201601.06
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New IBM Passport Advantage Agreement Drastically Changes Support Requirements

One of the major changes in the latest version of IBM’s Passport Advantage Agreement is the requirement that customers maintain subscription and support (S&S) on either all of the licenses that are installed and in service or none of the licenses. Customers can no longer maintain subscription and support on only some of the licenses in use.

In an audit situation, if a customer does not pay for S&S on each of the products installed, IBM will check the support requests for a particular product. If a support request has been made for that product during the audit period, IBM will demand that the customer purchase S&S for all installations of the product in question.

It is critical to understand the new S&S requirements in IBM’s agreements and if a company is not planning to subscribe, ensure that employees are not making support calls on the products. It is possible to receive support without a subscription, and then to be asked to pay a huge penalty for retroactive S&S on that product. The text of the new rule is included below.

FOR THE AUTHORIZED USE OF EACH IBM PROGRAM INSTALLED AND IN SERVICE AT A CUSTOMER’S SITE, CUSTOMER HAS THE OPTION TO MAINTAIN IBM SOFTWARE SUBSCRIPTION AND SUPPORT FOR EITHER (a) ALL OF THE AUTHORIZED USE OR (b) NONE OF THE AUTHORIZED USE.

THERE IS NO OPTION FOR MAINTAINING IBM SOFTWARE SUBSCRIPTION AND SUPPORT COVERAGE FOR ONLY A PORTION OF AUTHORIZED USE INSTALLED AND IN SERVICE FOR AN IBM PROGRAM AT A CUSTOMER SITE.

IBM Passport Advantage Agreement Section 3.5.1 (emphasis in original).