Let me start by saying I am not purposely assuming or attacking you in any way. I am just providing some thoughts to this thread. So if you take anything in offense personally, don’t.
I see where you are coming from and I can understand that you feel pressured by commercial modules. But to think that we are somehow compromising the Open Source aspect of FreePBX is what gets our staff upset. I am the one replying to this because I’m the one currently doing the most Open Source work for the company at this current time. We have FreePBX 12 coming out soon with a completely overhauled backend which is completely open source along with the complete rewrite of User Control Panel which is also free and open source. So to say there is diminishing support of the free modules is baffling to me. I am the only one who knows the code of Endpoint Manager inside and out no body else knows anything about it in the company which makes it hard for other people to work on or provide support for. So we have started saying up front that we do not support the OSS Endpoint Manager. So I apologize that you think we are forcing more paid products into the mix. In the last year and a half we have release closed source versions of Park Pro, Class of Service, High Availability and the FreePBX Phone Apps as commercial modules. Phone Apps is Free. and as for Free and Open Source code we have released Parking (completely rewritten, bugs fixed), Motif, User Manager (soon), User Control Panel [html5,mobile,table,desktop,streaming] (soon), Support for PJSIP from Asterisk and supporting a new object layer into freepbx that is slowly replacing all of the old code from 7 years ago and fix numerous bugs and added a bunch of features back, including a feature which you clamored for which was the fix to the extensions page so that you could have an ATA without a sip secret (and yes it’s in 2.11 code base). To me it seems like you are upset that you feel pressured to buy things from a product to which you feel should be completely free. Those are your thoughts to have (and if I am wrong I am sorry for assuming that).
I also wrote that “sales” line out of my own judgement (without any company involvement) because it’s the truth. It’s not sales jargon. The guy who works on the Commercial Version puts in about 30 hours a week on it. The OSS one could have the same amount of love if I desired to never sleep again. My role with Schmoozecom is the Open Source guy, I do the open source programing of FreePBX, my thoughts have always been would you rather see OSS improve for free or FreePBX improve…for free, but people don’t see the underlying changes or the over 500 commits to FreePBX framework alone in 12. They just see what they want to see and when they feel wronged they will comment and post about it (just look at yelp.com) when they feel righted they won’t say a word. We’ve (as Schmoozecom) invested a lot of money into making FreePBX better since we purchased the trademark in Feb 2013, and long before that as the sponsor of the project and we will continue to invest in FreePBX open source. I have a few awesome ideas of free things I want to get in there as well.
But I do take offense when I read that someone thinks we are diminishing our support of the “Free” stuff for the commercial stuff. Yes we have quite often told people to go buy the commercial endpoint manager when they are using the OSS one, however I can’t think of one single other module where we have done that (Like someone saying “parking doesn’t work” and then us saying “well go buy parking pro”). Tony always says that about the OSS one because he knows that people get confused about it and they want it to support more phones and that they get upset it doesn’t. Tony just wants people to realize that there is no support for the product and that it has a limited subset of phone support and also that no one really reads the descriptions of these modules (well maybe you, and thats good). Endpoint Management is a money pit and maybe third lane has it figured out but I don’t know. I’ve worked for two companies that do Endpoint Managers for their products and internally they both said they were losing money on the service. So if they are loosing money when attempting to actually create revenue out of it because of the hours put into it then you can only imagine the time and effort someone has to put into it who already has a full time job.
The reason Aastra firmware v3 is not included is because people found it buggy and it would crash their phones, around this time is when I had to make the decision if I was going to keep updating included firmwares and if I did update the aastra stuff then some peoples phones would crash, if I didn’t then people would be upset. The same problem has presented itself with Yealink where there are two different firmwares and configuration files and if you send the wrong type of configuration file then the phone bricks and you have to send it in to yealink. It’s a never ending battle. All the aastra firmware package does is drop the same file you “claim” to have placed into tftpboot, it doesn’t do anything magical, it just drops the files straight into the tftpboot directory so you could uninstall the firmware package provided by OSS and place all of your own firmware in the same directory (/tftpboot). There are not configuration changes to be made.
I also apologize that you feel you gave us support money without any result. I see three tickets from you, the last one was on 10 February 2012 and I only see one monetary transaction in 2011 where you purchased support for $695 for 5 hours. The first ticket was a quote for services because you couldn’t login to our support panel because you had cookies turned off because your employer requires them to be off. In the next ticket you refused to give our technicians SSH access to your machines and instead stated that we must do all work through a web sharing session. Our Terms of Service at the time clearly stated we needed SSH and it seems as though you went back and forth between our technicians about how you couldn’t do that and then there was an email exchange problem where you weren’t getting our replies and eventually someone from your company called Tony direct and it seems Tony answered his or her questions and the ticket was closed (so it seems as though information was provided?). You also seemed to have gotten upset several times with our automated no response ticket closing mechanism thinking that we were closing it when we weren’t. Many companies automatically close tickets after no response for x amount of days. The third ticket is hard to see if there was an outcome because from what I can see Scott and Tony had a conference call with you about the Aastra scripts and their usage in regards to your phones and your call setup and how it was not functioning and there seems to be some argument going on there however there were conference calls made. So it appears as though you and your staff are frustrated or upset with the services we have provided to you through support. I can’t comment further on those tickets without having been involved but I did need to clear the air as to you saying you paid for support twice and gained no result from it because it appears to be a little different from what I am seeing.
We can keep going back and forth here, over and over and over. But we’ve clearly wronged you in some way and you seem to feel that you should be getting more out of a free product than you are getting and that’s a fair assumption, but to then counter by saying you are leaving FreePBX to go to a closed sourced provider because (loosely) we keep pushing commercial modules and the “free” part of FreePBX is diminishing and our support costs are high seems strange. You are going closed source because you feel wronged by open source?
I’m also going to lock this thread. Not so you can’t reply (you can PM me if you want) but so that this doesn’t turn into a worse flame argue war than it already is. I answered your question about the Aastra firmware straight up and there is nothing more to talk about in regards to that.