TPM Myths – Spare Part Shortages

Graphical representation of computer components including a video card, motherboard, memory and hard drive

Posted on Tuesday, June 28, 2016

As hardware approach end of service life (EoSL), your business will come under increasing pressure from your OEM to replace each unit. If you remain adamant that your existing storage units are sufficient, they may offer a custom support agreement – at considerable extra cost.

When a third party maintenance (TPM) provider makes a pitch for the job, often at 40 to 70 per cent less than the original support contract, many CTOs are sceptical. How can a service offered by a third party possibly be that much cheaper without compromising on some kind of important detail?

Software patches and upgrades in most cases are the primary concern many clients express. The reality is once your hardware is deemed EOSL there are typically no updates or upgrades being made available by the OEM. OEMs know TPMs are unable to access or distribute any software and this fear tactic is used as a way to pressure clients into an early refresh.

When hardware is post warranty and updates and upgrades are available, clients need to determine how stable their environment is before electing to select a TPM. In many cases clients are not running on the latest software release for the simple reason, their environment is quite stable and they do not want to introduce potential problems or risk an outage. If however, your environment is constantly changing and your policy is to always to operate on the latest software release, then, consider OEM post warranty maintenance.

One common concern is the availability of spare parts. Once a unit is designated EoSL, the OEM immediately stops producing units, which in turn shrinks the pool of available parts. The longer you keep a system running, the harder it becomes to replace parts when they fail.

In many cases, this is a completely legitimate concern. Some TPM providers maintain very small inventories, relying on refurbishment or non-OEM approved spares to plug the gap. Regardless of the cost savings, neither compromise is ideal – or acceptable.

The CDS difference

To avoid spare parts shortages, CDS maintain a strictly controlled list of supported systems. This is then backed by one of the largest private inventories of OEM-approved spare parts in the world.

We also distribute and store spare parts using a network of global support agents, ensuring that they are close enough to our customers’ sites to be delivered and fitted in as little as two hours. In some cases we may even store high risk components at our client sites to reduce lead time even further.

In every regard, the CDS service is at least as good as that from your OEM – at far lower cost. And if your system is supported by CDS, you can be sure we have enough spares in stock to keep it running for another three to five years.

To learn more about third party maintenance services for your data storage hardware, please get in touch.