Six Years of Lastpass Support Requests : What have I learned

I went through the 38 support tickets I’ve opened with LastPass over the last 6 years to see if it’s really as bad as it feels. Here are some themes that are revealed

  • Lastpass has a persistent and serious problem with product quality and quality assurance. I’ve never used a service or software before with this many problems over this long of a timespan. The breadth of areas where they have user facing bugs is staggering. This is not one product in their suite of products with a bunch of problems. Everything from their browser plugins to pocket, to their website, to their credit monitoring service have all been critically broken for long periods of time over the last 6 years.
  • Lastpass support personnel has never followed up once in 6 years. With every bug that I’ve reported that they’ve confirmed they’ve never once notified me when the bug was fixed unless the fix came within the following day of the report, which only happened in the early years of Lastpass. This causes every user that reports a problem which is confirmed to be a real problem feel as if their report has gone into a black hole and their effort to report the problem was wasted
  • Lastpass takes years (literally years) to fix known bugs. They are either so short on resources or their priorities of favoring new features over a functioning product are so out of whack that known bugs that break core functionality can be acknowledged and remain unfixed for years.

Here is a short summary of the last 6 years of support tickets. I’ve summarized the multi-paragraph bug reports that I’ve sent in (with screenshots and screen capture videos) into a few sentences each to give an idea of the problem. I’ve also summarized their response. Finally I’ve added a subjective rating of how badly they handled the support ticket from 1 to 5, 1 being fine and 5 being as bad as it gets.

Date Type Problem Response How bad
2017-10-25 Pocket bug Pocket segfaults in Ubuntu 16.04 No reply yet 1
2017-10-04 Site bug Received email saying to signup for lastpass families. Clicking the link in email gives page with error “The page you are trying to access is currently closed” We sent an email and then close signups for the feature we invited you to 3
2017-09-13 Browser plugin bug Search bar is no longer focused when vault is launched requiring mousing to click before searching Over a month now and still broken 5
2017-09-10 Site bug Signing up for lastpass credit monitoring results in “ERROR: An unexpected error has occurred” Known issue 4
2017-09-09 Browser plugin bug Export feature doesn’t work Devs notified 4
2017-05-02 Browser plugin bug New saved credentials are saved with a URL of “http://” Devs notified and bug persisted for months 5
2017-04-20 Site bug Changelog is many revisions behind Devs notified 3
2017-04-07 Site bug Downloading the firefox plugin downloads 4.1.44 which the immediately autoupdates to 4.1.45. Please put the current version on the download page Devs notified 4
2017-04-07 Browser plugin bug Browser plugin auto upgrade logs the user out After 13 days of back and forth : It’s because you use yubikey and we can’t fix it 4
2017-04-07 Browser plugin bug Trying to delete a local “equivalent domain” fails and the vault UI becomes unclickable Known issue, please use Chrome 5
2017-04-07 Site bug Lastpass 4 announcement page video is broken Ya, it’s broken 3
2016-08-02 Pocket bug Pocket 2.0.2 crashes with “terminate called after throwing an instance of ‘char const*'” It’s because you use yubikey, can you disable MFA? 4
2016-08-02 Site bug Lastpass pocket product page has a download button which isn’t a button but an image of what the button looks like when you go to the download page. Baffling Still that way to this day 3
2016-06-09 Site bug Download page says version 4.1.7 but link points to 4.1.15a No fix, incorrect 4.1.7 version left on site 3
2016-03-18 Browser plugin bug New in firefox plugin v4 when a plugin autoupdate occurs I’m logged out or I’m prompted with a yubikey prompt mid-session Disable and re-enable MFA and see if that fixes it 3
2016-02-29 Share feature bug Email notification about share updates says to check for checkerboard icon to see change. There is no checkerboard icon in vault Reported to product team 2
2016-02-09 Browser plugin bug Firefox plugin v4 drops characters in vault search field when loading and causes full browser freeze for 3 seconds on vault load You have too many sites in your vault no our problem 5
2015-11-04 Pocket bug Pocket fails on Ubuntu 14.04 with libssl.so.0.9.8: cannot open shared object file Workaround provided to install libssl while bug is fixed 1
2015-08-10 Site bug Status page redirects to blog but should redirect to twitter status account Fixed after 1 day 1
2015-08-10 Site bug Release notes for 3.2.20 say firefox is supported, but there is no firefox download of that version Passed onto devs 2
2015-01-18 Question How can I update my credit card information Answered after 2 days 1
2014-11-03 Support system problem Adding comment to existing support ticket gets Request Denied Said to try a different browser, I gave up 3
2014-10-22 Site problem Adblock Plus added rule which breaks Lastpass “Share” function Devs notified, don’t know if it was fixed 3
2014-08-26 Pocket bug Deleting credential in pocket fails due to API 302 response I commented 2 months later that it was still broken, they fixed it the next day 4
2012-10-25 Browser Plugin Bug Change monospace font used to show passwords as the number 1 and letter l look the same Bug unfixed for ages, at some point it was fixed with no notification 5
2012-04-25 Security question Does malware running on your client result in full lastpass vault compromise despite having MFA? Answered yes in 1 day 1
2012-04-20 Question How can I update my credit card information Answered after 2 days 1
2012-01-04 Security risk How can I use lastpass on my phone and not risk compromise of my data if I lose my phone via a “log me out of all devices” feature on the website? Thanks for the suggestion 2
2012-01-04 Browser Plugin Feature How to I configure a lastpass credential set to identify a given field as a captcha and not automatically submit? You can’t lastpass just has a list of common names for captcha fields, if the name isn’t in their list they can’t tell 3
2011-12-29 Site Bug During outage like today, how can users determine status of lastpass if status page is hosted on lastpass.com? Didn’t understand the problem, then suggested using pocket during outages 4
2011-12-17 Security risk When credit card info changes and annual renewal comes up, billing fails and MFA is disabled. Feedback passed onto devs 3
2011-12-05 Browser Plugin Bug Yubikey prompt text is wrong saying to press yubikey for 2 seconds Bug wasn’t fixed after 11 months, gave up waiting, bug was fixed some years later with no notification 3
2011-12-05 Browser Plugin Bug Entering URL in tab of vault goes to last site in vault, not what’s entered in url bar Fixed and released in 1 day 1
2011-12-05 Browser Plugin Bug Deleting multiple records from vault causes UI glitch where they are re-added due to race condition After 10 months bug was still present, gave up waiting 4
2011-09-24 Browser Plugin Bug Saved credentials were lost Said to try upgrading browser plugin 3
2011-05-10 Site Bug Locked account email states wrong lock duration Bug fixed in 1 day 1
2011-05-05 Outage Lastpass inaccessible because of breach and offline access doesn’t work for yubikey users No response 1
2011-05-05 Documentation Bug Pocket instructions for linux users are confusing After 4 months they say devs disagree, no fix 2

Hose clamps for homebrew beer lines

Typical homebrew beer liquid hose has an outer diameter (OD) of 7/16″ or 0.4375″ or 11mm

Typical homebrew beer gas hose has an outer diameter (OD) of 9/16″ or 0.5625″ or 14mm

A worm gear drive hose clamp size 04 has a diameter

  • when fully open of 5/8″ or 0.62″ or 16mm
  • when close of 1/4″ or 0.25″ or 6mm

Ideally the host clamp is larger than the OD of the hose you’re clamping but not significantly larger so that the shape of clamp is circular and not pinched next to the gear when it’s cinched down.

This aliexpress seller sells hose clamps for cheap. The two sizes that may be ideal here are

  • Type 1: 8mm-12mm
  • Type 2: 10mm-16mm

You could also buy them in bulk from this seller though they look more expensive

Is it possible Spotify support is run by some kind of millennial AI?

I recently noticed that the release date of an album on Spotify was incorrect (Ani DiFranco’s Reckoning/Revelling came out in 2001 not 1997) so I let them know in their contact us page. I then got responses from Spotify support that sounds like battling machine learning algorithms trained on millennial’s text messages (assuming millenials still send text messages, I don’t know).

Hi there,
Thanks for getting in touch, and apologies for the confusion. No worries, we can explain how this goes.
We make content available in whatever form it’s given to us. Spotify is not responsible for information relating to a particular track, album, or artist.
If something isn’t right, we recommend contacting the relevant label/distributor who will be able to update the information from their end.
We hope that helps. Let us know if there’s anything else we can do 🙂
All the best,
Carina

So the first AI, CarinaBot, likely trained on a less targeted data set of text messages, maybe including people my age, is very deferential, overly apologetic and generally unhelpful.

I replied

Who is the “relevant label/distributor” that spotify received the information from for this album so I can contact them?

Then the second AI, VinceBot, jumps in, clearly trained on a very focused data set. It uses a similar structure for its response but wants to make sure I know that I both “rock” and have been and should continue to be “awesome”

Hello there,
Thanks for getting back to us.
Apologies for the confusion with our first response. No worries though! We’ll take care of this for you.
We’ve checked it out and see what you mean, so we’ve passed it on to the Content team for review. Hopefully they’ll have this sorted for you soon. Please be aware this could take several weeks to be reflected in the app.
We greatly appreciate you getting in touch to help make Spotify better. You rock!
Let us know if there’s anything else we can help with.
Stay awesome!
Vince

So now that I had a sense I was talking to an AI, I figured I’d ask it/them why the two different stories

I’m unclear. Do I need to contact the label as Carina said to correct this mistake or is this a problem on Spotify’s side like Vince said and Spotify will take care of it? It sounds like Vince and Carina are saying different things.

VinceBot clearly gets lost down some unfruitful decision tree branch. He’s worried his last response was inappropriate but still can’t actually answer the question.

Hey there,
Thanks for getting back to us.
We apologize if you found our recent reply inappropriate. No worries though! we got you covered.
We’ve already passed your issue to our Content Team for review. They’ll take care of this for you.
Sorry again for any inconvenience caused, and please let us know if there is anything else we can do for you.
Stay cool 🙂

At this point my plan is to stay cool and awesome.

Workaround for “No new people were added to the group One person is already a member of the group. The provided email address might be a primary, secondary, or alternate email address of this person.”

If you encounter the Google Groups error

No new people were added to the group
One person is already a member of the group. The provided email address might be a primary, secondary, or alternate email address of this person.

when trying to Direct Add or Invite a user to a Google Group, but there are no users in the Group which could possibly have alternate, primary or secondary email addresses that conflict with the address you’re trying to add, here’s a workaround to this apparent bug in Google Groups.

Change the permissions on the Google Group manifesting this problem to allow people to apply to join the group :

"Manage"... "Permissions"... "Basic Permissions"... "Join the group" : "Anyone can ask"

Then have the user who you couldn’t add or invite, go to the Google Group and click the “Apply for membership” link. Then approve their Join Request and they’re in.

Afterwards, set the “Join the group” permissions back to “Only invited users” if that’s what you had before. Here’s where I reported this bug

I experienced this problem with two different Google Groups and three different users and was able to get them all added by this method.

How to make your own furniture safety straps

You can buy furniture safety strap kits for about $10 a kit which will secure one bookshelf. If you need to secure many bookshelves buying one kit per bookshelf becomes expensive. Here’s how to make your own furniture safety straps and save money. With the process described below I spent about $50 and was able to secure 16 bookshelves with materials left over.

img_20160920_204202600

Buying Materials

  1. Nylon webbing : Search ebay for Black 10 Yards Nylon Heavy Webbing Strap 1 inch. This should return a number of sellers that will ship direct from China. I got mine from the seller lwf_1963 for $6.50 with free shipping. You can search that specific seller’s listing of nylon webbing with this advanced search. If you can’t find any from that specific seller just use the search terms and look for a cheap and trustworthy Chinese seller. The requirements are that the webbing be 1 inch wide or greater and that it’s a long enough roll to produce the number of straps that you need. Each strap is about 9″ long, each bookshelf takes 2 straps so 10 yards will make straps for 20 bookshelves.
  2. Grommets : Search ebay for #1 Grommets Solid Brass 5/16" 100 Pack. I got mine from a seller that doesn’t appear to carry these anymore for $10.99 with free shipping. Specifically I got Tandy Leather brand grommets product number 1285-11. The requirements are that the grommets are #1 5/16″ grommets, where 5/16″ is the inner diameter and that it be a pack of enough grommets to do the number of bookshelves that you need. Each strap uses 3 grommets, each bookshelf uses 2 straps for a total of 6 grommets per bookshelf. A pack of 100 grommets will do 16 bookshelves.
  3. Grommet setter with anvil : You’ll need a grommet setter to attach the grommets to the nylon webbing. I got a 5/16″ Tandy Leather brand grommet setter product number 8097-03. I got this setter on ebay for $11.99 plus $2.13 shipping from ebay gwaynecraft2009 and you can see his listing for this with this advanced search. The only requirement of this setter is that it be designed for 5/16″ #1 grommets.
  4. Lag bolts : You’ll need one lag bolt for each strap or 2 lag bolts for each bookshelf. The lag bolts you’ll need are 1/4″ x 2″ full thread lag bolts, ideally with a hex head, ideally 3/8″ hex head. I used Spax Powerlags 1/4 x 2″ which I bought at Home Depot. You might be able to get away with a non-full-thread lag bolt if needed and you could go with 2.5″ long if needed. Looking online I should have ordered a box of lag bolts instead of buying them quantity 1 at Home Depot. Go to ebay and search for 1/4" x 2" lag bolt 50 and it looks like you can get a box of 50 for $10. You can also get lag bolts with washers which I didn’t do but might be beneficial. 50 lag bolts will do 25 bookshelves.
  5. Modified Truss Screw : The modified truss screw is what attaches the strap to the bookshelf. It’s a truss screw so that the had is large enough to cover the grommet opening. I used #8 x 3/4" Zinc #2 Phillips Modified Truss Screw. The screw size is #8 with a thread count of 15 or 18 (#8-15 or #8-18). The length of the screw is 3/4″ but this should be based on the thickness of the tops of your bookshelves so that the screw doesn’t penetrate all the way through but comes as close as possible. For me 3/4″ was a good length. The “#2 Phillips” is the size of phillips head that fits with the screw. You need 2 screws per strap and 2 straps per bookshelf for 4 screws per bookshelf. You can get a 100 pack for about $10 on ebay. Search ebay for modified truss #8 x 3/4"

Creating Straps

  1. From the spool of nylon webbing cut enough straps for your bookshelves. Cut each strap to be about 9″ long. The straps that come in the commercial packages are 15″ long but I find you don’t need that much length. If your bookshelves sit far from the wall or there is thick molding keeping them away from the wall you might need longer than 9″. In all of my cases 9″ was perfect.
  2. Take one of the straps and identify 3 points on the 9″ strap. One about an inch away from one end, one an inch away from the other end and one in the middle. At each of these 3 points, take a razor blade and cut/puncture a small x in the strap. The x should be in the center of the 1″ strap width. The lines of the x should be about 5/16″.
  3. Take the male part of the grommet and push it through the first x you’ve cut. If it doesn’t fit, cut the x lines longer so it will fit. Once it’s pushed through use your razor blade to cut around the outside of the barrel of the male grommet piece to get rid of some of the nylon webbing material. It will come off as black fuzz. Once you’ve removed enough nylon webbing so you can see most of the barrel of the male grommet piece use the grommet setter and a female grommet piece and a hammer to set the grommet in the nylon webbing. If you’ve not cut away enough nylon webbing you’ll see some of it sticking out of the grommet (which isn’t the end of the world). If you’ve cut away too much nylon webbing the grommet won’t be secure in the nylon webbing and may come loose. Repeat this for all 3 x holes.
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you have enough straps

Installing The Straps

  1. With the bookshelf against the wall mark where the top of the bookshelf comes to on the wall
  2. Move the bookshelf away from the wall
  3. Using a studfinder find studs that line up somewhere behind the bookshelf, you’ll need to find 2
  4. Make two marks on the wall for each stud that you found and make them an inch or two below where the top of the bookshelf came to on the wall.
  5. Drill a pilot hole in the two marks with a 3/16″ drill bit of about 2″ in length
  6. Place one of the straps on the wall so that the grommet hole on one end of the strap is centered over the pilot hole. Using a 3/8″ hex bit in your drill or electric screwdriver, and one of the 1/4″ x 2″ lag bolts, attach the strap to the wall with the lag bolt. As you get near to sinking the lag bolt flush against the strap and wall, turn the strap so instead of hanging down below where you’re screwing the bolt in, it’s sticking straight up above the lag bolt. Finish securing the lag bolt to the wall. Do the same for the other pilot hole. You now have two straps attached to studs with lag bolts drooping down over your lag bolts.
  7. Move the bookshelf back into place. As you do this either with your hand or a ruler or something, flip the drooping strap up so that it rests on top of the bookshelf.
  8. Get up on a stool or chair so you can get to the top of the bookshelf. You should see the two straps laying on top of the bookshelf. Ensure the bookshelf is in the correct lateral (side to side) position against the wall and that it is the correct distance from the wall that you want. Take the first strap and with it taught against the top of the bookshelf, using a #2 phillips bit and a screwdriver or drill, drill a modified truss screw through one of the two grommets visible on the strap on top of the bookshelf. Do the same thing with the second grommet. Repeat this with the second strap’s two grommets.
  9. Test your work by pulling on the bookshelf to see how much play it has, if it twists side to side at all when you pull it and how much force it can stand.