Discussion:
VSI Subscription Licensing Response Letter
(too old to reply)
Stephen Hoffman
2021-04-28 22:38:15 UTC
Permalink
From the VSI "Chief Revenue Officer" Terry Holmes, the VSI response to
the subscription licensing discussions:

https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license

SaaS licensing will continue for new license purchases.

Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
--
Pure Personal Opinion | HoffmanLabs LLC
Arne Vajhøj
2021-04-28 23:23:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stephen Hoffman
From the VSI "Chief Revenue Officer" Terry Holmes, the VSI response to
https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license
SaaS licensing will continue for new license purchases.
Unless it is for nuclear plant or similar in which case
exceptions can be granted.

I don't think that will make people happy.

On the positive side then apparently VSI has reached
a self-sustainable state financially.

Arne
Simon Clubley
2021-04-29 01:34:31 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
On the positive side then apparently VSI has reached
a self-sustainable state financially.
Yes, but is that a temporary or permanent state of affairs in
light of the licencing changes ?

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Craig A. Berry
2021-04-29 01:50:34 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
 From the VSI "Chief Revenue Officer" Terry Holmes, the VSI response
https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license
SaaS licensing will continue for new license purchases.
Yeah, the memo essentially says they appreciate your feedback but feel
that it's just fine to completely ignore it. And it's ok because
everyone else is doing it. Which is nonsense because while there are
some software packages that do this, there is no other operating system
with a drop dead flag built into it that I'm aware of.

Some require paying more to get an upgrade to the latest version, and
most only support hardware going back a certain number of years. Fair
enough, but those keep working as well as they ever did regardless of
what the current date is.

The following statement I found particularly concerning:

"VSI issues subscription renewal quotes to customers at least 30 days
before expiration so that the customer is full aware of the need to
renew their subscription."

In my experience, VSI typically screws up the renewal process and lets
you know a month or two after your contract expired or the first time
you ask for support (whichever comes first) that it's time to renew.
Even if you asked for a quote well before expiration. I would not trust
folks with such a poor track record of handling renewals to do better
just because the stakes are higher for me (but not for them).
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Unless it is for nuclear plant or similar in which case
exceptions can be granted.
But stopping your printing press from running or your patients from
getting lab results is just fine because those things aren't important,
at least not to VSI.
Post by Arne Vajhøj
I don't think that will make people happy.
On the positive side then apparently VSI has reached
a self-sustainable state financially.
They reached that without the SaaS model and it happened in a year in
which everyone on HPE support had no choice but to switch. Now they are
going to lose it due to the SaaS model.
Arne Vajhøj
2021-04-29 19:53:35 UTC
Permalink
Post by Craig A. Berry
"VSI issues subscription renewal quotes to customers at least 30 days
before expiration so that the customer is full aware of the need to
renew their subscription."
In my experience, VSI typically screws up the renewal process and lets
you know a month or two after your contract expired or the first time
you ask for support (whichever comes first) that it's time to renew.
Even if you asked for a quote well before expiration.  I would not trust
folks with such a poor track record of handling renewals to do better
just because the stakes are higher for me (but not for them).
I wonder why they don't go for some auto renewal process.

Have customers credit card on file, fully automated charge
and send out license unless customers cancel.

All sorts of dubious companies use that model, why not
make it work for something useful.

Arne
Jan-Erik Söderholm
2021-04-29 23:03:20 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Craig A. Berry
"VSI issues subscription renewal quotes to customers at least 30 days
before expiration so that the customer is full aware of the need to
renew their subscription."
In my experience, VSI typically screws up the renewal process and lets
you know a month or two after your contract expired or the first time
you ask for support (whichever comes first) that it's time to renew.
Even if you asked for a quote well before expiration.  I would not trust
folks with such a poor track record of handling renewals to do better
just because the stakes are higher for me (but not for them).
I wonder why they don't go for some auto renewal process.
Have customers credit card on file, fully automated charge
and send out license unless customers cancel.
All sorts of dubious companies use that model, why not
make it work for something useful.
Arne
Might work for your personal copy of AutoCAD, but does larger companies
even have a credit card today? And do they want to have automated
payments that can easily be forgotten? Say you decomission your
VMS systems and 10 years later find those payments.
Arne Vajhøj
2021-04-30 00:04:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Craig A. Berry
"VSI issues subscription renewal quotes to customers at least 30 days
before expiration so that the customer is full aware of the need to
renew their subscription."
In my experience, VSI typically screws up the renewal process and lets
you know a month or two after your contract expired or the first time
you ask for support (whichever comes first) that it's time to renew.
Even if you asked for a quote well before expiration.  I would not trust
folks with such a poor track record of handling renewals to do better
just because the stakes are higher for me (but not for them).
I wonder why they don't go for some auto renewal process.
Have customers credit card on file, fully automated charge
and send out license unless customers cancel.
All sorts of dubious companies use that model, why not
make it work for something useful.
Might work for your personal copy of AutoCAD, but does larger companies
even have a credit card today? And do they want to have automated
payments that can easily be forgotten? Say you decomission your
VMS systems and 10 years later find those payments.
I expect the company purchase department to have a credit card.

Some may not want the automaticness. But if someone is worried
about the manual process failing then automating it seems pretty
obvious. The manual process can be kept for those not wanting
automatic, but they should not complain about the risk
of the manual process.

Arne
Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
2021-04-30 07:51:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
Might work for your personal copy of AutoCAD, but does larger companies
even have a credit card today? And do they want to have automated
payments that can easily be forgotten? Say you decomission your
VMS systems and 10 years later find those payments.
Any company that big has a whole department for financial stuff. In any
case, not having automatic renewal because some big company might forget
to cancel doesn't make sense.

It seems that the only way out is to buy a five-year (or however much
buffer one needs) license every year, rather than every five years. In
such cases, it would be nice if one could return the old one and get 4/5
of it refunded. Same revenue for VSI, same payment schedule.
Jan-Erik Söderholm
2021-04-29 23:32:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Craig A. Berry
 From the VSI "Chief Revenue Officer" Terry Holmes, the VSI response to
https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license
SaaS licensing will continue for new license purchases.
Yeah, the memo essentially says they appreciate your feedback but feel
that it's just fine to completely ignore it.  And it's ok because
everyone else is doing it.  Which is nonsense because while there are
some software packages that do this, there is no other operating system
with a drop dead flag built into it that I'm aware of.
Some require paying more to get an upgrade to the latest version, and
most only support hardware going back a certain number of years.  Fair
enough, but those keep working as well as they ever did regardless of
what the current date is.
"VSI issues subscription renewal quotes to customers at least 30 days
before expiration so that the customer is full aware of the need to
renew their subscription."
To be fair, I think that you could have quoted the full section.


"First, there is a message that the operator sees once the subscription
license is within 30 days of expiration.

Second, VSI issues subscription renewal quotes to customers at least 30
days before expiration so that the customer is full aware of the need to
renew their subscription.

And third, in case the customer fails to enact their new subscription in
time before license expiry, we add an extra 90 days “grace” period before
the license will truly stop working.

By providing these three actions in advance of the expiration date, we
are trying to help customers not let their subscriptions expire. Plus,
our support team has the ability to provide short term temporary licenses
as an additional backup."


Just to make the picture complete. It's unfair to just pick a single
quote out of the total picture and build an opinion on that.

And, for those that so require, there are also perpetual licenses.

The letter, even if the number of words are more, is more or less the
same as a reply I got directly from VSI when asking just the day before
this was published. That also mentioned Johan Gedda, mentioned in the
letter, who have more or less founded VSI out of his own pockets with
approx $50 MUSD so far. Nice guy, btw, shared lunch table at one
customer meeting at the IKEA IT HQ a few years ago.

Johan Gedda is not only investing in VMS:
https://tech.eu/brief/danish-esports-entertainment-startup-blast-secures-e12-5-million-to-scale-up/

Also: https://www.linkedin.com/in/johanm4/
Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
2021-04-30 07:54:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
"First, there is a message that the operator sees once the subscription
license is within 30 days of expiration.
Second, VSI issues subscription renewal quotes to customers at least 30
days before expiration so that the customer is full aware of the need to
renew their subscription.
And third, in case the customer fails to enact their new subscription in
time before license expiry, we add an extra 90 days grace period before
the license will truly stop working.
By providing these three actions in advance of the expiration date, we
are trying to help customers not let their subscriptions expire. Plus,
our support team has the ability to provide short term temporary licenses
as an additional backup."
None of that addresses the concern that VSI might go bust. In such
cases, people need more than a few weeks to move to another platform.
And I seriously don't think that people forgetting to renew is the
problem.
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
And, for those that so require, there are also perpetual licenses.
So one has a choice? How does one get such a perpetual license? What
is the cost compared to the others? (Cue Monty Python sketch about
dirty books. "Very visual, señor!")
Jan-Erik Söderholm
2021-04-30 08:00:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
"First, there is a message that the operator sees once the subscription
license is within 30 days of expiration.
Second, VSI issues subscription renewal quotes to customers at least 30
days before expiration so that the customer is full aware of the need to
renew their subscription.
And third, in case the customer fails to enact their new subscription in
time before license expiry, we add an extra 90 days grace period before
the license will truly stop working.
By providing these three actions in advance of the expiration date, we
are trying to help customers not let their subscriptions expire. Plus,
our support team has the ability to provide short term temporary licenses
as an additional backup."
None of that addresses the concern that VSI might go bust. In such
cases, people need more than a few weeks to move to another platform.
And I seriously don't think that people forgetting to renew is the
problem.
A "few weeks"? 120 days are around 17 weeks.
Post by Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
And, for those that so require, there are also perpetual licenses.
How does one get such a perpetual license?
Why ask at all if you haven't even read the "letter".
Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
2021-04-30 08:22:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
Post by Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
"First, there is a message that the operator sees once the subscription
license is within 30 days of expiration.
Second, VSI issues subscription renewal quotes to customers at least 30
days before expiration so that the customer is full aware of the need to
renew their subscription.
And third, in case the customer fails to enact their new subscription in
time before license expiry, we add an extra 90 days grace period before
the license will truly stop working.
By providing these three actions in advance of the expiration date, we
are trying to help customers not let their subscriptions expire. Plus,
our support team has the ability to provide short term temporary licenses
as an additional backup."
None of that addresses the concern that VSI might go bust. In such
cases, people need more than a few weeks to move to another platform.
And I seriously don't think that people forgetting to renew is the
problem.
A "few weeks"? 120 days are around 17 weeks.
Post by Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
And, for those that so require, there are also perpetual licenses.
How does one get such a perpetual license?
Why ask at all if you haven't even read the "letter".
OK, then the problem is solved and everyone is happy. Good to know.
Jan-Erik Söderholm
2021-04-30 08:28:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
Post by Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
"First, there is a message that the operator sees once the subscription
license is within 30 days of expiration.
Second, VSI issues subscription renewal quotes to customers at least 30
days before expiration so that the customer is full aware of the need to
renew their subscription.
And third, in case the customer fails to enact their new subscription in
time before license expiry, we add an extra 90 days grace period before
the license will truly stop working.
By providing these three actions in advance of the expiration date, we
are trying to help customers not let their subscriptions expire. Plus,
our support team has the ability to provide short term temporary licenses
as an additional backup."
None of that addresses the concern that VSI might go bust. In such
cases, people need more than a few weeks to move to another platform.
And I seriously don't think that people forgetting to renew is the
problem.
A "few weeks"? 120 days are around 17 weeks.
Post by Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
And, for those that so require, there are also perpetual licenses.
How does one get such a perpetual license?
Why ask at all if you haven't even read the "letter".
OK, then the problem is solved and everyone is happy. Good to know.
I do not think that everyone is happy. But selecting short quotes
from a "letter" and build a case around that is not fair. And anyone
that is not happy can do as I did, talk to VSI.
Bill Gunshannon
2021-04-30 13:06:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
None of that addresses the concern that VSI might go bust.  In such
cases, people need more than a few weeks to move to another platform.
And I seriously don't think that people forgetting to renew is the
problem.
A "few weeks"? 120 days are around 17 weeks.
It's been a long time (many decades) but the last time I saw
a migration of a production environment from one system to a
totally different system (and the primary language involved
was COBOL which is very portable) it took a year. And there
were minor fires that had to be extinguished for many months
thereafter.

bill
Craig A. Berry
2021-04-30 12:10:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
Post by Jan-Erik Söderholm
And, for those that so require, there are also perpetual licenses.
So one has a choice? How does one get such a perpetual license?
No, you have no choice. The letter says you apply to VSI, who will
review the request and decide whether you get the non-expiring licenses.
The implication from the examples given ("nuclear plants, military
armaments, local infrastructure projects, other key government agencies
that protect their citizens, etc.") is that the answer will be no for
people merely concerned about staying in business.
Post by Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
What is the cost compared to the others?
It's never mentioned in the letter.
Simon Clubley
2021-04-29 01:32:24 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stephen Hoffman
From the VSI "Chief Revenue Officer" Terry Holmes, the VSI response to
https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license
What a tone-deaf response. :-(

VSI have not given any specific ideas to address customer concerns
about VSI going bust.

Isn't that guy some kind of salesperson ? It's typical salesperson
thinking about only caring about the next quarter.
Post by Stephen Hoffman
SaaS licensing will continue for new license purchases.
With no indications about what happens if VSI goes bust.
Post by Stephen Hoffman
Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
Well, that should be interesting. Has someone told VSI they are
not Oracle ?

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
2021-04-29 05:45:59 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Isn't that guy some kind of salesperson ? It's typical salesperson
thinking about only caring about the next quarter.
Or the next dollar. :-)
Chris Hanson
2021-04-29 19:05:59 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stephen Hoffman
Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
LOL, good luck with that. What is this, 1982?

-- Chris
Dave Froble
2021-04-29 21:31:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by Chris Hanson
Post by Stephen Hoffman
Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
LOL, good luck with that. What is this, 1982?
-- Chris
Actually, I can see some benefit from this. Whoever uses more, pays
more. Reasonable, I'd think.

I do believe in the recurring revenue model, using support as the
product. My only problem is the apparent disregard for customer
continuity, should for whatever reason the customer cannot get renual of
the support, and the use of VMS.

I'm really hoping that VSI's position of "if we're gone, what do we
care", that seems possible, isn't.
--
David Froble Tel: 724-529-0450
Dave Froble Enterprises, Inc. E-Mail: ***@tsoft-inc.com
DFE Ultralights, Inc.
170 Grimplin Road
Vanderbilt, PA 15486
Arne Vajhøj
2021-04-30 00:01:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by Chris Hanson
Post by Stephen Hoffman
Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
LOL, good luck with that. What is this, 1982?
Actually, I can see some benefit from this.  Whoever uses more, pays
more.  Reasonable, I'd think.
Paying per system size is common today.

Oracle is well known to do it.

I believe Microsoft also do it.

Arne
Simon Clubley
2021-04-30 04:33:41 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Chris Hanson
Post by Stephen Hoffman
Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
LOL, good luck with that. What is this, 1982?
Actually, I can see some benefit from this.  Whoever uses more, pays
more.  Reasonable, I'd think.
Paying per system size is common today.
Oracle is well known to do it.
I believe Microsoft also do it.
VSI is not Oracle or Microsoft.

There's one thing I do not understand.

If VSI are so sure that they are not going to go bust or be sold off,
then why not offer the escrow option anyway as they will never have
to deliver on it if they are right.

For the cost of setting up the escrow, they would get a great marketing
tool that would build customer confidence.

If they believe they would never have to deliver on it, then why not
just offer it ? The benefits would outweigh the escrow setup costs if
VSI are right about their future.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Arne Vajhøj
2021-04-30 13:09:15 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Chris Hanson
Post by Stephen Hoffman
Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
LOL, good luck with that. What is this, 1982?
Actually, I can see some benefit from this.  Whoever uses more, pays
more.  Reasonable, I'd think.
Paying per system size is common today.
Oracle is well known to do it.
I believe Microsoft also do it.
VSI is not Oracle or Microsoft.
Very true.

But that does not change that paying per system side is common today.

ANd Oracle and MS seemed more relevant to mention that some companies
that nobody knows.
Post by Simon Clubley
There's one thing I do not understand.
If VSI are so sure that they are not going to go bust or be sold off,
then why not offer the escrow option anyway as they will never have
to deliver on it if they are right.
For the cost of setting up the escrow, they would get a great marketing
tool that would build customer confidence.
If they believe they would never have to deliver on it, then why not
just offer it ? The benefits would outweigh the escrow setup costs if
VSI are right about their future.
In worst case it would hurt creditors. That could be problematic. In
a super worst casde scenario then it could even end up being the
customers problem.

Arne
Simon Clubley
2021-04-30 17:09:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
If VSI are so sure that they are not going to go bust or be sold off,
then why not offer the escrow option anyway as they will never have
to deliver on it if they are right.
For the cost of setting up the escrow, they would get a great marketing
tool that would build customer confidence.
If they believe they would never have to deliver on it, then why not
just offer it ? The benefits would outweigh the escrow setup costs if
VSI are right about their future.
In worst case it would hurt creditors. That could be problematic. In
a super worst casde scenario then it could even end up being the
customers problem.
Why would it become the customer's problem ? Have you seen something
the rest of us have missed so far ?

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Arne Vajhøj
2021-04-30 18:36:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
If VSI are so sure that they are not going to go bust or be sold off,
then why not offer the escrow option anyway as they will never have
to deliver on it if they are right.
For the cost of setting up the escrow, they would get a great marketing
tool that would build customer confidence.
If they believe they would never have to deliver on it, then why not
just offer it ? The benefits would outweigh the escrow setup costs if
VSI are right about their future.
In worst case it would hurt creditors. That could be problematic. In
a super worst casde scenario then it could even end up being the
customers problem.
Why would it become the customer's problem ? Have you seen something
the rest of us have missed so far ?
Transfer of something of value away from creditors can
be a legal problem. In bankruptcy cases what is called
"fraudulent transfers" can be undone by court.

Arne
Dave Froble
2021-04-30 19:38:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
If VSI are so sure that they are not going to go bust or be sold off,
then why not offer the escrow option anyway as they will never have
to deliver on it if they are right.
For the cost of setting up the escrow, they would get a great marketing
tool that would build customer confidence.
If they believe they would never have to deliver on it, then why not
just offer it ? The benefits would outweigh the escrow setup costs if
VSI are right about their future.
In worst case it would hurt creditors. That could be problematic. In
a super worst casde scenario then it could even end up being the
customers problem.
Why would it become the customer's problem ? Have you seen something
the rest of us have missed so far ?
Transfer of something of value away from creditors can
be a legal problem. In bankruptcy cases what is called
"fraudulent transfers" can be undone by court.
If it is an agreement between vendor and customers, I don't see how it
could be a problem. That would take something of value from the
customers, which they have paid for, and are entitled to.

I'm thinking that the simplest thing would be a permanent license pak,
along with a binding agreement, that if for whatever reason VSI could no
longer issue new licenses, the customers would be entitled to the
permanent license pak and unlimited usage of the latest version of VMS,
layered products, and whatever, or whatever they choose to run. This
would be part of their service agreement, paid for, and legal.

I don't really care about the mechanics of how to do this. But it is
the minimum that I'd consider acceptable.

I've contacted Terry at VSI, and am waiting on his response.
--
David Froble Tel: 724-529-0450
Dave Froble Enterprises, Inc. E-Mail: ***@tsoft-inc.com
DFE Ultralights, Inc.
170 Grimplin Road
Vanderbilt, PA 15486
Simon Clubley
2021-05-02 03:15:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Why would it become the customer's problem ? Have you seen something
the rest of us have missed so far ?
Transfer of something of value away from creditors can
be a legal problem. In bankruptcy cases what is called
"fraudulent transfers" can be undone by court.
If it is an agreement between vendor and customers, I don't see how it
could be a problem. That would take something of value from the
customers, which they have paid for, and are entitled to.
Indeed. That is _exactly_ the point of escrow agreements.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Arne Vajhøj
2021-05-26 01:05:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Why would it become the customer's problem ? Have you seen something
the rest of us have missed so far ?
Transfer of something of value away from creditors can
be a legal problem. In bankruptcy cases what is called
"fraudulent transfers" can be undone by court.
If it is an agreement between vendor and customers, I don't see how it
could be a problem. That would take something of value from the
customers, which they have paid for, and are entitled to.
Indeed. That is _exactly_ the point of escrow agreements.
But it is not the case here.

A typical escrow agreement is that company A delivers software
X to company B and promise N years of support for a given amount.
The source code for X is put in escrow and B get access to it
if A are not able to deliver the promised support.

What we are discussing here is a different scenario. Company A
delivers software X to company B and promise N years of support
for a given amount. Company A actually delivers as promised, but
after the N years they don't want to sell X again or A and B cannot
agree on the price for selling X again. And you want B to get
X for free forever in that case.

Very different.

And given that if VSI goes under then the right to
issue new VMS licenses is likely the only real asset
that can be used to cover debt to creditors, then giving
away that asset for free to customers will raise
questions.

And given that the whole point of this discussion is to
remove risk for VMS customers, then a solution that could
be overturned by court is not good.

The asset preservation issue could be addressed if it
was not for free. Customer would be offered a forever license
for a "fair amount" if VSI went under. Then creditors would
get some value and the legal risk would be somewhat
mitigated.

But if the right to VMS ends up with a company
just wanting to sell licenses and not provide any
development & support, then most customers will
want to migrate off VMS.

And then what is the difference between having prepaid
for 5 years license and paying the equivalent of 5 or 10 years
license for a forever license and migrate off in 5 years?

Arne
Simon Clubley
2021-05-26 12:24:48 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Why would it become the customer's problem ? Have you seen something
the rest of us have missed so far ?
Transfer of something of value away from creditors can
be a legal problem. In bankruptcy cases what is called
"fraudulent transfers" can be undone by court.
If it is an agreement between vendor and customers, I don't see how it
could be a problem. That would take something of value from the
customers, which they have paid for, and are entitled to.
Indeed. That is _exactly_ the point of escrow agreements.
But it is not the case here.
A typical escrow agreement is that company A delivers software
X to company B and promise N years of support for a given amount.
The source code for X is put in escrow and B get access to it
if A are not able to deliver the promised support.
What we are discussing here is a different scenario. Company A
delivers software X to company B and promise N years of support
for a given amount. Company A actually delivers as promised, but
after the N years they don't want to sell X again or A and B cannot
agree on the price for selling X again. And you want B to get
X for free forever in that case.
No Arne, that is not the case.

I have made it very explicit that a condition for the permanent licences
escrow triggering is that you had a valid support contract at the time
that VSI either failed or was taken over by some company unable to provide
proper support or which wanted to impose extreme price rises.

That makes it _exactly_ the same as the normal source code escrow
release you are talking about in your first example.

I don't see why you have such a problem with understanding this.
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Very different.
And given that if VSI goes under then the right to
issue new VMS licenses is likely the only real asset
that can be used to cover debt to creditors, then giving
away that asset for free to customers will raise
questions.
It's not for free. It's part of the legally binding contract between
the customer and VSI which was agreed before the customer would agree
to hand over money to VSI.

That makes it _exactly_ the same as the normal source code escrow
release you are talking about in your first example.

I don't see why you have such a problem with understanding this.
Post by Arne Vajhøj
And given that the whole point of this discussion is to
remove risk for VMS customers, then a solution that could
be overturned by court is not good.
The asset preservation issue could be addressed if it
was not for free. Customer would be offered a forever license
for a "fair amount" if VSI went under. Then creditors would
get some value and the legal risk would be somewhat
mitigated.
Waiting until after VSI goes under to arrange this is _way_ too
late and would be totally unacceptable to most people because of
the risk to the customer's company.

Sometimes Arne I get the feeling that you only know how to apply
academic idealistic thinking to a problem instead of considering
the practical real-world issues and concerns that occur in these
situations.
Post by Arne Vajhøj
But if the right to VMS ends up with a company
just wanting to sell licenses and not provide any
development & support, then most customers will
want to migrate off VMS.
And then what is the difference between having prepaid
for 5 years license and paying the equivalent of 5 or 10 years
license for a forever license and migrate off in 5 years?
How many emulated 20-year-old plus VAX systems are still in production
use these days for various reasons ? It's enough to allow a commercial
market for such emulators.

Of course, from a security point of view, emulated hardware and an
unchangable version of VMS is not a good approach, but that's another
discussion...

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Arne Vajhøj
2021-05-26 12:46:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Why would it become the customer's problem ? Have you seen something
the rest of us have missed so far ?
Transfer of something of value away from creditors can
be a legal problem. In bankruptcy cases what is called
"fraudulent transfers" can be undone by court.
If it is an agreement between vendor and customers, I don't see how it
could be a problem. That would take something of value from the
customers, which they have paid for, and are entitled to.
Indeed. That is _exactly_ the point of escrow agreements.
But it is not the case here.
A typical escrow agreement is that company A delivers software
X to company B and promise N years of support for a given amount.
The source code for X is put in escrow and B get access to it
if A are not able to deliver the promised support.
What we are discussing here is a different scenario. Company A
delivers software X to company B and promise N years of support
for a given amount. Company A actually delivers as promised, but
after the N years they don't want to sell X again or A and B cannot
agree on the price for selling X again. And you want B to get
X for free forever in that case.
No Arne, that is not the case.
I have made it very explicit that a condition for the permanent licences
escrow triggering is that you had a valid support contract at the time
that VSI either failed or was taken over by some company unable to provide
proper support or which wanted to impose extreme price rises.
That makes it _exactly_ the same as the normal source code escrow
release you are talking about in your first example.
No it does not.

You paid for a license until time T.

With a normal escrow agreement you will have rights up to time T
and zero rights after that.

Getting a permanent license is not like that. Getting a
permanent license is getting something after time T. Something
that you have not paid for.
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Very different.
And given that if VSI goes under then the right to
issue new VMS licenses is likely the only real asset
that can be used to cover debt to creditors, then giving
away that asset for free to customers will raise
questions.
It's not for free. It's part of the legally binding contract between
the customer and VSI which was agreed before the customer would agree
to hand over money to VSI.
That makes it _exactly_ the same as the normal source code escrow
release you are talking about in your first example.
No.

If the escrow agreement says that a third party would get
right to source code from VSI went under until your license
expired at time T, then it would be a normal escrow agreement.
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
And given that the whole point of this discussion is to
remove risk for VMS customers, then a solution that could
be overturned by court is not good.
The asset preservation issue could be addressed if it
was not for free. Customer would be offered a forever license
for a "fair amount" if VSI went under. Then creditors would
get some value and the legal risk would be somewhat
mitigated.
Waiting until after VSI goes under to arrange this is _way_ too
late and would be totally unacceptable to most people because of
the risk to the customer's company.
Yes. Above is describing an agreement made now but with payment later
if worst case happened.
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
But if the right to VMS ends up with a company
just wanting to sell licenses and not provide any
development & support, then most customers will
want to migrate off VMS.
And then what is the difference between having prepaid
for 5 years license and paying the equivalent of 5 or 10 years
license for a forever license and migrate off in 5 years?
How many emulated 20-year-old plus VAX systems are still in production
use these days for various reasons ? It's enough to allow a commercial
market for such emulators.
Some. But that is also a business risk.

Arne
Simon Clubley
2021-05-26 18:03:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Why would it become the customer's problem ? Have you seen something
the rest of us have missed so far ?
Transfer of something of value away from creditors can
be a legal problem. In bankruptcy cases what is called
"fraudulent transfers" can be undone by court.
If it is an agreement between vendor and customers, I don't see how it
could be a problem. That would take something of value from the
customers, which they have paid for, and are entitled to.
Indeed. That is _exactly_ the point of escrow agreements.
But it is not the case here.
A typical escrow agreement is that company A delivers software
X to company B and promise N years of support for a given amount.
The source code for X is put in escrow and B get access to it
if A are not able to deliver the promised support.
What we are discussing here is a different scenario. Company A
delivers software X to company B and promise N years of support
for a given amount. Company A actually delivers as promised, but
after the N years they don't want to sell X again or A and B cannot
agree on the price for selling X again. And you want B to get
X for free forever in that case.
No Arne, that is not the case.
I have made it very explicit that a condition for the permanent licences
escrow triggering is that you had a valid support contract at the time
that VSI either failed or was taken over by some company unable to provide
proper support or which wanted to impose extreme price rises.
That makes it _exactly_ the same as the normal source code escrow
release you are talking about in your first example.
No it does not.
You paid for a license until time T.
With a normal escrow agreement you will have rights up to time T
and zero rights after that.
It's time for you to do some reading Arne:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Source_code_escrow

Or did you miss the bit above where I said that you would need to
have a valid support contract with VSI at the time they went bust
in order for the escrow to still be valid ?
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Getting a permanent license is not like that. Getting a
permanent license is getting something after time T. Something
that you have not paid for.
Does time T represent the termination date of your support contract
or when VSI goes bust ?
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Very different.
And given that if VSI goes under then the right to
issue new VMS licenses is likely the only real asset
that can be used to cover debt to creditors, then giving
away that asset for free to customers will raise
questions.
It's not for free. It's part of the legally binding contract between
the customer and VSI which was agreed before the customer would agree
to hand over money to VSI.
That makes it _exactly_ the same as the normal source code escrow
release you are talking about in your first example.
No.
If the escrow agreement says that a third party would get
right to source code from VSI went under until your license
expired at time T, then it would be a normal escrow agreement.
Please read the link I have provided above about normal source code
escrow agreements work. Once you get access to the source code in an
escrow agreement, there is usually no limit to how long you have access
to that source code.

As I have been saying all along, what I am proposing is a normal escrow
agreement but with licences instead of source code.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Arne Vajhøj
2021-05-26 18:26:17 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Why would it become the customer's problem ? Have you seen something
the rest of us have missed so far ?
Transfer of something of value away from creditors can
be a legal problem. In bankruptcy cases what is called
"fraudulent transfers" can be undone by court.
If it is an agreement between vendor and customers, I don't see how it
could be a problem. That would take something of value from the
customers, which they have paid for, and are entitled to.
Indeed. That is _exactly_ the point of escrow agreements.
But it is not the case here.
A typical escrow agreement is that company A delivers software
X to company B and promise N years of support for a given amount.
The source code for X is put in escrow and B get access to it
if A are not able to deliver the promised support.
What we are discussing here is a different scenario. Company A
delivers software X to company B and promise N years of support
for a given amount. Company A actually delivers as promised, but
after the N years they don't want to sell X again or A and B cannot
agree on the price for selling X again. And you want B to get
X for free forever in that case.
No Arne, that is not the case.
I have made it very explicit that a condition for the permanent licences
escrow triggering is that you had a valid support contract at the time
that VSI either failed or was taken over by some company unable to provide
proper support or which wanted to impose extreme price rises.
That makes it _exactly_ the same as the normal source code escrow
release you are talking about in your first example.
No it does not.
You paid for a license until time T.
With a normal escrow agreement you will have rights up to time T
and zero rights after that.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Source_code_escrow
Maybe you should read your own link.

It says:

<quote>
The software's source code is released to the licensee if the licensor
files for bankruptcy or otherwise fails to maintain and update the
software as promised in the software license agreement.
</quote>

When you pay VSI for a license for N years then, then there
is a license agreement for those N years.

There is no license agreement after those N years.

If VSI or whoever acquire VSI assets after those N years
do not want to sell a new license for M years, then they
are not violating any agreement. They delivered for N
years as promised.
Post by Simon Clubley
Or did you miss the bit above where I said that you would need to
have a valid support contract with VSI at the time they went bust
in order for the escrow to still be valid ?
That one has a support contract and a valid license before
the license expire does not give one any rights after
the license expire.
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Getting a permanent license is not like that. Getting a
permanent license is getting something after time T. Something
that you have not paid for.
Does time T represent the termination date of your support contract
or when VSI goes bust ?
T is end of license paid for.
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Very different.
And given that if VSI goes under then the right to
issue new VMS licenses is likely the only real asset
that can be used to cover debt to creditors, then giving
away that asset for free to customers will raise
questions.
It's not for free. It's part of the legally binding contract between
the customer and VSI which was agreed before the customer would agree
to hand over money to VSI.
That makes it _exactly_ the same as the normal source code escrow
release you are talking about in your first example.
No.
If the escrow agreement says that a third party would get
right to source code from VSI went under until your license
expired at time T, then it would be a normal escrow agreement.
Please read the link I have provided above about normal source code
escrow agreements work.
It doesn't match what you are proposing.

VSI or whoever acquire VSI assets would have delivered as promised
on agreed contract - they just don't want to sign a new contract.

To do a car analogy.

You rent a car for X per year for N years.

If you do not get your car for those N years then you have a
valid case.

But if you after those N years go to the car company and said that
you want to rent a new car for another N Years and they say no,
then you do not have a case.

You are of course free to ask for the first rental contract to contain
a clause that says that if they after the N years are not willing to
rent you a car again then you can keep the first car forever for free.
But do not expect the car company to signoff on that.

Arne
Simon Clubley
2021-05-26 18:54:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Source_code_escrow
Maybe you should read your own link.
<quote>
The software's source code is released to the licensee if the licensor
files for bankruptcy or otherwise fails to maintain and update the
software as promised in the software license agreement.
</quote>
When you pay VSI for a license for N years then, then there
is a license agreement for those N years.
And the cases I am discussing is what happens if VSI goes bust
during those N years. You get permanent access to the licences
in the same way as you get permanent access to the source code
in a normal escrow agreement if the conditions for the escrow
release trigger.
Post by Arne Vajhøj
There is no license agreement after those N years.
If VSI or whoever acquire VSI assets after those N years
do not want to sell a new license for M years, then they
are not violating any agreement. They delivered for N
years as promised.
Read the bit in my link about cancellation of the vendor's project.

This is directly the same thing (if it is addressed in the escrow
agreement.)

If the vendor is willing to sell a new support contract at a reasonable
price increase but the customer says no, the escrow becomes invalid
and cannot be used.

If the vendor is only willing to sell a new support contract at an
extreme markup then the escrow triggers (provided the escrow agreement
was written to handle this).
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Or did you miss the bit above where I said that you would need to
have a valid support contract with VSI at the time they went bust
in order for the escrow to still be valid ?
That one has a support contract and a valid license before
the license expire does not give one any rights after
the license expire.
Yes it does, if it's not the customer's fault that they can't get
a new support contract, and provided the escrow agreement is written
correctly.

This is absolutely no different to getting permanent access to the
vendor's source code in a normal escrow agreement, even past what
would have been the next support contract period for that vendor.
Post by Arne Vajhøj
You are of course free to ask for the first rental contract to contain
a clause that says that if they after the N years are not willing to
rent you a car again then you can keep the first car forever for free.
But do not expect the car company to signoff on that.
Normal source code escrow agreements can contain such a clause however.
Read the link I have provided.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Arne Vajhøj
2021-05-26 20:11:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
There is no license agreement after those N years.
If VSI or whoever acquire VSI assets after those N years
do not want to sell a new license for M years, then they
are not violating any agreement. They delivered for N
years as promised.
Read the bit in my link about cancellation of the vendor's project.
This is directly the same thing (if it is addressed in the escrow
agreement.)
If the vendor is willing to sell a new support contract at a reasonable
price increase but the customer says no, the escrow becomes invalid
and cannot be used.
If the vendor is only willing to sell a new support contract at an
extreme markup then the escrow triggers (provided the escrow agreement
was written to handle this).
There are no escrow contracts that works that way.
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
Or did you miss the bit above where I said that you would need to
have a valid support contract with VSI at the time they went bust
in order for the escrow to still be valid ?
That one has a support contract and a valid license before
the license expire does not give one any rights after
the license expire.
Yes it does,
An agreement that ends at T doers not give any parties any right
after T.
Post by Simon Clubley
if it's not the customer's fault that they can't get
a new support contract,
That it is not their fault does not give them any specific rights.

The vendor sold a license for N years and delivered a license for
N years.

No obligations after the N years.

Try to turn it around. What if VSI wanted customers that buys a
license for X for N years to deposit a huge sum of money that
would go to VSI if the customer did not want to buy a new
license period. Totally crazy right. But the other way around
is just as crazy.

When an agreement has expired then it has expired.
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
You are of course free to ask for the first rental contract to contain
a clause that says that if they after the N years are not willing to
rent you a car again then you can keep the first car forever for free.
But do not expect the car company to signoff on that.
Normal source code escrow agreements can contain such a clause however.
Read the link I have provided.
Escrow agreements are all about when the party are not delivering
what was agreed on - not when a party do not want to enter a new
agreement.

If you do not believe me, then try get a leasing company to signoff
on such a deal.

Arne
Simon Clubley
2021-05-27 12:11:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
If the vendor is willing to sell a new support contract at a reasonable
price increase but the customer says no, the escrow becomes invalid
and cannot be used.
If the vendor is only willing to sell a new support contract at an
extreme markup then the escrow triggers (provided the escrow agreement
was written to handle this).
There are no escrow contracts that works that way.
I disagree. That is a natural thing for any customer to worry about.

If this isn't addressed, then what is to stop any successor organisation
to VSI demanding a 500% increase in the annual licence fee in order for
the customer to continue receiving licences ?

They know the customer would have to pay the fee or the customer could
go bust. Any reasonable customer is going to want to make sure they do
not find themselves in this position.
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Try to turn it around. What if VSI wanted customers that buys a
license for X for N years to deposit a huge sum of money that
would go to VSI if the customer did not want to buy a new
license period. Totally crazy right. But the other way around
is just as crazy.
Not the same. VSI wants the customer's money and so the customer
gets to decide the terms under which they are willing to hand over
money to VSI in return for VSI's products.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Arne Vajhøj
2021-05-27 13:54:41 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Post by Simon Clubley
If the vendor is willing to sell a new support contract at a reasonable
price increase but the customer says no, the escrow becomes invalid
and cannot be used.
If the vendor is only willing to sell a new support contract at an
extreme markup then the escrow triggers (provided the escrow agreement
was written to handle this).
There are no escrow contracts that works that way.
I disagree. That is a natural thing for any customer to worry about.
If this isn't addressed, then what is to stop any successor organisation
to VSI demanding a 500% increase in the annual licence fee in order for
the customer to continue receiving licences ?
They know the customer would have to pay the fee or the customer could
go bust. Any reasonable customer is going to want to make sure they do
not find themselves in this position.
I totally agree that it is a natural thing for customers to worry about
and that it needs addressing.

But to get it addressed then we need a model that makes
everybody happy.

Customers need to know that they can be sure to have a license for
a number of years.

VSI needs revenue.

VSI creditors needs asset preservation.
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Try to turn it around. What if VSI wanted customers that buys a
license for X for N years to deposit a huge sum of money that
would go to VSI if the customer did not want to buy a new
license period. Totally crazy right. But the other way around
is just as crazy.
Not the same. VSI wants the customer's money and so the customer
gets to decide the terms under which they are willing to hand over
money to VSI in return for VSI's products.
That is not how business works.

If it was then I would go down to the Rolls Royce dealer and
ask for a car for 100 dollars.

A business agreement requires two parties to agree on terms, so:
* customer must be willing to hand over the money for the
good/service
* vendor must be willing to hand over the good/service
for the money

The problem with escrow is a little special because VSI
most likely do not care at all - it will will only apply
if VSI goes under - if they don't they don't care - if they
do they don't care.

The problem is with VSI creditors. They will not like
VSI assets to be given to customers as part of an agreement
made by VSI.

And in the end that means a risk to the customers. VSI creditors
could go to court and claim illegal transfer of assets. Maybe their
chance of success is only 5% or 10%, but could customers live
with a 5% or 10% probability that their in escrow permanent
licenses would be invalidated by court? I don't think so.

There are many other models.

The escrow model could be changed to a model where in case
of bankruptcy customer got the right to buy permanent licenses.
As soon as it is a buy not for free, then it becomes very
hard to ask for voiding as an illegal asset transfer.

There is the model I suggested with rolling license
extensions to ensure people have 5 years. Or maybe increase
to 8 years. VSI will not complain about more prepayment. And
I don't see VSI creditors being able to complain about
VSI entering multi-year contracts.

VSI already said that it would be possible for some (nuclear
power plants was given as example) to still get permanent
licenses. Maybe that could be extended to cover more - maybe
everybody that does the appropriate song and dance with their
sales rep.

There may be other models.

But everybody that has a good idea should not just think
"does this solve the customers problem?" - they should also
think "will this work for VSI and VSI creditors as well?".

Otherwise the chances of acceptance is small.

We need a win-win-win proposition.

Arne
Simon Clubley
2021-05-27 18:46:55 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
I totally agree that it is a natural thing for customers to worry about
and that it needs addressing.
But to get it addressed then we need a model that makes
everybody happy.
Customers need to know that they can be sure to have a license for
a number of years.
VSI needs revenue.
VSI creditors needs asset preservation.
I've just posted a proposal in a new thread that I think handles all
three of these concerns.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
2021-05-26 12:55:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
I have made it very explicit that a condition for the permanent licences
escrow triggering is that you had a valid support contract at the time
that VSI either failed or was taken over by some company unable to provide
proper support or which wanted to impose extreme price rises.
How much is extreme?
Simon Clubley
2021-05-26 18:05:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
Post by Simon Clubley
I have made it very explicit that a condition for the permanent licences
escrow triggering is that you had a valid support contract at the time
that VSI either failed or was taken over by some company unable to provide
proper support or which wanted to impose extreme price rises.
How much is extreme?
Depends on the contract. In my view, I consider 10% to be ok (at least
in this situation), but I consider 500% to be extreme.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Chris Hanson
2021-05-21 06:05:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Paying per system size is common today.
Oracle is well known to do it.
I believe Microsoft also do it.
Yes, and there's also a reason PostgreSQL, MySQL, FreeBSD, Linux, etc.
are so prevalent relative to Oracle and Microsoft.

VSI may think they have Oracle or Sybase/Microsoft levels of customer
lock-in, but what customers will actually do is further hasten their
transition to other systems.

-- Chris
Simon Clubley
2021-05-21 12:06:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Chris Hanson
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Paying per system size is common today.
Oracle is well known to do it.
I believe Microsoft also do it.
Yes, and there's also a reason PostgreSQL, MySQL, FreeBSD, Linux, etc.
are so prevalent relative to Oracle and Microsoft.
VSI may think they have Oracle or Sybase/Microsoft levels of customer
lock-in, but what customers will actually do is further hasten their
transition to other systems.
I agree.

The French group were supposed to be creating a letter in response to
VSI's totally out of touch reply. Did this ever happen because I have
not seen it posted here ?

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Dave Froble
2021-05-21 20:13:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Chris Hanson
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Paying per system size is common today.
Oracle is well known to do it.
I believe Microsoft also do it.
Yes, and there's also a reason PostgreSQL, MySQL, FreeBSD, Linux, etc.
are so prevalent relative to Oracle and Microsoft.
VSI may think they have Oracle or Sybase/Microsoft levels of customer
lock-in, but what customers will actually do is further hasten their
transition to other systems.
I agree.
The French group were supposed to be creating a letter in response to
VSI's totally out of touch reply. Did this ever happen because I have
not seen it posted here ?
Simon.
I sent an email to Terry Holmes weeks ago. No reply.
--
David Froble Tel: 724-529-0450
Dave Froble Enterprises, Inc. E-Mail: ***@tsoft-inc.com
DFE Ultralights, Inc.
170 Grimplin Road
Vanderbilt, PA 15486
Simon Clubley
2021-05-21 21:18:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Simon Clubley
The French group were supposed to be creating a letter in response to
VSI's totally out of touch reply. Did this ever happen because I have
not seen it posted here ?
I sent an email to Terry Holmes weeks ago. No reply.
In that case, I think that's very poor on the part of VSI management.

You are not an ordinary VSI customer David. You are a customer
that not only buys from VSI but is also directly responsible
for a lot of other people (_your_ customers) also buying from VSI.

With the amount of business you put their way David, I think that's
rather poor form on the part of VSI.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Jan-Erik Söderholm
2021-05-22 09:31:41 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Simon Clubley
The French group were supposed to be creating a letter in response to
VSI's totally out of touch reply. Did this ever happen because I have
not seen it posted here ?
I sent an email to Terry Holmes weeks ago. No reply.
In that case, I think that's very poor on the part of VSI management.
You are not an ordinary VSI customer David. You are a customer
that not only buys from VSI but is also directly responsible
for a lot of other people (_your_ customers) also buying from VSI.
With the amount of business you put their way David, I think that's
rather poor form on the part of VSI.
Simon.
Without knowing what that email actually contained it is hard to
say if a reply was expected or not. It happens that I get emails
that I simply just forget about.

If it was just the same comments on that letter that has been
expressed already in other ways, it might not justify a reply.

So, chill down a little, Simon... :-)

And, it might be better to send to ***@vmssoftware.com, if you
have questions relating to your support agreement.
ultr...@gmail.com
2021-05-25 21:42:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Chris Hanson
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Paying per system size is common today.
Oracle is well known to do it.
I believe Microsoft also do it.
Yes, and there's also a reason PostgreSQL, MySQL, FreeBSD, Linux, etc.
are so prevalent relative to Oracle and Microsoft.
VSI may think they have Oracle or Sybase/Microsoft levels of customer
lock-in, but what customers will actually do is further hasten their
transition to other systems.
I agree.
The French group were supposed to be creating a letter in response to
VSI's totally out of touch reply. Did this ever happen because I have
not seen it posted here ?
Simon.
I sent an email to Terry Holmes weeks ago. No reply.
--
David Froble Tel: 724-529-0450
DFE Ultralights, Inc.
170 Grimplin Road
Vanderbilt, PA 15486
did you also send him a copy of your latest bank statement? :)
VMSgenerations working group
2021-05-25 15:55:49 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
The French group were supposed to be creating a letter in response to
VSI's totally out of touch reply. Did this ever happen because I have
not seen it posted here ?
Simon.
(Thanks Simon for your attention)

Maybe it is time for us to say that we did send a second letter to VSI
on May 7th after their unsatisfying answer (that they decided to make
public via gtug.de).

We provided customers concerns and feedbacks on inconsistencies in the
licensing policy.

We suggested ways for a positive exit on this VSI originated crisis but
are still waiting for a reaction.

We plan to keep users informed but have no answer from VSI yet.

VMSgenerations working group
Volker Halle
2021-05-25 16:19:19 UTC
Permalink
Just to help people finding this letter:

The VSI information has been posted by the Connect OpenVMS SIG:

https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license

Volker.
Arne Vajhøj
2021-05-21 12:44:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by Chris Hanson
Post by Arne Vajhøj
Paying per system size is common today.
Oracle is well known to do it.
I believe Microsoft also do it.
Yes, and there's also a reason PostgreSQL, MySQL, FreeBSD, Linux, etc.
are so prevalent relative to Oracle and Microsoft.
I suspect that VSI could live with having the profits of Oracle and
Microsoft.

10 and 44 B$ respectively.

:-)
Post by Chris Hanson
VSI may think they have Oracle or Sybase/Microsoft levels of customer
lock-in, but what customers will actually do is further hasten their
transition to other systems.
VSI has way stronger lock-in with existing customers than Oracle and MS.

New customers will be an entirely different thing though.

Arne
Mark Redding
2021-04-29 22:34:47 UTC
Permalink
I do recall that the PATCH utility had a very useful DEPOSIT command, and that VMS has, if I remember correctly, a NOP instruction.
Simon Clubley
2021-04-30 04:27:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mark Redding
I do recall that the PATCH utility had a very useful DEPOSIT command, and that VMS has, if I remember correctly, a NOP instruction.
I hope no-one is thinking of doing this.

This is _NOT_ the right way to go about this.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Dave Froble
2021-04-30 04:36:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Mark Redding
I do recall that the PATCH utility had a very useful DEPOSIT command, and that VMS has, if I remember correctly, a NOP instruction.
I hope no-one is thinking of doing this.
This is _NOT_ the right way to go about this.
Simon.
It is far from my first choice, but, if I was faced with my customers
going out of business, I surely would. Anybody who would not isn't too
bright.

If VSI is out of business, where is the harm?

If multiple companies go out of business, losing the jobs for many
people, then really, it would be the correct thing to do.
--
David Froble Tel: 724-529-0450
Dave Froble Enterprises, Inc. E-Mail: ***@tsoft-inc.com
DFE Ultralights, Inc.
170 Grimplin Road
Vanderbilt, PA 15486
Simon Clubley
2021-04-30 04:40:15 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Mark Redding
I do recall that the PATCH utility had a very useful DEPOSIT command, and that VMS has, if I remember correctly, a NOP instruction.
I hope no-one is thinking of doing this.
This is _NOT_ the right way to go about this.
It is far from my first choice, but, if I was faced with my customers
going out of business, I surely would. Anybody who would not isn't too
bright.
If VSI is out of business, where is the harm?
If multiple companies go out of business, losing the jobs for many
people, then really, it would be the correct thing to do.
There was no implication in the original message that this would be
done only after VSI had gone out of business.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Mark Redding
2021-04-30 09:16:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Mark Redding
I do recall that the PATCH utility had a very useful DEPOSIT command, and that VMS has, if I remember correctly, a NOP instruction.
I hope no-one is thinking of doing this.
This is _NOT_ the right way to go about this.
It is far from my first choice, but, if I was faced with my customers
going out of business, I surely would. Anybody who would not isn't too
bright.
If VSI is out of business, where is the harm?
If multiple companies go out of business, losing the jobs for many
people, then really, it would be the correct thing to do.
There was no implication in the original message that this would be
done only after VSI had gone out of business.
Simon.
--
Simon Clubley,
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
It was a somewhat "tongue in cheek" comment, but given that it was taken so seriously, I'll not mention that "SET TIME" or running VMS4.7 are also options.
Dave Froble
2021-04-30 15:26:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Mark Redding
I do recall that the PATCH utility had a very useful DEPOSIT command, and that VMS has, if I remember correctly, a NOP instruction.
I hope no-one is thinking of doing this.
This is _NOT_ the right way to go about this.
It is far from my first choice, but, if I was faced with my customers
going out of business, I surely would. Anybody who would not isn't too
bright.
If VSI is out of business, where is the harm?
If multiple companies go out of business, losing the jobs for many
people, then really, it would be the correct thing to do.
There was no implication in the original message that this would be
done only after VSI had gone out of business.
Simon.
Gee Simon, it sure is in the thread where that seems to be a big topic.

More than a few people know how to defeat the VMS license scheme. Just
knowing that does not mean they would use it. As I've mentioned in the
past, all CODIS users have support, not because they would ever use it,
but because VSI needs to be supported.

If it was your customer, and hundreds of people faced losing their jobs,
what would you do?
--
David Froble Tel: 724-529-0450
Dave Froble Enterprises, Inc. E-Mail: ***@tsoft-inc.com
DFE Ultralights, Inc.
170 Grimplin Road
Vanderbilt, PA 15486
Bill Gunshannon
2021-04-30 16:23:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Dave Froble
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Mark Redding
I do recall that the PATCH utility had a very useful DEPOSIT
command, and that VMS has, if I remember correctly, a NOP instruction.
I hope no-one is thinking of doing this.
This is _NOT_ the right way to go about this.
It is far from my first choice, but, if I was faced with my customers
going out of business, I surely would.  Anybody who would not isn't too
bright.
If VSI is out of business, where is the harm?
If multiple companies go out of business, losing the jobs for many
people, then really, it would be the correct thing to do.
There was no implication in the original message that this would be
done only after VSI had gone out of business.
Simon.
Gee Simon, it sure is in the thread where that seems to be a big topic.
More than a few people know how to defeat the VMS license scheme.  Just
knowing that does not mean they would use it.  As I've mentioned in the
past, all CODIS users have support, not because they would ever use it,
but because VSI needs to be supported.
If it was your customer, and hundreds of people faced losing their jobs,
what would you do?
I wouldn't be waiting until the last minute to make a plan.

bill
Simon Clubley
2021-04-30 17:07:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by Bill Gunshannon
Post by Dave Froble
If it was your customer, and hundreds of people faced losing their jobs,
what would you do?
I wouldn't be waiting until the last minute to make a plan.
Exactly. And judging from the original posting and the responses so far,
it looks like people need to see a viable plan for this exact situation
if it occurs before they will agree to continue buying from VSI.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Dave Froble
2021-04-30 17:36:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by Simon Clubley
Post by Bill Gunshannon
Post by Dave Froble
If it was your customer, and hundreds of people faced losing their jobs,
what would you do?
I wouldn't be waiting until the last minute to make a plan.
Exactly. And judging from the original posting and the responses so far,
it looks like people need to see a viable plan for this exact situation
if it occurs before they will agree to continue buying from VSI.
Simon.
When V9.2 and beyond are ready, sensible people will be looking at
moving to x86 VMS. But in doing so, there is the question, "with the
SAAS support, what happens if for any reason, we cannot get support and
updated licenses?" Before moving to x86 VMS, this question must have a
satisfactory answer. Otherwise, it would be foolish to make such a move.

So, yeah, this question is one VSI must address, if they wish to sell
x86 VMS. It is not the customer's problem, it is VSI's problem, and, it
is a problem.
--
David Froble Tel: 724-529-0450
Dave Froble Enterprises, Inc. E-Mail: ***@tsoft-inc.com
DFE Ultralights, Inc.
170 Grimplin Road
Vanderbilt, PA 15486
Simon Clubley
2021-05-02 03:13:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Froble
When V9.2 and beyond are ready, sensible people will be looking at
moving to x86 VMS. But in doing so, there is the question, "with the
SAAS support, what happens if for any reason, we cannot get support and
updated licenses?" Before moving to x86 VMS, this question must have a
satisfactory answer. Otherwise, it would be foolish to make such a move.
So, yeah, this question is one VSI must address, if they wish to sell
x86 VMS. It is not the customer's problem, it is VSI's problem, and, it
is a problem.
Just a reminder that this has already started with Itanium (and
apparently any recent Alpha contracts as well) so sorting this
out is a little more urgent than that.

Did you hear anything back from VSI ?

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Edgar Ulloa
2021-04-30 03:12:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stephen Hoffman
From the VSI "Chief Revenue Officer" Terry Holmes, the VSI response to
https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license
SaaS licensing will continue for new license purchases.
Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
--
Pure Personal Opinion | HoffmanLabs LLC
I really feel a lot of concern like many of us who love ovms, because in case clients are migrating to other platforms under linux where sap, escada, baile & controls for example if they have applications for reactors and everything that is industrial control.

In what happened in 2020 I had to migrate 6 ovms servers to Linux, turning them off completely due to hardware limitations. Now we add that the licenses will not be perpetual but an annual payment and more in the future an oracle style?

What foot do you choose to put a bullet in?

It would be good to try to rescue software houses that want to work with Ovms like the previous ones mentioned in order to compete against the linux world.

in my humble opinion
VMSgenerations working group
2021-04-30 16:44:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stephen Hoffman
From the VSI "Chief Revenue Officer" Terry Holmes, the VSI response to
https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license
SaaS licensing will continue for new license purchases.
Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
Hello,

We are very happy to have sparked this discussion. We are impressed by
the number of readers and contributors.

We are a working group and it is not possible for us to respond as
quickly as individuals. But we read all contributions with the utmost
attention. And we want to respond, at our own pace.

We note that almost all contributors share our concern. The ideas
expressed in this thread often overlap with those emerging from our
discussions.

We had sent a letter to Adam Hoff-Nielsen (VSI's French-speaking contact
for Europe) and Terry Holmes. We got a reply from Terry Holmes which he
made public to the connect German group
(https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license), without
informing us of this publication.

We have studied his reply letter. With a few exceptions, we are not
happy with the content and we are preparing a second letter which will
be sent next week. We will communicate on comp.os.vms the results of our
efforts.

We encourage all readers and contributors to this thread to activate the
channels they know to send their feedback to VSI.

We are very eager to discuss this topic and more generally about the
conditions for a successful return of VMS. You can also suggest meetings
or actions in which we would be proud to participate.

Sincerely,

The VMSgenerations Working Group
Ian Miller
2021-05-26 08:51:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by Stephen Hoffman
From the VSI "Chief Revenue Officer" Terry Holmes, the VSI response to
https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license
SaaS licensing will continue for new license purchases.
Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
--
Pure Personal Opinion | HoffmanLabs LLC
I see there are circumstances under which VSI will grant a perpetual license. The discussion here has not talked about those or engaging with the VSI Sales Director about that. Perhaps such discussions are going on in private while complain.on.vms proceeds as usual.
Phillip Helbig (undress to reply)
2021-05-26 10:20:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by Ian Miller
Post by Stephen Hoffman
From the VSI "Chief Revenue Officer" Terry Holmes, the VSI response to
https://www.connect-community.de/SIGs/OpenVMS/license
SaaS licensing will continue for new license purchases.
Additionally, VSI plans to move to per-core SaaS licensing on OpenVMS x86-64.
--
Pure Personal Opinion | HoffmanLabs LLC
I see there are circumstances under which VSI will grant a perpetual license.
The discussion here has not talked about those or engaging with the VSI
Sales Director about that. Perhaps such discussions are going on in private
while complain.on.vms proceeds as usual.
That has been mentioned here. Yes, if you are running a nuclear power
plant then maybe you can get a perpetual license. In any case, it seems
to be something one has to negotiate. Obviously, if it were a
possibility for a majority of customers, there would be no point in the
new scheme, so such licenses will probably fill only a very small niche.
Loading...