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Support

SAS TECHNICAL SUPPORT SERVICES AND POLICIES

At SAS Technical Support, our mission is to "help our customers make the best use of our software products through effective and responsive support, active advocacy, and a broad and flexible range of self-help resources." In support of this mission, the following services and policies set the expectations for your relationship with SAS Technical Support.



Services

General Support Services

Technical support for SAS software includes: Some of the ways in which we can help you successfully use our software are:
  • Suggest the appropriate SAS procedure, language feature, or products for the particular type of analysis or functionality that is requested.
  • Answer questions about specific details of procedures, such as discussing available features, options, and limitations.
  • Provide references for formulas and statistical techniques that our algorithms use, where possible.
  • Provide limited guidance and references to help you interpret the output that is produced by statistical procedures.
  • Isolate, document, and find circumventions for reported software defects.
  • Work with SAS software development staff to provide safe hot fixes for our software, as we deem appropriate.
  • Provide limited and general statistical advice on a case-by-case basis; however, it is your responsibility to determine which type of statistical analysis is appropriate for your needs.
  • Address concerns with printed or online documentation by providing additional examples, if necessary, or explanation for concepts that require clarification.
  • Provide guidance during SAS software installation.
  • Provide limited assistance with programming logic.
  • Provide a broad overview of hardware tuning, operating system modifications, SAS system performance enhancements, and methods of efficient programming for achieving optimal performance; however, we do not provide benchmarking for specific hardware or operating systems.
  • Provide support for the interaction between the SAS system and any third-party software that ships with the SAS system.
  • For other third-party applications, we are glad to convey any knowledge that we have, but we cannot provide support for another vendor's software.

Due to limited resources and knowledge of any particular customer's data analysis situation, we cannot provide customized consulting services. Nor can we provide customized SAS code, for example, CONTRAST, ESTIMATE, or TABLES statements; macro, JSL, SCL, DATA step, or IML code. You can visit the SAS Consulting Web site to learn more about the consulting services that are offered by SAS. Your Account Representative can also assist you in engaging the appropriate professional services.

SAS Technical Support applies only to SAS licensed software products. Work Product from SAS Consulting services engagements can be supported under a services contract from SAS Consulting. Visit SAS Consulting web site to learn more about the consulting services that are offered by SAS. Your Account Representative can also assist you in engaging the appropriate professional services.

Some SAS software products are designed to be modified by the customer. However, modifying SAS software products in a manner not authorized by the applicable user documentation might limit or preclude SAS from providing technical support. Contact SAS Technical Support if you are unsure whether your planned modification will result in a supported software configuration. Attempting to reverse engineer, reverse assemble or decompile SAS software, or in any way attempting to recreate or modify the source code for any SAS software, is never authorized under your SAS software license and might preclude SAS from providing technical support.

Support Services for Current and Prior Releases of Software

SAS provides three levels of support for generally available SAS software applications running on these supported operating systems. These levels of support are described in the following table:

Support Levels for SAS® Software
Support Level Support Activity by Technical Support Staff Support for Executable Modules
and Hot Fixes
A    Phone
   E-mail
   Web Interface
  Investigates all reported problems.

  Provides circumventions, where possible.
  Provided for selected critical problems.
B    Phone
   E-mail
   Web Interface
  Investigates all reported problems.

  Provides circumventions, where possible.
  Might be provided for selected critical
  problems.

  Provides fixes where already available.

C
   Phone
   E-mail
   Web Interface
  Identifies and provides self-help resources and/or
  previously-documented, known circumventions.*

  Additionally, your SAS account representative
  can identify options for you to migrate to a SAS
  product or release at a higher support level,
  if desirable.
  Provides fixes where already available.
* Note: After-hours support for Level C-supported software is limited to searching the Technical Support database for known,
           readily-identifiable potential circumventions to previously-encountered similar problems.


The support levels for SAS software releases are indicated in the following table:

Support Levels for SAS® Software Releases**
SAS® Software Release Level A Level B Level C Notes
9.4 X        SAS 9.4 (TS1M2) generally available August 2014
   SAS 9.4 (TS1M1) generally available December 2013
   SAS 9.4 (TS1M0) generally available July 2013

   For information, see the SAS 9.4 Software web page.
9.3 X        Generally available July 2011

   For information, see the SAS 9.3 Software web page.
9.2   X      Generally available March 2008

   Reduction to Level B support September 30, 2013

   For information, see the SAS 9.2 Software web page.
9.1.3     X    Reduction to Level C support September 30, 2013
8.2     X    Reduction to Level C support December 31, 2011
Earlier than 8.2     X    All previous releases in Level C support
    Non-GA* solutions and
    products developed on
    obsolete platforms
    X  
*  Generally available
** Specific releases of SAS software products might have different support levels than the overall SAS software release with
   which such product is associated. Current support levels for specific SAS products and solutions might be documented in
   SAS Notes and can be found by searching the Samples & SAS Notes Knowledge Base and using the search terms
   support level with the product name. SAS customers may also contact SAS Technical Support to confirm which support level
   corresponds to their version of licensed SAS software.

Software Maintenance and Bug Fixes

SAS provides maintenance for the SAS system through replacement executable modules, or hot fixes, that might be supplied individually or in bundles. The availability of hot fixes is announced on the Technical Support Hot Fixes Web page and via e-mail by subscribing to our TSNEWS-L mailing list.

While we attempt to provide fixes for serious problems, there might be cases where it is impractical or impossible to generate a fix, due to compatibility issues or the potential for introduction of unwanted side effects.

Problem and Product Change Notifications

SAS documents Alert Priority issues, as well as problems that are not of alert status, in the form of SAS Notes. You can search for Alert Priority issues in our Samples and SAS Notes database.

SAS lists product change notifications on the Web page for Product Advisory Notices from SAS.

Policies

Support Eligibility

Technical support is available to all customers who license SAS software. However, you are encouraged to engage your designated on-site SAS support personnel as your first support contact. If your on-site SAS support personnel cannot resolve your issue, have them contact SAS Technical Support to report your problem. When you contact SAS Technical Support, you might be required to provide information, such as your SAS site number, company name, e-mail address, and phone number, that identifies you as a licensed SAS software customer. Failure to provide this information might preclude SAS Technical Support from taking action on your issue.

Support Cost

For most SAS products and solutions, there is no additional charge for technical support. Support of our software is considered a part of the license agreement. Charges for any fee-based Technical Support services are outlined in your license agreement.

If you need assistance to do any of the following, your request will be routed to an appropriate fee-based resource.

  • write custom code
  • design a SAS application
  • select an appropriate statistical methodology
  • design experiments
  • debug a complex application
You can visit the SAS Consulting Web site to learn more about the consulting services that are offered by SAS. Your Account Representative can also assist you in engaging the appropriate professional services.

Support Hours

For Customers in North America during Normal Support Hours:

Support is provided in English from our corporate headquarters in Cary, North Carolina.

Support hours for new questions are Monday through Friday 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern time.
Limited support for new questions is available Monday through Friday 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern time.
Support hours for questions with an assigned tracking number are Monday through Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern time.
For Customers Outside of North America:

Local-language technical support is provided through the local office in your country. If you are outside of North America, contact your local SAS office for specific support hours.

For Critical Problems after Normal Support Hours:

Calls to Technical Support for critical problems after normal support hours are directed to one of our world-wide support centers in North America, Europe, or Asia/Pacific, thus providing 24-hour "follow the sun" support.

Note: After-hours support is available only in English and is limited to critical problems. After-hours support for Level C-supported software is limited to searching the Technical Support database for known, readily-identifiable potential circumventions to previously-encountered similar problems. If no potential circumvention is found, support will continue during regular business hours.

In addition, you can access the SAS Customer Support Web site and e-mail support services 24 hours a day.

Problem Response Time

For Problems Reported by Phone

All problems reported to Technical Support are initially handled by a consultant who works with you to identify and (in many cases) solve your reported problem. If the problem is not resolved during the primary contact, the consultant assigns a tracking number to the problem and does additional research or might pass it to a specialist.

The following table displays the targets for initial follow-up and frequency of updates for problems with different severities and conditions. The goals for initial follow-up after a problem with production software is first reported are based on the nature and severity of the problem. The Technical Support consultant will attempt to contact the customer who reported the problem within the response time goals described below.



Severity Level Condition Initial Follow-up* Frequency of Updates
1

  A critical SAS production system is down or does not
  function at all, and there is no circumvention for the
  problem; a significant number of customers are affected,
  and a production business system is inoperable.

2 hours Every day
2

  A component of SAS is not performing, creating a
  significant operational impact.

4 business hours Every 2 business days**
3

  A component of SAS is not performing as documented;
  there are unexpected results; problems are
  circumventable; there is moderate or minor
  operational impact.

24 hours*** Every 3 business days
4

  Questions pertain to usage questions or clarification
  of documentation.

24 hours*** Every 10 business days
5

  Customer offers suggestions or requests for new product
  features and enhancements.

24 hours*** Every 30 business days

*   For problems that are assigned to a Technical Support consultant, initial follow-up is defined as the time between when the problem
    is initially reported and the specialist contacts the customer. For problems that require further research by the consultant who
    initially received the problem, initial follow-up is defined as the time between the initial contact with the consultant and a follow-up call. 

**  Follow-up as agreed upon by Customer Management and SAS Technical Support Management

*** Does not include weekend or other non-business days






For Problems Reported Electronically

Priorities are assigned to problems reported via the Web or e-mail, based on the guidelines above. All problems reported electronically receive an immediate automated e-mail confirmation and a problem tracking number. A Technical Support consultant will respond to the customer who reported the problem by phone or e-mail within 24 hours, with the exception of problems that are reported on weekends and holidays. Because SAS cannot guarantee less than 24-hour response on problems tracked electronically, you should report Severity 1 or 2 problems by phone.

Escalating Problems

If the normal support process does not produce the desired results, or if the problem has changed in priority, the problem can be escalated as follows:

Sites that are served by Cary World Headquarters

  1. First contact the consultant who is working on your problem and request that the priority of the problem is escalated.
  2. You may request to speak with a Technical Support manager if additional escalation is required.
  3. You may request to speak with the Vice President of Technical Support if continued escalation is required.

Sites that are served by International offices

  1. First contact the Technical Support staff who are working on your problem and request that the priority of the problem is escalated.
  2. You may request to speak to the Technical Support Manager.
  3. You may request to speak with the Professional Services Director if additional escalation is required.
  4. You may request to speak with the Country Manager if continued escalation is required.

Resolving Problems

Due to the complex nature of software development and operating environments, SAS cannot guarantee the time that it will take to resolve a problem. In addition, our response times may be affected if a customer fails to provide requested information and/or refuses to provide SAS with remote access to the customerís relevant network(s) or system(s), as applicable. We make our best effort to resolve problems as expeditiously as possible.

Archiving Problems

A problem is archived upon mutual agreement between the consultant that is responsible for the problem and the customer who reported the problem. In cases where the consultant is awaiting further information from the customer, the consultant makes at least one attempt either by phone or e-mail to contact the customer within a few business days. During this contact, the consultant communicates a timeline for archiving the problem if further information is not provided.

Information is not lost when a problem is archived. If for any reason in the future you need to discuss the specific problem that is documented in an archived track, a new problem will be opened with a new tracking number, and all information will be carried forward into the new tracking entry.

SAS Software Support when Third-Party Vendors Drop Support

In some instances, SAS software is supported for an operating system, Java application server, Java Development Kit (JDK), or Java Runtime Environment (JRE) level, even though the third party vendor of that software has withdrawn support. SAS reserves the right to move support to Level C for these third party software levels at our discretion.

Sending Sensitive Data

SAS will safeguard data you send to our Technical Support organization in the same manner in which we protect our own similar confidential information. However, SAS Technical Support cannot guarantee that your data will be handled in compliance with all regulatory standards applicable to such data. Accordingly, please do not send to SAS any data subject to government regulations that prescribe special handling requirements. If your data file contains such regulated information, please contact us before sending it so we may discuss masking, obfuscation, or other possible methods to convert your data set to a format that SAS can manage.