The mystery of the Chinese downloads

I have been getting mysterious downloads from China for the last 2 years. Apparently I am not the only one.

I blogged about it here: The mystery of the Chinese downloads .

Anyone else here seeing the same thing?

If anyone has an explanation, I would love to hear it.

My guess would be it’s some Chinese pirate site which wants to show a large listing of software but not host non-cracked files, so it just downloads your software when requested.

Have you considered localizing in Traditional and Simplified Chinese (at least the app and enough of the doc to make it usable)? The Chinese do hold a lot of banquets, large wedding dinners, etc.

I’ve wondered similar things. Files served from S3/Cloudfront so haven’t really bothered to block it, but 20% from China and it’s been higher before. The bot/crawler stats show a similar number (22%) so could well be Chinese bots amusing themselves.

4th of April I had a huge bounce, but Google Analytics says my site had no corresponding bounce so likely a direct download.

Edit: just added block to China in Cloudfront. Let’s see where else that pops up. I’ve never sold to China so no loss and I’m sure motivated people can get it elsewhere.

If you look at the log example in the blog, it is downloading every hour, like clockwork. So I don’t think that explains it.

I have seen tables plans done in PerfectTablePlan with Chinese characters. So it is doable.

Localizing PerfectTablePlan would be a big job. >100 KLOC (lots of GUI), 200 pages of documentation and a sizeable website. Also people would probably expect me to do tech support in Chinese. And I’m not sure Chinese people have really got the hang of paying for software! Currently I have sold the same number of licences to China (pop 1.35 billion) as I have to Monaco (pop 36,000).

If I was going to localize it, I would do French and German first.