I had a sense this would work out well

As I noted in an earlier post Joyent had discontinued an aging service, but one which many people had bought into, with the promise of “forever” service. I pointed out that in this sense, forever couldn’t mean, in a literal sense, forever …
But I had suggested as well that they would likely try to find a way to make a transition better for people. And they did.

On November 1st, 2012, TextDrive will relaunch as a separate hosting provider. Joyent’s shared hosting customers will be migrated to new, modern, and efficient infrastructure. Service will not be interrupted. Here’s a forum post by Dean for the official announcement.
For no.de and accelerator customers, we’re providing specific programs so that you can start new services on Joyent Cloud today. To help you understand how to use these programs we?ve published a guide that includes migration recommendations and incentives.
We?re here to help. We understand changes of this nature are disruptive. Should you want to discuss specific recommendations on how to move your application, site or data to the latest version of the Joyent Cloud, please send us a note at support@joyent.com and one of our expert technical advisors will walk you through your options.

This is perfect illustration of how to handle these transitions. From older aging gear, to modern infrastructure. Slowly over time, Joyent may decide (via textdrive) to start sunsetting the “forever” aspect, which they (IMO) can and should do. Give the people enough time to understand that “forever” as a context doesn’t mean until the eventual heat death of the universe. And that Joyent as a provider needs to make money to continue to provide these services. It is reasonable to request annual fees to keep these services going “forever”.
Kudos to Joyent for doing this right. From reading what I did there, it looks like Textdrive is being relaunched, in a virtualized sense. And this is, IMO, a very cool business model. Its literally a value added layer atop their existing technology.
And ask them for a yearly maintenance fee. They bought their accounts, and they are “forever” for various definitions of those words. But the cost to provide those accounts on the systems should be at least shared.