Brad Wardell's views about technology, politics, religion, world affairs, and all sorts of politically incorrect topics.
Published on February 4, 2008 By Draginol In Personal Computing

Since 1999, Stardock has been a pioneer in digital distribution.  The original Galactic Civilizations was the first PC game to be released at retail and digitally at the same time.  Its flag-ship product, Object Desktop, made the transition from being a retail product to being digitally distributed with a subscription in 1999.

For the past few years, Stardock has distributed its content with Stardock Central:

Stardock Central

And while Stardock Central was very cutting edge when it was launched back in 2003, it's getting a bit long in the tooth.  For the past year, Stardock has been working on a  new platform that will finally combine Stardock's various technological assets into a single place. This new platform is called Impulse.



Impulse isn't just a cosmetic make-over of Stardock Central. It greatly expands the capabilities of Stardock's digital distribution offerings. 

Here are 5 key differentiators of Impulse:

  1. Users do not have to load Impulse to use the software or games.
  2. Impulse will support third-parties submitting their software or game, name their price, and then after review having it available -- all done nearly automatically. Stardock already has this system in place on with "Master" themes.
  3. Impulse will integrate its next-generation social networking features in the Community tab that will let users have friends, chat about games, have blogs, and more.
  4. Impulse includes built in support for backing up your purchase to CD/DVD.
  5. Impulse allows users who buy software or games at retail to still manage their updates and re-download the entire product on Impulse (for products that support this feature).


Impulse provides a cleaner UI than Stardock Central.


Managing your software on Impulse is a snap. If you bought a game or software program at retail or even from another digital distributor, you may be able to still manage updates and such on Impulse.

Impulse is still in internal beta at Stardock but it expects to release it in mid February with additional features for it being added through the course of the year.

Comments (Page 4)
on Mar 07, 2008
In due Stardock time, Stardockians.
on Mar 08, 2008
Im not sure I can wait any longer. Stop being a tease Stardock
on Mar 17, 2008
Does Impulse ship with Sins of a Solar Empire? I noticed the original date was mid-Feb., but that's come and gone. Is the release far off?
on Mar 17, 2008
from : Object Desktop 2008 Guided Tour
The Ultimate Windows Experience
By Frogboy Posted March 11, 2008 12:04:42

While not technically part of Object Desktop 2008, Impulse will debut with it.

Stardock is targeting March 31, 2008 as the release date for Object Desktop 2008.

on Mar 19, 2008
In a recent article they mentioned April would be the release date. That's not too far off.
on Mar 20, 2008

Does Impulse ship with Sins of a Solar Empire? I noticed the original date was mid-Feb., but that's come and gone. Is the release far off?

Nope, but it has support for it.

on Mar 22, 2008
why doesn't Impulse skin with WindowBlinds?

Impulse is showing numerous updates which SDC is not. Bad SDC?
I noticed that Impulse is not showing the correct registration codes. Copy/Paste from SDC solves that.

This is a great improvement!! Thanks for the development.
on Apr 07, 2008

Since Impulse is close to release, I am redirecting an feedback to this support forum.