Before you buy VueScan, know the developer

Over on the TidBITS forum, there is a long thread about an article written on the site:

VueScan: Not the ScanSnap Replacement You’re Looking For - Article Comments - TidBITS Talk

A lot of people talking about the good vs bad about the app.

A user named Steve Nicholson wrote this post about his experience reporting a bug to the VueScan developer:

I reported a bug that caused flickering in the preview pane for one of the two users on my machine. Their response was arrogant beyond belief.
They dismissed the bug report out of hand blaming “something unique to your system”.
After some back-and-forth explaining all the troubleshooting steps I had taken, this was their response:

You’re missing the conclusion that any professional
software developer would reach:

10,000 downloads per day
1 report of this problem in a year
The obvious conclusion is that the problem is
with the software on the system that’s having
the problem - something you’ve installed on your
computer is causing flickering. It’s such a trivially
simple and obvious conclusion that I’m stunned that
you claim to actually be a software developer.

Ed Hamrick

So, already there are plenty of warning signs that tell me to keep a safe distance away from Ed Hamrick and VueScan.

But as if that wasn’t bad enough, Steve Nicolson wrote a followup post saying:

A couple weeks ago, my copy of VueScan started telling me it was unregistered even though I bought a Professional license which has a lifetime registration. I sent an email to support explaining this and here’s the reply:

I seem to recall you did something obnoxious, so I revoked
your registration info. Go away.

Ed Hamrick

Apparently Mr. Hamrick not only doesn’t want to be bothered with bug reports, but if he decides he doesn’t like you, he’ll just revoke your license.

That’s just theft.

You pay for something, the person takes your money and then revokes the license? That’s theft. I don’t care how obnoxious he felt Mr Nicholson was. I don’t care if Nicholson insulted Hamrick’s mother.

“I revoked your registration info. Go away.” That sort of arrogance is revolting.

Could Mr Nicholson be making this up? I suppose. I don’t know him beyond the forums. But I’d have to think long and hard before I spent $1 on VueScan.


@OogieM has also related her tale of poor experiences with Mr. Hamrick. Personally I have not had issues like this; my interactions with him have always been businesslike and on point.

I would say (again) though, that VueScan does not seem to be a perfect replacement for the ScanSnap software. I don’t have a ScanSnap but if I did I would be directing at least an equal amount of ire towards Fujitsu.

I also agree that revoking a user’s license info is going too far.

We’re going to leave this thread open for now, but we don’t want to slide into trashing someone who isn’t here to defend himself. We can talk about the pro/cons of the application (and there are many) but let’s try to stick to that.

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That’s completely reasonable. And, I might suggest, if folks are interested in learning more about VueScan, check out the TidBITS link in the original post. There have been lots of good back-and-forth about the app.

I wanted to share this because I’d heard lots of VueScan talk here, but obviously it is just one person’s experience with one developer, so it should be taken with the proverbial grain of salt.

For now, I’m glad I have an old iMac around where I can keep using the 32-bit ScanSnap software for now. I’ll deal with whatever replacement is necessary when the time comes.

Maybe someone from Apple will leave to create a scanner company with great software :slight_smile:

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Can 32-bit macOS be run in a VM to maintain scanner support?

Theoretically, yes. I have not tried it myself, but I’m pretty sure that both VMware and Parallels let you send USB devices to a VM, so that should work.

At least when I requested a refund (as the the software was just slooooow and beach-balled), they did.

Ed Hamrick, who’s been developing and updating Vuescan for over two decades, seems like a certain breed of grouchy, old-school neckbeard solo-dev who I’ve encountered before. Sadly, you can see user reviews going back years attesting to his testiness. I’ve never dealt with the man, but I have over the years with similar one-man, one-app shops like Hamrick’s. When dealing with crotchety owners of products I need, I’ve learned it’s better to sometimes just pour on the sugar.

Years ago I used a powerful yet ugly database app to successfully archive tens of thousands of emails. Had a similar issue with the dev, was able to gently cajole him into dealing with it (when he twice refused to), and the moment I found an acceptable alternative app I jumped ship.


I haven’t used Vuescan recently but the couple of times I needed help he was excellent!

And he is still honoring purchased licenses unlike so many other developers who are screwing us over by switching to a subscription model…

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Except, apparently, when he doesn’t. :face_with_monocle:

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So, I’m not normally one to revive old threads in a forum, but I actually just had the same issue today. Sure enough, the head developer/creator I was speaking to over email that started arguing with me, revoked my software license. I paid $40. I am fully prepared to get in contact with my state’s attorney general if he isn’t going to cooperate. He’s also blocked my primary email to make things more difficult for me. Just because you find a customer annoying is not a valid reason to commit theft. Guess I’ll keep y’all updated.

edit: I understand we aren’t supposed to ‘trash’ others that aren’t here to defend themselves as previously said but this is literally a full-on buyer beware situation at this point.


I have to say that, if the developer feels they have to revoke your licence, it’s their choice - but only if they refund the licence fee.

You can get into a debate about what proportion of the fee that should be (time, usage etc), butI don’t see ny jurisdiction being supportive of the idea that you can just cancel service and keep the money.

Not to mention that it’s a good way to drive former users into the arms of “less formal” ways of acquiring your product

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