Microsoft Partner Network members qualify for Core benefits based on their membership level. The N-1 support policy applies to support incidents created using the core benefits below.
|Support benefit||Membership level|
|Partner support Gold 20pack||Gold competency|
|Partner support Silver 15pack||Silver competency|
|Partner support MAPS 10pack||Microsoft Action Pack subscription|
The N-1 Partner support policy for on-premises products
From July 22 2017, Partner support core benefits follow the N-1 support policy, for on-premises products. The N-1 support policy enables only the newer on-premises products. N-1 includes the current product (N) and the previous product version (N-1). Older (N-2) products and any product where Mainstream Support has ended, are not entitled for support incident creation (see user experience below).
Note: Product support is available from Microsoft, for the partner or customer, for products within the Microsoft support lifecycle. Online they should select the “Purchase Support” option and use Pay Per Incident or use an alternative support offering to create a support incident.
Note: Cloud products are not impacted by this change
Product summary list
The N-1 support policy applies to all on-premises products. For the products not listed below, please see the example below for more details. The information below will change if a new product or service pack is released, when the mainstream support end date* is reached (usually after 5 years) or if dates are changed by Microsoft.
|Product||Entitled products current & previous||Mainstream Support End Date* |
|Microsoft Windows Server||2016, 2012||10/9/2018, for 2012|
|Microsoft Exchange Server||2016, 2013||4/10/2018, for 2013|
|Microsoft Dynamics CRM||2016, 2015||1/14/2020, for 2015|
|Microsoft SQL Server||2016, 2014||7/9/2019, for 2014|
|Microsoft SharePoint Server||2016, 2013||4/10/2018, for 2013|
|Microsoft Office||2016, 2013||4/10/2018, for 2013|
|Microsoft Windows||10, 8||1/9/2018, for 8|
*See the product lifecycle
Q1. Does the N-1 support policy impact any other partner support related benefits?
A. No. The policy only applies to “Partner support Gold 20pack”, “Partner support Silver 15pack” and “Partner support MAPS 10pack”. Signature support, Advanced Support for Partners and Pay Per Incident are not impacted by the N-1 Support policy.
Q2. Does the N-1 support policy impact my existing support contract?
A. Yes. Following a system change July 22 2017 all existing and new support contracts using the Partner Support benefit above will follow the n-1 support policy. Online submission for products not entitled to support will show the error “These contracts cannot be used” and phone requests will be declined (unless an alternative support offering is used).
Q3. How can a partner obtain support for a product no longer entitled to support due to the N-1 support policy?
A. Product support is available from Microsoft, for the partner or customer, for products within the Microsoft support lifecycle. Select the “Purchase Support” option online and use Pay Per Incident or use an alternative support offering to create a support incident.
Example: Applying the N-1 support policy for Microsoft Exchange Server
To identify the current and previous product versions, and the mainstream support end date, search the product life cycle
- The current version is Exchange server 2016 (N) and the previous version is 2013 (N-1);
- The current and previous product are both in mainstream support (usually 5 years from release date). Therefore, Exchange server 2016 and Exchange server 2013 are both entitled to support using Partner support incidents.
The older products such as Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 product are not entitled to support. Therefore, when the Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 product is selected support incidents cannot be created. See User experience using online submission below.
|Product classification||Product version|| |
Create a support incident
|N - the current product||Microsoft Exchange Server 2016||Yes |
Mainstream support end date 10/13/2020
|N-1 the previous product||Microsoft Exchange Server 2013||Yes |
Mainstream support end date 4/10/2018
|N-2 old products||Microsoft Exchange Server 2010||No*|
*Partners or customers may use alternative support offerings or purchase support online for products within the Support lifecycle.
User experience using online submission
When a non-entitled product is selected, online submission will show the message “These contracts cannot be used with XXX”. XXX will refer to the specific offering the user selected eg Partner support Gold 20pack. Product support is available, for the partner or customer, if they select the “Purchase Support” option online to use Pay Per Incident or use an alternative support offering to create a support incident.