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As with any purchase of business-class products, it is industry standard practice to purchase proper support contract along with the actual product itself. In case of buying Cisco product, the proper support contract is called Smartnet contract.

Simply put, any Cisco product purchase should include the associated Smartnet contract. Any authorized Cisco reseller should be able to help you providing complete package to purchase that includes both the actual Cisco product and the associated Smartnet contract.

What You Receive By Having Smartnet Contract

Depending on which level of Smartnet contract you have, you at minimum have technical support directly from Cisco. This technical support includes getting proper IOS image, firmware, or updates/patches for your Cisco product. The support also includes configuration assistance, network setup, and even in some cases getting brand new equipment for free should the one that you already have has physical damage.

For more info on Smartnet contract, check out following official Cisco link that explain what a Smartnet contract is and how it works for Cisco equipment owners.

Cisco Smartnet Support Contract

Choosing Suitable Smartnet Contract

To have ideas of which Smartnet contract is available for your Cisco product, check out the following link.
Cisco Service Finder

Should you decide to have Smartnet contract, you can check the following FAQ for authorized Cisco partners/resellers
»Cisco Forum FAQ »Where can I purchase a SMARTNet contract or cheap Cisco product?

Some user experience on Smartnet contract
»Power Issues - Cisco 871

»Recommendation needed for pain free ordering of Smartnet

Getting contract of EOL or "questionable" equipments

When you have a brand new equipment fresh from Cisco resellers, then you should be able to purchase Smartnet contract for the equipment without hassle as previously mentioned. As a note, it is suggested that you put Smartnet contract right away on the equipment. Getting the contract from the same reseller is also suggested to make sure that your contract purchase process smoother.

However when you need to put contract on EOL equipment, used equipment; or equipment that you are unsure if it was ever under Smartnet contract; then you need to prepare yourself since these equipments are considered "questionable".

When you have such equipment that need a new contract from Cisco, you may or may not be able to have the contract. This is something that you need to discuss with your local authorized Cisco partners or resellers. You can also try to contact one of the company listed on the above FAQ link.

Keep in mind that Cisco partners and resellers have "appealing power" in getting Smartnet contract for EOL or questionable equipments. When you are in luck, then you could have the contract with help from the partners.

It is suggested that you purchase the Smartnet contract from the same company that you bought the equipment from. The company should have records on the equipment such as the purchase date, ever under Smartnet contract or not, etc. Such records will make your contract purchase process easier.

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by nozero See Profile edited by aryoba See Profile
last modified: 2010-07-15 09:23:32