Best Answer Christopher (Drashna) , 11 February 2017 - 01:30 AM
As a paying customer, i'm concerned by the complete lack of release stable updates over this extended period.The latest stable version 22.214.171.1241 which was released eons ago. I know there have been some subsequent betas into the 2.2.x range but as we all know, that means nothing if nothing actually gets released in some form of a reasonable time frame. If this software has been abandoned, please let us know so we can migrate to other solutions as no one in their right mind should be using software that doesn't receive at least semi-regular updates.
No response to this post would also be worrying as it would indicate a lack of attention and concern on the forum and in-turn the software itself.
That is absolutely understandable. I wouldn't want to pay for software that is being abandoned either.
That said, we have ABSOLUTELY NO INTENTION OF ABANDONING ANY OF OUR SOFTWARE.
We do apologize for the extreme delay in releases here. Unfortunately, this is heavily due to StableBit cloudDrive being signfiicantly more complex than we anticipated (the initial public beta was build 240, we're on 834....). Additionally, we are a small company, and Alex is the only developer at this point.
So for the most part, his effort has been focused on StableBit CloudDrive. This means that StableBit DrivePool and StableBit Scanner have suffered, in that they haven't gotten much attention (bug fixes).
We know that this isn't good for us or our products, and it leaves things in ... well, a mess.
Once StableBit CloudDrive has a stable release, things will "get better". After this happens, Alex plans on going through all of the pending issues for both products, and then pushing a public beta and then stable release for those products.
After that, we have plans on streamlining the development and testing process so that we can have periodic "scheduled" public releases, that are not dependant on Alex's workflow. So that this never happens again.
And trust me, we are not happy about how things have progressed ourselves... but drastically changing this right now isn't good either, as it could significantly delay a release for StableBit CloudDrive, and it's already been in beta "too long" for us.
Additionally, the internal beta builds are very stable, and should be safe to use for production use (myself and many others do).
Further, I have written a "known issues" post, that you can check to see if you want/need to upgrade to a beta build:
I can see why people are getting nervous even drashna seems to only check in once or twice a week these days and the forum is very quite compared to what it used be
But the product does work it would be nice to see new versions complementing the operating systems as well as trying to take advantage of things like REFS which will replace NTFS and people's requests for the option to use parity and many other things as it's running the risk of being outdated.
Yeah, I apologize for that. Between being swamped by the latest CloudDrive (Google Drive specific) issue, and personal issues (medical and mental stuff), I haven't checked the forums as much as I would like, or should.
@Spider99, not ignoring you, but I've already referenced/answered what you've said above.
One thing I would suggest is Alex needs a better pricing structure free updates for life is never going to work from a business point of view he needs money to be able to continue to develop the software he needs to adopt a similar pricing structure to other programs in the same category like ihomeserver and lights out you get 1 year of free updates after that you pay a small fee to extend if you want to then every now and then you pay full for the new improved version. As they say money does not grow on trees not yet anyway.
This is something that Alex and I have talked about at length, and repeatedly.
So it's something that is DEFINITELY on our minds. As well, it should be.
There are a number of "solutions" here that we can implement to ensure that we remain afloat.
- Time/version limited licenses (as you've mentioned).
- Releasing new products periodically to keep revenue up (we have several additional products/services planned already)
- Release a subscription based product (service), for reliable income.
- Switch to paid support solutions
Each one of these options has their pros and cons, and none are mutually exclusive (we could do all of the above). These are all options that we've discussed internally, and at length.
To be honest, neither Alex nor I are found of the "time/version limited licenses", and prefer to stick to a lifetime license solution. It's a much better experience for users, as it produces less confusion. And basically it's too late to switch our licensing scheme for existing products (or we'd have to grandfather everyone in).
And as I said, we have several products planned for release already. StableBit CloudDrive is technically included in that, for now. But we have several other products/services planned. Specifically, StableBit FileVault, StableBit Cloud, StableBit PowerGrid and StableBit.me. These are all additional products/services that will fit in neatly with our existing products, and should provide additional revenue for us. You can read a bit about these here:
(personally, I've been pushing hard for StableBit FileVault for a while now, as it may really address the "bitrot protection" feature that many people want)
As for ongoing revenue stream, services are .. well, the best option for that. A monthly or yearly payment means continuous revenue stream, as well as offset the price for such a service. And that would likely be what StableBit Cloud is. It would not (may not) be self hosted, but we hope that what it does offer would be more than worth it for those interested.
And as for the paid support, this has been the topic that has been the most heavily debated. To put this bluntly, even though this is what would directly affect me (paid support, means more money for me directly), I am very much opposed to this. Other products (competitors) do implement this, and in some cases, I can absolutely understand why ... I do not like (rather, I hate) the idea of a paywall between customers and good service. Good tech support is something that should be part of the intrinsic price of the product, not a hidden cost.
However, there are circumstances that I do agree would warrant that paywall. Such as immediate support (within the hour), remote support to help set up things, etc.
So, as you can see, this is something that is definitely "on our minds". And it does come up often.
And this is by far not a complete list of potential actions we can take. It's just the primary ones that we've discussed.
@anotherforumname: I hope this assuages your fears about our software becoming abandonware. Both from an update standpoint, and from a financial one, as well.
If you have any more questions, don't hesitate to ask.Go to the full post