Terrible Experience with Auslogics

I just had a terrible experience with Auslogics. If you are not familiar with them, they make an excellent tool for defragmenting hard drives (faster and better than the Windows native tools) (edit:) a popular but possibly malware-ridden disk defragmenter.1 They also make a product called BoostSpeed, which cleans up various things on computers that slow them down, such as excessive temporary files, broken registry entries left by programs that installed or uninstalled themselves incorrectly, broken shortcuts, and so on.

In January 2013, my (now dead) laptop was having some serious performance problems, so I decided to try out BoostSpeed. I downloaded the then-current version (5) and tried the free tools. They worked well, so I decided to pay $49.95 for the full version. It worked fairly well over the last year, although I am not entirely convinced how much better it was than the free version. It was hard to tell, because my computer was clearly having some hardware issues at the same time.

Last month, I got an email stating that my annual subscription was about to renew for $49.95. Because my experience so far had been good enough, I decided to let it renew. On January 16, it did. On January 28, my laptop finally bit the dust, or at least I called the time of death after a long struggle against the inevitable. I began installing my daily-use software on a different computer. Naturally, I figured I would download BoostSpeed again, enter my subscription key, and be on my way.

Come to find out, there is now a new version out, BoostSpeed 6. It also sells for $49.95 for a one-year subscription, but my BoostSpeed 5 key, renewed less than 2 weeks earlier, doesn’t work in BoostSpeed 6. In fact, there’s not even a link to download BoostSpeed 5 from the Auslogics website anymore. They did, however, offer to let me upgrade my 12-day old subscription for an additional $9.95.

So, time to contact the company. The Auslogics “Contact Us” page, however, is absurd:

Auslogics Contact Screen
Auslogics Contact Screen — apparently, customers have never needed to contact the company.

The “technical support” link is no help; it’s just a canned set of questions and answers, and clicking any link that implies an opportunity to contact the company just takes you back to the absurd contact form above.

Auslogics Technical Support Page
Auslogics Technical Support Page — do they even know that customers might have real questions?

At this point, I got fairly fed up and filled out the contact form with the following message late on Saturday night:

Less than 2 weeks ago, you charged me full price ($49.95 + tax) for a one-year renewal of my subscription to BoostSpeed 5. A couple of days ago, my computer died, so I am setting up a new computer. I downloaded BoostSpeed 6, only to realize that my license key doesn’t work with BoostSpeed 6.

Now, you want me to pay you $9.95 to upgrade to version 6, when the non-upgrade price for the new version is exactly the same as what you just charged me for an outdated version. That’s absurd and, frankly, offensive. Why did you charge me for an outdated version if there is a new version available for the same price?

On top of that, I cannot find a link anywhere on your site that lets me contact you with either sales or technical questions; I just get a database of canned questions and answers.

I am currently extremely frustrated with your company and your product. My hope is that you will make this right by upgrading my subscription to version 6 without charge. If not, I will be cancelling my subscription and warning others to avoid doing business with your company, as I consider my experience thus far to be unacceptably bad.

I received this response this morning (February 4):

Dear Ed,
Thank you for your email.

On Jan 18, 2013 16:54 you purchased Auslogics BoostSpeed and during the purchase you subscribed for an automatic annual subscription renewal. That’s why now, one year after your purchase, you were charged automatically for a license for one more year.

If you don’t want to renew the license, we can provide you an immediate refund of the automatic renewal.

Thank you!

Obviously, no one read my message; this was either a canned, automatic response by a computer (likely) or a canned, automatic response by an incompetent individual who couldn’t be bothered to read even a couple of sentences (also, sadly, pretty likely).

I loathe doing business with companies that are incompetent and treat customers as an inconvenience, when they bother to acknowledge customers at all. I absolutely refuse to do business with companies that charge customers for obsolete products, refuse to make even the obsolete product available to their paying customers, and demand a ransom payment if the customer wants to avoid being ripped off.

I have cancelled my subscription and demanded a refund.  We’ll see how long the “immediate refund” takes. They have a little bit of a grace period simply because they are based in Australia; after that I’m challenging the charge with my credit card company.

Update: This morning (February 5), I received this message:

Dear Ed,

I am really sorry for the confusion. This message is to confirm that we have received your refund request and the refund process has been initiated. Please allow some time for the money to reach your account, which usually happens within 1 to 5 business days. You will be receiving a separate confirmation message from our authorized vendor Avangate, who actually processes the transaction.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me if I could be of more assistance.

Thank you!

Get our brand new PC speed up eBook «Turbo Windows – The Ultimate PC Speed Up Guide» for free now!
http://www.auslogics.com/turbo-windows/

This offer is a “thank you” for being an Auslogics customer. “Turbo Windows” is also available as a paperback on Amazon.com: http://www.auslogics.com/turbo-windows/amazon/

Best regards,
Alexandra Pokhylko

So, that’s promising.

1 Edit 4/15/2015: I used to recommend this tool, but I cannot anymore. Chrome and a number of antivirus and firewall programs seem to detect a Trojan in it. I personally cannot say whether it does or does not contain malware, but I no longer feel comfortable recommending it and have uninstalled it from my machines.

6 Replies to “Terrible Experience with Auslogics”

  1. Version 6 seems to be a scam… it’s rooted with IE launches on hover and links instead of using the default browser. The new download of the defrag comes with 3 pieces of sneakware. And they’re removed all reference to version 5 from the public website.

    Fortunately for us, whomever bought them out lacks the wit to clear out the rest. The download link for version 5 still works:
    (in case the comment filters the link it’s on the auslogics site under the path:
    /en/downloads/boost-speed/5/
    and filename:
    boost-speed-setup.exe
    )

    http://www.auslogics.com/en/downloads/boost-speed/5/boost-speed-setup.exe

    I’m rolling back to version 5 and demanding a refund. I no longer trust this company to provide updates or new products. Shame, the old Auslogics was pretty solid.

  2. Hi Ed;

    As an attorney, and in your research, have you ever been able to find anything about the people that run Auslogics? Are there any or is this being run by some secret or secretive society?

    Personally, I do not trust companies who do not publish the names of the people who run them.

    Who is Auslogics?

    What does Auslogics actually do? Do they gather information about the computers that they service through “back door” programs?

    Who are the managers, programmers, specialists, etc. at Auslogics? Why is no one ever recognized? Is this not strange?

    Who owns Auslogics? Is it owned by non-Australians? If so whom? If Russians or Chinese or Al Qaida or ISIS, should we not know about it before we entrust the very essence of our computers to them?

    Why the secrecy of Auslogics?

    Maybe these are questions we should ask ourselves. If they indeed have 10 million users, this is serious!

    Regards,

    Walter Prochorenko
    Maywood NJ

    1. Walter, I have not investigated any details of the company’s owners, officers, or employees. These are all fair questions to ask of any software, but I do not have any answers with respect to Auslogics.

  3. Why would anyone pay money for Defrag when you can use the best on most Windows programs. Also there are so many free defrags out there bundled with other products that paying for one seems like throwing money away.

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