Frequently Asked Questions

  • System Requirements

    • 2 GHz x86 based host machine (minimum dual-core, quad-core recommended)
    • Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10, Mac OS X (Sierra, Big Sur and Montery: Intel Platforms only), Linux 4.x
    • 8 GB of RAM (16 GB or higher recommended)
    • Minimum display resolution of 1280x768, 24 bit colour (recommended 1920x1080 resolution)
    • Approximately 325MB of disk space is required to store the application and JRE.
  • Windows installation

    1. Download the software for your system from the Downloads section.
    2. The download file is a self-installing executable file.
    3. Double click the Contour_setup.exe executable contained in the zip file. This will install the application into the given installation directory and create a shortcut to the application on the desktop.
    4. Double clicking on the shortcut will start the application.
  • Mac OS X installation

    To install the application, double click on the zip file to extract the OceanContour application and copy it to the Applications directory.

    On later versions of Mac OS, the quarantine flag needs to be removed before unpacking the zip file or else the application will be reported as "damaged and can't be opened". Open a terminal and run:

    xattr -rd com.apple.quarantine ~/Downloads/install_file

  • Linux installation

    Open the zip file and copy the OceanContour directory into the location from which it will be executed.


  • How does the licensing work?

    Upon purchase, a user is e-mailed a license ID and a user key string (essentially a password).   The license is activated by entering this information in the "Licensing: Activate License" menu option.   The activation process installs a hardware specific license file by accessing an external license server, so internet access is required for the activation process to operate automatically (e-mail activation is possible if internet access isn't available).  If no license is installed, Ocean Contour will act as a data viewer, allowing data files to be imported and examined, but without any data processing capability available. Once activated, the operational license will not expire. However, the ability to upgrade to newer versions of software does expire after a period of one year from the date of purchase.

  • What is the difference between a Basic and Professional license?

    A Basic license allows a user to do co-ordinate transforms, simplified QA/QC and averaging. A basic single user license allows operation on a single computer.

    A Professional license enables the more advanced processing capabilities of the software. These include: wave processing, batch processing, processing wizard, compass re-calibration, bin mapping, subsurface mount draw-down depth correction, report generation, 3D data plots, 2D vector (stick line) plots. A single user professional license allows up to three activations to take place so that the software can be used, for example, on both a field laptop and an office desktop computer.

  • Are application upgrades allowed?

    Application upgrades are allowed for one year from the license purchase date. For software releases occuring after this date, a maintenance fee must be paid to extend the maintenance date on the license.


    License information can be found in the “About” information. Checking for updates will also highlight whether or not the newest available version can be used with the license currently installed.

  • Memory Usage

    Given the large sizes of data files that are possible to collect, Ocean contour can use a significant amount of memory, especially during the import phase. If the import of a data file appears to stall without any progress showing on the progress bar, the likely issue is an over allocation of memory resulting in memory being swapped to disk. If this happens, the import should be halted (and application stopped) and a lower memory allocation factor selected by choosing Preferences: Data Import and selecting ½ or ¼ for the file sizing (see the section on Import File Sizing).

  • Getting Started

    Double clicking the Ocean Contour shortcut will start the application. A prompt will be displayed to select a directory for all work data to be stored (the “workspace”). A new folder can be used by clicking on the “Make new Folder” button and then selecting the folder after it has been created. Ocean Contour will use this directory to store all projects and project related data. Once a folder has been selected, the application will then start.