Frequent Questions

 Still have a question that is not answered on this page? Do not hesitate to contact the author of Shadows.


Is there any risk in paying on Internet with Paypal?

Paypal is the world's biggest secure web site for on line payment, with millions of user accounts. The site offers secure payments and support several currencies. There is no risk in providing your credit card number, because the transaction is crypted between your PC and the server (as shown by the small padlock on the bottom right of the window). You may also pay by direct transfer if you have a Paypal account. Using Paypal is the most secure and fastest way to get your Shadows Expert or Shadows Pro license.

I cannot pay with a credit card; Can I pay with another payment solution?

You can send cash money (only Euros) by regular mail, or you can use an IBAN wire transfer.
More about payment solutions...


How is Shadows delivered?

The program can be downloaded freely on When you buy a Shadows Expert or Shadows Pro license, you receive by E-mail a license file which contains the codes that will activate the advanced functions of the program. You just need to install and associate the license file as explained in the installation guide. There is no delivery by regular mail. The complete process is done using Internet, in order to reduce risks and costs of international shipping.

Can I obtain the program on a physical support?

You can get the program and the license on USB key by ordering Shadows Pro Box version. You will receive the installation program, your license and a full copy of the web site

I ordered my license several days ago but I didn't receive anything yet?

The license is sent by e-mail, if you didn't receive it, it may be caused by one of the following reasons:

Do not hesitate to contact the author to ask again for the license message.

Installation of the program

Can I install Shadows on a Mac or under Linux?

Shadows is developed for Windows x64. However, some emulator programs allow Windows programs to run under other operating systems such as Mac OS or Linux. Several Shadows users are using this solution, but no guaranty is provided by the author that it will work. Some users reported that they use Shadows under Mac OS using Wine or Parallel Desktop. However, the newer Mac hardware use Apple Silicon, M1, M2, M3 processors, that are not compatible with x64 applications. Older Mac based on Intel processors are compatible.

Can Shadows run under Windows XP or older versions?

Shadows is developed primarily for recent Windows platforms such as Windows 10, Windows 8.x, Windows 7 and Windows Vista. Shadows is not compatible anymore with Windows XP or older versions. And the OS needs to be 64-bit.

Is Shadows compatible with the Windows RT version that I have on my Surface tablet?

Windows RT is a light version of Windows made for entry-level tablets running on ARM processors. This version is compatible only with applications from Windows Store. Traditional desktop applications are not compatible, therefore, Shadows will not be compatible. Windows RT was terminated in 2015.

During installation, it says that the program is not for this version of Windows. Why?

Shadows is a 64-bit application that requires a 64-bit version of Windows. If you have a 32-bit version of Windows, you may download the 32-bit version of Shadows on

After an update, Shadows keeps saying that a new version needs to be installed. How to exit this loop?

Some versions would not delete the installer after installation, leading to a loop. You just need to manually delete the file shadowsinstaller.exe in the folder Documents\Shadows Data to fix the problem.

Installation of the license

How to install the license file?

Follow instructions given in the Installation guide.

I have installed the license file but Shadows says it is corrupted. What can I do?

The file has probably been damaged during the transfer or when it was saved. Contact the author to receive again the message.

I have installed the license file but it is not recognised by Shadows. What can I do?

The license file must be named shadows.license.txt and must be saved in Documents\Shadows Data. If another name is used, it won't be recognised. Especially, check if the file extensions are displayed by Windows and that the file does not have the extension twice (.txt.txt)

I installed the new version but I can't access to the advanced functions! Why?

The license file is normally recovered from an old version. In case it is not recognized, reinstall the license following the installation guide.

I installed my license file but some functions are still locked with a red key!

Shadows exists in three levels: Shadows, is a freeware and does not need any license file, Shadows Expert and Shadows Pro, each requiring a license file. The Shadows Expert license will unlock functions marked with a yellow key, you will still see the red keys in this case. Shadows Pro will unlock the complete program.

I installed the latest version and it says that my license was found but is not associated. Why?

Since version 4.1, Shadows requires that your license is associated with the PC on which you use Shadows. So click on the button: Associate the license in the dialog box displayed at launch. You need to have an active Internet connection during the operation. Once it is associated, you do not need anymore to be connected.

I do not have an Internet connection on my PC. How can I associate my license?

Click on the button: Associate the license in the dialog box displayed at launch. You get an error but it creates a file in the folder: Documents\Shadows Data\Association. Send this file to who will send you back the manually associated license.

I have an error when I activate my license using the activation code received by E-mail. Why?

If the activation fails, it is probably due to an antivirus or a firewall which blocks communications. Try to authorize Shadows to communicate on Internet by adding an exception (see below). Otherwise copy the license received by E-mail into the folder Documents\Shadows Data and start Shadows, then try to associate the license from the association dialog. If it also fails, see the next point.

I get an error when trying to associate the license when I launch Shadows. Can you help?

In order to associate the license, Shadows needs to communicate with a FTP server. Windows firewall or antivirus firewalls often block by default any communication coming from an application. Therefore it is necessary to authorize Shadows to communicate over Internet.

With Windows 10: Go to the Control pannel and click on System and security then on Windows firewall. Click on Allow an app or feature through Windows firewall. In the dialog box, click on Change settings and then on Allow another app. Click on Browse... and look for the Shadows application (usually in Programs\Shadows\Shadows.exe) then validate. You can now retry the association process.

In case of connection error during the association, go to the folder: Documents\Shadows Data\Association and send the text file that was created to who will send you back the manually associated license.


Shadows tells me that a new version is available on line. Can I download it?

Of course! Should you use the freeware version of Shadows or the advanced version Shadows Expert or Shadows Pro, you can freely download any new version. New versions bring improvements and new features. It is always recommended to upgrade to the latest version.

I use version 3.4, can I upgrade directly to the latest version?

You can upgrade from any version to the latest version, freely. The latest version always includes all the new features and improvements introduced by intermediate versions.

My computer crashed and I lost the Shadows license file. What can I do to get it back?

Send an Email to the author and ask him to resend the license file.

I will need to change my PC; what do I need to do to transfer the Shadows Pro license?

Since version 4.1, it is possible to move your license with the following steps:

Using Shadows

How can I include the longitude correction in the sundial with the new version of Shadows?

In the version 1.x, the longitude correction was checked during the sundial creation and it was not possible to change this setting after the creation. In the version 2 and later, the sundial is created, then you can go to Information given by the sundial to change the kind of time displayed by the sundial.

How to display the sundial name and location?

You just need to insert a text frame (menu Frames | Insert a text frame and choose in the dialog Insert the location name or Insert the type of sundial then select the text style. The frame can be moved at any position on the sundial, contrary to earlier program versions where the name and location were displayed on top of the sundial.

How can I search the help files for a keyword?

As the manual is now a PDF file, just use the search function (CTRL-F).

Text frames do not seem to be exported in DXF format, why?

DXF does not manage very easily standard text. This is why text frames are not exported in this format. You may export the drawing in EMF format. Alternatively import your drawing into a CAD or Vector drawing application to add text and decorations.

The user manual always opens on the first page. Shouldn't it open at the requested page?

Normally, the user manual should open at a page depending on the context of the call. To do so, Shadows uses standard parameters of the PDF format, but some PDF readers do not support them. For an optimal feature, it is recommended to use either SumatraPDF, or Adobe Reader, both being free and compatible.


My firewall program has detected that Shadows tries to connect to Internet! Does it contain a virus or a spyware?

Shadows periodically checks if a new version is available on the web site To do so, the program detects if an Internet connection is active and consults a file containing the available version. So it is normal that Shadows establishes a connection. There is no risk for your computer, Shadows does not contain any virus and does not try to send personal information on the Internet. Normally the verification is a transparent mechanism for the user, even if no connection is there. But if your computer is protected by a firewall, the connection will be detected and you will be notified. It is therefore recommended to configure your firewall and authorize Shadows to use Internet.
You can also disable the automatic mechanism in the General Preferences

3D view: what are the required technical specifications?

The 3D visualization in Shadows Pro requires a graphic card that is compatible with OpenGL version 3.30 at minimum. Normally, all graphic cards of less than 10 years are compatible. Attention: in case your PC is equipped with two or more graphic cards, and in particular with an integrated card (ex: Intel HD) and a nVidia card or from another vendor, you need to check that the defaut graphic accelerator is compatible with OpenGL 3.30. Integrated cards are sometimes not compatible. Check the control pannel of your graphic card (ex: nVidia).

Continue with next page: Sundials made by Shadows Users