Why won't XenForo let me trial its software?

and2

New member
Good evening

I will have the pleasure of bringin a vBulleting 4.2.5 forum into the year 2021 by migrating to a different forums software. I preselected two forums, one of those is XenForo. So I created an online demo, clicked a bit around and found that it could be a good fit - but obviously, I need to trial it in depth with the data of my existing forum and to see how easy migration is going to be which is a big decision factor for me.

Now while my forum with 4.100+ users and roughly 250k posts might not be the biggest on the planet, it is big enough to properly check stuff out before buying a new software.

So I wrote to XenForo support asking whether I could get a proper trial. Friendly but not helpful "Paul" told me that this is not possible. I explained my situation and why I need to trial it and his response was that XenForo has been installed thousands of times including migrations of huge forums, so I should bugger off.

Which is not just really bad customer service, it is also a very bad idea. Because the OTHER software forum SEND me their actual software for a trial and in this way I learned after spending several evenings trying to get their migration tool to work how painful it is. This is also a very popular software so why should XenForo be any better? After this experience, I will certainly not accept "Pauls" wise words for granted.

So why exactly is XenForo not helpful in presales, why should I buy it if post-sales support certainly wont be better and how on earth can I see how easy I can migrate my vBulletin to XenForo?

A very frustrated non-customer

Andreas
 
Solution
We maintain a reasonable refund policy. We have never refused a refund to anyone who has had insurmountable issues with the software be that through issues with migration or other technical issues that we were unable to solve.

To be clear, people stealing the software do not get better support. They get no support whatsoever.

We don’t offer a trial version and the sheer majority of forum software companies do not because once the software has been downloaded there is no feasible way to expire the software.

But in spite of that, we’re also one of the very few companies that do offer a refund policy at all if the software has been downloaded.

So, if you like the software, buy it and if things don’t go to plan we’ll be here to help and...

New Joe

Well-known member
Xenforo is a proven Forum software which has been tried and tested for years, with many sites migrating to it from many different platforms.

Once you go with Xenforo you never look back, i was a huge VB person with a few big Forums running on VB and sat on the fence before switching and paying for an Xenforo licence.

I didn't bother with a demo, just went for it, plenty of help along the way from this Forum, basically once I'd bought it I cloned my DB and did some 'test' runs with upgrading making sure there were no problems and such and getting used to it all before doing the live upgrade.

No reason at all for Xenforo to offer a 'free' real trail of their software, it is what it is, the best Forum software at a good price out there.
 

and2

New member
New Joe: Sorry but this answer is again not helpful. Is your name Paul by any chance?

You are stating how great XenForo is and how easy migration is. Fine. I want to believe it. But this is what everyone is saying. Why not prove it?

What do I do if I spend 160 USD and have the same problems with migration which takes away days of my time?

Where is the problem in providing the software as other do?

I have a reasonable request as a potential customer and get ignored and people stealing the software get better support.

What should I make of that?
 

Chris D

XenForo developer
Staff member
We maintain a reasonable refund policy. We have never refused a refund to anyone who has had insurmountable issues with the software be that through issues with migration or other technical issues that we were unable to solve.

To be clear, people stealing the software do not get better support. They get no support whatsoever.

We don’t offer a trial version and the sheer majority of forum software companies do not because once the software has been downloaded there is no feasible way to expire the software.

But in spite of that, we’re also one of the very few companies that do offer a refund policy at all if the software has been downloaded.

So, if you like the software, buy it and if things don’t go to plan we’ll be here to help and make sure you’re not out of pocket if we’re unable to.
 
Solution

and2

New member
THAT is a helpful answer, thank you Chris. It might have been a good idea to tell me this when I contacted support instead of telling me to get lost.

Please DM me the details of the refund policy, thank you.

Andreas
 

Chris D

XenForo developer
Staff member
THAT is a helpful answer, thank you Chris. It might have been a good idea to tell me this when I contacted support instead of telling me to get lost.
Just to be clear, and for the avoidance of doubt, at no point were you told to “get lost” or “bugger off”.

Our interactions with all customers are polite and professional at all times.

We also made it clear that we would be there for you if you needed it. While a refund policy was not mentioned - it’s really not something that is needed with respect to the import system - it was made clear to you that support would be there.

If you proceed and you need support you can seek support from the forums here or by submitting a ticket.
 

Tracy Perry

Well-known member
Where is the problem in providing the software as other do?

I have a reasonable request as a potential customer and get ignored and people stealing the software get better support.

What should I make of that?
IPS doesn't supply a demo version
Wotlab (WBB) doesn't supply a demo version. They do have a "blog like" front end that is free, but it doesn't contain the actual Forum part of the package. This may be the "German" software you are referring to.
VBulletin doesn't supply a demo version.

I have licenses for all 3 and so have direct knowledge with what they offer the "new" customer. You pays your money, you gets your software with all 3 of them. IPS won't even consider refunding your money once you've placed the order, much less having downloaded it, even if you have "unsolvable" technical issues. Xenforo goes further than they do with that aspect.

So, care to tell me exactly what paid script supplies a downloadable demo version?

AndI I seriously doubt that Paul told you to "bugger off". He can be a somewhat abrupt at times, but I've never seen him be impolite and tell someone to get stuffed/bugger off/get lost. All my Xenforo related dealings with him have been extremely professional.

Generally most serious issues are handled via ticket (and normally timely during the normal working hours). You can get further assistance from many forum members by posting in the corresponding area for issues, sometimes even faster than submitting a ticket.
One script I have doesn't even go that far. You want assistance, you HAVE to submit a ticket. They won't even contemplate giving assistance on their support forum (unlike you can get here), and at times it appears that it is frowned upon for others to provide assistance there (IPS I'm looking at you).
 

TheGroove

Active member
Just to be clear, and for the avoidance of doubt, at no point were you told to “get lost” or “bugger off”.

Our interactions with all customers are polite and professional at all times.

We also made it clear that we would be there for you if you needed it. While a refund policy was not mentioned - it’s really not something that is needed with respect to the import system - it was made clear to you that support would be there.

If you proceed and you need support you can seek support from the forums here or by submitting a ticket.
I'll just add that I've had nothing but professional and courteous service here. I even installed one of their applications on a server that couldn't handle it and was offered a full refund even though it was my own fault, it was above and beyond.
 

and2

New member
IPS doesn't supply a demo version
Wotlab (WBB) doesn't supply a demo version. They do have a "blog like" front end that is free, but it doesn't contain the actual Forum part of the package. This may be the "German" software you are referring to.
VBulletin doesn't supply a demo version.

I have licenses for all 3 and so have direct knowledge with what they offer the "new" customer. You pays your money, you gets your software with all 3 of them. IPS won't even consider refunding your money once you've placed the order, much less having downloaded it, even if you have "unsolvable" technical issues. Xenforo goes further than they do with that aspect.

So, care to tell me exactly what paid script supplies a downloadable demo version?

AndI I seriously doubt that Paul told you to "bugger off". He can be a somewhat abrupt at times, but I've never seen him be impolite and tell someone to get stuffed/bugger off/get lost. All my Xenforo related dealings with him have been extremely professional.

Generally most serious issues are handled via ticket (and normally timely during the normal working hours). You can get further assistance from many forum members by posting in the corresponding area for issues, sometimes even faster than submitting a ticket.
One script I have doesn't even go that far. You want assistance, you HAVE to submit a ticket. They won't even contemplate giving assistance on their support forum (unlike you can get here), and at times it appears that it is frowned upon for others to provide assistance there (IPS I'm looking at you).
I simply asked Woltlab and they did provide me a full demo version as in a zip file for the installer. I also dont get the problem with it - it can be very easily managed via license key, no?

I am not going to quote private e-mail correspondance here, but Paul told me to bugger off. Not in this exact words of course but in contrast to Chris, he did not provide a solution but left me standing alone in the rain which made me obviously not just upset but heavily doubting XenForo as a company. Normally, when I receive so bad service in presales, I run away.

Anyway, since Chris provided a pragmatic solution, I will gladly accept it, buy the forum and hope all goes so well which has been promised :)

Andreas
 

and2

New member
The ticket ID is XF-1B6585CE - if you feel you need to post our conversation please do, but please retract my e-mail adress and full name.

For me the issue is resolved and I am now investing my time in installing XenForo.

Thank you.
 

Tracy Perry

Well-known member
I simply asked Woltlab and they did provide me a full demo version as in a zip file for the installer. I also dont get the problem with it - it can be very easily managed via license key, no?
Since 2014 I know they don't normally provide a free download since they have no real control over it after it is made available.

Screen Shot 2021-08-06 at 12.55.41 AM.png

And their current stance on downloadable demos:

Screen Shot 2021-08-06 at 12.56.18 AM.png

There are no call-backs to stop the software from running, unlike what IPS has in it's code (which can still be defeated by hackers).
The code is also not obscured... so what you would download would be the same as what you would buy. What would be the point of buying it once you had a copy of it would be many peoples outlook.
 

FTL

Active member
@and2 I get your concerns about migration which are quite valid when you're evaluating a new product.

All I can say, is that Chris has accurately described the great level of customer support that you can expect from XenForo the company. I'm a relatively new user myself, have logged a couple of support tickets and also posted for help on the forums several times, all with great results. Therefore, I'm confident that you'll get the same level of service should you run into migration problems.

XF is great, you won't regret it. :cool:
 

Emre

Well-known member
We maintain a reasonable refund policy. We have never refused a refund to anyone who has had insurmountable issues with the software be that through issues with migration or other technical issues that we were unable to solve.

To be clear, people stealing the software do not get better support. They get no support whatsoever.

We don’t offer a trial version and the sheer majority of forum software companies do not because once the software has been downloaded there is no feasible way to expire the software.

But in spite of that, we’re also one of the very few companies that do offer a refund policy at all if the software has been downloaded.

So, if you like the software, buy it and if things don’t go to plan we’ll be here to help and make sure you’re not out of pocket if we’re unable to.
This is an excellent reason to buy xenForo (y) Once again, my endless thanks to the xenForo developer team who worked on the entire development and upgrade process. 🙏
 

and2

New member
I must say that I am impressed. Where I spent several afternoons and evenings trying to get the migration done with another forum software, with XenForo, the whole migration took me 30 minutes and went flawlessly as far as I can tell so far.

Obviously there is fine tuning to be made but it seems like it was not marketing bla bla after all :)

Great job! (y)
 
Top