I’m as perturbed as most Stuffit users will be. It seems like just a few months ago when Stuffit 8.0 hit the streets. I upgraded from 7.0 and regretted it right away. Bugs. Plenty.
So, I went back to Stuffit Standard (yes, I had Deluxe, but it caused so much grief that I went with the “free” shareware version until 8.0.2 came out) and didn’t regret that decision.
Stuffit Standard 8.0.2 has been working fine for most of my needs for, I guess, about a year. It just doesn’t seem like it.
Most of my archives the past year have come via Mac OS X’s built in .zip file (which Stuffit unzips; I think—it happens so fast it’s hard to tell). No, there’s not much in the way of features with the built-in .zip and for most users, that’s probably OK.
I can’t speak for most users so let me expand my own horizon and recognize a handful of basic facts of Mac life.
This one is hard to deny. For some reason we expect dramatic changes and little, if any, difference in cost. Yet, we don’t have a problem plunking down over $100 for Jaguar, then Panther, and certainly Tiger. Somehow we think we’re getting more for the extra money.
Profits Are Important
With the exception of Adobe, I don’t see too many Mac developers making money hand over fist. I buy plenty of shareware, too. The fact that some developers have been around for many years indicates they’re doing at least OK. Allume (used to be Aladdin) has been doing Stuffit for awhile.
New Features Are Expected
If there’s enough of an improvement, or there’s buckets more features, we’re not inclined to grumble. Much. Some grumbled at having to pay $50 for iLife. That’s an absolute bargain unless you’re from another planet or dimension.
How Does Stuffit Deluxe Score?
Frankly, it depends. It hasn’t scored well enough for me to part with the $30.00 upgrade fee from Deluxe 8.0. That should tell you something. To be fair, my “archive” needs are nominal compared to some, and that’s obviously where Allume is headed with Stuffit Deluxe 9.0.
What You Get
Don’t you love advertising? On TV it entertains us. On radio, it entertains us. In print, we look for the ad bargains. On the web, it’s mostly annoying.
“Will I upgrade? Probably. Not right away, though. Version 9.0.2 looks real promising.”I’d like to think that advertising for a new product would contain beneficial information about the product’s features and benefits. Instead, here’s what Allume posted on VersionTracker:
Now they’ve got me scared. Maybe they don’t know that the term “completely redesigned” bothers some Mac users. Yes, I know that needs to happen from time to time. Mac OS 9 “leaped” to the completely redesigned (kinda, unless you count NeXT, NeXT Step, et al) Mac OS X.
Over a dozen new features? For $80.00? Only $30.00 with the upgrade? Wait. That’s less than $3.00 per new feature for me.
So, why am I probably NOT going to upgrade right away?
Bugs. Allume’s talented engineers are probably good guys working hard to make a solid, dependable product. But I was burned with their “new” products with Stuffit Deluxe 7.0, and burned again with Deluxe 8.0, and this one is completely rewritten? I think it’s time to avoid the hat trick and sit on the sidelines for awhile.
Regardless, if you take the plunge and pickup Stuffit 9.0, here’s what you can expect for your trouble. And I mean that in a nice way.
Matthew Covington, Senior Product Manager at Allume in a press release:
What most Mac users may not know is that StuffitX (notice the little “X” on the end) is an archive file format from Allume that’s pretty nifty. Compression is good, security is good, compression and decompression are faster than ever.
Those are good things, right? The answer is “yes.”
Before you jump right into Stuffit Deluxe 9.0 give consideration to what your archive needs really are. If you gotta have StuffitX (many consider it very superior to .zip), then it’s the upgrade path for you.
If you’re always moving all kinds of files around; Stuffit, StuffitX, .zip, .tar and others, Mac, Windows, Unix, Linux, then Stuffit Deluxe is a more than decent choice. One interface, many uses. I see a $30 value in that.
There’s more. If you’re a dual CPU PowerMac user you’ll see speed increases as Stuffit 9.0 is not multi-processor friendly. You can’t say that about all Mac utilities.
Now, we’re down to one I like. I won’t use it right away. But I like it.
Archive directly to CDs, DVDs, or even FTP to a remote site or server. Segmentation is built in so if your archive will take up the space of five CDs, Stuffit will “break” the content appropriately and re-assemble it appropriately later.
As I trolled various sites tonight searching for user feedback I wasn’t disappointed. Surprised, maybe. “Stuffit is reaching (or has reached) the point of diminishing returns.”
Multi-tasking in the Finder. That’s worth more than a few bucks alone. “I can’t stand having to sit and wait for my large files to stuff/unstuff while not being able to user the finder. This feature by itself is a reason to pay the $30 upgrade fee,” wrote one reader on MacDailyNews.
It’s tough to argue with that. Response has been mixed so far. Heavy disappointment by Mac users who’ve been burned by too frequent Stuffit upgrades that came with new features and new bugs.
Yet, some of these features are very good, far exceeding the capability of Mac OS X’s built in .zip archive function.
Will I upgrade? Probably. Not right away, though. Version 9.0.2 looks real promising.