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What To Expect Next From Sync

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You guys are selling a product, not a service. It should be a one time fee, not a subscription.

 

This is the best statement in this thread so far.  I'm not sure I'm keen on a subscription model.  Once Sync 2.0 is in a full release version, I will have to think long and hard if I will consider paying for it.

 

I know it's been said, one subscription = one user = all devices.  I have three servers, two phones, a desktop, a laptop and a tablet running Sync.  One subscription covers that?

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You're absolutely right. How should they anyway control your installation? Make the program stop running after some time? If such would be build in I would not trust my data to this program.

You can't require a yearly subscription without enforcement. So yes, I assume that btsync will stop running when the license times out. Or disable the non-gratis functionality. Or that it must periodically consult a central license server, which would make it impossible to deploy btsync in LAN segements that are not connected to the internet.

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Hey there.

 

As I stated somewhere else (don't know, could be some pages back in this thread): That's quite easy.

 

* Create an asymmetric encryption key pair

* Put the public part in the binaries and ship it to the customer

* Sign the string "licensed until 12/30/2015" with the private part

* Hand both, that string as well as the calculated signature in one file to the user and call it "license file"

=> done.

 

Now every user has to issue a license file every couple of months and no client needs to contact any licensing server since the validation can be done by the client itself.

This procedure 100% fits the "only one license per user, as much client computers as you want" scenario.

 

But I really hope bittorrent rethinks the whole situation. 40 bugs a year is quite a number if no storage is provided.

 

The marketing page is completely wrong by comparing storage capacities. The number is not "unlimited" as stated but more like "zero, you need to probide that yourself".

 

Regards,

Stephan.

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Microsoft provide unlimited (aka, no need to BYO storage if you don't want/need a local copy) OneDrive storage with their O365 subscriptions, and a solid productivity suite. How exacty is BTSync supposed to compete at $40/year with that? For not that much more, I can get a whole lot more from another company. It's really not going to be a hard choice, especially when many people are going to be using MS Office anyway... As said by others, this is a product, not a service. Please don't use a SaaS business models (subscription pricing) for this or it will die quickly. We are your early adopters here... the ones who generally provide the technical advice to less saavy potential users, whether that be family and friends, or higher ups/bosses and coworkers. If we don't think it is priced reasonably, we won't recommend it.

 

Calling BTSync "unlimited" is very misleading as well here. I pay for my hard drives and power, not you. This $40 does not contribute towards my real costs here. What exactly are your real costs that require subscription pricing anyway, beyond constant development (which would better suit upgrade pricing anyway)? And if I want true backup, I need to find something off site as well. Will you contribute to that? No? Then it's not really unlimited.

 

I would happily pay $5-10/year under a subscription model, if it had to be charged that way. I would prefer to pay $40 towards a stand alone license that has exactly ZERO requirements to phone home to any third party server anywhere. If it's my license/copy, I want to be able to use it somewhat anonymously, especially as that is part of the selling point behind BTSync as far as I can tell. I'm keen to contribute towards the software, especially if it means it will continue to be improved. I'm also keen to use the Pro features (I've jsut downloaded the alpha to try), and I suspect I will come to depend on them. As others have said though, it needs to be priced in a way that will see some $ from me, rather than $0 from me (and I suspect others).

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I believe BT's target is to the people who value having there files synced in a place that's not in the cloud. Those are the people who value privacy. The people who don't value privacy are those that will use services like one drive, etc. If you don't value privacy, then you probably aren't going to be interested in paying for Sync; I suspect BT is okay with that. 

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It might feel better - but let's not kid ourselves. Those really invested in privacy would not use a closed source products for this anyway.

 

It would have been cool if they had made it (at least up until the data encryption layer) open source and just ask for money for the final product. Pro could have be hosting of the encrypted files. But well...

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@all

There were a lot of things already told and discussed around Open Source (1, 2). I suggest to read mentioned topics and continue discussion regarding Open Source and privacy there.

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@RomanZ

 

It's really hard to have an adequate discussion when we are inhibited from branching into subtopics that are directly related to the topic of the thread we're in.  It's hard to jump-threads and keep the continuity of conversation.  Also, I really don't feel that the discussion was drifting off topic in the direction of an Open Source debate.  But I do thank you for the links.

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@Journeyman, constructive discussion and debate is welcome and encouraged in the forums, and RomanZ is certainly not trying to shut down that particular discussion/debate.

 

However, given that the particular discussion/debate as to whether Sync should/shouldn't be "open source" isn't something new - or indeed something that's unique and specific only to version 2.0 of Sync, there are more suitable and relevant threads to further discuss/debate the privacy/security/pros/cons, etc of Sync in general being open vs closed source.

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@Journeyman, constructive discussion and debate is welcome and encouraged in the forums, and RomanZ is certainly not trying to shut down that particular discussion/debate.

No, but there is a pattern the BT staff for rebuking people for not staying on topic.  (Rebuke might be a strong word.)  That's where my comment is directed.  Like I said, it's difficult to maintain a fluid conversation that way.

 

However, given that the particular discussion/debate as to whether Sync should/shouldn't be "open source" isn't something new - or indeed something that's unique and specific only to version 2.0 of Sync, there are more suitable and relevant threads to further discuss/debate the privacy/security/pros/cons, etc of Sync in general being open vs closed source.

I don't think that people were implying that the open source idea was anything new, nor do I believe that the thread was turning into a debate as I already mentioned.

 

Since this conversation is contributing nothing to the subject at hand, (the expectations of Sync), then out of respect I will respond no further.

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I certainly did not want to derail this thread by making the two references to the open source topic.

I was merely pointing out that in the Snowden era "privacy" cannot really be "expected next" from btsync (or any closed source software for that matter). So at least privacy should not be used to make an argument for btsync when it's not more than a claim.

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Hi There

 

I am looking at using BTSync again after a while and it is serving my needs a lot more than it did a while ago. I look forward to the 2.0 version and may just purchase the pro version if the features are worth it.

 

A few features I would love to see and would like to suggest.

 

1. Custom naming the "Jobs" in BTSync. I have more than one folder with the same name but in different root folders, like "Documents" for different users, so they are different folders but it is difficult to tell them apart in the Sync interface.

 

2. Relocating the ".sync" folder in a central BTSync folder outside of the actual folder being synchronised. Possibly in a index folder in the BTSync install directory. This keeps it out of the way for other file management programs.

 

3. Filtering of files and sub-folders. This can be a manual selection, based on size, name mask, etc ... This will prevent me having to create several Sync "Jobs" all in the same root folder just to exclude one folder I don't want to sync, but also do not want to move. 

 

I really look forward to the launch of Sync 2.0

 

Thanks

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I am very new here, but my first thought when I read the feature list for 2.0 (because I'm a solo lawyer and need remote backup but all my machines are in one location) is confidentiality of remote peers. I have lots of friends who would be willing to put a peer on their machine, but I'm bound legally and ethically to protect the confidentiality of each client's information. So if it's clear text on remote peers, it's a show-stopper for me.

 

Is there a present method or one on the horizon that can handle that use case?

 

If you need remote backup - rather than fully usable synchronized unencrypted files - then simply use CrashPlan's app.

 

CrashPlan allows you to backup for free to a remotely located Friend's computer, other computers on a network, an on CrashPlan's unlimitted cloud storage.  In any location, the data is encrypted. You can customize the encryption so that only you know the password - meaning the data is lost if you lose the password.

 

Outside of using CrashPlan:

 

With BittTorrent Sync, you can also store your information on encrypted sparse virtual disks - which store only the information needed and grow as more information is added.  On Macs, these sparse disks are sliced by the operating system into numerous small chunks.  Only the chunks that with data changes are synchronized by Bittorrent Sync.  This makes synchronization very efficient.

 

Each Friend's computer will only contain the encrypted disks, maintaining confidentiality.  You can also keep information on each client on separate encrypted sparse virtual disks for even more security. 

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If you need remote backup - rather than fully usable synchronized unencrypted files - then simply use CrashPlan's app.

With BittTorrent Sync, you can also store your information on encrypted sparse virtual disks - which store only the information needed and grow as more information is added.  On Macs, these sparse disks are sliced by the operating system into numerous small chunks.

...or just use the encrypted nodes feature of BitTorrent Sync - which does exactly what @Marbux wants!

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Good luck finding any competing enterprise products that offer unlimited storage and >1M file support for $40/year.

 

Also, you do realize you can roll your own offsite backup with BTS, right? All it takes is having a few peers located elsewhere.

 

Microsoft Office365 for Business in 2015 will upgrade UNLIMITED OneDrive Storage and Synchronization to your computer.

 

It is already HIPPA Encryption Compliant.  The US Government can't get your data unencrypted behind your back.  So privacy is assured.   It stores your data on your computer(s) and in the cloud.  And it has obviously extensive file locking and sharing capabilities and administrative capabilities.

 

It comes with Office 365 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Publisher, and OneNote) which you can install on up to 5 PCs or Macs, Office for Tablets which you can install on up to 5 Windows Tablets or iPads, and Office for smartphones for up to 5 phones. It also has online versions of Office. 

 

ALL THIS FOR THE COST OF $99 PER USER PER YEAR.

 

The Office 365 Business Essentials version doesn't come with the Office Software for your computer but it has the online versions. It comes with OneDrive with Unlimited Storage PLUS EMAIL, IM and HD Video Conferencing that is HIPAA Complaint and Corporate Social Networking, and synchronization of the data to your computer(s) and the cloud.

 

OFFICE 365 BUSINESS ESSENTIALS VERSION IS EVEN CHEAPER AT $60 PER USER PER YEAR.  

 

This is the most comparable product to BitTorrent Sync since it doesn't include the Office Suite.

 

In this light, BitTorrent Sync Pro at $39 per user per year doesn't give as comparable a value.  It may be worth it for some companies. Particularly with the 16x speed advantage for transferring files.

 

But is it worth $39 to a lot of people particularly since Office 365 Business Essentials gives you a competitive cost but with more features. And for $40 more you get the whole Office Suite for 5 computers, 5 iPads, and 5 iPhones.

 

My thought is that BitTorrent Sync Pro is too expensive for most small groups of people at $39 a year per user for the features it gives you.

 

It is a niche product.

 

The higher price may be necessary because it is a niche product with few anticipated users that needs to support its developers.

 

But:

 

1. It would be much more attractive at a lower cost given its limited feature set to attract more users to the fold.

2. Or it should have many more useful features than are currently revealed.

 

---

Panic, Inc is an example of a failure of niche development on iOS.  

 

It developed a FTP app for iOS.  It is best of class.  It is beautiful.  It works fantastically. But hardly anyone bought it.

 

The reason is that iOS users hardly need an FTP app.  Panic did not anticipated this.  So realized that they need to cut back on the development of this app and focus on their more lucrative apps.

 

So is BitTorrent Sync Pro going to have a similar fate?  Does anyone really need a Pro version at a subscription model in pricing?

 

 

---

INTERESTING IDEA!

 

YOU CAN USE BITTORRENT SYNC FREE TO SUPERCHARGE OFFICE 365 ONEDRIVE.

 

For each of your computers, simply set bittorrent sync to synchronize the onedrive directory.  

 

This allows each computer to bypass the cloud to synchronize their files at 16x speed.  But it also allows the files to be simultaneously backed up to the microsoft's cloud!

 

You get the best of both worlds!

 

Since this can be done with the free BitTorrent app, is there a place for an expensive subscription model for BitTorrent Sync Pro?

 

 

---

Edited by junkbonds

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a feature really missing in sync even in its latest version is pausing sync of a certain folder.. i do not have the option for that.. either pause all or run all!!

an option to make priority syncing of folders would be amazing too.. i mean sync a folder and start syncing the other after the older one finishes..

i can pay for sync.. but with such very basic lack of organizing sync it is not gonna work

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I would like to see sync detect when a PC is on a wireless NIC and prompt the user to continue or suspend.

For some reason I haven't figured out yet sync seems to think it has about 26k worth of files to sync even though I have not changed anywhere near that amount.

The files I see in the queue have not changed since November. I went through 7 gig on my wireless plan before I realized what was happening, now I have under 2 gig left for 3 more weeks.

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a feature really missing in sync even in its latest version is pausing sync of a certain folder.. i do not have the option for that.. either pause all or run all!!

Please consider adding your voice to this thread in the Feature Requests forum.

an option to make priority syncing of folders would be amazing too..

Please consider adding your voice to this thread in the Feature Requests forum.

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My perspective as a diehard Linux user since the mid-90s and a platform engineer for a SaaS provider - I am not claiming any particular expertise, but I am somewhat informed.  The subscription model rubs me the wrong way for software, as it does many, so by going with a subscription based model (for software - NOT service), you will keep your user base somewhat small and open a vacuum for an open-source, free solution.  And let's be honest, with the large overlap between Bit Torrent users and the open source community, would probably happen pretty quickly.  There would not be a massive barrier to create comparable software and the more your charge / the more unfavorable your terms are (ahem, subscription), the more likely that is to happen.

 

I'd much prefer if you sell the software for a fixed amount - on a Mac sell it though the App Store, which takes care of updates, security screening (trusted source!) and billing - and allow it to run in either a managed mode - in which case the user could get a subscription to your sync coordination service - and clearly it would be easy for you to then begin offering an encrypted backup/cloud/web-browseable service.  But also allow it to be used in a self-managed mode, so the use of your services is not required.  And charge what makes it worth your while.  I'd pay $50+ for it, if it's the best thing out there, that's a bargain.  Make up for it with volume.  Make Dropbox obsolete.  There is a class of users who will pay what it takes for quality, thats the user base you want.  It's been extremely lucrative for Apple.

 

There are security issues with all my computers talking to your servers.  Best case I have to trust you are only sending necessary information and not mining or examining my private data.  Every time I switch wifi networks, etc, there is a traceable and loggable series of packets heading out to your server, which makes tracking me easy for you or any interested parties who may be in a position to examine traffic en-route to your servers.  And we all know they are out there, that's not even debatable anymore.  You're also cutting out corporate customers who are not open to using a third party service for the sharing of sensitive data, and let's face it, being connected with the Bit Torrent protocol and company has certain implications/connotations, whether or not they are deserved.  So neuter that argument.  If someone has the expertise to manage the sync infrastructure themselves, let them.  It will be a minority of business/power users and you'll still get their licensing fees.

 

People who want to avoid Dropbox and commercial solutions are going to be disproportionately privacy & security minded - and having mandatory third-party server interaction is a huge turnoff for potentially your largest and most vocal/influential user base.  So sell that as an optional service targeted at more mainstream users; perhaps enabled by default with a trial or even 1 year subscription (bake that into the sales price), that makes it damn simple for the 95% out there who don't have the time and expertise to setup VPNs and understanding NAT and routing.  Then you still profit of those of us who want to self-manage/host, you avoid creating a vacuum for a free solution, you don't chase away the security conscious/informed users - who keep in mind have a disproportionately loud voice in the community that reviews software or just recommends to friends/family. 

 

In short, if you sell this as a service that requires use of your servers and/or a subscription pricing model, I will not buy it.  I already have Dropbox + Boxcrypt, why should I move.  Bit Torrent means nothing to me if I still have to trust you.  And not many people are going to think that the Bit Torrent corporation is more trustworthy than Dropbox.  Perception, not reality.  Sell it with at least the option to use it stand-alone, and I'd pay $79 on the Mac App store, and tell all my coworkers, friends and family what a great product it is.

 

Rob

 

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OwnCloud 7.0 now does server to server sync, and is open-source. As well as providing a web gui. I have combined it with btsync and love it, but will drift away from a subscription model. Plex already suckered me for my one lifetime subscription I will ever buy. Sell the software, rent the service. Sell me the program, rent me off site. Done and done

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Personally I think a lot of this pricing stuff has been misread. from what I've read it seems to me that 2.0 will essentially be a home edition free of charge with all the functionality seen thus far and more.

and on top of that 2.0 pro looks like an enterprise edition, tailored around much bigger users. business networks with a hundred machines sort of thing. and that being the case it doesn't seem much to worry about. it's almost like windows 7 pro vs ultimate vs standard, many users wouldn't notice the difference as half of the extras would be of no use to them.

as for fees, I'm not so keen on a subscription service per-se, the idea that if my sub expires I lose functionality could be a killer.

my take would be allows users to purchase the software outright fully functional no limititaions and then with that offer some degree of upgrade / support service.

then if a person goes to buy pro they get the software with unlimited use, maybe offer them a years worth of free upgrades and then after that offer them the chance to join an upgrades service. that allows users to keep downloading the latest versions. this way the version they have at that time is theres and still fully functional. but if newer versions have shiny new features they will have to purchase the upgrade service if they want those new features.

then if people choose not to subscribe there software would remain fully functional as they own it. but they may not get the latest versions.

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Just thought I'd chime in.  I don't like software subscription models, I like to buy software rather than rent, as I do everything, and then have it work for as long as it lasts, which would probably be several years.  Perhaps this is a generational thing (I started off coding Z80 machine code), I've always bought my software and always expected it to last a few years.  But, Photoshop has gone towards subsrciption, ProTools (music software) has also gone this way, so it may well be the way the industry business model moves but I will try my very best to avoid subscribing myself.  I think right now the subscription model is immature and is alienating a fair few people so I strongly hope that there will always be a one-off payment option (with extras for upgrades) to cater for poeple's different tastes.

 

Besides that I also think that unless you're providing a constant service, e.g. hosting, then a subscription model really isn't applicable.

 

Another thing not mentioned here is advertising...  Did I read somewhere that the free version will contain advertising banners?

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Just thought I'd chime in.  I don't like software subscription models, I like to buy software rather than rent, as I do everything, and then have it work for as long as it lasts, which would probably be several years.  Perhaps this is a generational thing (I started off coding Z80 machine code), I've always bought my software and always expected it to last a few years.  But, Photoshop has gone towards subsrciption, ProTools (music software) has also gone this way, so it may well be the way the industry business model moves but I will try my very best to avoid subscribing myself.  I think right now the subscription model is immature and is alienating a fair few people so I strongly hope that there will always be a one-off payment option (with extras for upgrades) to cater for poeple's different tastes.

 

Besides that I also think that unless you're providing a constant service, e.g. hosting, then a subscription model really isn't applicable.

 

Another thing not mentioned here is advertising...  Did I read somewhere that the free version will contain advertising banners?

 

There was a lot of backlash when Adobe went subscription with Creative Cloud -  just to get a taste take a look at the Amazon reviews for a Creative Cloud membership (http://www.amazon.com/Adobe-Creative-Cloud-Digital-Membership/dp/B00CS74YQO) vs the reviews for CS6 (http://www.amazon.com/Adobe-CS6-Design-Premium-Version/dp/B007R0RJF0/).  Same product, different pricing model.  Same thing with Microsoft Office.  And (like Pro Tools), these are expensive products, so they can in part justify the subscription model by creating a lower cost barrier to entry.  Also these are all products with very established markets and no real competition, so they can force customers against their will into an undesirable pricing model.  None of this holds true for BitTorrent Sync, which is a new product trying to take marketshare from a popular existing service.

 

The only advantage of a subscription based pricing model for BitTorrent Sync is that it creates a steady and high revenue stream for the business.  But I don't see how it is good for customers at all, and in general, customers are smart enough to see that.  Dropbox can do it because they are actually providing cloud storage.  BitTorrent Sync is simply providing trackers, with no way to allow users to use their own trackers.  So in their case it's less of a service and more of a forced sales hook.

 

I don't see this model as being successful.  That's unfortunate, because it seems like a potentially great product that could address the most significant shortcomings with DropBox (insecure reliance on a third party, high reoccuring fees for any significant amount of storage).  Technically, in both these regards, they may be marginally (incrementally) better in both these areas, but they have to overcome the huge market penetration of DropBox, so marginally better isn't going to do it.

 

And advertising in on your desktop is just tacky.  There goes pretty much the entire Apple user base.

 

Rob

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