Author Topic: Quality of Support from WinPatrol  (Read 9267 times)

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Offline G_Mugford

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Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« on: March 27, 2018, 12:55:51 AM »
I wax and wane about various Security programs and suites. Sometimes, when I see a sale, I'll splurge and spend the money ... only to find I bought a limited-time licence or that the program itself is insufferable. Then, it's back to Avast! and ZoneAlarm.  THEN, their repeated come-on's for upgrades get me looking for the next sale. It is under the latter situation that I once again renewed my acquaintance with WinPatrol. Actually, I've bought WinPatrol several times over the years to support Bill. Don't actually use it because it's a bit Nanny State for me. But I do install it every now and then and see if it fits MY needs. It's usually gone in a few days. However, I have a future Win10 computer arriving to replace my long-time workhorse, a Win7x64 Pro machine. I decided that I'd take advantage of a Bits Du Jour sale and grab a licence that would cover the workhorse, the new computer (code name RUHROH ... you have to be a Scooby Do! enthusiast to understand the name) and my laptop. The latter also runs Win10, a system that I dislike on many levels.

I DO run a pro version of eSet as my anti-virus. So, I installed WinPatrol Firewall and WinPrivacy, the two items I needed to cover my suite. There were some of the annoyances that I associate with WinPatrol software, but I was handling them. Until the Firewall kept throwing messages up onto the screen about a program that I had told it was OK. Going to the dashboard, I found it kept coming up about a non-existing program called Update. I searched high and low for the program. It was, indeed, missing. So, I contacted support at winpatrol.com. I got NO answer. The email was, admittedly, confrontational. But not excessively so. NO answer. And this is a program that is now approaching a year without an update.

At the very point that I was thinking about uninstalling WPF, with prejudice, I figured out that it wasn't a program at all. It was a folder called UPDATE. THAT still didn't work. It took adding the targeted program via copy to UPDATE that was eventually proven successful in quelling these incessant WRONG alerts. Unfortunately, after every update to Palemoon (a webbrowser variant of Firefox), I have to resort to the whole rigmarole again. 

Would support give me a PERMANENT work around? Don't know. Two messages in and NO responses. Would an update fix this? Don't know. Never have seen one and it appears I might be in for a long wait. In a software sector that changes DAILY.  Will things like a non-dismissive alert box (seriously, the only way to get rid of it is task manager OR clicking on it to bring up the Dashboard) be fixed? And yes, I know I can turn off ALL messages if I want, which I DO NOT want. Just the fake ones should be dismissed. Or maybe adding the BLOCK INTERNET feature which just about EVERY firewall I have used has, in case I need to chase down a rogue piece of malware. Nope, I have no pathway to expect those two things to happen either.

I am ... disappointed that the legendary support I got from Bill, WHEN needed, has disappeared from the company that supposedly carries on that legacy. Of course, just as I have been unwell of late, it IS possible my requests are going into a black medical emergency hole. So, I ask here, DO YOU GET SUPPORT? When was it last needed and responded to? How long did it take to get a response? Is WinPatrol salvageable? Is the whole suite?

Appreciate any and all responses. ANY responses would be better than I'm currently getting. GM

Offline MikeW

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2018, 08:09:54 AM »
I can fully understand your frustration, and it would appear you are not alone. Personally I was never a fan of the program and removed it many years ago.
Win 7 Home Premium  IE11 MSE  Mbam Pro

Offline Digerati

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2018, 02:26:07 PM »
Well, I was a long time fan of WinPatrol which, IMO, makes it that much more disappointing to see just about everything about the program and company fall from grace.

The current owner has had some serious personal family issues of late that would affect any one. I am not offering that as an excuse, just a partial explanation for some of the lack of attention issues.

All I can really say is if I didn't already have a lifetime license, I probably would not still be using it. I only use WinPatrol Plus, not any of the other programs.
Bill (AFE7Ret)
Freedom is NOT Free!
2007 - 2018

Offline Gopher John

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2018, 04:18:23 PM »
I have lifetime licenses for the trifecta of WinPatrol products.  Thus far, they are performing tasks flawlessly.  Therefore, I cannot speak to support issues.  It's not always necessary to have regular updates to have fully functioning software.

Offline dallas7

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2018, 10:22:16 PM »
I've got over 60 gmail threads with Bret going back to June of 2016 when I was running WAR beta versions on my Windows 7 primary and 10 test systems.  By the time January 2017 rolled around, WAR matured to the point I no longer needed support or desired more beta work.  Then was about the last time we corresponded.

Since WAR continues to work without issue on my tower and a laptop, both Windows 7, support has been unnecessary.   Product updates are not of a major concern to me.  Which is to say I'm not dismissing 10 users considering those four Redstone bulldozers.  (I have only one active 10 box and it's dedicated to NAS and restricted to FTP and my LAN, so no need for WAR.  And I have no concern to run WAR on my 10 test system at this point.)

I notice that WARSvc still bangs a couple or three IP addresses in ip dot secureserver dot net (for my SW USA location) when I install/run new stuff.  Of course, there's no way to tell if the server side has seen any data maintenance.  However it most likely continues to act on its core functionality. 

That domain and winpatrol dot com are hosted by Go Daddy - Domains By Proxy and some one is paying the bills.

I had only recently become aware of Bret's absence and hope he soon recovers from whatever family and business troubles are disturbing his calm.

Offline Digerati

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2018, 02:14:26 PM »
It's not always necessary to have regular updates to have fully functioning software.
This is very true. As long as there are no previously undiscovered bugs, no compatibility issues with the latest version of the OS or latest generation hardware, and as long as new security threats don't need to be addressed, there is no need to push out an update.
Bill (AFE7Ret)
Freedom is NOT Free!
2007 - 2018

Offline G_Mugford

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2018, 03:07:55 PM »
Thank you all for your responses to this. I've been going through my on health issues (three heart attacks and other stuff and I KNOW the struggle these things can do to a life). I feared this might be the case. I wish I had been wrong. It explains the lack of response and it's one I can respect as a reason rather than an excuse.

That said, despite the warm reviews (mostly) of WPF, there is no reason to continue to believe it will adapt to my particular needs. The interface remains mired in the past, doesn't perform some functions that I think make sense and it has a bug that has bitten me on the backside. In fact, said bug is scheduled to re-appear when I reboot Pale Moon on this system to update it. Sigh.

A switch back to Zone Alarm is on the horizon. I see the 1 yr licence is running an Easter Sale. I will have six months of peace and then a litany of update/upgrade notices. Rumpletstiltskin. Sigh.

I only wonder one thing. If Brett is under the weather, why did he have the time to run the sale on Bits Du Jour? Caveat emptor indeed.

Offline plodr

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2018, 05:56:19 PM »
Bret is not under the weather. There was major flooding where he lives. His mother died in the flood; people have been displaced and Bret was down to a skeleton staff because of the flooding/moves etc.

Offline Corrine

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #8 on: April 01, 2018, 07:16:45 PM »
Actually, he had been very sick with the flu.


Take a walk through the "Security Garden" -- Where Everything is Coming up Roses!

Remember - A day without laughter is a day wasted.
May the wind sing to you and the sun rise in your heart.

Offline plodr

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #9 on: April 02, 2018, 12:24:42 PM »
Thanks for the update. He has had his share of troubles of late.

Offline Digerati

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #10 on: April 02, 2018, 01:34:32 PM »
It seems to be pretty much a one-man show.
Bill (AFE7Ret)
Freedom is NOT Free!
2007 - 2018

Offline DavidON

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #11 on: April 23, 2018, 05:26:59 PM »
Of course Bret has my sympathy and we've all needed tolerance from others for our own personal issues. However there are a couple of points that I must mention...
 - Bret's response to issues has been seriously lacking since at least December 2016 - yes, almost a year and half now.
 - I'm surprised at the number of people who are saying that the programs simply work. While this has always been my experience with the original WinPatrol, this has not been the case with WinPrivacy/WinPatrol Firewall. It has been in need of some TLC for quite a while. The update in May, IIRC, was a long overdue repair of a fundamental security failing in the program. Meanwhile, we're left with that version's poor handling of work files which causes it to regularly use using huge quantities of disk space (no, I'm not saving connection history). In addition, there are the foreground messages for routinely blocked programs which require the window to be manually closed (from the TaskBar!) unless you're willing to look at them for 60 seconds at a time.

Regards,
David.

Offline plodr

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #12 on: April 23, 2018, 07:02:36 PM »
Actually I'm running a very old version of WinPatrol. (33.6.2015.1 from an image because later versions gave me problems).  From that point on, I was unwilling to test later versions.

I bought 1 license for Win privacy and disliked it so I removed that and did not attempt to put it on another computer.

Offline Charyb

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2018, 04:48:24 PM »
Actually, he had been very sick with the flu.
Since you have been in contact with him has there been any talk regarding continued program development?

Offline Corrine

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Re: Quality of Support from WinPatrol
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2018, 06:30:37 PM »
Sorry, no, that wasn't discussed.


Take a walk through the "Security Garden" -- Where Everything is Coming up Roses!

Remember - A day without laughter is a day wasted.
May the wind sing to you and the sun rise in your heart.