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Not so long ago, I’ve posted about my poor experience with LiteSpeed support handling my ticket #945335. In short, I have an issue with directing custom error pages to a PHP script while also populating the redirect headers properly (as it turned out). Surprisingly (or maybe by coincidence) after I tagged their social profiles, where possible, they did reach out back to me in the ticket… And repeated the same kind of nonsense.

I took a deep breath and wasted lots of time, to teach the support how the application they support works through this YouTube video which does not just show the behavior itself, but also snippets of the logs (which were attached to the message in the ticket, too).

One would expect someone a support person to respond to the video, but… No. I’ve got ghosted. Again. As such, I am not just sharing the video in this post, but also link to the saved version of the ticket here. Because I believe, people choosing a webserver for their business need to know what kind of support they may get, if they choose LiteSpeed.

Do I sound annoyed and frustrated in some of my messages there? Yes, I do. As a paying customer, I may even have the right to, when what I am receiving is half-assed, at best. And no, I am not saying, that I am 100% sure, that the behavior I am experiencing is a bug, but if it’s not I would definitely want to hear a logical explanation why it is not, and why it is, indeed, beneficial to do things this way.

As I mention in the ticket, the same setup works perfectly in Apache, which LiteSpeed is supposed to be able to replace as “drop-in” solution. And it also works in the free version of the webserver, OpenLiteSpeed, too. Yes, they are different products, with their own flaws (which forced me to buy LSWS in the first place), but… Why is this quite basic feature different in LSWS? Support briefly mentions some redirects “protection”, is that really part of that “protection”? Does not look like it according to logs, and the way they do mention it sounds more like an assumption, a guess.

Furthermore, I am not even asking for a fix, let alone immediate fix. I’ve been on that side of the screen for 13 years of my life, I know that sometimes there are reasons why things just can’t change, even if the change required is minuscule with huge positive impact. They may be stupid, extraordinarily so, but does not matter. My “grief” here is that I am not being handled as I should be.

If I was supporting myself in this situation, if I was looking at all the evidence a paying customer (which is very important) has provided after spending time and effort on gathering it, I would, at least, say something like: Indeed, it does seem a bit weird. I am not able to find any immediate explanation as to why, but I can highlight this to developers, so that they can take look and, possibly, address this. I cannot guarantee, that there will be a fix, but I will push for a revision of the logic, if possible or respective documentation update, so that this behavior is clearly explained there.

These are not so difficult words, right? But they show empathy, they show acknowledgement, that there may be an issue, and they give a promise, that this will be looked at by developers, who are responsible for this thing. If I have received an answer like that – I would not have wasted my time on writing this very post here. And it’s the 2nd one, too. Because I would be satisfied with just the issue being put into backlog. I mean, there is a satisfiable workaround, that works for my setup, so it’s not really that big of a deal.

But the messages from support people, that show that they have no idea how their product work (and not willing to admit, that they need to get more info from someone more familiar with this part of the app) and then ghosting of the customer for weeks… That’s what grinds my gears. It’s not Steam, which also has quite poor customer support, and which objectively is not that critical for those customers. It’s an application, that is meant to be used to host websites, that bring money to businesses and may in some cases be the only source of income for smaller businesses. For this kind of product this level of support is purely unacceptable.

Thus, I am making it public. I have no illusions, that most likely only a couple of people will see it, even fewer will read it, and infinitely less will consider not to support LiteSpeed if this is even relevant for them. But I believe that this information needs to be out there.

If by pure luck you are part of some media outlet (tech website or what not) for which this may be relevant, or you know someone for whom this may be relevant – please, do not hesitate to share or even DM me.