What the New Year Holds for Jungle Disk

We hope you had happy holidays and are raring to go in 2013! It’s been a busy past month at Jungle Disk and we want to update you on our progress.

We Hear You

Over the past month we have been busy working on our renewed commitment to you, our customers. We sent our first-ever customer feedback survey out to half of the Jungle Disk customer base on December 5th and we are now analyzing the responses. We will discuss the findings in coming weeks, once the results are tabulated, but at a high level, the responses were extremely polarized. We received a large number of positive responses from those of you who love the service and would highly recommend it to your friends or colleagues. We also received a large number of negative responses from some of you who would not recommend Jungle Disk because of our lack of communication, dearth of visible product development, and the absence of live customer support. We’ve found this feedback very useful, and we’re addressing each of the critiques mentioned here in our new plans for the product.  We realize it will take time and hard work to win back the customers we have disappointed, but that is our goal as a team.

Introducing Our New CTO

A big focus of ours has been building out the Jungle Disk team and we are pleased to introduce Trey Fischer (trey@jungledisk.com) who has come onboard to lead all technical and operational efforts for the Jungle Disk product. You can think of him as our de-facto CTO. Trey has been at Rackspace for 9 years and is one of the most talented and highly regarded Rackers at the company (at Rackspace, we call ourselves “Rackers”). Having worked on the “front lines” in the dedicated hosting business supporting one of Rackspace’s larger customers, and leading the Windows Support environment for Rackspace’s Managed Cloud product, he has seen it all and is going to be huge asset to the Jungle Disk team.

In his latest role Trey has been intimately involved with the customer support of the new Rackspace Cloud Backup product, the next generation of the Jungle Disk backup product which is currently available to Rackspace customers for backing up Cloud Servers, and which we are looking to roll out to Jungle Disk customers this year. You can expect to hear more from Trey as he engages with technical topics here on the blog.

Back to Basics

We are going to introduce a “Best Practices” series of posts on the blog. Written by our customer support technicians, these posts will provide explanations and walkthroughs for common uses of the Jungle Disk product, such as setting up a Backup Vault or best practices for using the Network Drive with a team in your organization. Following these best practices can ensure smooth functioning of the product. Although these practices may be basic stuff for the more experienced among you, and a number of these gems already exist in our customer support forums (http://support.jungledisk.com/forums), we think the blog will be a good place to showcase updated versions of these practices to help you use Jungle Disk successfully. Stay tuned and expect to see this series kick-off in a couple of weeks.

As highlighted previously we want to hear from you, our customers. We encourage you to share your thoughts with us at feedback@jungledisk.com.

 

Huw Edwards

General Manager, Jungle Disk

huw@jungledisk.com

  • claykin

    Great. Thanks for keeping us in the loop. That said, what criteria was used when selecting the half of your customer base that received the survey? Being an early adopter, I would have liked to be part of the half involved in the survey. Unfortunately I was not. Hope you got some real world useful data from the half surveyed.

    • Huw Edwards

      We ordered the customer base chronologically (based on when they signed up) and surveyed every other customer. We then analyzed to ensure this was a representative sample – by product type, customer type, age of customer etc. I’m sorry you missed out this time but we’ll be surveying customers again in around 3 months time.
      You can always provide feedback to us at feedback@jungledisk.com if you have something specific you’d like to share now. The more feedback we get the better!

      • http://twitter.com/bluesix Craig Stump

        Ordered chronologically will skew the results and is not a representative sample.

        • http://www.facebook.com/peterfine Peter Fine

          I’d be interested to know why it skews the results if you don’t mind posting more information?

        • Huw Edwards

          I’m going to investigate this with our survey team and revert to you with our feedback.

        • Huw Edwards

          Craig, can you provide more detail on why you don’t think this is a representative sample?

  • iancummings

    I don’t mean to be grumpy, but we had one of these announcements months ago. You said you realised you had neglected the customers and that it would change. Unless I am missing something you are saying the same again.

    You new product is for backing up cloud servers to the cloud – I am confused as to what this does and how it would target current JD customers like me. What I wanted was support for S3 RRS, some fix to the file syncing functionality that wasn’t reliable for open files unless everything was shut down, and some idea of what’s to come. If I could have some roadmap or list of things to come I might not buy Cloudberry. I don’t need hard dates, just Q1, Q2 would be close enough – teasing us with “it’ll be better soon” isn’t enough I’m afraid.

    BTW Why can’t I log in using my JD login to post rather than Disqus?

    • Huw Edwards

      Hi Ian, the goal of this post was to update you on what we’ve been up to over the past month, to introduce Trey and what is coming on the blog in the next couple of weeks.

      The first iteration of new products will be for Server Edition customers and for users of the Backup Vault for Workgroup/Desktop/SimplyBackup customers. Beyond that we plan to bring out new iterations of other components (e.g. Network Drive) but we don’t have details to provide at this stage hence why we haven’t drawn attention to them.

      We used Disqus to make it easier to respond directly to each individual comments. I’m sorry if this is an inconvenience.

      • iancummings

        Hi Huw, I know I said I don’t mean to be grumpy but my post did come over as very much that and I didn’t mean it to come across quite as bad as it did! I guess it’s just that I am keen to know what’s coming along as I am currently playing with Cloudberry and it looks good, but JD used to be great and I’m hoping it will be again. As a “grandfathered” buyer of JD I know you won’t get much more cash out of me so I have less right to demand features than those paying monthly so I will be more reasonable in future.
        The disqus comments are fine, I really was being grumpy then (it was late in the UK).

        • Huw Edwards

          No worries at all. It shows you care and right now we want honest feedback from our customers, old and new. I don’t have full answers to everything you and others are asking. But I’m trying to share what I can, be honest and make steady, if slow, progress. Thanks again for sharing so openly.

      • claykin

        Huw, its been a month. Please update us. You last mentioned “…what is coming on the blog in the next couple of weeks.”.

        • Huw Edwards

          Thanks for checking up on us. We have an update coming so thanks for your patience.

          • Russ Back

            Hi Huw.

            Recently signed up and having problems with the server edition and JD support already and this has lead to more digging to find rather concerning content online about JD’s service and support levels.

            I read this post with interest, and although you said you’d update in a couple of weeks, that was 2 months ago and no update?

          • Huw Edwards

            Hey Russ, I’m sorry you’ve been having trouble with the software and support. We just launched our Live Chat Support. Shall we add you to our Beta program?

          • Huw Edwards

            Hey Russ – I just tracked down your support ticket. Adding you to Live Chat to see if we can help with getting through your issues.

  • http://twitter.com/dilling Dave Illing

    If you’re really listening to your customers, I hope that means we can expect an Android application soon?!

    • Huw Edwards

      We have noted the clear feedback from customers like yourself requesting an Android app. We’re working on our mobile plans and we’ll let you know as soon as we have something concrete to announce.

  • Mike McCormack

    I was not part of the survey – I would have liked to know what you asked. I was an early adopter before you were bought. I would like ot have the app work better on multiple platforms . But I bought early before the subscription model and have the app for life so there is not more money coming from me.

    • Huw Edwards

      Hey Mike, I’m sorry you weren’t included in this first survey but I’m sure we’ll catch you on a future survey. We’d still like to hear your feedback: we were asking “How likely are you to recommend Jungle Disk to a colleague or friend? (on a scale of 1-low to 10-high)” and why? You can email us at feedback@jungledisk.com and we’ll look out for your feedback and include it in our analysis.

  • Adam Fomotor

    I left for cloud berry months ago

    • Huw Edwards

      We’re sorry to hear this but thank you for the feedback.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=643105322 Mark Harburn

    Huw, Bit disappointed that you
    never got back to me. However what I’d like to see in the product is as
    follows:

    - Seed Loads for large datasets (for us to upload from DC or to ship on disk)

    - Better handling of large data sets (100k files+) – i.e. multithreading

    - Better reseller pricing structure

    - Central Server management for resellers (i.e. multi-customer)

    - Faster auth time on payments, can take days to get a server license so we buy
    one in advance!

    - Automatic Job Breakup for large datasets (as not to crash out the program)

    - Andriod/Iphone etc = gimmicks not enterprise backup stuff. Should not be a
    core development feature. We want to backup whole servers not someone’s PC :)

    - Agent based backup for desktop PC’s back to central server for De-Dupe and
    upload

    - If a new direction a sync system like engyte, but fully working. Would need
    to be able to handle large datasets/sync with real local servers and have
    proper permissions and locking though.

    - Backup to competing products — WHY? Your pricing is one of the best
    available and legacy customers can use legacy products. I don’t want to backup
    to Amazon i want Rackspace with nice SLA’s.

    - Phone support not only for RS customers but jungledisk since their same
    thing. Why should i have an emergency billing ticket waiting to get answered
    when I want to put a client live there and then?

    - Full server backup images
    including the OS in a seed load with differentials (big job but love to have!)
    p.s. stuff the people that say online backup not for servers most enterprise’s
    have access to DC’s with Gig+ pipes nowadays.

    - Better failure reporting

    - I never got the survey either :p

    Sorry if i came standoffish to
    smaller scale users but at the end of the day enterprise is where the money is.
    The product is fine for small home users as is and the nice to have’s like
    andriod and iphone are on loads of products that are free. I think jungledisk
    should have a nice base product for home users still but core focus should be
    on enterprise to generate revenue for that development tree. I’m not saying
    don’t do it just there should be a focus on items that generate larger revenue
    and make for more uptake with enterprise customers.

    I think thats a good start!

    • Huw Edwards

      Hi Mark,

      Thanks for following up. I did some digging and your email was caught in our spam filter – thanks for drawing our attention to this.

      We really appreciate the detailed suggestions above – especially the focus on enterprise requirements. These resonate with the feedback/suggestions we’ve been receiving from other large customers.

      This is an excellent list – please continue to add as you have additional suggestions for us. Thank you again!

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=643105322 Mark Harburn

        Hi Huw, thats good news, just added one up top, UK DC (or rather since it’s global DC’s in correct areas i’m sure AU would like a DC in their area!)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=643105322 Mark Harburn

    forgot one, UK DC to reduce latency/speed up backup times + compliance :)

    • Huw Edwards

      Got it – thanks!

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=643105322 Mark Harburn

      doh, put this on the old post. Exchange, Sharepoint, SQL, Local backup device with local VM capability to keep servers running. Clear reseller vs consumer pricing to prevent customer poaching. White label etc isn’t so important to me but will be to others. I’d rather peg on the rackspace brand but get discounted rates so it’s like for like to the end user. (hell if you bill them direct like MS does for 365 and we get paid even better!)

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=643105322 Mark Harburn

        And (if possible) a simple DC migration path from USA RS to UK RS for existing large datasets.

        • Huw Edwards

          It was great speaking last week – keep the awesome feedback and suggestions coming!

  • Michael Zehrer

    Maybe you should just take action. This list could be helpful: http://petewarden.typepad.com/searchbrowser/2013/01/things-users-dont-care-about.html

    • Huw Edwards

      Thanks Michael. Duly noted.

  • Matthias

    Also how about the outstanding security issues (MD5 use of key derivation and lack of checksums/MAC for files) as described here over a year ago … http://www.daemonology.net/blog/2011-06-03-insecurity-in-the-jungle.html

  • Rob C

    I had hope JD was coming back. A new blog entry! A new twitter entry! Then all communication stopped again, going on a month now. False hope. How can these people be trusted (again)?

    • Huw Edwards

      Hey Rob, we appreciate you checking up on us. Right now we’re focused on action. But it’s largely behind the scenes, so we’re sorry that it seems to you like we’re not doing anything. We’re working on the code to address bugs in the products and working on improvements to the service we offer. Thanks for your response. It’s important that you hold us to a standard that you expect of us and let us know when we’re not meeting that.

  • Dave Bunting

    Before Rackspace bought it, Jungle Disk was BEAUTIFUL Webdav, operating PERFECTLY just like Apple’s iDisk.

    It was mounted on my desktop exactly the same as my startup drive, I had all my docs on it and edited them just exactly the same as docs on my startup drive, from any computer anywhere. No syncing or copying or endangering opening a non-current version or being vulnerable to theft by having the docs on any local computer. BEAUTIFUL!

    I liked it so much, was so certain it was the future of the internet, that I bought stock in Rackspace!!

    When you quit Webdav, I abandoned it and tried every other cloud storage system, but without success. I never found anything even close to old Jungle Disk = old Apple iDisk.

    How’s chances of bring Jungle Disk back to that real, perfect, super, beautiful Webdav capability?

    • Huw Edwards

      Hi Dave, thanks for your honest feedback. Jungle Disk supports WebDAV today – it’s the default for agents on Mac and it’s still available as an option for communicating with the network drive on Windows. Could you provide specific details on what you miss and are unable to do now that you could before? We’d love to understand this as our goal is to delight customers in the same way you were delighted with Jungle Disk initially.

  • Aaron Roydhouse

    We are also working on a new product to replace the current one (major update of Jungle Disk running on a new infrastructure and new software suite)

    That is good and bad news, good that this is ongoing development but bad that perhaps a stable 3.x product is to be replaced with, effectively, a 1.0 product. Plus as you say, there will be little maintenance to 3.x while development this new product no doubt runs later and later. I understand the typical developer urge to ‘start over’ but I hope it won’t be a step backward in terms of platform support or stability.

    Could the new CTO make some statement of commitment of the minimum capability of the 4.0 platform, e.g. commit to supporting at a minimum Linux and Windows servers, commit to management tools that work on (at least) Linux and Windows consoles. That is – if JD is going to become another Carbonite clone then it would be nice to be up front that that is the business plan.

  • reallyniceguy

    Four months later and still no updates apart from adding W8/WS2012 “support”. Really disappointing

    • Huw Edwards

      We launched our Live Chat Support today and we’ve been busy improving our infrastructure behind the scenes. Hope to have more for you soon.