Support (or lack of).


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Hi team,

 

I really like Unraid.  I've recommended it to anybody that will listen.  I think the product is fantastic and I purchased the top license to support you guys...but....

 

The support is not great.  I've written quite a few questions since I've been using Unraid and they often go without response, this is a poor experience for users, especially if somebody else has the same issue, searches and all that comes up is the same question but with zero replies.

 

I'm a software developer myself, I understand support can be time consuming and take away from other jobs, but I feel it's something that needs to be addressed.  My most recent post was about issues I've been having with KVM since rc2 and not a single reply, not even a "It's not something we're aware of, can you post x.y.z".

 

It should be somebodies responsibility to go through the most recent questions posted and supply a response, as above or "we will look into it" is just so much better than deafening silence which gets users worked up.

 

This post is intended to be constructive, I feel this is an area that you need to be more proactive in.

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Understand your point of view and frustration on it but you're assuming that LimeTech and this forum is full of staff that have detailed knowledge of every issue that might arise.

 

Here's the "staff" ... https://unraid.net/about

 

The forum is full of users and there may not be someone that can answer any random problem that comes up, especially if you are the only person that experiences the problem.  This is not an official response, obviously, but you have to manage your expectations.. this is not Microsoft with world wide call centers and support staff (that all use copy & paste responses to every problem anyways).

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56 minutes ago, Energen said:

Understand your point of view and frustration on it but you're assuming that LimeTech and this forum is full of staff that have detailed knowledge of every issue that might arise.

 

Here's the "staff" ... https://unraid.net/about

 

The forum is full of users and there may not be someone that can answer any random problem that comes up, especially if you are the only person that experiences the problem.  This is not an official response, obviously, but you have to manage your expectations.. this is not Microsoft with world wide call centers and support staff (that all use copy & paste responses to every problem anyways).

 

This is their support forum though.

 

As an axample I use emby, they are a small team of developers and are incredibility responsive in responding to issues, like staggeringly good.

 

If somebody, as a company provides a support forum then I don't think it's an unreasonable expectation that they actually provide support the product, I'm a co-owner of a company, we have 3 developers (including myself) and 1 admin and 1 hardware design guy, we respond instantly to questions during work hours, we're a small company.  

 

The traffic is low here, it wouldn't take much effort to provide responsive support., they understand their product and I assume, like my own company, the guys doing the technical support are the guys who develop the product.

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I think the reality of it is that the user to user based support on the forum is so thorough that the actual paid staff really don't poke around much unless summoned. If you need to talk to somebody other than all us volunteers, then either email support, or page one of the Administrators like @SpencerJ or @jonp.

 

I get that you shouldn't have to do that in an ideal world, and one of the paid staff would read every post and respond if one of us volunteers doesn't have a good answer, but so far the volunteers cover things rather well so the paid staff don't react very quickly unless specifically asked.

 

The fact that you are a more advanced user means that your questions are typically NOT going to be easy answers that are common knowledge, so your support experience isn't typical of the newbie questions that we see day in and day out.

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20 minutes ago, jonathanm said:

I think the reality of it is that the user to user based support on the forum is so thorough that the actual paid staff really don't poke around much unless summoned. If you need to talk to somebody other than all us volunteers, then either email support, or page one of the Administrators like @SpencerJ or @jonp.

 

I get that you shouldn't have to do that in an ideal world, and one of the paid staff would read every post and respond if one of us volunteers doesn't have a good answer, but so far the volunteers cover things rather well so the paid staff don't react very quickly unless specifically asked.

 

The fact that you are a more advanced user means that your questions are typically NOT going to be easy answers that are common knowledge, so your support experience isn't typical of the newbie questions that we see day in and day out.

 

I try to avoid tagging people, sometimes tagging somebody can have the complete opposite effect to what was desired! 😛

 

It's just an observation, not just from my posts, but other peoples posts as well and the appearance it gives to people visiting the forum, especially if they happen to be prospective users.

 

As an aside, there's also the issue of issue reports, I've mentioned many times that the setting for the VNC port should be in the GUI because as it stands if you change it in the XML and then suseqently make a change in the GUI it gets lost, I'm forever chasing my tail on this, it's presumably something that's entirely trivial for them to fix and that makes it even more disheartening that it's been ignored, hell, I'd even settle for them to remove auto and just use a counting high water mark for the VNC port every time you create a new VM because the current behaviour is exceedingly irritating.

 

As I said, this is all said in the most constructive way I can do it, I'm not stamping my feet and throwing toys out of the pram, but giving feedback on my experience.

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3 minutes ago, Fizzyade said:

I've mentioned many times that the setting for the VNC port should be in the GUI because as it stands if you change it in the XML and then suseqently make a change in the GUI it gets lost,

Right there with you. I resigned myself to working around the behaviour by setting up quick connect profiles with 5900, 5901, 5902, 5903, etc. It could take 2 or 3 tries to get the machine I want, but I eventually get there.

 

The overarching issue of GUI changes killing XML customizations is a VERY longstanding issue, apparently the intent was to wrap all possible changes into the GUI and only the most obscure changes should need to be made manually. But, as you point out, there are some really common tweaks that aren't in the GUI, like a working boot order changer, vnc settings, etc, etc.

 

Honestly I think the answer is to scrap the VM gui entirely and plug in an adaptation of virt-manager.

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36 minutes ago, Fizzyade said:

 

I try to avoid tagging people, sometimes tagging somebody can have the complete opposite effect to what was desired! 😛

 

It's just an observation, not just from my posts, but other peoples posts as well and the appearance it gives to people visiting the forum, especially if they happen to be prospective users.

 

As an aside, there's also the issue of issue reports, I've mentioned many times that the setting for the VNC port should be in the GUI because as it stands if you change it in the XML and then suseqently make a change in the GUI it gets lost, I'm forever chasing my tail on this, it's presumably something that's entirely trivial for them to fix and that makes it even more disheartening that it's been ignored, hell, I'd even settle for them to remove auto and just use a counting high water mark for the VNC port every time you create a new VM because the current behaviour is exceedingly irritating.

 

As I said, this is all said in the most constructive way I can do it, I'm not stamping my feet and throwing toys out of the pram, but giving feedback on my experience.

Hey @Fizzyade, I’m sorry to hear about this experience you are having. Could you please email us at support@lime-technology.com with a link to your specific thread(s) that haven’t been answered? 
 

Cheers,

Spencer 

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16 hours ago, SpencerJ said:

Hey @Fizzyade, I’m sorry to hear about this experience you are having. Could you please email us at support@lime-technology.com with a link to your specific thread(s) that haven’t been answered? 
 

Cheers,

Spencer 

I have done this, as I said, I don't like to tag people as sometimes it gets people really wound up!

 

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I have to also say, I'm grateful that those who have responded in this thread have taken it at face value, that it was a observation about my perception of support, it wasn't meant in any way to single out anybody or a "this sucks" kind of post, I wanted it to be constructive and I'm glad that I haven't had to don the flame suit just yet!

 

I think Unraid is awesome, for people like myself who use it primarily to run a media server (and the assosicated other tools that go along with that) and who use the virtual machines as development environments it's brilliant.  The fact that a catastrophic array failure results (i.e your parity + other deivces) only in the loss of data from those disks and not the array.  The speed trade-off for me is worth that alone.

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  • 2 weeks later...
3 hours ago, Fizzyade said:

And still no reply.  Seriously?  I called you out on poor support, you tell me to email, which I did on the 24th of Feb and I still get no response.

 

@SpencerJ

 

I have sent you a DM.

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4 hours ago, Fizzyade said:

And still no reply.  Seriously?  I called you out on poor support, you tell me to email, which I did on the 24th of Feb and I still get no response.

 

@SpencerJ

 

 

This is my fault, not Spencer's.  He did inform me that he wanted us to take a closer look at your most recent support threads.  Between the devs working towards the 6.9-stable release and myself being busy with a few other internal projects, this just slipped through the cracks and for that, I do apologize.  I am looking at your issues regarding VNC port mapping not sticking as well as the virtual display adapter.  It would be helpful if you updated those posts with results after testing with 6.9.1 that was just released, as sometimes kernel/package updates fix these types of problems.

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3 hours ago, jonp said:

 

This is my fault, not Spencer's.  He did inform me that he wanted us to take a closer look at your most recent support threads.  Between the devs working towards the 6.9-stable release and myself being busy with a few other internal projects, this just slipped through the cracks and for that, I do apologize.  I am looking at your issues regarding VNC port mapping not sticking as well as the virtual display adapter.  It would be helpful if you updated those posts with results after testing with 6.9.1 that was just released, as sometimes kernel/package updates fix these types of problems.

 

Hi Jon,

 

Thanks for taking the time to respond, it's been a little frustrating but hopefully this has been a constructive exercise, I wasn't angry, just a little bit dissapointed that the communication wasn't as good as I expected.  I wanted to let you guys know in a polite manner that I felt this way!

 

The VNC port issue is just a long standing thing, I've mentioned it a few times.  While under normal circumstances it's probably not something that most people will have an issue with, but for me, it is.  You definitely need the options to set a port and keep it even after editing the XML, this is my only real bug bear with unraid.

 

Another semi related thing is hitting the console option on dockers for me always results in a pop up window which asks me to log in again, I have to log in and then go back and click on console and then I get to the console.

 

I'll upgrade once everybody has gone to bed and finished watching shows.

 

I absolutely love Unraid, I recommend it to anybody who wants to put together a media server or NAS, and apart from 2 dead USB sticks which were caused by a plugin I've not had any significant issues with it.  I'm a Mac user, I have been since the mid 90's and I use unraid to host VM's which I use for software development, so I have various Linux and Windows installations with my development tools in, the KVM for me is crucial (although I could run a VNC server in windows) as my code signing certificate for windows is smartcard based which means it is not accessible when connecting through RDP, so being able to use VNC means that I am able to sign binaries - it's all handled through TeamCity.

 

I did just update the VirtIO drivers and straight away I hit one of the VNC issues I've seen as well (I didn't mention this one before), on some occasions the screen is still working, I can see the cursor flashing, the time updating etc but niether the keyboard or mouse are functional, it doesn't matter if I just my favourite VNC software, Jump Desktop, or the built in noVNC client in Unraid.  Actually, last week I tagged you guys on twitter as I had a chain of tools running which involved Unraid, Jump Desktop and Duet and it worked perfectly. 

When I see these issues with VNC, I can normally close the VNC session, switch to RDP and immediately exit and go back to VNC and then the session starts working again.

 

I posted the question in the other forum more of a "is anybody else seeing this or is something gone screwy with my install".

 

 

 

 

 

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In the interest of being fair, the Unraid team have held their hands up and apologised and have gone out of their way to try to find the cause of my problems.  Although it's still ongoing, I'm hoping that we can get to the bottom of it.

 

I rarely rely on support, I've been a programmer professionally for 25 odd years and programming 6-7 years before that, so I normally figure stuff out myself so I'm probably a bit more sensitive when it comes to asking for advice.

 

I've had very few issues with Unraid over the past 2 or so years that I've been running it, I bought the pro license a couple of days after trialling to support them, even though I didn't need that many disks, I'm a believer in supporting companies (especially smaller software companies) because it's hard work writing software.

 

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On 3/9/2021 at 8:26 PM, Fizzyade said:

Another semi related thing is hitting the console option on dockers for me always results in a pop up window which asks me to log in again, I have to log in and then go back and click on console and then I get to the console.

 

I've experienced this too with both docker consoles and the Unraid console, but only with Safari (I note that you're a Mac user too), and never with Firefox, Brave or Chrome. I gave up using Safari in favour of Firefox years ago but tried it again recently on an Apple Silicon Mac because at the time it was the only natively-built browser available, and saw the same result. I'm now back to using Firefox.

 

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Just throwing an idea out there regarding the VM config that came to mind as I read this thread... feel free to entirely disregard.

I'm not sure how the current VM XML is formed in the webUI, but could this be improved by either:

1) Allow adding tags that prevent an update of certain XML elements from the UI.

2) Parse the current XML config and only update the changed elements on apply in the webUI.

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3 hours ago, John_M said:

 

I've experienced this too with both docker consoles and the Unraid console, but only with Safari (I note that you're a Mac user too), and never with Firefox, Brave or Chrome. I gave up using Safari in favour of Firefox years ago but tried it again recently on an Apple Silicon Mac because at the time it was the only natively-built browser available, and saw the same result. I'm now back to using Firefox.

 

Yeah, I've seen other funnies in the GUI with safari.  Funnily enough, I just switched to firefox a week or so back because Safari on Big Sur is crashtastic, it also seems very slow.

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3 hours ago, sreknob said:

Just throwing an idea out there regarding the VM config that came to mind as I read this thread... feel free to entirely disregard.

I'm not sure how the current VM XML is formed in the webUI, but could this be improved by either:

1) Allow adding tags that prevent an update of certain XML elements from the UI.

2) Parse the current XML config and only update the changed elements on apply in the webUI.

Yes, the wiping out of XML values is infuriating.  When changing stuff in the GUI, only the items that were affected by the change should be updated in the XML, everything else should remain as it is.

 

Ideally, the VNC port should be exposed in the GUI because it's pretty much a requirement, you don;t go around changing the VNC port on your client every time because the order has changed.

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Lol i litterally thought this myself the last few days.

My question is from 28.02.21

 

 

I even wrote an email to a unraid (specer) just asking and no response so far. (10.03.21) 

 

I understand i dont get 24/7 support. Thats not what im asking for. But just no resposne at all not giving any tips on their own product? I cant start helping myself because i dont know where to start. I just need some help in the right direction. Since output comes while booting i think it can only be unraids fault. But maybe a dev would know more.

 

Since reddit and facebook the support in the forum is... getting less..?

 

about the "we will look into it" this was just much worse, atleast they post now some things on forum. So that has gotten better in my eyes.

 

I mean its okay if they cant social or something, but maybe hire someone then...? 

 

Problem for helping people is: its either a standard problem asked 1000 times OR its something so special only devs can help.

 

The standard problems could get less if they work harder on "making the product fool proof" or lets say more user friendly. But they currently focus on adding new stuff (which is also great i guess)

 

To topic:

i have an even weirder issue. Im using chrome, as soon as i open up any "edit VM" page it auto fills some crap into it. (and i literally gone thru all chrome settings regrading auto fill and could not find the problem (or the data which is filled there) its very aggresive automatic refilling wrong things. I guess they should add autocomplete="off" 

Edited by nuhll
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