Well Lookie Here, Barracuda Networks tries to get me to fall into their trap again...

Leo Bicknell bicknell at ufp.org
Thu Dec 22 18:47:45 UTC 2011

In a message written on Thu, Dec 22, 2011 at 12:26:56PM -0600, PC wrote:
> This particular product is often used by the SMB types.  This changes
> things a bit.  While I disagree with paying for signature updates you
> didn't use (It's a service, and I don't care about their fixed costs, I
> went into it knowing I'd have a license for the signatures as they were
> expired), I do understand where they are coming from for software/firmware
> development.  Unfortunately, they don't decouple the two.

Maybe I'm just a grinch, but I think they could fix this problem.
If they set the software in the box so that on the day your
subscription expires it no longer processes the subscription data
there would be a lot less issue.

The problem here is they let the system use the old signature data,
and that data is useful for a while.  The day after a contract
expires, you're still getting 99.9% of th benefit, a week later
95%, and so on.

They've essentially been too nice in letting the software be leniant
with the signature data, and they they pay for it in terms of
customer relations when they try to do renew.  Do they let customers
renew every 13 months, effectively getting one month free each year
while they run on old subscription data, or do they play hardball and
make them "true up" with a backdated contract.  It's really a no-win
choice for them.

I suspect if someone came in here saying "my Baracuda stopped
filtering out spam the day my contract expired" there would be no
love for that person, they would be told "yeah, so renew your
contract if you want the service to work".  While making it stop
working may seem less customer friendly, I think it actually ends
up more.  Everyone knows where they stand, and the poor engineer
trying to get his management to renew it now has a nice club to use
internally rather than the current "nothing happens if we ignore
it, at least in the short term."

       Leo Bicknell - bicknell at ufp.org - CCIE 3440
        PGP keys at http://www.ufp.org/~bicknell/
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