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Cisco Unified Communications 500 Series Configuration Support Policy

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At Cisco, our goal is to provide the very best level of support possible for our partners and customers that are installing or have installed the Cisco® Unified Communications 500 (UC 500) Series platforms. This policy document outlines a new support strategy that will provide partners with a model for GUI-based configuration using the Cisco Configuration Assistant (CCA) tool on the UC540 and UC560 platforms or command-line interface (CLI) based configuration on the UC520 or CME-based Integrated Services Router (ISR) platforms.

Use of the CLI-based configuration requires extensive knowledge and training and will remain available for Express UC certified partners purchasing SMARTnet on the UC520 platform and will be supported by Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC). The use of CCA with the UC540 and UC560 platforms, along with the appropriate Small Business Support Service, will be supported by the Small Business Support Center (SBSC). Configuration conflicts can occur when moving between Cisco Configuration Assistant and the CLI, such as in mixed configuration scenarios, so Cisco will no longer support this. Major enhancements to CCA are forthcoming and Cisco is encouraging partners to use CCA for all configurations. Training classes and materials are available for those partners that want additional education on how to successfully use CCA in their voice practice.

To provide our partners and customers the best support possible, the following new policy will be implemented in phases. In addition, this early communications gives our customers and partners time to plan for the change in policy.

The first phase of the policy implementation will be referred to as the “Grace Period” and spans the timeframe of September 1, 2010 to January 3, 2011. During this timeframe, the following policies will apply:

   If a customer requires a feature not supported by Cisco Configuration Assistant, the SBSC will advise that the feature is not supported.

   SBSC will also advise if and when the feature will be supported by Cisco Configuration Assistant.

   If a partner or a customer with a service contract requests support for a specific CLI feature, SBSC will assist with troubleshooting the installation or will assist with the implementation of the feature.

Phase 2 begins January 3, 2011. At that time, the following policies will apply:

   The SBSC will support new Cisco UC 540 and 560 deployments only via Cisco Configuration Assistant. Use of the Cisco IOS® Software CLI will no longer be supported by the SBSC on these models.

   Cisco UC 540 and 560 installations occurring prior to January 3, 2011 that were configured using both Cisco Configuration Assistant and the CLI and with service contracts will continue to be supported by the Cisco SBSC. The SBSC will troubleshoot and provide support on CLI features on the installed release.

   In organizations where installed, operating Cisco UC 500 Series systems were deployed and are having no issues requiring support, no action is required.

In summary, starting January 3, 2011, the Cisco UC 540 and 560 platforms will be supported only for configurations established via Cisco Configuration Assistant. Partners that prefer to use the CLI have the options of using either the Cisco UC 520 platforms or can choose the Cisco Integrated Services Router (ISR) platforms (a Cisco Express Unified Communications Certification is required). Implementation of this policy will have a broad, positive impact on our partners and customers by providing them with a robust version of Cisco Configuration Assistant and with the most effective troubleshooting and support possible from both the TAC and SBSC. It will also greatly diminish or even eliminate critical account scenarios.

The SBCS Feature Reference Guide (http://www.cisco.com/go/sbcsfeatures) lists all the features that are officially tested and supported in the system. This includes features configured through the Cisco Configuration Assistant or Cisco Office Manager (released in September 2010). It will be updated with each release of Cisco Configuration Assistant.

More information can be found at https://supportforums.cisco.com/docs/DOC-12860.

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