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Paid for SoftRAID 6 and was fine doing so but now have to pay for 7 and maybe a yearly 'upgrade fee'???


(@eoren1)
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Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 11
Topic starter  

Purchased my Thunderbay in 2015. The enclosure is rock-solid and have purchased many more OWC products since then.

In April 2021, I purchased the 5 to 6 upgrade with the understanding that a lot of work went into making the app aware of APFS and Silicon, etc.

But now I read that I have to pay again for version 7 or else I cannot update to OS Ventura. Seriously?

And in the same breath, you write how monthly subscription plans are bad and then offer a yearly subscription plan? Right under the area where it says that in order to update to Ventura you HAVE TO update to version 7?

I don't understand what is happening with OWC and SoftRAID but I do not intend to pay $80 per year indefinitely for access to my data. 

Explain to me exactly how I can maintain read/write access to my data in Ventura if I do not update to 7 as you write elsewhere...


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(@owclarry)
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Joined: 4 weeks ago
Posts: 1
 

Thank you for your post and feedback. As Apple continues to make substantial architectural changes to the MacOS, in addition to the new features we do continue to roll out with ongoing SR versions - significant work continues for the MacOS support side as well. While the Softraid license remains perpetual, we have found it necessary to have an annual support and update cost. This annual cost includes access to all new version releases and updates as well as tech support. 

Softraid 6 arrived in April of 2021 and was the first paid upgrade of any kind since Softraid 5 in 2014. In all honesty, had we had any inkling that Apple was about to begin making such significant annual changes to their OS architecture starting with MacOS 10.12 - we would have made changes sooner. But for the longevity and ongoing betterment of the best RAID software technology for Mac on the planet today, we have come to a go forward plan today. 

First and foremost, access to your data does not require you to pay. The version you have today, as is our next version, is a perpetual license. It does not stop working. Yes, version 6 application and monitor are not compatible with MacOS 13, but  MacOS 13 does include a version of the Softraid Driver (on intel) that operates without any Softraid application being installed. Your Softraid volumes with both mount and provide full, unhindered read/write capability, even under MacOS 13. The limitation is you cannot manage your volumes if there is an issue. At no time do we ever impede anyone's access to their data. 

With Apple Silicon, you will be able to install the 30 day demo of Softraid 7 which will install the driver on an Apple Silicon system and while the demo will expire after 60 days, this will provide you with a MacOS 13 compatible driver for data accessibility.

That said, we continue to enhance in feature set, operation, security, and OS compatibility with each Softraid update. I hope that the cost we are charging, with respect to both the ongoing updates as well as the technical support included, is an exceptional value for what Softraid provides. 

This is a link to a blog article written by the chief engineer of SoftRaid with respect to v7:

https://eshop.macsales.com/blog/84128-softraid-7-in-final-testing-for-macos-ventura/

Thank you!

- OWC Larry

 

This post was modified 4 weeks ago by OWCLarry
This post was modified 4 weeks ago 2 times by SoftRAID Support

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(@eoren1)
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Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 11
Topic starter  
Posted by: @owclarry

Thank you for your post and feedback. As Apple continues to make substantial architectural changes to the MacOS, in addition to the new features we do continue to roll out with ongoing SR versions - significant work continues for the MacOS support side as well. While the Softraid license remains perpetual, we have found it necessary to have an annual support and update cost. This annual cost includes access to all new version releases and updates as well as tech support. 

Softraid 6 arrived in April of 2021 and was the first paid upgrade of any kind since Softraid 5 in 2014. In all honesty, had we had any inkling that Apple was about to begin making such significant annual changes to their OS architecture starting with MacOS 10.12 - we would have made changes sooner. But for the longevity and ongoing betterment of the best RAID software technology for Mac on the planet today, we have come to a go forward plan today. 

First and foremost, access to your data does not require you to pay. The version you have today, as is our next version, is a perpetual license. It does not stop working. Yes, version 6 application and monitor are not compatible with MacOS 13, but  MacOS 13 does include a version of the Softraid Driver (on intel) that operates without any Softraid application being installed. Your Softraid volumes with both mount and provide full, unhindered read/write capability, even under MacOS 13. The limitation is you cannot manage your volumes if there is an issue. At no time do we ever impede anyone's access to their data. 

With Apple Silicon, you will be able to install the 30 day demo of Softraid 7 which will install the driver on an Apple Silicon system and while the demo will expire after 60 days, this will provide you with a MacOS 13 compatible driver for data accessibility.

That said, we continue to enhance in feature set, operation, security, and OS compatibility with each Softraid update. I hope that the cost we are charging, with respect to both the ongoing updates as well as the technical support included, is an exceptional value for what Softraid provides. 

This is a link to a blog article written by the chief engineer of SoftRaid with respect to v7:

https://eshop.macsales.com/blog/84128-softraid-7-in-final-testing-for-macos-ventura/

Thank you!

- OWC Larry

 

Thanks Larry

I appreciate the information and I will readily admit that having this enclosure work flawlessly since the purchase in 2015 as well as no paid updates until 2021 was amazing.

I guess what I'm frustrated with is the lack of transparency until this blog post on why there was a need for a major version change and another fee.

And I'm left wondering if OWC now expects me to pay $120 each year going forward or if I can expect this to be the last major revision for a few years.  

I understand the support fee but tying that to an upgrade fee and using the time limited discount makes it seem as though we will be asked to pay yearly going forward.

The driver being available is very good to know.

 


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(@micheloupatrick)
Active Member
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 5
 

@owclarry 

Hello Larry,

I am a loyal OWC customer, owning several TB enclosures, a TB hub, an external nvme enclosure and I am a long time Softraid Pro user. There is a Mercury Pro U.2 in my cart as I'm writing this.

I have a big number of monthly / annual subscriptions, and I'm fine with it as I get regular updates and this is simply the way it is now in the software industry.

And then comes your Softraid 7 announcement that's confusing at best (I'm not going to repeat what eoren1 already said as he summed it all up), giving the impression that you don't want to clearly state that you're going the subscription way because you know you're not going to offer much in return. I'm not saying that it is what you're thinking, just saying that it's the impression it gives, a typical case of bad PR.

Just to give you an idea of how confusing your annoucement is, I have no idea if I'll get a one year extension of my Softraid Pro licence if I buy the Mercury Pro U.2 with two (empty) shuttles.

Don't get me wrong, I think OWC is a great company but the new licencing scheme just doesn't feel right.

Alex

 


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(@softraid-support)
Member Admin
Joined: 7 years ago
Posts: 6704
 

@micheloupatrick 

the simplest answer is if you purchase any additional OWC enclosure with SoftRAID, you can use that license for all computers on your system. Which restarts the support clock. Just use the new license.

 


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(@micheloupatrick)
Active Member
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 5
 

@softraid-support Excuse me but this makes absolutely no sense to me : the price for the enclosure is $229, $329 with Softraid XT (= $100 for Softraid).

The upgrade for my Softraid pro licence is $99 (before nov. 30), 1 dollar less than the XT version bundled with a new enclosure.
If I get it right the only ‘good’ deal is to buy an enclosure with disks and get 3 years of subscription.

Again this is very confusing.


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(@owclarry)
New Member
Joined: 4 weeks ago
Posts: 1
 

@eoren1 

Thank you all again for the feedback!

There was no intention for any lack of transparency, I apologize for this and any perception. 

Customers of OWC External solutions 500GB or larger that included Softraid XT will receive free upgrades to all released versions within 3yrs of that purchase. 0GB Enclosure purchases that included XT receive the same for within 1yr. The license and software is perpetual, updates to the software - with explanation provided above - are then offered on an annual cost basis. Within a fixed period of time, that will be $79.99 for XT.

For the Pro version the cost will be $99.99. Customers who purchased the Pro version less than a year ago will continue to receive updates, including to 7.x, for the 1yr from the original Pro purchase date. 

Softraid v7 become available today or latest will be tomorrow. The posting for this release should have very clear details on the upgrade and we will work to better clarify / communicate anything still left that comes across less than clear. Access to data will never be limited, but the to continue with the latest Softraid features and updates needed for changes to be able to have full operation of Softraid functions beyond Read/Write in future Apple OS versions - it is necessary to have the full and latest application version installed. The updates under the hood that come with the v7 version are very significant both for OS13 and all OS versions. Major additional features offered by Softraid will also being coming out in the next 1-2 quarters that bring more visible benefits through new capability and feature set ongoing SR 7 releases will offer. 

And again - to reiterate - ability to read/write data on Softraid volumes will never be held hostage or made inaccessible. We have never imparted such restrictions and we never will.  We know why we are here and here absolutely to earn your business, maintain your trust, and ensure that the solutions you depend on continue to be the best and only get better. I am incredibly excited for what's ahead with Softraid and all that is yet to come and it's only because of the customers that support it. Thank you. 

 

This post was modified 3 weeks ago by SoftRAID Support

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(@eoren1)
Active Member
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 11
Topic starter  

The new info page is MUCH improved. Thank you


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(@softraid-support)
Member Admin
Joined: 7 years ago
Posts: 6704
 

@eoren1 

Thanks. Stuff like that has to be developed "off line", while we prepare for the release of 7. Only then can we publish everything.

We are trying to make this transition transparent and understandable to users. I am sure there are gaps still, but we will clear them up as they pop up.


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