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Hardware FAQ

How Is ReluTech's Price So Much Lower Than The OEM's Price?

ReluTech’s prices are derived from determining the likely cost of a contract over time. We provide fair prices that are designed to help customers maximize the useful life of their systems. Ultimately, the question becomes, “Why are OEM prices so high?” The answer is that most OEMs artificially inflate the price of maintenance renewals so customers have an incentive to buy the latest generation of technology. The OEM’s inflated prices are why ReluTech’s prices are usually 40-80% less expensive. 

Is Monitoring Included?

For many storage arrays, ReluTech is able to use the native email alerting features to redirect call-home alerts. This is done as a best practice at no charge. For equipment that doesn’t have a call-home feature, we offer a monitoring add-on option (at an additional cost) using a third-party software. Consult your account executive for options here.

Do I Still Have Access To Software Updates?

As a general rule, third-party maintenance providers are not permitted to provide software patches or updates, as they are intellectual property of the manufacturer (There are a few notable exceptions in which we can legally acquire software, so consult your account executive if there’s a specific system or product line you’re curious about). 

Since software updates are proprietary, third-party support may not make sense in all situations, particularly those in which compliance or internal policy dictate that you have ongoing access to the newest OS versions. However, most organizations choose TPM despite this limitation for the following reasons:

  • The OS is stable. By the time the initial manufacturer warranty expires, a storage, server, or networking platform is usually at least 4-5 years, meaning the OS has stabilized. This is because the vast majority of bugs are found and resolved within the first 2-3 years of a platform’s release (the same can arguably be said for any meaningful updates the OEM releases for a platform as well). This is why many customers upgrade once or twice a year in the first few years of ownership but slow that pace dramatically as the system gets older.
  • The customer is not adding any new applications. When it comes to shared storage, one software-related concern may be that you bring on an application that doesn’t play well with your semi-outdated OS iteration. This is an unlikely scenario in the first place, but most of our customers have a fairly static purpose for any storage that is 3+ years old and they’re simply trying to extend its useful life by a few years.
  • Updates are available until your OEM support contract expires. As a customer, you can protect yourself to a certain extent by downloading any patches or updates that are available prior to going off OEM support, even if you choose to apply them at a later time. For the most part, our customers who do this never choose to apply the update, but they see it as a precautionary best practice.
  • The OEM has moved on. The OEM overcharges for maintenance renewals because they want to push customers to prematurely refresh to the latest, more expensive generation. In many cases, the OEM has shifted its engineering focus away from the legacy platform you are using in favor of the new product line it wants you to buy. As a result, updates for legacy product lines are few and far between.

The cost savings are enormous. We understand there is usually some perceived level of risk associated with losing the ability to update software. However, ReluTech supports hundreds of customers and thousands of systems, and we have never encountered a situation in which a customer cannot operate a system because a software update was unavailable. We encourage our potential customers to compare our renewal prices to the OEM prices, consider how much risk is really involved, and perform a basic risk-reward analysis to decide for themselves if TPM is a wise decision. More often than not, we believe it is.

Do I Have To Back-Pay For Any Months During Which My Equipment Was Not Supported?

Absolutely not. While manufacturers often do this, we do not. ReluTech only needs to ensure that a system is functioning properly prior to putting it under support.

Where Does ReluTech Get Equipment For Spares?

Since ReluTech is also a stocking wholesaler of pre-owned and new surplus equipment from the major OEMs, we can supply properly tested equipment and spare parts needed to service various systems.

Which SLAs Does ReluTech Offer?

We provide standard service level agreements (SLAs), plus additional options to increase flexibility. We offer 24x7x4, 9x5xNBD, remote-only, and customized SLAs.

What Is The ReluTech Process For Resolving An Issue?

Once a customer places a ticket (or if an automated alert sends notification of a failure), the help desk will either dispatch the appropriate part and/or field technician or escalate the issue one time to the appropriate engineer for troubleshooting. In many cases, the help desk will request logs prior to dispatch in order to ensure proper resolution. Customers may open support tickets by calling or emailing the 24 hour help desk.

Where Does ReluTech Keep Spare Parts?

Spare parts are kept at local depots or on site with the customer.

Can I Replace Hot Swappable Parts (Like Hard Drives) Myself?

In almost all cases, yes! A select few systems are complex enough that we request you leave the replacements up to the field technicians. However, for the vast majority of systems, we are happy to deliver replacement parts so that you can perform the simple replacement. Many customers prefer this method because it cuts down on planning time and the need to work around data center access times.

Can ReluTech Service My Area?

ReluTech supports systems across the globe and we can provide 24x7x4 coverage for every major North American market. If your equipment is located within 100 miles of a major North American city, we can service it. For certain remote areas more than 100 miles from a major city, ReluTech may only be able to provide next-business-day service, but it is best to check with your account executive to see what level(s) of coverage we can provide.

How Is ReluTech Different From Other Maintenance Providers?

ReluTech believes that maintenance contracts are critical to protecting IT infrastructure and should not come with an overwhelming price tag that prevents you from investing in more strategic initiatives. Instead of overcharging and finding ways to make you spend more, ReluTech’s top priority is helping our customers save money and propel their business.

Does ReluTech Provide Software Support?

You will have access to a certain level of software support and troubleshooting, as ReluTech offers expert engineering resources who understand the OS (and usually the advanced software suites) within a product line. Software updates, on the other hand, are intellectual property of the OEM.

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