HP has announced it is changing its policy on service pack and firmware updates for its ProLiant servers. From 19 February, these will only be available to customers with a valid support agreement, HP Care Pack service, or warranty covering the product.
The firm announced the changes on its Technical Support Services Blog, stating that access to server firmware updates and HP Service Pack for ProLiant (SPP) servers will henceforth require entitlement. Previously, the updates were freely available to download, V3 understands.
However, despite many reports claiming that HP is attempting to charge customers for updates, it appears that the firm is only adopting a position that is standard practice across the rest of the industry.
The firm has also been applying the same restrictions to customers of its HP Integrity and HP 9000 enterprise server lines since September last year.
"Our customers under warranty or support coverage will not need to pay for firmware access, and we are in no way trying to force customers into purchasing extended coverage. That is, and always will be, a customer's choice," said Mary McCoy, vice president of HP Server Technology Services.
However, the firm advised that customers should review their current support to ensure they have the appropriate coverage to maintain uninterrupted access to firmware updates for the systems they have.
HP said that an active warranty, HP Care Pack or support agreement for the specific product being updated is required to access the latest firmware updates and SPP downloads.
In the case of warranties, customers are advised that these must be linked to their HP Support Center User ID, and customers must have a contract or warranty for the specific product being updated.
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