by which the Helix is turned on and immediately open for anyone to access any of the settings and change/delete them, let alone the unit being stolen and, again, easily accessed for use by another person, would it be advantageous to have a login/password setting similar to other devices e.g. Computers, mobiles etc..?

 

Ok, great to see a little humor injected into a topic and I can understand where maybe most people would think having a password unlock feature would be a bridge too far (unless maybe you have an intrepid four year old crawling around in your practice area who thinks your Helix is way more fun than a Fisher-Price mobile). Backups, early and often!

 

 

I would like to see a "lock" of the presets that just disables the ability to save over a final.   Patch based of course, so when you are ready, you just save and then from a separate menu do a lock.   If you want to unlock a preset, that's fine..  or you can just copy it to a new spot.    I can actually envision dumping all of the built in pre-sets at some point and just having a nice clean array of pre-sets I use, locked so I can't accidentally overwrite them.   Again, this would not even prevent editing, just overwriting.   Lets say you were at a gig and you needed to adjust something on the fly, no problem, you can make the change and if you want to keep it, save it to an empty preset, or if it was just a one-off change...  don't worry about it.

 

I am not sure about the "separate menu" implementation but I have actually thought that being able to lock/unlock a preset was a good idea since it was first posted.  It is usually super easy to implement in programming terms (a simple on/off flag, flip a bit) and has been used to good effect in some applications. I think it has been explained clearly, he is not trying to have permanently locked down factory presets that can't be overwritten, he is simply looking for an option to lock/unlock a selected user preset (or maybe even a factory preset). This idea is not exactly at the top of my priority list but I still think it is a good one.  It is possible in the heat of the moment to either overwrite a preset you did not intend to by saving to the wrong location, or even by saving it to the current location when you had intended to copy it elsewhere. Again, there are about a 100 things I would like to see L6 work on before this but it would be a nice feature to have.

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  • 1 year later...

Line 6 ABSOLUTELY SHOULD add a password option to the Helix.  Sure, not all Helix users are professional musicians, but some of us are.  Those who don't feel the need to password protect their sounds/patches wouldn't need to set a password.  Those who feel the need to set a password should be allowed to do so.  In the rest of the professional world, you can't just copy/steal someone else's work and use it as your own.  USB sticks all have the option to set a password.  So do routers, phones, email accounts, computers, etc. 

 

Why in the world wouldn't a piece of professional audio gear allow this simple safeguard?  I think the original poster in this thread had a very valid concern:  That someone could reset their patches.  Sure, they could recover them, but only if they had them backed up and had the gear on site to do so.  Oh, and the time to do so, as well.

 

Equally important for me, however, is the ability to keep private the sounds I have worked so hard to create and tailor.  I put no small amount of time into coming up with the sounds I use.  People love my tones, but I don't give them away.  I mean, the sounds I use are part of the reason I sound like me.  If everyone sounded like me, I'd just sound ordinary.  Sure, skill is an important factor, but quality gear is an important factor in the quest for tone and cannot be overlooked.  I consider my sounds proprietary, and don't need someone hooking up a computer to my Line 6 gear and taking a copy of my hard work for distribution to who knows where. 

 

Line 6 should allow those of us who prefer to lock their front door to do so.  The rest can just leave the door open or take it off the hinges altogether.  I've had many people want to copy my sounds, and I find it cumbersome to never be able to leave a piece of gear unattended.  A simple password could really simplify things.

 

Please, Line 6, add a password option.

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Interesting thread. I understand the desire to prevent accidental or malicious modifications or theft, but I can't think of another audio device with that feature except an actual computer.

 

Am I just naive?

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A 4 digit pin code is probably a better option than a password. Easier to enter, and plenty secure.

 

One thing that should also be considered is : what happens if you forget your code/password? I'd say it's just as likely that someone messes up a gig because they're a bit drunk and can't remember the code... maybe even more likely than someone messing up your patches out of malice. Could store it in your phone or wallet, but you could lose that as well...

 

So there should probably be a way to generate a special deblocking code from the line6 website, tied to the serial number of your registered devices... That is, if you remember that password :)

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I don't know about that. The weak point might be when you're actually going to save a preset and your mind is elsewhere. By the time you've hit the save button twice it's too late, because that's when you're mind returns and you've realized what you've done. :lol: Good reason to keep backups.

 

But I don't think there's any amount of programming they can do to account for something like that.

 

Reminds me of an old saying back when I was a software designer/programmer.  You can't idiot-proof anything.  There are way too many idiots in the world and they can be quite creative....

 

And a resounding ABSOLUTELY NOT in response to the password idea.  The last thing I want to do is try to remember and input a password when I'm trying to practice or setting up for a gig.  I already have enough aggravations in my life....

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Line 6 ABSOLUTELY SHOULD add a password option to the Helix.  Sure, not all Helix users are professional musicians, but some of us are.  Those who don't feel the need to password protect their sounds/patches wouldn't need to set a password.  Those who feel the need to set a password should be allowed to do so.  In the rest of the professional world, you can't just copy/steal someone else's work and use it as your own.  USB sticks all have the option to set a password.  So do routers, phones, email accounts, computers, etc. 

 

Why in the world wouldn't a piece of professional audio gear allow this simple safeguard?  I think the original poster in this thread had a very valid concern:  That someone could reset their patches.  Sure, they could recover them, but only if they had them backed up and had the gear on site to do so.  Oh, and the time to do so, as well.

 

Equally important for me, however, is the ability to keep private the sounds I have worked so hard to create and tailor.  I put no small amount of time into coming up with the sounds I use.  People love my tones, but I don't give them away.  I mean, the sounds I use are part of the reason I sound like me.  If everyone sounded like me, I'd just sound ordinary.  Sure, skill is an important factor, but quality gear is an important factor in the quest for tone and cannot be overlooked.  I consider my sounds proprietary, and don't need someone hooking up a computer to my Line 6 gear and taking a copy of my hard work for distribution to who knows where. 

 

Line 6 should allow those of us who prefer to lock their front door to do so.  The rest can just leave the door open or take it off the hinges altogether.  I've had many people want to copy my sounds, and I find it cumbersome to never be able to leave a piece of gear unattended.  A simple password could really simplify things.

 

Please, Line 6, add a password option.

 

 

Jeez, I know everybody's paranoid about the NSA snooping through their baby photos these days, but one's Helix patches are hardly State secrets or nuclear launch codes. In fact, no matter how much you like them or how many compliments you get, they're utterly worthless to anyone but you. You have my personal guarantee that Tom Cruise is NOT going to descend from the air vent above the stage to steal your tones in between sets... 

 

Anybody have that Dark Web address for stolen Helix patches handy? I lost the link...

 

This thread will self-destruct in 5 seconds... ;)

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Jeez, I know everybody's paranoid about the NSA snooping through their baby photos these days, but one's Helix patches are hardly State secrets or nuclear launch codes. In fact, no matter how much you like them or how many compliments you get, they're utterly worthless to anyone but you. You have my personal guarantee that Tom Cruise is NOT going to descend from the air vent above the stage to steal your tones in between sets... 

 

Anybody have that Dark Web address for stolen Helix patches handy? I lost the link...

 

This thread will self-destruct in 5 seconds... ;)

 

 

I can agree that it's unlikely that someone steals patches, and that this would cause a significant loss of profit to the creator.

 

However, if someone wants to protect their work, that's not such a crazy request. I personally wouldn't really care too much, but I can see how it might be important for a big rockstar or something :)

 

I know that some big rockstars try to keep their pedal setup etc secret. Others like to share what they know. Both are valid.

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A password option would be just that: an option.  Kind of like your phone.  Or your router.  You don't have to set one up if you don't think you can remember it or prefer not to use one. 

 

I certainly didn't mean to imply that a password would have to be input for simply playing through the effect unit at a gig.  In fact, I wouldn't want to enter a password to play through the unit myself at a gig either.  No, I meant that the data -  the parameters - should be have the option of password protection.  So that one could prevent the changing of the data, or the theft of the data, without consent.  And again, for those who don't want to set one; then don't.  This is simple, simple programming that Line 6 could easily accomplish and they could still leave implementation up to the user.

 

But thanks for the guarantee: I'll rest much easier knowing that I don't need to keep an eye out for Tom Cruise.

 

And one more thing; I don't think you can lump all tones into the worthless category.  I'll agree with you to the extent that I think most people's tones aren't worth having.  At least I know I certainly don't want them.  People are always trying to find out what tone a particular guitar player used on a certain song.  That's why tones are often named after a famous player.  Heck, some guys even have gear named after them.  And people buy it up, hoping to come closer to getting that same tone.  No, I don't claim to be a big name.  But I do know how to get good sounds out of my gear.  And to be totally honest, most people are actually shocked that I'm getting my tones out of Line 6 gear.  I guess many of them expected me to be using something much more boutique than Line 6.  Nonetheless, some people are continually trying to get me to give them my tones, sometimes even trying to buy them from me.  Maybe they're just not happy with what they've come up with on their own or with what's otherwise available for free.

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I can't imagine typing/tapping in a password to tweak the parameters on the board while playing live.  Furthermore, even if you had (insert famous guitarist) tone, you would still sound like you.  Sometimes gear can be overrated.  People are often more worried about their tone when they should be concentrating on their technique.  If you're one that worries about someone bumping a knob or intentionally changing a setting, save the patch to more than one memory slot so that you always have a backup handy when you're not in front of a computer.  That's what I've done and it has pulled my butt out of the fire a couple of times.

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As a guy whose days are filled with implementing processes and systems to protect my organization's data, I have mixed feelings about this.  

 

On the one hand is my knee jerk reaction that more protection is better, especially if it can be made optional.  On the other hand, when I look at the risk,  I have to wonder when the protection would actually be applied.

 

What are the risks that are of concern?  The OP mentions two potential risks:

  • ​Theft of IP in the form of presets
  • Inappropriate modification of presets

As far as theft of presets, I'd probably be more concerned about theft of the device. First, there's no particularly easy way to offload presets without hooking a computer up to HX, running Helix Edit, and exporting a preset, setlist or bundle.  It's not like someone can shove a thumb drive in the HX, hit "export" and run away with your tonal goodies.  On the other hand, someone who made off with your Helix could, password or not, go through the presets and manually note the preset parameters even if unable to export.  If the password function were to lock down even viewing of parameter values, that would indeed be a Vista-level act of user inconvenience, further dissuading folks from actually using the feature.

 

If you're more concerned about inappropriate modification, a passcode feature would be overkill and in most cases the risk could effectively be mitigated simply by making frequent backups.  If you had your heart set on a new feature offering such protection, it could be accomplished with a write-lock feature, perhaps as a global setting.  If you want to avoid clobbering a preset, got to global features and disable write-lock.  When you're happy with things, go back and re-enable.  It's still no substitute for backups. Sometimes we make weird choices when our ears or brains are fatigued.

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This feature has a negative value IMO.

 

The risk element of someone stealing your patches is incredibly low. Even if they do, it's incredibly unlikely to negatively affect the Helix owner.

 

Accidental modification might be an issue, but better solutions have been described above to solve this problem.

 

That leaves malicious behaviour. Incredibly low chance of happening, and it's much easier to just pour beer over the Helix or stomp on the connectors if damage is the goal.

 

The problem with password options is that they must be set if you want to prevent a malicious (or even well meaning) person from setting a password and locking you out of your own unit. The simple fact of its existence will inconvenience people that would never even consider using it.

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Helix is designed for a pro to turn it on and play a show.

Anything that gets in the way of that is bad.

Back up your presets. problem solved. I also agree with the "not only no, but HELL NO" to this kind of feature.

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This entire discussion is a solution desperately in search of a problem. You can all sleep soundly...NOBODY is plotting to steal your monster tones.

 

They might steal the entire device, in which case you'll be starting from scratch with a new unit if you haven't backed up your patches elsewhere. But who cares if the thief messes with the patches themselves on the unit that they've swiped from you? You're not getting it back anyway...welding a chain to it, and pad-locking it to the stage will do you more good than a password.

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Reminds me of an old saying back when I was a software designer/programmer.  You can't idiot-proof anything.  There are way too many idiots in the world and they can be quite creative....

 

And a resounding ABSOLUTELY NOT in response to the password idea.  The last thing I want to do is try to remember and input a password when I'm trying to practice or setting up for a gig.  I already have enough aggravations in my life....

 

"Never underestimate the genius of an idiot" TM

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A Password Lock on the Helix???? Absolutely a BAD IDEA!!

 

Copy your precious presets to another (empty) SetList on your Helix. The copied Presets will be conveniently accessible on board, yet in a place where they are impervious to any distracted double Taps of the Save button (while you are using/editing/working in the other SetList).

 

Unless you are saving your financial, social security, or other confidential info, in the names of your Presets, you should concentrate more on the physical security of the entire device.

 

A Password lock concept for the Helix rates about the same as a matching set of custom keyed Tuner Locks that would prevent anyone other than the owner from turning the tuning pegs of their guitar. Come to think of it, if they also had a heavy duty metal pass through slot, you could thread your bicycle cable lock to secure you guitar to the stand.

 

The best idea to come from this thread would be for the OP to put this on IdeaScale so the votes can rack up. Might just earn an all-time Negative Vote count.

 

Should Line 6 ever provide any sort of a Locking or additional confirmation for overwrite feature please make it so that it could be disabled for all those who would never use it!

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Amazing, all the hate. I don't know what scares you people so much about the OPTION of enabling a password. If it scares you so much, don't enable it. And try to pay a little bit of attention to what's going around you these days. Theft of items isn't the big thing these days; theft of data is. Each an every city has guys that peddle stolen proprietary information for a living. Yeah, everything from an incredibly big movie library to a music library, every incarnation of the Adobe Suite, Microsoft Office, Windows, iOS, you name it. It's all for sale. You probably use some free email service, too, thinking that the company is just really nice and is trying to help you out. How do you think they stay in business? I hate to break it to you but YOU are the product. Your connections, your contact info, your pictures, everything about you. In other words, YOUR DATA.

 

I've had guys offer to sell me entire copied plugin suites from local area studios, complete with the go-to presets for things such as compression and EQ. I'm also a bit amused bout how you are so certain that nobody is interested in any of my sounds. Perhaps it's just that nobody is interested in yours. And Maybe you can tell me why my smart thermostat maker REQUIRES a password. I mean, by your logic, who would want to get into my thermostat?

 

You're imagining some crazy implementation where you can't use the device without it. Read my posts - that's not what I said. I'm talking about copying or changing.

 

So here’s a practical application: I set up to rehearse the night before a gig. I have two options, tear down and take my stuff with me (the option I almost always choose) or leave my stuff in place. If I leave it in place, a number of people have will have access to it – such as all employees of that venue – anyone with a key. Of course, they could steal it outright. But that’s only if they’re complete scum, and most of the people who work in those venues aren’t complete scum. Same with the people who are asking for my tones, in fact, I think most of them are pretty good people. But what if they could copy my tones without actually physically stealing anything? That doesn’t sound so bad, does it? Of course not, but it is still wrong and this is something I can see a few people doing because it just doesn’t seem like a crime. But it is.

 

So why not accept the fact that the Helix is a computer and offer one of the nice protections that computers offer? And for those who are against passwords, the best advice I can give you would be to simply not enable that feature, if Line 6 were to offer it.

 

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It's not just a case of "don't use it".  There are only so many engineering hours L6 can invest in the helix platform and the value to the users of what you're proposing is a huge waste to more than 99% of them.

 

Your patches don't have anywhere NEAR the value of an adobe suite or a feature film; these things have mass appeal and an entire black market.  Personal data can be sold to advertisers and your identity can be used to facilitate fraud.  IOW, there's money to be had for stealing these things. Any given random musicians presets are essentially worthless to almost everyone except that guitarist.

 

The reason your thermostat needs a password is because it's potentially on the internet.

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