SmartNet vs Small Business Support Documentation

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John Platts Tue, 04/20/2010 - 20:29
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Differences between SMARTnet and Small Business Pro Service:

  • SMARTnet covers traditional Cisco products. Traditional Cisco products are defined as enterprise-class or SMB-class  Cisco products that are not in the Cisco Small Business, Cisco Small Business Pro, Linksys, or Scientific Atlanta product lines. Some of the SBCS solution components, including the UC520, CP-521, CP-524, Catalyst Express 520 series, AP521, and WLC526, are considered to be traditional Cisco products. Other SBCS solution components, including the UC540, UC560, AP541N, ESW 500 series, and SPA500 series IP phones, are considered to be traditional Cisco products. All SBCS solution components that are not Small Business Pro products or Cisco Small Business Video Surveillance products (which were originally sold under the Linksys brand) are considered to be traditional Cisco products.
  • Small Business Pro service covers Cisco Small Business Pro products.
  • A single UC500 site can have some equipment that is covered by a SMARTnet contract and other equipment covered by a Small Business Pro Service contract.
  • SMARTnet covers many traditional Cisco brand products that are not part of the SBCS product line, including but not limited to the 1841 ISR, ASA 5505, Catalyst 2960 switches, and Aironet Access points.
  • SMARTnet contracts can be purchased for a 12-month term or a multiple-year term, whereas Small Business Pro Service contracts are 36-year term contracts.
  • Equipment covered on SMARTnet contracts are supported by the Cisco TAC, whereas equipment covered on Small Business Pro Service contracts are supported by the Cisco Small Business Support Center.


Differences between TAC and SBSC:

  • TAC provides support for products covered on traditional Cisco service contracts, including SMARTnet, SAS, and SASU.
  • SBCS provides support for Small Business Pro products covered on Cisco Small Business Pro Service contracts, as well as Cisco Small Business and Linksys Business Series products.
  • SBSC usually supports Small Business Pro products using CCA and/or Web-based GUIs, whereas the TAC supports SBCS solution components using CLI (for IOS-based SBCS solution components with CLI support), CCA, and/or Web-based GUIs.
  • The only SBCS solution components with official CLI support are the UC520 and the SR520. The 850 series ISRs and 870 series ISRs are CCA-configurable in a teleworker configuration and can be used with a UC520, UC540, or UC560, but are traditional Cisco products with official TAC support, and SMARTnet is offered on the 850 and 870 series ISRs. The UC540 and UC560 do have CLI capabilities, but there is no official CLI support for these products.
  • The Catalyst Express 520 switches and AP521 access points are CCA configurable only, but are traditional Cisco products with TAC support and SMARTnet service.
  • The ESW 520 switches and AP541N access points are configurable through CCA or a web-based GUI. In addition, CLI does exist on the AP541N access points. The SBCS does support all of the documented configuration methods for the ESW 520 switches and AP541N access points.


Remember that when the UC520 enters the end-of-life stage, the following will be true prior to the discontinuation of the UC520 model and for several years after the discontinuation of the UC520:

  • The UC520 will remain supported in CCA.
  • SMARTnet will still be offered on the UC520 models (even though there is a limited time after the discontinuation of the UC520 that a UC520 can be attached to a existing SMARTnet contract or a new SMARTnet contract can be acquired for a UC520).
  • The UC520 will still be supported by the Cisco TAC.
  • New software pack updates will still be delivered for the UC520, in addition to the newer UC500 models.
  • The UC520 will remain interoperable with other SBCS solution components, including SBCS solution components released after the discontinuation of the UC520.
cindy toy Fri, 04/23/2010 - 02:24
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Hi John,


Thank you for your comprehensive and well-written response! With the exception of a couple minor points (see below in bold), you made my job a whole lot easier. The entire community of customers, partners and Cisco appreciate your interest and dedication.


1) SMARTnet contracts can be purchased for a 12-month term or a multiple-year term, whereas Small Business Pro Service contracts has a 3 year or 36 month term


2) SMARTnet covers traditional Cisco products. Traditional Cisco products  are defined as enterprise-class or SMB-class  Cisco products that are  not in the Cisco Small Business, Cisco Small Business Pro, Linksys, or  Scientific Atlanta product lines. Some of the SBCS solution components,  including the UC520, CP-521, CP-524, Catalyst Express 520 series, AP521,  and WLC526, are considered to be traditional Cisco products. Other SBCS  solution components, including the UC540, UC560, AP541N, ESW 500  series, and SPA500 series IP phones, are considered to be Cisco Small Business Pro products. All SBCS solution components that are not Small Business  Pro products or Cisco Small Business Video Surveillance products (which  were originally sold under the Linksys brand) are considered to be  traditional Cisco products.


Thank you!


Cindy Toy
Cisco Small Business

Support Community Manager

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