Welcome Guest.   Make a donation to an author on the site October 21, 2014, 07:10:16 PM  *

Please login or register.
Or did you miss your validation email?


Login with username and password (forgot your password?)
Why not become a lifetime supporting member of the site with a one-time donation of any amount? Your donation entitles you to a ton of additional benefits, including access to exclusive discounts and downloads, the ability to enter monthly free software drawings, and a single non-expiring license key for all of our programs.


You must sign up here before you can post and access some areas of the site. Registration is totally free and confidential.
 
The N.A.N.Y. Challenge 2010! Download 24 custom programs!
   
   Forum Home   Thread Marks Chat! Downloads Search Login Register  
Pages: [1] 2 Next   Go Down
  Reply  |  New Topic  |  Print  
Author Topic: Mini-Review and Discount (Sep 2010): USB Safely Remove and Zentimo  (Read 14615 times)
cranioscopical
Friend of the Site
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 4,182



see users location on a map View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« on: July 20, 2010, 01:42:27 PM »

USB Safely Remove
This software is mentioned more than once as a favourite of DC members in the Must-have Windows Programs topic (click here).

In brief, USB Safely Remove is a device manager that improves on the basic 'Safely Remove Hardware' mechanism that is built into Windows itself.
USB Safely Remove makes it easier for users to see and work with USB, SATA and other devices that are connected to the system. The software simplifies managing flash-drives, portable drives, card readers and other gadgets.  

When a device cannot be stopped for some reason, the program can show what is preventing this and help to defeat the problem. The program also allows a user to set up hot keys to remove devices safely, without the need to use a tray icon. If a user has stopped a device, USB Safely Remove can return it to an active state if desired. USB Safely Remove can show a menu of attached devices, displaying considerably more useful information than is available from the native Windows tool, and it allows the user to identify devices by name, give names to devices, allocate specific drive letters to devices, hide devices that are not useful to see (e.g. card readers with no card inserted), and more.

Another nice feature of USB Safely Remove is that it allows a user to set up actions that will occur automatically when a device is connected and also when it is removed. I also like the fact that I can assign custom icons to the devices that appear in the menu, in order to see at a glance which device is which.

As of this writing the program is at version 4.3.2. In my experience it has been improved consistently.

The normal pricing of USB Safely Remove is, for a Personal License, $20 USD.
Private usage only, One user / multiple computers / lifetime upgrades

Here are a few illustrations to give an idea of the program at work (click on an image to enlarge it).

          


More information is available on the web site, which is http://safelyremove.com/


Zentimo
The company that offers USB Safely Remove also offers a similar but more powerful program called Zentimo.

The Zentimo web site lists these advantages over USB Safely Remove. Not every user will need them: for many, USB Safely Remove will be enough:

  • An improved device menu. This allows right-click access to more information about the attached device, and offers common functions such as browsing a drive or launching software from it.
  • A drive-speed test for an attached drive.
  • A quick-launch menu for any portable application on the device.
  • Integration for TrueCrypt (for example, with Zentimo running, TrueCrypt containers can be mounted on device connection and dismounted on disconnection).
  • The ability to have portable settings, on a relevant device, so that your Zentimo configuration will be recognized automatically on another computer running Zentimo.


The license details listed for Zentimo are these:
Personal licenses which are for private use only, One user / multiple computers / lifetime usage
Note the difference between lifetime usage and lifetime upgrades.
License with free upgrades for one year$35 USD
License with free upgrades for two years$45 USD
License with lifetime upgrades$70 USD
To extend upgrades beyond the initial upgrade period costs $19 USD per additional year.

There are also commercial and site licenses available.


Here are a few images of Zentimo in action:

          
 
  

For those who are interested, some information about Zentimo appears here.


Disclaimer
I should make clear that I have no connection to the people who offer USB Safely Remove and Zentimo.
I am a paying customer of USB Safely Remove.
I first learned about it, on DonationCoder, by reading favourable comments from other users.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2010, 06:53:15 PM by mouser » Logged

Chris
mouser
First Author
Administrator
*****
Posts: 33,572



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2010, 06:54:31 PM »

Chris was great enough to arrange a discount for DC members for September 2010; details to be posted soon.
Logged
tomos
Charter Member
***
Posts: 8,605



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2010, 03:31:41 AM »

thanks for the review Chris Thmbsup and the discount smiley

The normal pricing of USB Safely Remove is, for a Personal License, $20 USD.
Private usage only, One user / multiple computers / lifetime upgrades

Commercial license is fair enough too:
Quote
Commercial License ($20 USD)
Commercial usage, One license per computer / lifetime upgrades / volume discounts
as often in the euro-zone,
you're better off choosing us dollars as payment currency
Logged

Tom
Darwin
Charter Member
***
Posts: 6,979



see users location on a map View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2010, 08:59:08 AM »

Thanks, Chris  Thmbsup I missed this when you posted it (thanks to Tomos for bumping the thread and drawing it to my attention). I have a license for USB Safely Remove and couldn't live without it. I'm curious about Zentimo, particularly its ability to function as a drive letter and label manager and as a portable applicaiton launcher. I can't believe I hadn't heard of its development thus far.
Logged

"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin
cranioscopical
Friend of the Site
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 4,182



see users location on a map View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2010, 09:38:27 AM »

Quote from: Darwin
a drive letter and label manager
I think that's essentially the same as in USB Safely Remove's device properties\drive properties.
Logged

Chris
Darwin
Charter Member
***
Posts: 6,979



see users location on a map View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2010, 09:48:54 AM »

Quote from: Darwin
a drive letter and label manager
I think that's essentially the same as in USB Safely Remove's device properties\drive properties.

Ah, thanks for that. I've just read the website blurb and you're right. I explored using the USB Safely Remove feature in the past (instead of USBDLM), but I rejected that idea. I wonder why...?! I stupidly didn't take any notes. Will have to revisit this idea.
Logged

"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin
OldElmerFudd
Charter Member
***
Posts: 181


Bite-sized trouble

see users location on a map View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2010, 11:37:28 PM »

I bought a license for USB Safely Remove back in November with a promotional discount. (less than $20 - don't remember exactly) Have it installed on five machines at home and works fine. One thing I like is when I turn on/off a USB device like a printer, it notifies me the device is loaded or unloaded.
Logged

Always code as if the guy who ends up maintaining your code is a violent psychopath and knows where you live.
Curt
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 6,338

see users location on a map View Profile Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2010, 07:06:04 AM »

The license details listed for Zentimo are these:
Personal licenses which are for private use only, One user / multiple computers / lifetime usage
Note the difference between lifetime usage and lifetime upgrades.
License with free upgrades for one year$35 USD
License with free upgrades for two years$45 USD
License with lifetime upgrades$70 USD
To extend upgrades beyond the initial upgrade period costs $19 USD per additional year.

Zentimo discount for existing safelyremove.com customers only: -$15
making it:

one year$20 USD
two years$30 USD
lifetime$55 USD

Also, it should be noted that Zentimo is all new:

Quote from: Zentimo
July 27, 2010
Zentimo 1.0 Final!

http://zentimo.com/index.htm

Logged
superboyac
Charter Member
***
Posts: 5,702


Is your software in my list?

see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #8 on: August 15, 2010, 02:50:08 PM »

Very interesting.  USB SR is one of my favorite little utilities.  A very well made program.
I don't quite understand Zentimo.  What does it do that USB SR can't do?  I mean, i've read the features, but I don't quite get what the big deal is.  This is one of those cases where you need that comparison chart with the check marks.

I don't see why the author had to make a different program that does pretty much the same thing.  I'm sure he could have done the same by just doing a major version upgrade.  I'm also sure it was a business decision.  USB SR was a lifetime license if you bought it.  That's great for us (the customers) but I've always wondered how that affects their business models.  And now that I have had to work with business models lately, I am more sympathetic to things like this.  I wonder if it was a situation where the author realized that he can't make enough money by offering these lifetime licenses.  So he had to re-launch under a different product name and offer a normal 1,2-year licenses as well as a more expensive lifetime license.  I know we'll complain about it, but I understand.  In this particular case, I really like the software, i like the author, he's been very responsive for USB SR.  So if he needs to change his business model to make more money, I support that.  I want good authors making good software and I want to pay them for it.  i don't want to give money to the people making mediocre software and using similar methods to extract cash from their customers.
Logged

mauzer_tim
Participant
*
Posts: 13

View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #9 on: August 16, 2010, 03:07:37 PM »

superboyac, thanks for your kind words!

Quote
Very interesting.  USB SR is one of my favorite little utilities.  A very well made program.
I don't quite understand Zentimo.  What does it do that USB SR can't do?  I mean, i've read the features, but I don't quite get what the big deal is.  This is one of those cases where you need that comparison chart with the check marks.
We will add later this comparision matrix and here I'll describe above the differences. It's copied from the description we are going to put to safelyremove.com so don't mind its a bit commercial style smiley

So, what features has Zentimo over 'USB Safely Remove'?

More powerful and informative device menu


  

Now with this menu you can see device drive volume and free space, display hidden devices in a click right in the menu, and do frequent actions in a click such as browsing a drive or launching a portable program

Honest drive speed test



The program can show the real performance of your devices

Portable application quick launch menu




Just a menu available via a click to the menu button where you can add programs from your drive and run them in a couple of clicks.

Strong TrueCrypt integration




Your TrueCrypt containers that are stored on external drives can be handled like a part of device: you can see them on the device menu, they can be automatically mounted\dismounted on device connection\disconnection and even if a program prevents TrueCrypt volume from being stopped
Zentimo allows you to see and unlock such programs.

Portable settings


You can set up your device name, image or app quick launch list once and these settings will be available on the other computers where Zentimo is installed
  

Quote
I wonder if it was a situation where the author realized that he can't make enough money by offering these lifetime licenses.
That's true. Actually offering the lifetime upgrades isn't good for a company as the number of customer grows, but not the revenue. So we need to spend more time supporting rather than programming. We are going to change that model even in USB Safely Remove, however that affects only new customers, for those who purchased the license with lifetime upgrades nothing will change.

Quote
So he had to re-launch under a different product name and offer a normal 1,2-year licenses as well as a more expensive lifetime license.
That's not quite correct. I've already described the reasons why we created the similar product in Zentimo's blog. In short, USB Safely Remove is enough mature product and it has large userbase, and its users love its simplicity. So if we start to make hard experiments with its interface and add significantly more features not all people will like it (and this is not just a big phrases, e.g. Zentimo by default stores device settings on external drives as a small file in the drive root making the settings to be portable, however not all people like this feature they think such a behavior very obtrusive, they don't want a program automatically save any data to their drives). Therefore we decided to make a separated application which on the other hand will satisfy the needs of people who need more features, however we will continue developing USB Safely Remove however we will leave it such simple as it is now.

Conclusion: just compare for yourself Zentimo and USB Safely Remove and choose if you need Zentimo. If USB Safely Remove is enough for your need you should stay with it.

Kind regards,
Igor Tkachenko,
Crystal Rich Ltd CEO
Logged
Curt
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 6,338

see users location on a map View Profile Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #10 on: August 16, 2010, 03:27:22 PM »

@mauzer_tim / Igor Tkachenko, Crystal Rich Ltd:

Will drive speed test auto-disable the screensaver?
Logged
superboyac
Charter Member
***
Posts: 5,702


Is your software in my list?

see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #11 on: August 16, 2010, 05:31:08 PM »

Thanks mauzer_tim for the explanations.  I'll likely get Zentimo, I don't mind having more features!  And like I said, I'm very supportive of the companies making great little tools like this.
Logged

mauzer_tim
Participant
*
Posts: 13

View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #12 on: August 17, 2010, 12:59:40 PM »

@mauzer_tim / Igor Tkachenko, Crystal Rich Ltd:

Will drive speed test auto-disable the screensaver?
We didn't thought about it as usually drive speed test takes not more than minute. However you are right we need to fix that.

Thanks mauzer_tim for the explanations.  I'll likely get Zentimo, I don't mind having more features!  And like I said, I'm very supportive of the companies making great little tools like this.
Glad to hear that, thank you too!
Logged
mouser
First Author
Administrator
*****
Posts: 33,572



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2010, 05:33:56 PM »

Discount info now posted: http://www.donationcoder....rum/index.php?topic=23907
Thanks chris!
Logged
Darwin
Charter Member
***
Posts: 6,979



see users location on a map View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #14 on: September 06, 2010, 11:05:20 AM »

Disappointing. The lifetime license option for Zentimo has been removed. I wish I had purchased one when they were still available. Still, I undertstand the necessity of this move. I'm just lazy and don't like having to renew licenses annually.

Quote
Update from August 28th: Licenses with lifetime upgrades are no longer available to sell. Only licenses with one or two year upgrade subscription are available. However everyone who already purchased the licenses with lifetime upgrades are eligible for lifetime upgrades.

Nonetheless, thank you Chris, mouser and Crystal Rich software for making this discount available.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2010, 11:23:00 AM by Darwin » Logged

"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin
mouser
First Author
Administrator
*****
Posts: 33,572



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #15 on: September 06, 2010, 11:10:42 AM »

Just to clarify -- from my reading you don't need to renew the license to use the program.. it's just a question of whether you get free UPGRADES after a year.  Regardless, you can always keep using your last version.  That's pretty standard and seems not a big deal to me.  That's how i read it.

(i agree with you about avoiding programs where you actually need to renew your license every year in order to keep using it)
Logged
Darwin
Charter Member
***
Posts: 6,979



see users location on a map View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #16 on: September 06, 2010, 11:26:32 AM »

Yes, sorry for the confusion. I meant lifetime upgrades, not a lifetime license. From what I can see, Zentimo works as advertised, so upgrades may not be all that urgent. Also, Crystal Rich have reduced the cost of extending a subcription from $20 a year to $15 a year, so upgrades will hardly be a big hit on the pocket book.
Logged

"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin
superboyac
Charter Member
***
Posts: 5,702


Is your software in my list?

see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #17 on: September 06, 2010, 11:58:31 AM »

Just to clarify -- from my reading you don't need to renew the license to use the program.. it's just a question of whether you get free UPGRADES after a year.  Regardless, you can always keep using your last version.  That's pretty standard and seems not a big deal to me.  That's how i read it.

(i agree with you about avoiding programs where you actually need to renew your license every year in order to keep using it)
I think developers don't need to actually mention or brag that you can use the version you bought for life.  I've seen companies do this many times and the end result is that the consumer is always confused and there's a lot of miscommunications and back-and-forths because of the whole thing.  First of all, there is no program that I know of where you CAN'T use the version you originally bought forever.  So it's nothing to emphasize or brag about because all programs work that way.  So just the fact that it is mentioned is confusing.  Why is it being mentioned?  What's the point?  So what?  That's why people get confused.  It sounds like a great thing is being offered, but it's really the standard practice for just about all software.  When people say the word "lifetime" in any software licensing situation, the user will assume they mean lifetime upgrades/updates/everything.  That's why we get excited when we hear that.  So the fact that the word "lifetime" is used when it's describing the standard situation is misleading.  I have to think it's done intentionally.  Now, I like Crystal Rich so I won't criticize them too much for this.  The bottom line is that they have decided to use a different licensing for Zentimo than they were doing for USB SR.  And as a developer, you have to mention this, but you have to do it in a nice way.  Maybe that's why they say "You can still use the program for lifetime and on each of your computers", even though that was never in question.  What software do you know of where you can't do this?  That would be the equivalent of software rental, which just doesn't happen (maybe in some big corporate software it does).

Like I said, I've seen this happen many times and in all cases, I've seen the developers throw in that statement, "You can still use the program for lifetime and on each of your computers."  You shouldn't say this.  It causes confusion, it's misleading, and as soon as you say this, you have to:
1) Explain to MANY people the difference between lifetime upgrades/updates vs. using an old version forever.  This is always difficult for developers because they have a hard time saying "you can still use your old version forever."  That sounds depressing and negative.  So they go for the more positive/happy sentence "You can still use the program for lifetime and on each of your computers", which just doesn't get the same point across.

2) Makes people resent the developers for seemingly trying to do a switch-and-bait or other trickery.  This does happen, but I don't think Crystal Rich is one of those.  I think they just realized the lifetime thing is an impossible business model.  It really is.  It's great for us as consumers.  I jump on lifetime licenses all the time because I know they're going to have to change it sometime in the future.  But it's bad for the developers.  I think Crystal Rich, from all the companies I've seen that had to go through this change, were the most honest in dealing with this.  They explained on the website how with lifetime licenses, the user base keeps growing and growing, and no more money is coming in other than that initial purchase.  It really doesn't work.
Logged

tranglos
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 1,079



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #18 on: September 06, 2010, 12:47:46 PM »

I think developers don't need to actually mention or brag that you can use the version you bought for life.  I've seen companies do this many times and the end result is that the consumer is always confused and there's a lot of miscommunications and back-and-forths because of the whole thing.  First of all, there is no program that I know of where you CAN'T use the version you originally bought forever.

It must be pretty rare, so far, but I do have one example of such a shady/shoddy licensing scheme: Returnil System Safe. From their FAQ:

Quote
Q: What happens after the subscription expires (one year normally)?
A: Returnil Virtual System 2010 will simply revert to the unregistered version of Home Free called Free. The System Safe and Virtual Disk features will continue to work but the Virus Guard, File manager, and Real System Access features will be inactive.


So unless you pay up every year, the product you originally bought reverts to the limited, free version. Instead of an upgrade (new features, improvements), you're buying the right to keep using what you've already bought.

Other than that, I'm with you all the way.

Logged

mouser
First Author
Administrator
*****
Posts: 33,572



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #19 on: September 06, 2010, 12:48:52 PM »

Antivirus programs tend to stop working (or at least become worthless) if you don't renew; which is why i would ignore any special offers of "a free year" of any such program.
Logged
Curt
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 6,338

see users location on a map View Profile Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #20 on: September 06, 2010, 04:54:50 PM »

Antivirus programs tend to stop working (or at least become worthless) if you don't renew; which is why i would ignore any special offers of "a free year" of any such program.
tellme

It is quite easy to have reasonable shareware anti-virus programs for free for the rest of your life, if only you would bother to check out sites like giveawayoftheday each day. They all fight to give you "a free year", year after year.
Logged
Clancolin
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 1

View Profile Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #21 on: September 18, 2010, 06:10:11 PM »

Hi.
The hiding of multiple (unused) drive letters is intriguing.  I have a U3 USB key which won't function since a "multi-reader" was installed. I only use 2 of the 9 possible multi-reader slots, so the ability to release the other 7 would be great and would allow my U3 key to work again.

My question is... are those drive letters "released" or simply hidden?
Logged
IL1keT0Donate
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 27

View Profile Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #22 on: February 11, 2012, 02:18:01 AM »

Zentimo "Lifetime License" is available again ... at least for the moment


Hello folks,

After Zentimo's initial beta release around the beginning of 2010 at some point Lifetime Licensing became available to purchase but in a low key move "Lifetime Licensing (which included major upgrades as well as the usual minor updates" was removed from the purchase options around the end of August 2010.

From then on the vendor chose to offer either 1 or 2 year subscription models at varying prices depending on if you also owned a USB Safely Remove license.

Why would you own both? probably because you has already purchased a license of USB Safely Remove license which has been around for a number of years and has just released v5.0 (although the vendor advises against installing or perhaps that should read running both USB Safely Remove & Zentimo at the same time on your PC).

Now as you might find in the Zentimo website blog and elsewhere, there has been much aggravation and many user emails complaining to the vendor about the withdrawal or nonavailability of "Lifetime Licensing" and the vendor has got a little hot under the collar at times in responce with various responces, but stuck to their guns only making 1 or 2 year purchase options available.

Well by pure chance on Feb. 10, 2012, I discovered that the Lifetime License option has been restored,  and so i contacted the vendor to ask if this change of policy was for a brief period or restored for all time (as there is a 30%OFF promotion running until Feb. 17, 2012) and the reply said the "L.L." had been restored late last year (2011) and the current thinking was it would be made permanent, BUT no guarantee it would be available for ever more.

(which to my mind says one thing, forget about what you might have paid for a 1 or 2 year license and buy the Lifetime License NOW.)

I thought it was worth advising DonationCoder's of the change of policy as many people either own a Zentimo "purchased license" or a "freebie not-upgradable license" made available through Giveawayoftheday dot com largely because you couldn't buy a Lifetime License.

So currently, if you meet the correct requirements to upgrade or renew your Zentimo License (which are on the Zentimo purchase page), then contact the vendor and they will likely send you a discounted (- personalised?,) license upgrade voucher.

Hope this helps someone
Logged
Curt
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 6,338

see users location on a map View Profile Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #23 on: February 11, 2012, 04:17:59 AM »

-... and this coming the day AFTER we all purchased a USBSR lifetime key on Bits du Jour...

Logged
wr975
Charter Member
***
Posts: 369



View Profile Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #24 on: February 11, 2012, 05:47:50 AM »

There's not much difference between USBSR and Zentimo IMO (http://zentimo.com/zentimovsusbsr.htm).

They gave Zentimo away for free some week ago (http://zentimo.com/giveawayd11.htm). Missed that. Well, they had free giveaway of USBSR and Zentimo all the time, I'm sure there'll be another giveaway.
Logged
Pages: [1] 2 Next   Go Up
  Reply  |  New Topic  |  Print  
 
Jump to:  
   Forum Home   Thread Marks Chat! Downloads Search Login Register  

DonationCoder.com | About Us
DonationCoder.com Forum | Powered by SMF
[ Page time: 0.068s | Server load: 0.01 ]