An open letter to the Dropbox team

Today, I received an e-mail from the Dropbox team announcing that on May 18th support for both Mac OS X 10.4 and 10.5 will end, I will be signed out of my Dropbox account on my computer and the Dropbox desktop application will no longer be accessible. I know, I'm probably tilting at windmills, but I have to try reverse this decision. So here is my open letter to the Dropbox team:

Dear members of Dropbox team,

today I received your e-mail about ending support for Mac OS X 10.4 and 10.5. and I want to say something about that.

I am member of small but not-dead-yet worldwide community of users of Mac computers equipped with PowerPC microprocessors. Since 2005, when Apple announced switch to Intel CPUs, support for our computers vanished from almost all kinds of applications. Dropbox was one of the last still supporting us and I want to thank you for that effort. Let me just ask you not to cut us off.

You advise us to upgrade to OS X 10.6, which will still be supported after May 18th. This makes little sense to me, since there are just seven Mac models from 2006, for which 10.6 is the final version, all newer can upgrade to 10.7. On the other hand, Mac OS X 10.4 or 10.5 is the final version for much more computers, all Apple computers from summer 2000 to the end of 2005 to be exact. There are even some 1999 Mac models that can run 10.4 and many older can be upgraded to do so - with proper CPU upgrade it's possible to use Dropbox from Mac made in 1995. So with this one step you will cut off the whole decade of computers, but you will still support seven models from 2006, some of which have less CPU power than final PowerPC models from 2005.

I started with Dropbox five years ago on my on PowerMac G5 and now I still use it on that very same PowerMac G5 with OS X 10.5 as well as on PowerBook G4 with OS X 10.4, Lenovo T400 with Linux, HP desktop with Windows 7, iPad and BlackBerry Z10. You can probably say, that removing two computers from this list will do a little harm, but the opposite is true: I have Dropbox installed on all my computers to get my data to the PowerMac G5 on which I do all my typing, programming, photo editing, etc. Two months ago I even bought Samsung camera with Dropbox support to get pictures to this desktop without wires, now my complete ecosystem will be broken with demise of its central element.

Without my PowerMac, it has no sense for me to use Dropbox on other machines and devices. Even after you stop supporting 10.4/10.5 there will probably be some ways how to sync on these systems, like installing qemu (or other x86 PC emulator) with Linux and sync Dropbox via shared folder from this emulation. But I don't want to do things this ridiculous just to have my favorite cloud service on my favorite computer. So please, reconsider support for 10.4/10.5, you still support Windows XP (2001) and our systems are no older than this one.

Thank you.

Martin Kuka─Ź, Dropbox AND PowerMac user
Written by Logout | Wednesday, January 21, 2015 | Permanent link | Comments: 11