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MegaZine3 FAQs - Frequently asked Questions


One of the most frequently asked questions!

The operation and use of mz3Tool became very simple and safe, e.g.  by “intelligence in the background”, sensible and proven presets, context-sensitive displays, guided operation in several steps, tooltips, etc.
Of course, there are still optimization possibilities; and much is a matter of taste.
But we have an open ear and are keenly interested in your opinions and experiences! Often requests are also implemented within days and can be found in the next update…

That depends 😉
If the program is already installed, you can start with the appropriate section in chapter 2 of the documentation.
The chapter names help you find the sections that are useful for your personal needs. For example, if you do not plan to convert PDF files, you can skip that specific chapter on the use of PDF files. And vice versa: If you created a PDF, details about using individual images as a page images are not required.
You don’t have to be read every single page. But, as always… rtfm 😉
The long chapter 3, that describes all menu items, is mainly intended as context help and not to be studied line by line!
Chapter 4 can be read if you feel the need and according to your interests. Chapter 4 helps to understand the general concepts, making it easier to work “system-compliant”.
Chapter 5 discusses things in more detail; or covers special topics.
Recommendation: A combination of “just try it out” (nothing bad can actually happen!) and read some pages from time to time and specifically look up topics has proven to be a good approach!
We will create some videos that should help learning how to solve typical tasks by “looking across our shoulder”. The first selection of videos will probably be available soon, and can be found under the tab “Support”.

With the first start of mz3Tool after installation, the start window is immediately displayed, which supports exactly that!
Later this window can be opened via then menu item “New”.
If you drag a PDF file onto the PDF icon, a book is automatically created with the correct number of pages. Including the text version for SEO and search (product version MZ3 pro and higher).
To save time and to make a few adjustments before running a full conversion, only the first 10 pages are converted. In order to convert the complete PDF file, some few additional clicks are required.
We believe this is a good compromise!
Even from a prepared set of images, a book can be created fully automatically with one single drag-and-drop action!
We will prove that in a video!

Yes, this is one of the core competencies of MegaZine3!
Pages that already contain a background image (“Page Image”) can be enhanced with additional “elements” placed on such pages; like images, videos or audio files.
Many examples can be found in our documentation, in a very detailed way in Chapter 5.
Links to other websites or to pages in the book can also be added to a page at a position of your choice.

Yes, MegaZine3 runs locally on your own PC (Windows or macOS).
Only to activate a book and enter a new product key, an Internet connection is required for a query of the MegaZine3 database.
You can download the mz3Tool software free of charge from our server and use it immediately for the creation of publications (books, catalogs, brochures, …); even without purchasing a license. You not even have to register or provide your email address! The only limitation: publications are watermarked.
Only when you are happy with the result and want to use it “officially” and publicly, you’ll need a license.
After entering the license key (alos called “prodct key”), which is sent to you immediately afer the purchase, you can enter it and the watermarks on the pages will disappear. Your work is not lost if you start with the free demo version; you can defer a payment until the last moment 😉

The MegaZine3 software mz3Tool already contains a viewer (a copy of the free program mz3Viewer, which can be used to view offline books on a Windows or macOS PC).
This preview is used for control and User Interface during development.
For the “final” test, however, it is recommended to display the book either
in case of an offline publication, the original viewer should be used It is free and can be installed as a separate app. A check in the viewer is just a single click away.
for online publications, a server is needed, where the automatically built “online package” has to be uploaded. We recommend XAMPPas local server. A free and easy-to-install package. If installed at the default location, mz3Tool will detect that and the book can be opened in your default Browser with a single click.
But also the test on a “real” server is very simple. Since there are no restrictions on the allocation of the Internet address (URL), a non-discoverable, cryptic address can also be used for test purposes.
To support all features and get rid of the watermark, an activation key must be assigned to the final URL address during publishing (a “Publish Online” operation).
Once the book is published at the final destination address, the activation key can be “re-used” for that URL. There’s no limit in reassigning activation keys to other addresses. But one activation key is always linked to one specific address. So no worries: no activation keys will be wasted for tests 😉

Your own domain identifies you, and your “internet presence” is not just a part (subdomain) like milllions of other web sites at the same address. You can also more easily promote your content and make it easier to find for those searching the Internet (aka SEO: Search Engine Optimization).
If you own a domain, you usually also have access to a server. A cheap or even free server is sufficient and can be used in most cases! The requirements of MegaZine3 are minimal:
No CMS is required; but it can become part of your main web presence in several ways. (CMS: Content Management System such as WordPress)
Not even a database is required!
Everything needed will be collected automatically in a folder by mz3Toolonce you click “Publish Online”!
No further configuration or installation steps are required.
The only requirement is the possibility to transfer data via ftp. There are free solutions available on the Internet, like FileZilla.
Attention please when using WIX! To date, despite many years of announcement, this CMS system does not provide an FTP option!

The address on your server, where the book will be published and can be found and used, must be defined before requesting an Activation Key. But what address to use? Often the book can be reached in several ways, like:

  • http://my.books.de/book1
  • www.my.books.de/book1
  • https://my.books.de/book1
  • http://www.my.books.de/book1
  • www.my.books.de/book1

But in all cases the book is located at a unique address (duplicates must be avoided!). All other links will be redirected to this “canonical URL” (as this address is called).

Today this is usually an https:// address.

Users could configure their browsers to always use the secure https protocol (if supported), but it is a good idea to define the redirects on the server.

For this some lines of instructions need to be added to a special configuration file named “.htaccess”. Here is an example:

RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^www\.(.+)$ [NC]
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://%1/$1 [R=301,L]

In case of a WordPress based domain, several helpful and comfortable plugins could be used, e.g.:
Real Simple SSL


Yes (but it depends on what you mean exactly 😉 )
MegaZine3 is no longer open source software!!
The source code is not available and cannot and must not be changed.
But many things can be configured. Thanks to the useful presets, a configuration only is needed in very rare cases. All configuration files are freely accessible and readable (all configuration files are either in XML or JSON format).
MegaZine3 even provides direct access to these files via a menu item!
Nothing is hidden in databases or internal structures!
Therefore, backups or transfers to another computer are very easy.
Even the main configuration control file describing the entire book (the so-called MZ3 file, since the file extension is .mz3) is an XML file that is readable and can even be created or customized (with the necessary know-how) manually or programatically!
And if you ever land in “Nirwana” and smash edit a file: No problem!
After deleting the problematic file, that file is automatically recreated with default values when mz3Tool is restarted. Of course, you’ll lose all changes you made!

Yes and no 😉
There is a German documentation where you will find all needed information and details. You can search in this documentation, and it also can be downloaded as PDF and then printed.
The documentation is also displayed as context help (in German) and will guide you on how to use the program.
If you have any questions, you can also communicate with us in German or even Italian
And a start is made: The first error messages are already available in German. However, there is a lot to be translated!. All tool tips and the menus are currently only available in English, too!
The reason is our limited development capacity and the effort to work as efficiently as possible and to find an optimal compromise between quality, functionality, time, effort and comfort. Especially at a time when a lot is still changing and many new things are being added, the effort to maintain everything bilingually is more than twice as big!
But we (OK, long ago…) plan to translate the menus and tooltips as well!

You may install the MegaZine3 software (development environment: mz3Tool and Viewer: mz3Viewer) on several computers and also have it used by several developers!
There are actually no restrictions or additional costs!
Licenses and activation keys are automatically synchronized via the MegaZine3 server and database.
If a user uses an activation key (assignment to a book), it immediately affects all other systems: the number of keys remaining is reduced and the available number is reported appropriately with the next request and in the license overview table.
If a new license key has been purchased, it can be entered by any user, and then all features are immediately available for everybody.
Restriction: A parallel work on the same book is not supported! There is no synchronization between different developers. That had to be organized manually. Projects (the folder with the appropriate “Book Name” and all configuration files and data content) must be exchanged by copy.
Each book, however, has its own unique identifier, which distinguishes different books that might be named identically by coincidence. Unless the project identifier is copied together with all other files. It is your choice how to manage that 😉

Yes, in most cases!
You buy the software once and can use it for as long as you like.
There are no monthly payments.
Only if you want to put more books online at the same time than supported by the number of activation keys that you ordered for your MZ3 business license, you can buy additional “activation keys” for reasonable prices (details can be found on the page with the comparison table and to order please visit the “Buy Activation Keys” page).
New major versions can be purchased at half the price of the list price of the license. Such an upgrade is possible at any time (!) (details on updates and upgrades can be found on the “Upgrades” page or in the  “updates and upgrades” paragraph below the comparison table).

Pure marketing!
No, not just that 😉
MegaZine3 was completely redesigned. There are many new features, a new licensing concept (which allows us to offer cost-effective options!) and thus the need to retest and describe/document most of the functionality and special things again!
Chances are high you’ll find something not working as expected, missing documentation or features. The documentation is not yet completely revised and there is not yet the appropriate context help for every menu item.
Due to these possible inconveniences and the request for cooperation in optimizing (finding errors!), the lower introductory price is intended as compensation. By the end of the year at the latest, this should be all done, and we will adjust prices.
Until then, we will have experience with digistore24 as our new shop and with making use of an affiliate network.
Affiliates are “independent sales people” who use their social networks and email address lists built up over years to sell third-party products.
In principle, anyone can become an affiliate; also every customer! If you have any questions on that topic, please contact me!
We are curious to see what prices are expected and recommended by such resellers.
And, of course, on the feedback of our customers!

By selecting the appropriate product variant:
There are four product variants, the price of each variant depends on the functionality offered/required. Make your choice using the product comparison table.
Only if you publish books online and in parallel, you need an activation key for each book.
If you do not need an internet presence, you can create any number of “offline books” with the cheapest version MZ3 basic for a one-time-payment of less than €20.00 (current entry price). Such books can be viewed with the free mz3Viewer app without an internet connection on any Windows or macOS PC.
If you need a company presentation, a menu or a catalog, which you want to modify whenever needed and without any further costs, an MZ3 plus license will cover all your needs with no recurring costs!
If you want to publish a magazine periodically every month and keep all issues online for 2 years, you will need 24 activation keys.
The MZ3 business variant with an optional package with 20 additional activation keys covers this requirement forever; with a total cost of currently approx. €280.00 net.

Yes, updates are free.
An update is a new version of the same major version, i.e. a version number that changes only in the last digit.
If there is a new major version, i.e. if the 2. or 3.digit of the version number changes, an upgrade must be purchased.
Upgrades are possible for the same product variant, e.g. for an MZ3 business from version to v2.5.2.1
Cross grades from one product variant to another product variant are not supported.
An MZ3 basic product variant cannot be upgraded. A new license had to be purchased instead.

After even Adobe gave up on Flash, we also discontinued support for the Flash version and focused fully on the new version, based on JavaScript technologies.
In the meantime, the functionality is not only equal, but contains many new functions that were not possible with Flash. Only individual things could not be taken over, such as the support of the SWF format and all associated and unique options, such as the easy marking of text passages in a SWF file and the resolution-independent, perfect sharpness of text (due to the vector format).
If you have experience with our “old” Flash version, you will also appreciate the new version. And you will be surprised how easy and safe everything is working now! And with full access to almost everything!

We have low costs: A small team, no bank commitments, no investors, no compulsion to maximize profits.
The solution was created more than 10 years ago just for fun with technology and the desire to distribute videos easily.
Soon we were “forced” to sell the software and then seized the opportunity and turned the hobby into a profession.
We also believe that everyone should be able to bring their ideas and photos/videos/music to “paper”. And we like to support individualists (such as musicians)and idealists (people with great ideas but small budgets).
But even larger companies and organizations use our software and appreciate the openness and simplicity; although the software is really affordable 😉

In Munich
All development work took and takes place in our office in the east of Munich; now with support from the “branch” (home office) in Unterhaching on the southeastern outskirts of the city.

All orders and activation keys are managed in a database on our server.
This server is hosted by Hetzner and is physically located in Europe (currently in Finland).
With this new version 2.5.1 we use the German provider digistore24 as a shop, which works for us as a reseller and handles all orders and financial transactions.

Yes, we do absolutely believe so!
Our server is located in Europe. It is a “dedicated server”, i.e. only we work on the server.
We use “state-of-the-art” virus scanner software (ESET).
You do not need to load files to our or other servers for editing; you use your own computers and server.
We only store the absolutely minimal personal data we need to create the activation keys and to manage licenses:
Company Name
Email Address
MegaZine3 only accesses folders on your computer that you specify for use by MegaZine3. These are:
The folder where the software is stored and the associated “private program area”.
For Windows, this is “C:-Users”(username)-AppData-Roaming\de.megazine3.air.mz3Tool”
The project folder “C:\Users\(username)\Documents\mz3Tool\ including sub-folders
If you are using a local server (e.g. XAMPP): the HTTP folder of that server (can be configured).