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Thread: Zimbra NE licensing nightmare

  1. #1
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    Default Zimbra NE licensing nightmare

    This is my horror story with Zimbra...

    We have moved to Zimbra NE two years ago. Everything was working smoothly so far...

    Due to the increase of users, we decided to migrate to a new, more powerful server.

    During the process, we have tested migration with 7.0.1 RHEL5 and RHEL6, and we had to activate the license, in order for some features (like backups) work. After upgrading the old server to 7.0.1 we had to do the same. After some tests in the new server (which was re-imaged a few times), the activation process aborted.

    After submitting the case to Zimbra, on the 12th March, they say we can only activate the same license 5 times... After 18 days of discussion with Zimbra, we still have no solution for this....

    Users are screaming (Outlook connector doesn't work, among other things), and as last resort, we decided to buy a new license (even though the old didn't expire yet). We are a Zimbra partner, and contacted the distributor, which invoiced us on the 16th March... As today, we still have no license...

    Again, yesterday, we ordered a new license directly from Zimbra (loosing of course the partner discount), which should arrive, as per their instructions in 48 hours...

    I hope someone at VMWare or Zimbra reads this, because this is really *the worst customer service I've ever had*... 18 days to solve something as simple as this is by no means acceptable... I'm also waiting for the new license, which was already paid... How long will it take to arrive???

    Zimbra is really a great product and fairly priced (or not, in this case, I had one valid license and already bought two more), but I wonder if this type of problems every time we need to renew a license (we also had some issues last year) is worth the trouble that we *never* had with Microsoft Exchange...


    Here goes the support emails exchanged:
    3/31/2011 7:24 AM | Luis Domingues
    more 24 hours have passed...
    3/30/2011 1:27 AM | Sandesh Satam
    Sorry for the inconvenienced caused, I have sent a followup email to our sales team, let me know if you have not received any response in next 24 hours.
    3/30/2011 1:08 AM | Luis Domingues
    This is unbelievable...

    Is there any SLA for paid support??? 18 days have passed, we have already ordered a new license through our distributor (Magirus) as no fix for this issue was provided, but we are still waiting for the fix or the new license, whatever comes first...

    After 18 days without Outlook connector and nag screens we are loosing customers, and VMWare is loosing credibility...
    3/19/2011 1:53 PM | Luis Domingues
    One week has passed and this is still not solved... We will have no option than to migrate to the open source version, as the paid support in not helping...
    3/15/2011 3:25 AM | Luis Domingues
    No, nobody else contacted me. It's the 3rd day the server is unavailable, when will this be solved?
    3/15/2011 2:33 AM | Luis Domingues
    None of these work.

    License activation with: zmlicense -a gives the same error as the web interface:
    system failure: url=https://license.zimbra.com/zimbraLicensePortal/public/activa
    tion?action=getActivation&version=7.0.1_GA_3105&li censeId=xxxxx-dd1d-4061-99d
    b-cf85ec4fd830&fingerprint=xxxxxxxx, resp=HTTP/1.1 500 I
    nternal Server Error


    Manual activation provides an *empty* XML file that doesn't work....
    3/15/2011 1:25 AM | Luis Domingues
    You can easily see the problem in this URL, used by the server when I try to activate from the admin console:

    https://license.zimbra.com/zimbraLic...ngerprint=xxxx


    Message: system failure: url=https://license.zimbra.com/zimbraLicensePortal/public/activation?action=getActivation&version=7.0.1_GA_3 105&xxxxxxxxxxxxfingerprint=xxxx, resp=HTTP/1.1 500 Internal Server Error Error code: service.FAILURE ...
    3/15/2011 12:08 AM | Luis Domingues
    [License]
    ......
    Can you please check this? Nobody is able to connect to the server using Outlook... I've already renewed the Zimbra NE license with the local supplier, but it will take some days...

  2. #2
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    Hi,

    We get same error. We can not activate license. After couple tests of install and activating. Even we can't manually activate.

  3. #3
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    Well... I'm not exactly happy to know that there is someone else in this deep $%&/(...

    I get exactly the same... If I try manual activation i get an empty XML file which doesn't work...

    Could it be that Zimbra is experiencing an issue in they licensing application? Could it take 18 days to solve???

    I've already bought two licenses (from two different suppliers), and none arrived yet... I hope, some day, I will receive one of them and get a refund for the other...

  4. #4
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    We use ose over a year and a half, tested network version several times. Hardware migration, software version upgrade offen require testing, backup or re-imaging multiple times. Very offen will also take the opportunity to maybe change ip or hostname. They all(NE) require activation at some point to make sure all functions work.

    Due to client pressure and repeated request, we are seriously considering getting the network version, mainly for the active sync function. But several factor holding us back: the main one strange calendar behavior in 7.0 and 7.0.1. Though still have z-push testing pending, we are very close to just get those licenses. But with this 'horror' story, we may just push back and sink more time for alt solution testing. As we have to wait fro the calendar fix anyway.

    I think this post should move up to sticky on the top. And this is not a joke.
    Last edited by John Siu; 03-31-2011 at 09:35 PM.

  5. #5
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    Any news on how the licensing issue resolved? Or if they are resolve yet?

  6. #6
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    Yes, it is finally solved... although I had to *buy* a new license... and I couldn't get my partner discount and had to pay the "public" price...

  7. #7
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    Default It's happening again!

    I thought that I would had to deal with this again next year...

    For good or bad, the licenses were exhausted and we had to buy 25 more...

    Two weeks have passed, the customer is using now GMail with their new employees... And no licenses yet...

    The distributor took one week to tell us that they needed the final customer name... The next day they asked for the purchase order from the end customer... A day after they said the PO was not valid, because there was not amount... A day after they asked for a PO from us... The day after they refused to issue the license because the end customer had bought a license a few years ago and didn't renew (thus expired)...

    I believe tomorrow they will ask me to wear red pants with the Zimbra logo on it, otherwise they would not sell me a license...

    Last time it took more than one month to solve this - can you afford one month of downtime?????

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ldomingues View Post
    I thought that I would had to deal with this again next year...

    For good or bad, the licenses were exhausted and we had to buy 25 more...

    Two weeks have passed, the customer is using now GMail with their new employees... And no licenses yet...

    The distributor took one week to tell us that they needed the final customer name... The next day they asked for the purchase order from the end customer... A day after they said the PO was not valid, because there was not amount... A day after they asked for a PO from us... The day after they refused to issue the license because the end customer had bought a license a few years ago and didn't renew (thus expired)...

    I believe tomorrow they will ask me to wear red pants with the Zimbra logo on it, otherwise they would not sell me a license...

    Last time it took more than one month to solve this - can you afford one month of downtime?????
    ldomingues have you reached out to you Zimbra business partner contact or are you working only through a distributor?

  9. #9
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    Well, we have contacted Zimbra and they assigned us this distributor... We don't have a business contact, although I've emailed one Zimbra employee that helped sort things out last time, his name is Carlos.

  10. #10
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    It took me half a month to renew one of my customer's licenses! We rolled right into the "Server license expired" period and myself and the IT department looked like fools.

    I went round and round in circles with our distributor, TechData who first said they needed a contract number (a what? zimbra never had this) before they could process. Then they kept asking for the end customer's user info... which I emailed them three times! (The info was even in one of the reply emails to me asking for it!)

    Then I was told I would have to submit back a Quote that was sent to the End customer by VMware... Another asinine process which I was told I had to wait for and has Nothing to do with Zimbra licensing...

    All this until I finally got a hold of a different "vmware" license department (apparently who don't talk to one another) I finally got things resolved.

    Horrible.... Horrible... Horrible... Horrible.!

    I thought vmware buying Zimbra was a good thing. Now I am questioning...

    -Cheers, Peter.

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