Posted by: Anonymous Coward
on August 30, 2006 04:29 AM
All of their data was backed up - Rob said so in the article. In theory, there's no need to back up the application itself (as long as the configuration info was backed up or otherwise recorded manually). They had the original install media.
The only mistake the IT manager made was either (a)assuming that, under his current maintenance contract, he could call the vendor and get a new installation key, or (b) possibly forgetting that the install key was a one-time key, and you have to get a new one each time you re-install the software - a very poor practice by the software vendor, since you have a higher likelyhood of support calls with each sale.
It is possible that the software vendor, when it phased out support of the older version of the application, tried to get the customer to upgrade at a reasonable price, but was turned down. The article doesn't get into that. However, the vendor apparently continued extend an annual maintenance contract to the customer for a price. Either way - the customer was right and the software vendor unethical - and possibly guilty of violating local or state laws regarding the selling of a support contract with no material support behind it...