Warning for Mac users: PGP doesn't play well with Tiger

Privacy-sensitive folks who use Macintoshes, be warned: The popular PGP encryption software won't work properly with the new Tiger operating system.

I bought PGP 8.0.3 last year, and its excellent PGP Disk feature died after I upgraded my PowerBook to the latest version of OS X. Fortunately, PGP has made a work-around available: You can download the beta version of PGP 9.0 for free. It comes with a license key that's valid until the end of May.

That's the good news. The bad news is that PGP has no plans to upgrade its 8.x software to work under Tiger.

That means anyone who wishes to use PGP Disk under Tiger after May 31 must pay for the full cost of the PGP 9.0 software, which will be announced quite soon. (There's no discount if you already have purchased an earlier version.)

I can understand why PGP would do this--it's always a pain to support older versions of your software, and the vast bulk of the company's revenues probably comes from corporate customers who have budgeted for regular upgrades. But a discount for existing home users of PGP 8.x would seem to be a welcome gesture.

Update / 8 pm ET Friday: PGP's Marc Briceno e-mailed me this evening with an update: "For the upcoming release of PGP Desktop 9, PGP Corporation will, for a limited time, offer a discount to existing home user customers of PGP products."

Well done! If only all software companies were this sensible and responsive.

Second update / 1 pm ET Monday : Unfortunately, that information from PGP on Friday evening was incorrect. Existing users (and new users) will have until September 30 to upgrade for $69. The price will increase to $99 afterwards. Oh well.

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