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Jorge Arredondo Dorantes

Jorge Arredondo Dorantes

what is Cisco SMARTnet Service?

Hello networkers. This article will help clarify what is/isn't included in SMARTnet and the roles it can play in managing your network. Cisco SMARTnet Service Overview.

1. What is Cisco SMARTnet Service?
Cisco SMARTnet Service is an award-winning technical support service that can give your IT staff direct, anytime access to Cisco experts and online self-help resources required to resolve issues with most Cisco products. With SMARTnet Service, you can choose from a broad range of service delivery options for Cisco products.

2. What is included with Cisco SMARTnet Service?
Cisco SMARTnet Service provides the following device-level support:

  • Direct access 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to specialized experts in the Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC).
  • Extensive self-help support through Cisco’s online knowledge base, communities, resources, and tools.
  • Smart, proactive diagnostics and immediate alerts on select devices enabled with Cisco Smart Call Home feature.
  • Operating system (OS) software updates, including both minor and major releases within your licensed feature set.
  • Advance hardware replacement options, including 2-hour, 4-hour, and next-business-day (NBD) replacement, as well as return for repair (RFR).
  • Optional onsite service that provides a field engineer who can install replacement parts at your location.

3. Why should you purchase Cisco SMARTnet Service?
By covering networking devices with a Cisco SMARTnet contract, you can:

  • Improve network availability, reliability, stability, and security with direct access to networking engineers at Cisco
  • Reduce the cost of network ownership by using Cisco expertise, knowledge, and availability
  • Increase ROI by up to 192 percent having access to Cisco operating system software enhancements
  • Expedite time to repair with the right parts at the right time to resolve issues quickly
  • Better manage scarce internal expert resources at all locations when utilizing the proactive diagnostics and real-time alerts available with Smart Call Home, on select devices
  • Empower your IT staff and improve productivity and revenue per employee with access to tools and technical support documentation that can increase self-sufficiency and technical knowledge.

4. Is Cisco SMARTnet Service only limited to break/fix insurance?
No. The Cisco SMARTnet Service offers you help handling complex network operation and management issues such as:

  • Advance software configuration.
  • Interoperability and upgrade questions.
  • Hardware and software information.

5. Is support for Cisco application software products, such as security, IP telephony, and network management, included in the Cisco SMARTnet Service?
No, application support is not covered in SMARTnet. Cisco does offer software application support services separately that provide support for Cisco application software products such as security, IP telephony, and network management. There are currently four support offers available:

  • Cisco Software Application Support Service (SAS)— includes maintenance and minor releases.
  • Cisco Software Application Support Service with Upgrades (SASU)—includes all components of SAS plus upgrades.
  • Cisco UC Essential Operate Service (ESW)—includes maintenance and minor releases.
  • Cisco UC Software Subscription Service.

6. What is included in a Cisco warranty?
 Warranties provide short-term limited liability for Cisco to repair and/or replace defects in Cisco products. They are limited in both the duration and the support they offer, and most warranties do not include Cisco TAC support, software updates, or any of the additional benefits obtained under a support service contract. It is the responsibility of Cisco to repair and/or replace the Cisco product within the time frame specified in the warranty card that accompanied the originally purchased Cisco product. Elements covered under a typical Cisco warranty are:

  • Hardware: This guarantees that the piece of hardware will be free of defects in material and workmanship under normal use, or it will be replaced by Cisco in the designated time period.
  • Software: This guarantees that the physical media are free from defects or they will be replaced by Cisco. The warranty is explicitly “as is,” and no new releases are included.

7. If a product is already covered under the standard Cisco warranty, why should I buy Cisco SMARTnet Service during the warranty duration?
The Cisco SMARTnet Service provides more robust levels of support than are available under a Cisco warranty. For most products, Cisco warranties are limited in duration (detailed specifically by product type) compared to Cisco SMARTnet Service. Features available under a Cisco SMARTnet Service contract that are not covered under a warranty are:

  • Rapid replacement of hardware in NBD, 4-hour, or 2-hour dispatch options (restrictions apply; see Cisco SMARTnet data sheet for additional information, as well as Return for Repair on select video products).
  • Continuous technical support through the Cisco TAC.
  • Latest OS updates, including both minor and major releases within the licensed feature set.
  • Registered access to online self-help resources and tools.
  • Proactive troubleshooting and alerts for Call Home - capable devices.

8. What is Cisco Smart Call Home?
Cisco Smart Call Home, a secure, smart service capability of Cisco SMARTnet Service, provides proactive, detailed diagnostics and real-time alerts on many products to help you identify and resolve issues quickly, conserving valuable staff time and improving network availability. With automated network device monitoring, Smart Call Home dynamically and securely gathers device information, sending an alert when a problem is detected. Using Cisco intellectual capital, Smart Call Home can enable early diagnosis and remediation of device-related issues through proactive, rules-based problem resolution. As a result, customers can dramatically streamline their device maintenance, accelerate problem resolution, and reduce their network operating expense. Call home-enabled devices can continuously monitor their own health and automatically notify you of potential issues using secure transmissions. If a serious problem arises, Smart Call Home automatically detects it and can generate a Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC) service request to remediate the issue. Smart Call Home also provides you with access to a Smart Call Home web portal that contains personalized Call Home messages, recommendations, and more for all your Call Home devices.

9. What additional features are available under the Cisco SMARTnet ONSITE option?
Cisco SMARTnet onsite includes the same capabilities as Cisco SMARTnet, with the addition of an onsite technician for parts replacement and installation. It is available with all SMARTnet advance hardware replacement service levels.

SMARTnet Onsite Hardware Replacement Service Levels

SMARTnet Description and Service Level SKU Decoder


10. How do I buy SMARTnet?
Most SMARTnet is sold on an annual basis. 3 Year agreements will have bigger discounts than single year. The next time you send an RFQ, request a 3 year SMARTnet quote with an option to lease for 36 months with annual payments. The discounts should offset the cost of any interest.  More information on how to accomplish this can be found here.

If you're still with me, Thank you. I hope this was interesting.  I personally found the SMARTnet Description and Service Level SKU Decoder extremely helpful when reading SMARTnet quotes.

Please note due to its complexity that some of this content has been consolidated from multiple Cisco articles which I will listed below.


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