Considered by many to be genuinely a "fine product", AtGuard was a
personal firewall, privacy retainer, ad blocker, pop-up killer, and bandwidth
saver rolled into one easy to use product. AtGuard technology will be used in
Symantec's upcoming Norton Internet Security 2000 suite, which has no announced
release date. WRQ will stop selling AtGuard at then end of today, November
22nd, and will stop supporting the product December 22nd. Naturally, registered
users of AtGuard are concerned about how the deal will affect them.
Others, are downright ticked. "Words just don't describe how purely
angry I am at WRQ's decision to pass AtGuard on to Symantec," Says Tom Gilmore,
a user. "WRQ blew it, in the most despicable fashion possible."
"How could WRQ sell me AtGuard just a week ago knowing FULL WELL they
were discontinuing support for the product? I have been lied to by WRQ and will
promptly be reversing the charges on my credit card for this now useless
product," writes Wes Salmon.
When asked what support will be offered when the deal is complete,
Symantec Customer Service agent K.A. Lalsingh said "WRQ technology in our own
products and WRQ's discontinuation announcement does not affect our licensing
agreement. WRQ retained all rights to AtGuard and its AtGuard customers and
have made no arrangement with us to assume support of AtGuard."
However, those who have already invested their $30 USD into AtGuard may not
be completely out of luck. WRQ had provided a user-forum for customers to
request technical support, share their tips, ideas, and solutions with fellow
users of AtGuard. So upon hearing that the forums would be closed, Tom Rapid,
AtGuard customer, took the initiative of creating his own community forum for
folks who had been abandoned by WRQ. "I didn't want to lose this information
source," Rapid told eFront.
Is this another example where a "fine software product" will stay alive
only as a memory? It appears for the time being, that there are no answers on
the horizon. "Due to this product not being available for sale as yet, we
cannot make further comments," Symantec support told us. Perhaps the only
solution for now, is to wait.