What is the future for Legacy DirectAdmin License holders?

Thank you for your insight. Some of the way the abuse took place I was aware of, but it's good a team member answers questions and give some insight in what the real problem is.

Pity you didn't go into my response to your previous message.

Also again out of your reply, it's clear that the abuse is almost complete done by certain internal lifetime holders.

Which does not explain as to why we external lifetime holders are punished too, or some idea's about that (like keeping pause option) was refused. Or some split solutions are made for external and internal licenses, as we paid a lot more anyway per license.
Some of these idea's (like the pause option) was also refused by you as part of the team.

Please note I'm not the decision taker, and I wish this problem didn't exist at all.
So this might need some additional explanation, as I was told you were part of the team now and the team was against some idea's I proposed, including the pause option which we in fact now have too.
We all wished this problem didn't exist at all, but who is the decision maker then? As it seems Mark isn't the one and it seems he can't or won't overrule team decisions either.
 
ith the new licensing system, custombuild integration and merge of fi

Please don't get me wrong, this is not to "validate" the measures and just to provide more details :) I'm trying to reply personally, as you seem to be interested in solution and would like to understand the issue, thus, might really wish to give some suggestions.

Just sharing some of the abuse scenarios:
1) "datacenters" with 1-5 life-time $89 licenses, many of them, who don't even have any website, don't provide IP blocks etc. Nothing worked against them - IP limitations was bad, asking for a proof they sell VPS/dedicated was bad etc. If we take their licenses down for violation of the rules - that's also bad.
2) accounts with many life-time licenses used for their own shared hosting (they're not selling any VPS/dedicated servers), they have thousands of websites hosted, I won't name the hosts, but they're large. They never promoted VPS/dedicated offerings, and they don't do it these days.
3) re-selling of internal life-time licenses or re-rental of them (this was never allowed, there are many companies who have done this)
4) external life-time licenses and internal with recurring (no support as well for end-customers, just support for DCs) always had problems with support, even though 90 days was always mentioned, you may find many in this thread who said they created tickets, and they received help. How does that work? People are creative, when they get an answer "sorry, this is not a DA problem, and support period has ended", they insist that it's a bug, even when we know it is not - threatening starts. And those tickets are still support, as not giving the support costs more of the time (and psychological resources) than giving it..

And these aren't all. Regarding the deleted posts and some banned customers - when threatening starts + photos of garages/houses (some where we live, some aren't), cars with plate numbers etc. - I won't tolerate this, and wouldn't ever like to do this myself to someone else. It was me who removed the posts. I could say some had some truth, some didn't, but when it comes to personal things like places we live, or threatening PMs and posts - this won't be tolerated. I've banned one member a few days ago (permanently), as what has been done was too much :) (I guess no one would like anything like this for their families, own environment etc.)

Regarding abuse scenarios - I personally had some more ideas which people affected would probably hate again (I guess there isn't any solution, which everyone would like and development would continue?). One of the ideas - note in DA that license internal and must be sold with VPS/Dedicated server and it's illegal to use it otherwise (rent separately, use for own shared hosting etc.). This may or may not solve some of the issues mentioned. Just like snickers have a pack of 4 snickers and mark each of them that they cannot be sold individually, I personally wouldn't think it'd be something bad to do. We don't tell snickers that it's their problem that they sell 4 items at a lower cost, so we're allowed to re-sell even though if rules say otherwise? I'm lost at the options as well, as many did not work in the past. That's why I'm still reading this thread from time to time for great ideas, but to be honest - I haven't found any great ones worth to try to solve problems #1-4 (the ones that could change the situation, and we have plenty of time to see if they do). Please note I'm not the decision taker, and I wish this problem didn't exist at all. Just like you - I offer various methods on how to stop the abusers. Just mentioning that IP blocks, license removals (for "DCs" with 1-2 life-time licenses having no webpage), proofs etc. didn't work. I personally try not to comment statements like MariaDB 10.1 to 10.4 is "update and not upgrade not needing any internal work", I know technical details myself, as I've done many implementations in the past, problems like https://mariadb.com/kb/en/mysql-user-table/ wouldn't arise if that was true and many support tickets/forum posts on issues creating sql users, removal of databases etc. wouldn't exist, as well as documentation like https://docs.directadmin.com/other-...0-4-deleting-databases-is-slow-causes-timeout. I just try to ignore something like this in the thread, as it does not lead anywhere and is not realted to the thread. And this is not only MariaDB strategy, MySQL 5.7 could look minor when compared to 5.6, but then why do we have threads like https://help.poralix.com/articles/directadmin-unable-to-add-access-host-with-mysql-5-7 and problems like https://forum.directadmin.com/threads/add-an-access-host-to-our-directadmin-database.65204/ (just wanted to let you know, as you seem to care).

I haven't mentioned even more more thing which was a huge problem in the past, in addition to 1-4 - pirated licenses :) It seems we were able to get this sorted out with the new licensing system, custombuild integration and merge of file mirrors. So, that one worked, and I'm glad it worked. @fln had ideas for it. We were not able to get this sorted out without his ideas/work, even though we've tired to do this for many years. So, it shows that some measures could work.


That's the point of change, isn't it? Only external licenses :) Just with different types. So that you could get a Lite license starting from $9 or Personal Plus (letting you own admin+additional user, so, host your own and friends sites on the same server is possible) starting from just $3 ("starting" = up to -40% off with bulk discounts, you don't need to prove you're a DC, it's for everyone). You may browse Wayback Machine, these weren't the options earlier, only introduced in 2019. And even add-ons like CloudLinux seem to be more expensive like this? However, those options don't seem to be a solution? If the switch isn't made - "there should simple be 1 license for a server" couldn't become a reality, thus other options should be considered.

"starting off" I already paid 299 and I'm not about to pay anything on a "monthly subscription basis" nomatter how -xxx% "off" it is.
If what I said previously to a reply to you doesn't resonate with the "team" then there's really nothing to discuss now, is it?
 
While googling "is lifetime license for ever"
I get the same to read from company's:
Example 1
A 'lifetime license' means that after you buy the software, you can use the purchased version for as long as you want, providing that the machine you use it on meets the initial program system requirements. This kind of license also includes free updates and bug fixes but doesn't include an upgrade to the next major release.

Example 2
Lifetime
- the current version of the program will be available to you for an unlimited amount of time. For this version of the program, you will be provided with free minor updates (i.e. versions 22.1, 22.2 and so on). However, major upgrades (versions 23, 24, 25 etc.) have to be purchased separately. Major upgrades are optional, and notifications in previous versions of the program can be disabled in the Settings menu.
Additionally, if you have purchased the licence within 30 days before the release date, you are entitled to a free upgrade.
And after reading this i thought to myself and came indeed to the conclusion that Direct Admin *THEORETICAL* is correct
(as long as they go from version 1.659 --> 2.0) because MAJOR release.

Would this feel fair, no that would not feel fair to you guys who have lifetime licenses.

Dont get me wrong, i'm pro user (i hate SAAS software, but hé i'm here paying DA money every month).
But your Windows XP license that you bought $199 still works, but no updates, and i guess 70% of software doesn't work ont it anymore.

Dont know what DA said back in the days when they sold lifetime licenses, but standing in the other one's shoes i kinda get it.

-- note ; Yes DA should have discussed it before "taking the plug out".
 
And after reading this i thought to myself and came indeed to the conclusion that Direct Admin *THEORETICAL* is correct
No because in DA's statement it said lifetime update/upgrades on their site, so they are not correct. Next to that from 10.6 to 10.11 is within the 10 branch and is considered a minor update. Major updates are version updates from 10.x to 11.x.
 
Just sharing some of the abuse scenarios:
1) "datacenters" with 1-5 life-time $89 licenses, many of them, who don't even have any website, don't provide IP blocks etc. Nothing worked against them - IP limitations was bad, asking for a proof they sell VPS/dedicated was bad etc. If we take their licenses down for violation of the rules - that's also bad.

These are disqualified from the lifetime license because they do not have a website. You have to have a website to get the license.
 
@smtalk

Its real simple for me. I was paid for a product and I was promised I could continue using that product at least through 2038 if not longer. If the legacy license no longer will handle the latest version of MariaDB then the product is disabled when that version of MariaDB is EOL. I was promised upgrades which includes the upgrade to handle the next version of MariaDB.

The abuses by other people are not my concern at all and are irrelevant to this conversation. That has nothing to do with ME. DA could have also worded the agreement differently to give them an out. Its not my job to come up with solutions for DA's current situation. If I had to money and time my solution would be to just go to court over it. But I don't have that. So now the only solution is to pay or use something else. Guess which one I am going with.

A convenience store near where I live treated me unfairly once. I have not been back in the in over 30 years. Its not even the same people there now. I pass by it all the time. Yet I just cannot bring myself to go back. This is what DA is facing now.
 
While googling "is lifetime license for ever"
I get the same to read from company's:

So let me make sure I understand this. You are saying other companies could write an agreement like this but DA couldn't? What prevented them from writing a similar agreement?
 
So let me make sure I understand this. You are saying other companies could write an agreement like this but DA couldn't? What prevented them from writing a similar agreement?
Like i said, i was not active back in the days so dont know their terms and conditions :)

But changing the rules afterwards is not nice
 
What makes me sick is that DA keeps using someone else's mistake to punish us all. It's not my problem that someone abused the internal licenses. Why am I (among other external license holders) are getting punished?
 
@smtalk

Thank for your clear explanation of what abuse is DA is trying to get rid of. It seems to be clear that you know what customers need to change there license, and are misusing there current license. It seems to me that you then need to take on these customers which clearly can be defined. However you don't want to fight these customers even-tough you know who they are. Right now you are damaging your relationship with many more then just the bad apples.

The bad apples that abuse the license system are most likely not interested in upgrading anyway. They will simple use the system they have for as long as they can. They might even switch to a different platform if they cannot squeeze out enough money using DA. You are not hurting them, you are hurting plenty good customers.

Going to a new licensing system can be a good thing for some. They are, like myself, even willing to pay something for a good product. Switching would cost me a lot of time. I however I wish to buy the product through my trusted reseller, my datacenter. And I wonder why the same product I have right now would cost me triple the cost. It seems this change is not just to get rid of the bad apples, but also make more money from the rest. This gives a sour taste.

idea 1) Perhaps it would make it clear if there would a public statement on the lifetime licenses. Everybody with a lifetime license has a 1.x version they once bought. Start a clear new version like a 2.0 with some new features. Sell this version based on the new model. Then its more clear where the brake is. Make a public statement saying the 1.x will receive a one year security patches only. But make it public. Say one year from now things will change. Make it clear on your website, in the product, contact all license holders, offer them deals to switch. Do everything to make it public and give people a chance to get on the wagon, dont just drive off.

idea 2) I wish you you would still be willing to use resellers like a Datacenter to acquire a license. I think you still need them to sell your product. This would make you're product more attractive. Some might bundle it with a vps or use it on there own machines. Eliminating working with them might i even bring the company down, nobody wants that. But make no difference on how the license is used. It should not matter to you. If the license is valid, installed on one machine, its ok.

You need them and they could make you more money if you treat them right. They need to make a living too.

idea 3) make the change affortable. Make it attrative to start using version 2.0. Dont make me buy it just because I must, but because I want. Use a pricemodel that helpsout your current customers. The step is now to big. A triple price jump makes me feel like your ripping me off because somebody else cheated. It makes no sence.



Please make a more public en fair deal for all you customers. I know you cannot win them all, and i understand you need to get rid of some bad apples. But do it in an fair way. And help does that like your product. Don’t just throw us out with the bad apples.

Kind regards,

Sebastiaan
 
What makes me sick is that DA keeps using someone else's mistake to punish us all. It's not my problem that someone abused the internal licenses. Why am I (among other external license holders) are getting punished?
When it comes to external licenses, you can try to ask for a refund. @smtalk mentioned about this option along with other, non related data, in other forum. This is not exactly what we want, but that would take at least some bitterness away. If they would really refund. Positive move. At least to get rid of annoying clients :)
 
haha :D .....well it would have helped maybe.....but you know.....a lot of dutchies like to complain and have a "voor een dubbeltje op de eerste rij" mentality.

I am more of the do-it-yourself philosophy :D
 
What makes me sick is that DA keeps using someone else's mistake to punish us all. It's not my problem that someone abused the internal licenses. Why am I (among other external license holders) are getting punished?

Agree, how did the $299 lifetime license holders abuse the license system to deserve the "punishment"?

There's a lot of talk about this and I get it and support DA regarding that, but this point hasn't been addressed yet.
 
Thank you smtalk for a better view of the "licence abuse" situation.

I think that for the "external licence holders" that paid 299$ for the licence, there is no escape for DirectAdmin on this, you have to provide what was promised aka lifetime updates and upgrades (but no technical support).
It is poeple that invested in the product at some point, I think you enjoyed the business it generated then, I agree that it is not really profitable, lifetime options was probably a mistake then but as long as you sell licences, it doen't bear any cost either..
You might get money out of these by charging for support tickets or with a reasonable fee to modify the licence. (new ip / new os / ...).
At the moment there is no paid support ticket option so if an external licence holder needs support well he cannot choose to pay for it.

For the "internal licence holders" as this was a partnership, things should be possible to be discussed as we are all "partners" and benefit from each other success.
I see two options that should be acceptable for LLH and for DirectAdmin :
1) an option to update these "internal 49 - 89$" to perpetual for the price difference, but it seems to be a model that you don't want.
At my side, it would be something like 31500$, a lot, but I can finance it with a bank if there is some guarantee that we are good "until 2038" ;-).
2) the current "switch to recurring option" but at a realistic price that would allow datacenters / resellers to switch to without feeling extorted and still being able to make money for the support they provide to their users.
As I and others have stated, I am ok to pay something to keep using the product, but the current "best price" of 15$/month is too high (at least for providers with a lot of licences), I am ok for 5$/month/licence for all my licences, without pause possible.
I would do no discount on volume so providing the best price possible from the first licence as it helps sell the most.

I would also be ok for a flat fee to open tickets, for anything. (must be reasonable too, like 19 - 29$/ticket)
It can be presented as a premium version of the support available on the forum, with faster response time.
At our side when we open a ticket it is often for an issue for which we did not find a solution on the forum of searching ourself.
If we are faced with opening a 29$ ticket or wasting 2 hours searching ourself, there is no question we will pay 29$.
[On another side to do that you have to make sure all documentation and knowledgebase are extensive and up to date.]

And also commercially - for poeple outside of this lifetimelicence scope :
I also would create licences without technical support, without installation, only supported trough paid tickets, at 2 / 5/ 9 $ / month.
I would drop the bulk pricing and focus on providing the best price possible for every customer.
And in contraray, I would make bulk packs of tickets and licence modificaitons. (eg : ticket price is 29$, prepay for 20 tickets and get them for 19; licence modification is 2$, prepay for 25 and get them for 1$)


The new options (1 and 2) would fix a part of the abusers as either they switch to an extenal licence or get into the recurring at a monthly 5$/licence. (which is no 15$ but is better than 0$ and is something "possible" for anyone )
The no support licences with their low price would kill a part of the abusers business (why bother hacking when you can have the real deal for 2$ and as the licence modification now has a cost, it makes it non comptetitive)
The fee for ticket creation "for any reason" would fix the abuse by external holders and bring revenue from every licence owner even lifetime.
The fees for external lifetime licence update would help generate some money from these. (but it is important that it be low/reasonable)
Poeple often don't care paying many times a small fee.

So summary :
LLH :
External 299 : No changes, get a full real licence, except : support tickets are charged, licence modifications are charged a small fee.
Internal 80 and less : Either switch to External by paying the difference of switch to the recurring at 5$. Support tickets are charged, licence modifications are charged a small fee.
Packages of multiple tickets / licence modifications are created.

Non-LLH :
-current offer stands
-creation of an offer "without installation or support" at an aggressive price, witout discount available, with paid tickets and paid licence mods.

Don't know what other users are thinking of these propositions ?
 
"I know when we sold you your car we promised you free software updates but now we are going to charging you."

That is not acceptable. Take the car back and give me back my money. You changed the terms after the sale.
 
Looks like we are at a standstill. Obviously DA is not going to change the policy so I guess we just have to decide for ourselves what will do.
 
I see some people unhappy about internal licenses (which possibly is not legal), but I want to tell my story.

I started my career in IT in 2012 and worked for 2 years with the cPanel admin panel, which allowed me to work faster with servers and so on. In 2018, I wrote to DA support about the opportunity to have a cheaper license for testing purposes because I needed more experiments with servers to get more knowledge about server configuration and so on. They gave me this opportunity, and I thank them.

In the 2021 year, I was a helper of Symfony in open-source projects, and the DA internal license helped me quickly deploy and test code before being put into the Symfony community.

Companies like JetBrains, BlackFire, and Digital Ocean helped me to make open-source still possible and not pay money. Money, which is likely to purchase products I am using for small children who don't have a quality life, and I can give them that money because not all have a mother and father and so on.

Yes, I fully understand DA about internal licenses, and maybe some people use it for their purposes, which is not suitable for DA, but I currently cannot pay 12 x 15 = 180 USD. I thought this money better invested in the open-source community, which would not pay me money, but they said thanks, man, for your time. ;)

Now, you can say I am a terrible person... Maybe yes, but I am preparing a new blog post for people who help others configure their servers, their software in Linux, and so on. Will I get some money for my time? Exactly 0 USD.

I can put your DA logos into my projects and advertise to use products and so on, but I think open source cannot be a good position to make more money from lifetime license owners.
 
Looks like we are at a standstill. Obviously DA is not going to change the policy so I guess we just have to decide for ourselves what will do.
And that's why I'm leaving DA, after 15+ years of fidelity, DA is no longer worth the technical and commercial hassle for me (not to speak of disdaining their customers). Sorry DA, you're not competitive anymore.
 
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