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As of Tuesday 13th October 2015, Microsoft ended mainstream support for SharePoint 2010. This means that certain support functions that you may have relied upon are no longer available. These include:

  • Non-security hotfix support
  • Non-chargeable incident support
  • Design changes and feature requests
  • Warranty Claims

A big question on our customers’ lips is “how does this actually affect me?”

In this article we try to address the ramifications of discontinued support and make recommendations on what to do next.

No more…non-security hotfix support

Following the ‘End of Line Support’ deadline, Microsoft will only release security hotfixes. This means they will no longer release other updates or enhancements including cumulative updates, public updates, and service packs. The exception to this is if you have a Premier Support agreement which can give you the option to adopt an extended hotfix agreement by January 11, 2016 (i.e. 90 days from October 13, 2015) which will allow you to receive non-security hotfixes. With most things in life, this agreement has a cost associated.

No more….non-chargeable incident support

All calls to Microsoft’s Support team (including calls made by Microsoft Partners…i.e, us!) will be charged full price, even if the resolution would normally result in a no-charge incident when the product was under mainstream support.

If you contacted Microsoft support with a problem related to a bug with SP2010, the incident would will be charged at the regular Microsoft Support rates.

No more…..design change requests

Microsoft will no longer accept feedback for changes to SP2010. Design and engineering efforts are now focussed on current and future versions.

No more….warranty claims

Claims regarding potential defects (under the terms of your warranty) will no longer be honoured after October 13.

So what can you do?

Your options depend on your SharePoint strategy. If it’s being utilised as an important tool for business (reporting, workflow, records/doc management, CMS, intranet, collaboration, project management, etc) then you should be considering upgrade (and there are several options).

If you aren’t using SharePoint as part of your business operations then….why not? It’s a really flexible, functionally rich business platform!

The upgrade path…

Upgrading to a newer platform will enable new support (for your updated platform). There are several paths that can be taken to achieve this.

SharePoint Online

As part of Office 365, SharePoint Online is Microsoft’s cloud-based SharePoint offering. It provides users with the latest SharePoint version.

The good news with this option? As the platform is managed by Microsoft you no longer need to budget, plan, implement or worry about upgrading SharePoint. You’ll always have the latest and greatest features as Microsoft releases them.

SharePoint 2013

Your second option is upgrading to SharePoint 2013. This is the latest version of on-premise SharePoint and is available as SharePoint Foundation 2013 for the core product and SharePoint Server 2013 that include the features and functionality most organisations running SharePoint require.

Notable highlights (and there are many) – this iteration introduced new social and publishing features and it combines the entire SharePoint Search stack including the FAST product into a single service. The UI has been spruced up too, as well as being designed for better mobile-use on different devices with different screen sizes.

To upgrade, you’ll need to install and deploy SharePoint 2013 to new servers and then migrate your content using either the database attach upgrade method or third party tools. You can no longer perform an in-place upgrade.

SharePoint 2016

The third option, and much less one, is to wait for SharePoint 2016.

It will be a big leap from your current SharePoint 2010 platform, but we’d guess that the upgrade and migration capabilities would be much smoother that what’s available at the moment.

With all this in mind, you should remember that your technology is there to enable, not disable. SharePoint has come a long way (and it’ll go further). Planning and governance is key. As experts in the SharePoint arena we’ve come across a myriad of ways in which the platform has been used. We use that experience to advise and guide our customers.

We’d like to help you with your future SharePoint plans – please don’t hesitate to call us for guidance.

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