This Service Level Agreement defines the levels of service provided by Smoothwall and the obligations required of Smoothwall and the Customer/Partner.
Smoothwall provide remote support via telephone, live chat, and our customer portal (https://kb.smoothwall.com/hc/en-us).
Smoothwall will also provide Training on Smoothwall Products if required.
Where required, the Customer/Partner agrees to provide appropriate remote access facilities as a pre-condition for Smoothwall to be able to provide the agreed service level.
Smoothwall provide technical support for Smoothwall software and hardware solutions, non-Smoothwall IT Infrastructure is not covered under this agreement.
The Smoothwall Service Desk operate between the core hours of 08:30-17:00 Monday to Friday. If you have a 24/7 contract, support will be available to you outside of these core hours for P1 Incidents only.
The Customer/Partner is responsible for the management of their Smoothwall Solution. Smoothwall will provide technical support for faults under break-fix. Changes to the configuration of the solution are not covered under the support agreement. Additional charges may apply.
Configuration changes should be raised to your Account Manager and any work will be completed by our Projects Team.
Prior to logging a Support Ticket it is expected that basic diagnostics and information gathering is carried out. Please consider checking our Knowledgebase before raising a Ticket with the Smoothwall Support Team. The Knowledgebase is available to all customers at https://kb.smoothwall.com.
The following information will be requested by the Service Desk when logging an Incident or Service Request:
- Contact details including name, email address, and telephone number for the customer or partner.
- A detailed description of the symptoms of the fault, times, and dates of when this happened, and any changes that have recently been made that could have had an impact on the Smoothwall Service.
- Activities already undertaken. Examples of what you’ve tried, what the results were, did the behavior of the problem change?
- Smoothwall Product Serial Number(s).
- Network reference documentation (e.g., network diagram(s), connections, firewalls, servers/hosts, IP addresses etc.).
- Backup copies of current and previous Smoothwall configurations and diagnostics files.
Please note that all P1 Incidents must be submitted via telephone on 0800 5999 041 / (800)-959-1261. Smoothwall are unable to guarantee a 1 Hour Response if P1’s are not submitted via Telephone.
Support Tickets can be submitted via our Customer Portal at https://kb.smoothwall.com/hc/en-us/requests/new. The portal will also provide you with access to view open support tickets. If you require access to view all support tickets for your organization, please speak to your account manager.
Live Chat is also available on our Knowledgebase Page for any quick queries.
Smoothwall will aim to restore normal service operation as quickly as possible to minimize impact on business operations.
If the Incident has been resolved (i.e., a work-around has been applied), the Support Ticket will be closed and an RCA (Root Cause Analysis) Ticket will be created to ascertain the root cause. Once the root cause is determined, additional work may take place for preventative maintenance.
A workaround is defined as an agreed tactical (potentially partial) solution succeeding in returning the Customer/Partner system to acceptable service for a short-term pending a full resolution or RCA.
|P1 / Urgent||Critical Incident||Smoothwall Services are completely unusable OR web filtering services are unavailable. (1 school or more, 1 x LA or entire platform outage)
|P2 / High||Major Incident||Service degraded. Services suffering major disruption.
|P3 / Normal||Minor Incident||Minor disruption to system – e.g., Standard Web Filtering issues.|
|P4 / Service Request||Service Request (No SLA)||Service Requests are not covered under the Service Agreement. Smoothwall Support will provide best endeavors advice and guidance for Service Requests. See examples below:
|Priority||Initial Response||Target Restoration||Applicable Hours|
|P1 – Urgent||<60 mins||<1 Business Day||M-F 8:30 to 17:00|
|P2 – High||<2 Business Hours||<2 Business Days||M-F 8:30 to 17:00|
|P3 – Normal||<4 Business Hours||<5 Business Days||M-F 8:30 to 17:00|
|P4 – Service Request||N/A||N/A||M-F 8:30 to 17:00|
|Root Cause Analysis||N/A||N/A||M-F 8:30 to 17:00|
|Problem Ticket||N/A||N/A||M-F 8:30 to 17:00|
Service Requests are not covered under the Service Level Agreement. Smoothwall Support will provide best endeavors advice and guidance between the hours of 08.30 – 17.00 Monday to Friday.
Service Requests are either a request for information at the request of the customer, a new request or change to the configuration of the Smoothwall service, customers may require help on how to run a report, or trouble shoot a minor issue. (Please note that our Knowledgebase contains a wide range of detailed articles to allow customers to make changes to their Smoothwall solution)
Please note that the Customer/Partner is responsible for the overall management of the Smoothwall Solution.
Major Incident Management (MIM)
Incidents are escalated into the Major Incident Management Process after triage, thus ensuring their validity and for them to be managed based on their likely risk and impact.
Major Incidents will comprise of multiple sites affected (depending on impact). Smoothwall will engage through this process to ensure appropriate response and communications are maintained.
Smoothwall will engage as necessary and appropriate to provide timely support, advice, and assistance.
Major Incidents may result in a Root Cause Analysis Ticket to identify the Root Cause.
Root Cause Analysis
In some cases, a Root Cause Analysis may be required. Please note it is at the sole discretion of Smoothwall as to whether a Root Cause Analysis will be provided.
Root Cause Analysis Reports will include:
- Problem Statement
- Business Impact
- Incident Assessment
- Root Cause
- Service Restoration (resolution of problem)
- Incident Mitigation Plan
- If outage was result of a change – details of testing and back out procedures
- Issues that may have delayed issue diagnosis and restoration
- Escalation levels reached, notification and ongoing status
- Lessons Learnt
Problem Management is the process by which Problem Tickets are raised to our Development Team to be investigated as the cause of, or potential cause of multiple customer incidents.
This would typically be a product defect or bug which causes a degraded service for one or more customers that may require further development of the product to provide a permanent solution.
A Problem Ticket will be raised in the in the event that one of the following criteria are met:
- Multiple incidents with the same symptoms.
- An incident that requires further development work for a permanent solution.
- A product defect or bug has been confirmed by the Smoothwall Development Team.
Customer Incidents will be investigated by the Senior 3rd Line Team within the Smoothwall Support Department initially to ascertain whether further Development work is required, or if another solution can be applied. The Customer is also required to provide reasonable assistance and access to enable diagnostics to further the investigation.
Once a Problem Ticket has been raised and assigned to the Smoothwall Development Team, all Incidents linked to that Problem will no longer carry an SLA Target as this sits outside the scope of the Support Agreement.
Smoothwall will aim to provide weekly updates on the progress of Problem Tickets. Once a root-cause is identified the Customer will be notified and further information will follow via the Support Ticket.
The Problem Ticket will be closed once follow up actions are completed and agreed by the customer.
Smoothwall Support is available for Urgent/P1 Incidents only 24x7x365 for Premium and Enhanced Service Agreement. All P1’s must be submitted via Telephone. Please note that the out of hours service is a limited service, therefore SLA’s will only be adhered to within core hours.
Any planned work should be raised to your Customer Success Manager as this could incur further charges.
The Smoothwall Service Desk operate between the core hours of 08:30-17:00 Monday to Friday for all other support matters.
Online Training and Accreditation is available to Customers/Partners. Please contact your Customer Success Manager for access to our Customer Training Platform.
If you require additional Training/Consultancy, this may be chargeable.
Smoothwall will provide a Hardware Limited Warranty / RMA (Return Merchandise Authorization) for Hardware Failures.
Return Merchandise Authorization is defined as Smoothwall’s process for handling Hardware limited warranty claim or hardware replacements following a hardware fault.
Smoothwall will provide support, advice, and guidance regarding Smoothwall Software Products. This will include Blocklist updates (Filter Customers Only) Bug Fixes and updates via the Release Management schedule.
Customer / Partner obligations
Incident diagnosis and resolution may require the active participation of Customer/Partner staff to provide information, assistance and carry out requested tasks in a timely manner.
The Customer / Partner agrees to use all reasonable endeavors to execute Smoothwall’s requests and provide information in a timely fashion. Smoothwall’s ‘response’ and ‘fix’ service levels calculations will omit the Customer/Partner time taken to complete delegated actions and requests.
It is recommended practice that the Customer / Partner executes and tests regular backups of Smoothwall configurations. It is therefore the Customer/Partner’s responsibility to take regular backups of the appliance configurations. Failure to do so may result in delays in resolving incidents beyond Smoothwall’s reasonable control.
Smoothwall generates Blocklist updates daily at approximately 3.15am (GMT). The Customer / Partner agrees to allow the Smoothwall software to operate normally to complete automatic updates of Blocklists, usually by 4.30am (GMT) daily on their systems(s) in order that Smoothwall software can provide optimum, up to date internet security protection. At is sole discretion, Smoothwall may, from time to time, generate Blocklist updates at times other than 3.15am (GMT) in order to mitigate risks and / or issues bearing the potential to affect Customer / Partner service. The Customer / Partner accepts the need for daily and periodic automatic updates required by Smoothwall software to operate optimally.
In the event that the original priority changes due to a degrading of service, please call the Service Desk to report any changes to the incident. The incident will then be escalated appropriately to the relevant priority level.
Upon reaching an agreed resolution with the Customer / Partner, the incident will be closed, and the relevant ticket number updated accordingly on Smoothwall’s system. In the event that the Customer / Partner’s Authorized Contact(s) do not respond to telephone calls, voicemail messages or emails for 5 working days to verify their agreement to the incident being resolved, Smoothwall reserves the right to close the incident and relevant ticket number. In the event that the original incident re-occurs, Smoothwall agrees to re-open the incident and continue the investigation.
Hardware limited warranty
Smoothwall Hardware limited warranty terms, where relevant, apply within the Agreement. See; https://www.smoothwall.com/education/legal/
Smoothwall Engineers may need to remotely access Customer / Partner Smoothwall systems in order to investigate faults. It is Smoothwall’s recommendation that the Customer/Partner provides remote access utilizing a secure encrypted connection (eg. VPN, SSH, HTTPS or using the TeamViewer remote access software provided by Smoothwall). Smoothwall would be pleased to discuss this requirement further with the Customer/Partner if required and may, subject to agreed charges, provide design and installation for the above. When remotely accessing Customer/Partner sites Smoothwall staff will rely
upon the Customer/Partner for their guidance on local system security and system access permission issues. Delays due to Customers in obtaining suitable access to Customer/Partner Smoothwall systems will be excluded from SLA performance calculations.
For the purposes of service levels, an incident will be considered as ‘resolved’ (and thus the ticket will be closed) when Smoothwall has provided the Customer/Partner with an agreed solution or temporary work-around providing a ‘return to service’ for the Customer / Partner system. Smoothwall will take all reasonable steps to ensure that the solution (or proposed solution or work-around) will resolve (or at least mitigate) the issue being experienced by the Customer. Smoothwall will make all reasonable endeavors to contact the Customer/Partner in order to verify that the incident is satisfactorily resolved. In the event that Smoothwall cannot contact the Customer/Partner or the Customer/Partner does not respond within five working days of the first contact attempt, Smoothwall reserves the right to close the relevant ticket.
Should the Customer/Partner later inform Smoothwall that the solution has not been effective then the relevant ticket will be re-opened and Smoothwall will re- commence work on providing an effective resolution. In the case of a work-around then the incident priority level will be reassessed appropriately for the changed circumstances and service level achievement calculations suitably amended. Please note Support Tickets cannot be reopened after a 2 week period.
The Customer/Partner will take all reasonable measures to ensure that all Smoothwall products or services are maintained fully up-to-date with the latest software updates.
The Customer/Partner can submit a ticket to Smoothwall when a new update is available. Smoothwall will provide necessary guidance to facilitate the upgrade/update process if required. (Please note this would be considered a Service Request).
Smoothwall will not be bound by the terms of this Agreement in any of the following circumstances:
The Support Services do not cover the following:
(a) Third Party Software, Open-Source Software or Third-Party Hardware.
(b) IT products and services not supplied by Smoothwall. (i.e., customer’s infrastructure)
(c) Any improper use, misuse or unauthorized alteration of the Software, Third Party Software, Open-Source Software or Hardware by the Customer.
(d) Any use of the Software or Hardware by the Customer in a manner inconsistent with the current specification.
(e) The use by the customer of any hardware or software not provided by Smoothwall or approved by Smoothwall in writing. Misconfiguration or incompatibility of such hardware or software.
(f) The use of a version or release of the Software which is no longer supported by Smoothwall.
(g) Failure of the customer to fulfil their obligations as specified in this Support Agreement; Customer obligations refer to the provision of remote access, providing relevant and detailed information and participation in the resolution of the ticket.
(h) Inability of Smoothwall to contact (or gain a response from) the Customer contact(s); If Smoothwall are unable to reach the customer via telephone, Smoothwall will contact via email. If we do not receive a response from customer, we will follow up on days 2 and 4, on the 7th day the case is closed.
(i) Information from the customer (or their representative) that is inaccurate, incomplete, or untimely.
(j) Inability of Smoothwall to obtain remote access and / or remote diagnosis permissions to aid troubleshooting.
(k) Failure of communications, internet connections, electricity supply or other vital services outside of the control of Smoothwall.
(l) Problems emanating from configuration, software, network problems (e.g., DNS) outside of the control of Smoothwall.
(m) Non-compliance with the conditions of the Hardware Limited Warranty.
(n) Incidents not reported promptly by the customer or where a ticket number has not been obtained.
(o) Smoothwall being unable to verify successful service restoration with the Customer.
(p) Any act or interference of any third party other than an authorized Smoothwall Partner.
(r) Requests for change to the configuration of the original Smoothwall solution.
The term of this Agreement is defined by the years purchased by the Customer / Partner through a formal Purchase Order. Smoothwall will register the Purchase Order, Agreement and term on our systems.
- This Agreement, any associated Smoothwall Software Licenses, Smoothwall Hardware limited warranty and the Smoothwall Terms and Conditions of Business constitute the entire Agreement between Smoothwall and the Customer, superseding all previous written or oral agreement between the parties.
- If any of the terms or provisions of this Agreement are or become invalid or unenforceable then they shall be deemed severable, and all other terms and conditions shall remain in full force and effect.
- For Customers of Smoothwall Inc. or one of their North American Partners, the proper law applicable to this Agreement is the law of the State of North Carolina, USA. The parties hereby submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the Courts of Mecklenburg County, North Carolina in relation to any claim or matter arising from this Agreement.
- For Customers of Smoothwall Ltd. or one of their UK or worldwide Partners, the proper law applicable to this Agreement is English law and the parties hereby submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts in relation to any claim or matter arising from this Agreement.
- The current Smoothwall Terms and Conditions of Business apply: see https://www.smoothwall.com/education/uk-terms-and-conditions/