Dynamics Service-Pack Support Extended to 2 Years
Microsoft has extended service-pack support for its Dynamics products from 12 months to 24 months, the company announced Tuesday.
The change in policy applies to various Microsoft enterprise resource planning and customer relationship management products, including Dynamics AX, Dynamics CRM, Dynamics GP, Dynamics NAV and Dynamics SL. Previously, Microsoft provided service-pack support for just one year.
Microsoft lists the new support periods for Dynamics service packs at its help and support page here.
Microsoft also breathed new life into some service packs where support had expired. For instance, even though service-pack support ended in April for Microsoft Dynamics NAV 5 RTM, under the new policy, Microsoft now provides support for it until April 13, 2010.
A spokesperson for the company explained that the new policy provides more time for customers and partners to plan their product upgrades and manage costs in "tough economic times."
Microsoft's service packs are periodic bug fixes and updates. In addition, Microsoft offers overall product support called "mainstream support" and "extended support." Those support plans, which follow five-year intervals, remain unchanged.
Microsoft typically offers just one-year or two-year support for its service packs, according to Paul DeGroot, research vice president and channel licensing strategies analyst at Directions on Microsoft.
"With systems like these, IT typically likes to be more conservative and do more testing and evaluation of an upgrade, and a year may not be enough," DeGroot explained by e-mail.
Microsoft typically provides support to those who have applied the latest service pack.
"Basically, once support expires on a service pack, what it means is that if you call for technical support, Microsoft may ask you to upgrade to the latest SP first," DeGroot stated. "They won't automatically try to fix the problem if there's a chance that an SP did so."
Kurt Mackie is online news editor, Enterprise Group, at 1105 Media Inc.