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The answer is: it depends. It depends on the following four dimensions:

1. Knowledge

the level of knowledge you and your team has, especially about

  • Usage & Functionality of NMS Prime
  • Linux and CentOS configuration (also VM)
  • critical services like DHCP, TFTP, .. and it's integration into NMS Prime
  • CMTS, Switching and Routing Topics
  • could you keep track with NMS Prime development and coming updates and changes

If you feel very comfortable about these topics you probably don't need a SLA.

2. Tolerable Downtime

The second dimension is tolerable downtime for you and your customers regarding potential network outages. Questions you should have a good answer to:

  1. Who is responsible when we encourage a network outage?
  2. What will happen if a network outage is on a holiday, out of work-hours, in the night?
    Do we have a 24x7 support desk?
  3. Is the support desk capable and trained towards the topics listed above? Or is it L1 support only?

See: Example scenarios you should be prepared for

3. Costs on a 24x7 basis

What will it take (=cost) to address these topics 24x7 so that you and your team can have a peaceful night sleep, vacation, your customer satisfaction is at a maximum peak and you boss won't kill you if something went wrong?

For this purpose our Service Level Agreement is designed and we offer a special 24x7 Proactive Support. We could solve critical outages while you are on holiday!

Will your costs will be smaller than our service fee –> you should probably do it by yourself!

4. Your Long Term strategy

Last but not least: everything depends on strategy in a entrepreneurial environment – at least in a non shareholder company with a long breath. So the last question you will need to face is simple: will you address this topic inside or outside of your company from a strategic point of view?

What you will get from SLA and what it will costs?

With your service fee, you help to establish a free and open source network provisioning system and you will get a fast professional 24x7 support, direct access to the development team of NMS Prime any time you need it and a chance to vote for next features to implement (see Feature Voting).

For costs and included services checkout:

Free Software = Free beer?

The answer is NO!

We love to quote Fabien Pinckaers  – the Odoo Founder – bringing it to the point:

"The software is free, but not the service"

Other considerations: paying for open source?

Paying for open source software or better: its services is always based on a free choice. It's like going towards a political election or choosing between bike or car while driving towards sports. With your voice you can help establishing or killing an idea and system. It's up to you!

Business Models we hate (=avoid)!

  1. Data = Money: the sale of private and user oriented data's

    suggestion for google and facebook :)

    1. Why not giving the experienced user the choice to decide between
      1. paying a monthly service fee, or
      2. getting a free software, while all my data's are explored and sold to whom ever
        I think on a global dimension most people don't care about that, but why not giving aware people a free choice?
  2. Open core and all it's variants: means a free and open source core complemented by proprietary add-ons you need to pay for

NMS Prime = a value driven business (=idea)

We love open source. We love it 100%, not half and not under special circumstances. We fight hard to keep the system 100% free, open and avoid the explained business models above. We think the idea of open source and free knowledge is MOST valuable while it comes towards a free internet access.

Why? Because:

Nearly 50% of world population is offline!

Just imagine what this would mean to you, your family, your business, your educational background – no free information and communication at all! It simply means most of them won't be possible without a internet access. Your live and your history will be completely different. Why is it so complicated to reach 100% access?

We don't have the answers, but what we suggest is the following:

Why? And what can we do?

IT Infrastructure projects are expensive. That's okay, that's normal. But especially in political unstable areas they are insecure. From a business point of view, there is no safety that an investor will get back it's money. We call this "protection of investment" or "risk of loss". That's one reason why nothing happens. Could we change that? Will this change automatically? Yes and No! Of cause technical equipment prices are dropping. This will enable more and more companies and big investors to jump the critical line for "risk of loss". But is pricing the main issue?

We think it's not!

It's missing knowledge!

Especially in small, rural and unstable areas no big company will come what so ever. But how about community networks? Until now you could imagine what it will take to jump the level of knowledge required for building your own network and connect it to the internet. Especially because no free all-in-one solution is available. Provisioning knowledge is restricted and you need to pay a lot of money to get a food on the stage.

That's why we pushed NMS Prime open source! Share your knowledge! Support our Vision!

What the hell are you doing with my money? Or: How is development financed?

The money you spend will be used 100% for the NMS Prime project only:

  • 35% Research & Development of NMS Prime (come to our conferences or take part in online voting for next features)
  • 45% Support Team (24x7)
  • 15% Administration
  • 5% Social Engagement


SLA = Service Level Agreement

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1 Comment

  1. Read it (over and over again), learn it, feel it, breath it, share it - it's not just a product or a service - it's an attidude, it's about changing our world for the better!