Dana has had to make the hard decision to discontinue his excellent Firewall Dashboard product that he designed for the SMB market space – specifically SBS 2003 Premium. His announcement here is to me a major example of the SMB community NOT supporting a vendor who has directly invested into our community. You the SMB community are using his product for free and not actually paying for it. You’re using it with the watermark and NOT PAYING FOR IT. Heck – the product is cheap as chips and provides excellent value for monitoring your ISA installations. We have clients that review this report daily and ask us to investigate anything strange. How do they know what looks strange – easy – they look at the graph and then tell us “this peak is strange check it out…” Here’s an example of what you will be missing as of the end of the month…
So what did Dana do wrong? He thought that putting an “expired product now in trial mode” as a watermark on the graphics would be sufficient to deter people. However he underestimated the cheapskates out there in the SMB community that don’t care about the watermark and will continue to use it EVEN THOUGH THEY HAVE NOT PAID FOR IT.
So the next time a vendor makes a great product like this go out and buy it. Don’t continue to use it in “trial mode” if it’s giving you value. Don’t complain that vendors don’t build product for the SMB space either. They do and we continue to screw it up by not supporting them.
I’ve never used the product but your tone makes it sound as though consultants should be obliged to purchase the software simply because it the vendor has invested into the SMB space.
You only need to look at the number of SBS installs that use self-signed certificates to see that SMB consultants will save money wherever possible on behalf on thier clients, but that is not justification for a guilt trip.
The watermark really doesn’t look like it cripples the software in any way. It should have been obvious to the vendor that people would happily put up with this if they will put up with certificate warnings etc on a regular basis.
Also I get the impression that surprisingly few installs have ISA installed.