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Ask Slashdot: Do You Trust When a Vendor Tells You To Buy New Parts? 156

Posted by timothy
from the don't-clench dept.
Nerval's Lobster writes "Roughly 85 percent of IT managers polled by Forrester said they would hold onto networking infrastructure longer, but vendors retire products prematurely in an effort to force customers to upgrade. In a response that may seem familiar to anyone who's ever been pressured into buying a maintenance contract—either by an enterprise vendor or a major electronics retailer—over 80 percent of the 304 respondents said they don't like the misrepresented cost savings, new fees, and inflexible pricing models—but buy the products anyway. One of the survey's interesting points is that IT decision makers aren't willing to contradict the vendor. The uncertainty seems to come from the fact that the vendor may in fact be right—and a customer who contradicts what they're saying may end up shouldering the blame if the equipment goes south. It's the 'you never got fired for buying IBM' argument, applied to the networking space. The problem, of course, is that the vendor often works for its own agenda. Do you upgrade when the vendor (or reseller) suggests you do so? Or do you stick to your own way of doing things?"
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Ask Slashdot: Do You Trust When a Vendor Tells You To Buy New Parts?

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @12:59PM (#43721655)

    And, let's face it, whose money you're spending.

    • by asmkm22 (1902712) on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @03:46PM (#43723665)

      In my experience, the only people who get rewarded for cost savings are the ones in management. They're the ones who get the bonuses and gratitude of the people who actually run the company. As a result, there is literally no upside to turning down a vendor-recommendation, yet plenty of potential blame if you do. That being said, if you really think an upgrade isn't needed, just submit official vendor recommendations, and maybe a section detailing the alternative, including stuff like expected costs savings versus risk of hardware failure for keeping the "older" stuff in place, etc.. Make sure you include hard numbers, when it comes to the cost of upgrading versus the cost and risks of not. If they decide to save the money and not upgrade, they did so will full-documented knowledge of any risks that come with it. Keep a copy of your recommendation, and their response, in your CYA file.

      It's also worth noting that IT guys get something out of upgrading vendor stuff before absolutely necessary: experience with newer equipment. It's fun to be able to play with the latest and greatest, and also allows for a nice method of updating your skill set on a resume. You always want an exit strategy, so the last thing you need is to look for a new job with a resume filled with outdated vendor equipment. Unless it's something really rare or specialized, of course.

  • Nearly all HP kit has it even a lot of Cisco kit does (though they make you jump through hoops to use it). Buy good kit I've replaced cisco 6500's bits over the years that were bought in the 90's and just got tech refreshes not bad taking a 10/100 with a few gig ports to 10ge over 14 years.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @01:13PM (#43721825)

      Lifetime warranty from Cisco doesn't mean for the lifetime of the piece of equipment. Quoth Cisco (from http://www.cisco.com/en/US/docs/general/warranty/English/LH2DEN__.html):

      As long as the original End User continues to own or use the Product. In the event of discontinuance of product manufacture, Cisco warranty support is limited to five (5) years from the announcement of discontinuance.

    • Nearly all HP kit has it even a lot of Cisco kit does (though they make you jump through hoops to use it).

      A "life time warranty" (even if it really is - most life time warranties are the life of the product, which can be very short indeed) only means the vendor will pay out or replace stuff if it dies. All equipment dies at some point - if some equipment is mission critical then you shouldn't run it into the ground just because the vendor will replace it when it dies. (Of course, really mission critical stuff should have backup equipment ready to go too!)

      That said, equipment follows a "bath tub" curve and I o

      • by hawguy (1600213)

        A "life time warranty" (even if it really is - most life time warranties are the life of the product, which can be very short indeed) only means the vendor will pay out or replace stuff if it dies.

        Is there some other possible definition of "life time warranty" other than "the vendor will pay out or replace stuff if it dies (within the lifetime as defined by the vendor)"?

        • Is there some other possible definition of "life time warranty" other than "the vendor will pay out or replace stuff if it dies (within the lifetime as defined by the vendor)"?

          My point was, if your equipment is old and reaching the end of its servicable life, the chance of failure is high. Replacing it reduces the chance of failure, just having a warranty does not - if it dies then it dies, whether or not you get some pitiful payout when it does.

          • by tibit (1762298)

            Suppose we're talking about networking gear. Say I have a 100mbit switch that I'm happy with and it runs on a dedicated network with a fixed set of devices that it was adequate for when it was designed. What would you consider, then, to be "the end of its servicable life"? About the only components that have finite life by design are electrolytic capacitors, fan bearings and EPROM/FLASH memory. Other than that, there's nothing preventing that piece of equipment from performing as designed for a thousand yea

            • by cez (539085)
              The vendor determines the "end of its serviceable life" as in, they "end of life" a device. They stop selling it and eventually stop RMA'ing dead products even on maintenance contracts.
              • by tibit (1762298)

                I guess being an engineer who enjoys fixing stuff in their spare time has its advantages, then. I determine when I've had enough working on a particular model :) The vendor often doesn't even come into the picture.

            • The connectors, switches and buttons have a rated life (in cycles). If you never touch it, those shouldn't be an issue.

        • by gl4ss (559668)

          A "life time warranty" (even if it really is - most life time warranties are the life of the product, which can be very short indeed) only means the vendor will pay out or replace stuff if it dies.

          Is there some other possible definition of "life time warranty" other than "the vendor will pay out or replace stuff if it dies (within the lifetime as defined by the vendor)"?

          well yeah.. the for consumer definition in countries where companies can't use donald duck comics tactics("it wasn't a fly on the contract - that was the small print!"). usa is not one of them. of course, these countries tend to have other rules as well like manufacturing defects being replaceable forever.. and electronics having mandatory guarantees spanning further than american extended warranties. so you can get koss porta pros replaced forever for yearly cable faults as long as you bother to take 'em b

      • by CAIMLAS (41445)

        I'd say the curve should be closer to 5 or 6 years, depending on what it is we're talking about. If we're talking about a storage system, I'll start replacing disks sooner than later in the hopes of offsetting a catastrophic EOL failure.

        Video cards are about 3 years for me, personally. But general computing equipment? I don't have a problem running it into the ground, as long as there isn't important data on it. 5 years is a good benchmark. If it starts to fail after 4, I just chuck it and start over. It's

        • by aztracker1 (702135) on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @02:50PM (#43723003) Homepage
          I'm honestly hoping to get 6-8 years out of the NAS box I built last year... I've got Raid-Z2 (double parity) and two hot-spares... When it's full, as long as I don't lose more than two drives in less than two days, I should be fine... now remembering which drives are which a few years from now should one go bad, that's a different story. 12 WD Green 3TB drives. 22TB of relatively safe storage... I do have backups for *really* critical stuff.. but would be a pain to lose the 4.5TB already on the thing.

          That said, dropping $2K on hardware for storage more than once in half a decade sounds insane to me. I upgraded from my 4TB nas box that I filled up in about 2.5 years.
          • by shrikel (535309)

            now remembering which drives are which a few years from now should one go bad, that's a different story

            You could splurge and invest another $50 in a label maker...

          • by CAIMLAS (41445)

            $2k will buy you a pretty decent system, not just a "home NAS" box. If you've got 10TB of data already, chances are your use case is somewhat more esoteric than the "home NAS user" - for instance, you deal a lot in video. I understand your point, but 12 disks is quite a lot; you're looking at at least $3k for that, realistically.

            Personally, I've got a lot of recycled equipment for my storage needs. I don't have more than 4TB of hot data, but I do have it duplicated across 3 systems right now using zfs snaps

      • by TheCarp (96830)

        That said, equipment follows a "bath tub" curve and I often think that people replace it too soon. I see a lot of "that's 3 years old, we should replace it", which seems bonkers to me - if a bit of equipment has been working very reliably for 3 years, I would certainly hesitate to replace it with shiny new (untested) kit

        Yup, and I have worked places with such policies. I still thought it was bonkers, and even so, we didn't actually do it, because replacing everything every X years was laughable given staff

    • by fermion (181285)
      It depends on your tolerance for downtime and predictability of costs. I once worked in a place where we used a number of high speed pumps. These pumps would fail pretty regularly. If you wanted to minimize downtime you would have a service contract, and routinely take it out of service and either have it refurbished or replace it with a refurbished unit. We could handle random downtimes, so we would just wait for it to fail and pay for the refurbishment. It probably ended up being a bit more, as parts
  • by Anonymous Coward

    percent off list, and since you're looking at a new rollout anyways, do they still think you need new hardware even if it's a competitor's?

    If they say yes, you can probably believe. And might save a few quid on the rollout to boot :)

  • Do You Trust When a Vendor Tells You To Buy New Parts?

    Yes, if its a video card. Buying a low end video card (US$120-140) every two or three years seems to improve the end user experience nicely, **iff** we are talking about a system used for gaming.

    On second thought I guess I am not really trusting the vendor since they are telling me to buy the US$500 video card.

    • by X0563511 (793323)

      I guess you didn't even read the summary, or you'd realize we're talking about infrastructure and not toys or luxuries.

      • by perpenso (1613749)

        I guess you didn't even read the summary, or you'd realize we're talking about infrastructure and not toys or luxuries.

        Or perhaps I was trying to make a general point that upgrading every 2 or 3 years can be a good thing, it depends entirely on the specific item, and I chose to use an example that nearly all readers could understand.

      • by gl4ss (559668)

        I guess you didn't even read the summary, or you'd realize we're talking about infrastructure and not toys or luxuries.

        the same thing applies.

        do you buy an item just because the sales vendor came over for his yearly visit? hell no.

  • Related question (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Okian Warrior (537106) on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @01:05PM (#43721723) Homepage Journal

    Here's a related question. Do you trust when a car manufacturer tells you to buy new parts?

    Specifically, the maintenance schedule in the owner's packet that comes with a new car. For example [nissanusa.com], at 60,000 miles:

    1) Replace engine coolant

    2) Replace HEV inverter coolant

    3) Replace manual transmission oil

    4) Replace automatic transmission/CVT/eCVT fluid

    5) Replace differential oil

    6) Replace engine drive belts

    7) Replace radiator cap

    8) Replace transfer case oil

    Are all these necessary, or is the dealer trying to squeeze more money from the owner? I've heard various mechanics coming down on both sides of this question. Does the differential oil really need periodic replacing? Do you need new drive belts if there's no visible damage?

    (Also: Do you replace the engine oil and filter every 2000 miles, or is this just another way to squeeze money from the consumer?)

    • by ADRA (37398)

      I know diff's occasionally get metal filings inside, and I can't tell the true harm, but I imagine early wear is a likely result.

      I've been driving my Subaru going on 10 years and by sticking roughly to their replacement schedule I've never had anything outside of free recalls deal with. I could be lucky, or it could be a matter of keeping the car in good shape. Who's to tell.

      • by pnutjam (523990)
        This is the only blinker fluid I use [kalecoauto.com], it keeps my blinkers in top form.
      • Same here but not with a Subaru. By simply following the recommended change intervals for fluids you can greatly increase the service life of a vehicle. The example I like to trot out now is my 96 Jeep Cherokee with 377,XXX miles on it. It runs great, doesn't burn or leak oil, doesn't have the valve train chatter that other 4.0 L Jeep engines have, the 4wd works great, manual transmission still shifts smoothly, etc. granted the paint is shot and it has some rust but then I use it for hauling stuff, camping,
    • by jklovanc (1603149) on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @01:25PM (#43721991)

      All of those are relatively small cost items that break down over time and protect much higher value items. For example, if the engine coolant breaks down enough excessive corrosion can ruin an engine.That is very different than replacing a router with a new slightly faster router even though there is no current issue with speed.

      Does the differential oil really need periodic replacing?

      Yes, as a chemical it breaks down over time reducing efficiency and increasing wear. It also accumulates small metal particles which increase wear. The choice is to spend $50 replacing the differential oil at 60K miles or spend thousands to replace the differential sooner than necessary.

      Do you need new drive belts if there's no visible damage?

      According to this article [yahoo.com], yes.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @01:28PM (#43722033)

      Here's a related question. Do you trust when a car manufacturer tells you to buy new parts?

      Specifically, the maintenance schedule in the owner's packet that comes with a new car. For example [nissanusa.com], at 60,000 miles:

      1) Replace engine coolant

      2) Replace HEV inverter coolant

      3) Replace manual transmission oil

      4) Replace automatic transmission/CVT/eCVT fluid

      5) Replace differential oil

      6) Replace engine drive belts

      7) Replace radiator cap

      8) Replace transfer case oil

      Are all these necessary, or is the dealer trying to squeeze more money from the owner? I've heard various mechanics coming down on both sides of this question. Does the differential oil really need periodic replacing? Do you need new drive belts if there's no visible damage?

      (Also: Do you replace the engine oil and filter every 2000 miles, or is this just another way to squeeze money from the consumer?)

      You're talking about consumables. What the vendors are doing is the same as a car manufacturer telling you to buy a new car because it's out of date - regardless if it still works or not.

      • by cdrudge (68377)

        You're talking about consumables. What the vendors are doing is the same as a car manufacturer telling you to buy a new car because it's out of date - regardless if it still works or not.

        It always comes down to does the cost of the piece of equipment breaking and you being out of commission for some period of time outweigh the cost of replacing it ahead of time when it can be scheduled to minimize downtime.

        If you are a traveling salesman an rely 100% on your vehicle, replacing it prior to it's useful life m

        • It's not just the downtime. Replacing a seal that costs a few bucks could save you thousands on a new engine.

          • by AK Marc (707885)
            You are missing the analogy. There is no maintenance on most networking equipment. There's nothing you can do to a Cisco 6500 that will make it less likely to fail. Unless you replace all the power supplies, and all the cards inside on a regular basis. But if you are doing all that, you might as well buy the new version, as I've bought a $250,000 6500 where the chassis was about $10,000 of that cost, the rest in cards and such.
            • Blow out the fans every 6 months. Depending on conditions.

              • If there is enough dust around that this is a valid tactic, then an even more cost effective one might be to get a better dust filter on the aircon, not have carpeted floors, and a couple of other things, to minimize the dust problem.
      • by Above (100351)

        You're talking about consumables. What the vendors are doing is the same as a car manufacturer telling you to buy a new car because it's out of date - regardless if it still works or not.

        You correctly point out the initial misrepresentation, and then make one of your own.

        This is actually more like the car manufacturer telling you they are going to stop making fenders and axles and intake manifolds as replacement parts. "We no longer provide support for X" means exactly that. In the case of physical goods they are no longer going to manufacture the parts (which includes things like line cards in routers or switches), and in the case of virtual goods like software means things like no more

    • I'm not sure how this is a related question? At X miles you can have the fluid taken out and tested and show the percentage of breakdown that occurs. There is a reason there are SAE standards. Now the breakdown may occur more or less quickly depending on environment and driving habits but the number are a good average. These are all parts that suffer mechanical stress and will eventually wear out.

      It's not much different from computer hard drives. They will eventually fail, keep an eye on your SMART diagnost

    • by gl4ss (559668)

      Here's a related question. Do you trust when a car manufacturer tells you to buy new parts?

      do you buy a new car every time a new year model comes out and you see an advertisement? of course not, you would be a sucker if you did.

    • Those guys that wrote the maintenance schedule there really dropped the ball. How could they forget changing the turn signal fluid or lubricating the muffler bearings?

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      You can test all of those fluids, but some of the tests cost the same as new fluid, so you replace the fluid. It's about $50 for an oil analysis, are you prepared to have five of these analyses done? Coolant should be replaced every 2 years at least, more for heavy use, no matter what the manufacturer says. (You can test it, as well. There's at least two tests you need to do, on some diesels three.) Drive belts can be inspected. Radiator cap can be tested, but again it's cheap and they go bad.

      The situation

    • by Pope (17780)

      (Also: Do you replace the engine oil and filter every 2000 miles, or is this just another way to squeeze money from the consumer?)

      No, I do it when the users manual says to. Who came up with this 2000 miles crap? It's not the 70s anymore.

    • by stymy (1223496)
      Have you ever seen what a broken drive belt does to the engine of a car? I have, and it's not pretty. Belts are ticking time bombs. Eventually they WILL break, and cause thousands of dollars in damage. Better to just pay a couple bucks and replace them every now and then. Also, microscopic tears aren't visible, but can very quickly lead to catastrophic failure.
  • by afidel (530433) on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @01:09PM (#43721767)

    HP will extend the warranty on any business class system they sell for a minimum of 5 years beyond the initial 3 year warranty, at the end of 8 years it probably IS more cost effective to replace the system (hell, the HP 3000 series boxes were supported for over a decade after end of sale). For networking I love Cisco chassis based switches, Cat 6500, 4000, and 4500 series switches have all lasted at least a decade.

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      For networking I love Cisco chassis based switches, Cat 6500, 4000, and 4500 series switches have all lasted at least a decade.

      I only feel sorry for the last customers to buy cat5ks, which could not be made y2k compliant for love nor money.

      • by AK Marc (707885)
        cat5ks should never have been made. I've had cisco buy them back from different companies for different reasons, always because the stated specs were wrong, usually related to which features are available with which sup module. And yes, it's really really hard to get Cisco to buy them back.
    • by tibit (1762298) on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @04:38PM (#43724285)

      Of course those Cisco boxes are almost useless unless you also purchase a Cisco support contract. At least you can download manuals and firmware from HP for free - no such thing from Cisco without paying them first!

  • by Joe_Dragon (2206452) on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @01:11PM (#43721787)

    Stop golf course meetings and let real IT people in to meetings as well.

  • generally i keep my options pretty open. infrastructure servers are usually high availability and ordered from Silicon Mechanics or something. theyre cheap, my management enjoys the cost savings, and if one breaks its super simple to just order another as opposed to trying to justify the 'value.' ERP applications or databases will get the Dell/HP Treatment with the $nonferrous_metal level service support and $mm/$dd/$yyyy response SLA because management sees more value in them and theyre generally easier
  • by ADRA (37398)

    If you don't want to upgrade every 2-3 years you could always:

    - You're a small shop with no money and the equipment is doing business critical work: Carry a spare and possibly arrange in redundant configurations
    - You're a small shop with no money and the equipment is doing nothing critical: Possibly carry a spare
    - You're a large shop with 'too much' money and the equipment is doing business critical work: Carry spare(s) and arrange in redundant configurations
    - You're a large

    • Re:Use cases (Score:4, Insightful)

      by FireFury03 (653718) <slashdot@nex[ ]k.org ['usu' in gap]> on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @01:45PM (#43722261) Homepage

      If you don't want to upgrade every 2-3 years you could always:

        - You're a small shop with no money and the equipment is doing business critical work: Carry a spare and possibly arrange in redundant configurations

        - You're a small shop with no money and the equipment is doing nothing critical: Possibly carry a spare

        - You're a large shop with 'too much' money and the equipment is doing business critical work: Carry spare(s) and arrange in redundant configurations

        - You're a large shop with 'too much' money and the equipment is nothing critical: Carry spare

      All too often:
        - You're a small/large shop with enough money and the equipment is doing critical work: Ignore advice to have a spare/redundant configuration, scream blue murder when it breaks. (And usually after a big outage like that, once its all up and running, they *still* ignore the advice to have spares).

      • by pnutjam (523990)
        Keep a resignation letter in your desk along with copies of your recommendations and a list of your consulting rate. Use it when someone is screaming blue murder at you.
        • by Stiletto (12066)

          LOL I've seen the "resign then offer to contract" stunt work maybe once, for one guy, during my 15 year career. Try it, and more than likely you'll get a response from the boss: "Well..... bye."

          • Agreed. When it's time to quit, don't half ass it. Get a new job, then quit.

            If you are _that_ critical you can always extort a nice consulting rate down the road and work nights/weekends for the screamer.

            Always quit on screamers. Fuck them in the ear. They deserve the weak staff that their behavior gets them.

            • by pnutjam (523990)
              Yeah, my point was mostly that you should quit and let those sorts of issues solve themselves. Don't let people abuse you.
  • Not if you're these guys [pcworld.com].

  • Maybe some SOHO/small business networking gear gets retired prematurely, but for larger scale Cisco stuff the end of sale/end of life dates are way beyond when anyone would reasonably want to use the gear.
    • Maybe some SOHO/small business networking gear gets retired prematurely, but for larger scale Cisco stuff the end of sale/end of life dates are way beyond when anyone would reasonably want to use the gear.

      My ISP recently expressed shock when I told them one of my DSL modems was over 10 years old... I'm not entirely sure why they thought it would've been worth replacing - a DSL modem is a DSL modem, a new one isn't going to do anything the old one didn't do, so why bother replacing it? Anyway, the firmwares on consumer grade kit are still junk, so "upgrading" was always most likely to just replace one set of serious bugs with another set of serious bugs...

    • by h4rr4r (612664)

      You could not be more wrong.

      Lots of 6509s with Sup1s are still in use, Sup720s are even more common and they are EOL as well.

    • Infrastructure ceases to function and an upgrade is the cheapest long term solution.
    • The cost of upgrading is less than the savings in productivity, which is frequently true because manpower tends to be significantly more expensive than hardware.
  • Ask for evidence ... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by gstoddart (321705) on Tuesday May 14, 2013 @01:30PM (#43722071) Homepage

    I'm sure most of us have dealt with sales reps over the years, and seen all sorts of claims of bigger/better/faster/cheaper, but they're often unsubstantiated by anything.

    We had a scenario with a vendor a while back where functionality we were relying on wasn't going to be in their next version until a year after it was too late for us. (Add on component we'd been using for years.)

    So, we basically forced them into extending support since the only reason we couldn't upgrade was because of their inability to deliver functionality we already had.

    Then they spent the next year constantly asking us when we would be upgrading, and conveniently trying to forget about the signed contract they'd given us to extend support and telling us we were about to become unsupported.

    You need to work with your vendor, but you sure as hell don't need to take what they tell you at face value without something to support it.

    At the end of the day, most of the salesmen (because that's what your rep is) are more worried about their commission check than anything else, and will certainly mislead your or pressure you to do something which doesn't really benefit you.

  • All of these Ask Slashdot questions appear to come from a Computer Science freshman class.

    Before you buy a piece of hardware, you find out what the "lifetime" is of a piece of hardware and how long it is going to be supported by the vendor. For example, my last job we bought Dell servers, so we investigated that we could get support contracts from Dell for 5 years after purchase. So, we used servers in production for 3 years, and then after that, we would rotate them to another production level function tha

  • "and a customer who contradicts what they're saying may end up shouldering the blame if the equipment goes south. It's the 'you never got fired for buying IBM' argument, applied to the networking space."

    Since when has "management based on fear" ever been a good way to run a department?

    If you are really so afraid that you will buy expensive equipment that is probably unnecessary in order to keep your job, then either:

    (A) you should lose your job, you coward. Or

    (B) you are in a toxic workplace and need to find another one right away.

  • Why are "IT decision makers" listening to anyone outside their organization when it comes to actual decisions?

    I'm sorry, but they have many people in their organizations who have informed opinions on equipment - such as the people who have to work with them. Things like, "These NetApps are shit, let's go with someone else" or "we need new switches, these are dropping packets and are totally fabric saturated". Employees tell their bosses this stuff all the time; they know it amongst themselves as well.

    What's

    • by RKThoadan (89437)

      Because in most cases the "purchasing decider" is actually an over-worked network admin with a real job to do who desperately wishes they could spend 30-60 getting familiar with something.

      • by AK Marc (707885)
        The purchasing decider for me was usually the boss of the admin. The admin had "recommend" influence, but the buy/no-buy would always come from the manager. The non-technical manager. The manager decides on cost and golf games included in the order.
  • HP Procurve devices break so often and so frequently that we automatically get upgrades. If we try to send back a shelved device, we just get the next model up.
    • by tibit (1762298)

      I only have a couple switches and wireless access points, but I've had zero failures so far. I have two Procurve 2512s that are a decade old and all we've ever done to them was firmware upgrades. In fact, they only would be shut down due to firmware upgrades and for no other reason. I also have three LaserJet 8000s that printed millions of pages and are a decade old as well. Perhaps their more advanced products are less reliable, but the circa-2000 stuff seems to have exceeded my expectations so far.

      • by Murdoch5 (1563847)
        Honestly I have to swap out switches about twice a month, it's almost a joke at this point.
        • by tibit (1762298)

          What models are those? I will avoid them. I have an upcoming upgrade on some PoE switches because we're running out of ports and would like gigabit going to the desks, so this might be helpful.

          • by Murdoch5 (1563847)
            On the POE side we run a bulk of 2910's and 2620's, I've replace in the last 3 months probably 5 of the 2910's.
  • We recently decommissioned a perfectly good Sonicwall CDP-6080 with 4TB of backup storage. We were only using about half of the device's available storage, and it was plenty fast for our needs, yet Sonicwall/Dell would not renew our service contract for the device. We were simply told to buy the replacement model in the lineup.

    At the time (4 years ago), it was one of the few backup appliances that could handle AD/Exchange/SQL/Linux off-site backup and manual external archiving to disk. It was expensive b

  • Most times it is all about budget. If you can purchase a fully redundant infrastructure environment, you can suffer end-of-life failures and replace those devices with newer equipment, even out of warranty. You also get the benefit of having backup in the event of an infrastructure failure. Ideally, we would all have a fully redundant infrastructure to start with and then periodically rip it all out and replace it with newer/modern equipment after EOL/EOS...the problem is that, in my experience, the new
  • Never, ever, ever, listen to the vendor. Remember that when you're talking to them, you're talking to their salesmen. Not their technical lead, not their developers, their salesmen. So many people forget this when they go into these contract negotiations. These people are going to say whatever they can to get you to buy, and they rarely have any idea of what they're talking about.

    The details of how long you should expect their product to serve your needs should be explicitly detailed in your contract before

  • One of the survey's interesting points is that IT decision makers aren't willing to contradict the vendor.

    Then they're shitty IT guys.

    Seriously - if some salesman is going to tell you how and what to do with your job, if they can't present you with a convincing argument you tell them to STFU and move the fuck on. Of course, some industries really do need to be on the bleeding edge, but the vast majority do not. The VENDOR should not be making decisions about your purchases...that's like "Buyer Beware 101" right there.

  • Never trust a salesman when he wants to make you buy something. He gets bonus based on how much you buy, which means he has an incentive to fool you. A good test is suggesting that if you replace gear now, you could switch to another supplier.
  • The simple solution is one that has clear benefits: leasing.

    1) You refresh your hardware every three years.
    2) You don't end up with eight-year-old legacy systems that threaten to die at any time.
    3) You're forced to keep your software "fresh."
    4) Each new generation uses far less energy for far more computing power.

  • by Osgeld (1900440)

    if they had good parts I would not be needing new ones as quickly, and they would not cost a left nut for best buy gear in a metal box

    machine vendors generally suck, now that will be 149$ for a gasket please

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