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Canonical provides paid support plans, but not for individuals (minimum Order: 50 Desktops). Is there any company other than Canonical providing paid support for Ubuntu for individuals or very small companies? If not directly for Ubuntu, then perhaps for Linux in general? I have tried searching online for a company that provides paid support to individuals but could not find anything.

  • Possible duplicate of Does Canonical provide paid support for individuals? – gravitymixes May 11 '17 at 20:00
  • I'm asking if someone other than Canonical provides paid support. Question updated to make that clearer. – Todd Chaffee May 11 '17 at 20:01
  • On the contrary, they offer support for individuals/small companies. – gravitymixes May 11 '17 at 20:02
  • Minimum 50 desktops from what I can see on their website. Please feel free to give an answer if that's not true. – Todd Chaffee May 11 '17 at 20:03
  • There's nothing that prevents anybody from offering any type of support for Ubuntu. – David Foerster May 16 '17 at 14:31
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Ask your Ubuntu Local Community. Those LoCo teams often hold meetings near you.

That would be the best method to get localized support. Often there is not even a need to pay for support. They just like to help you with questions.

But the people at a loco meeting also will know more about people and/or companies willing to help individuals with problems or with some form of education about Ubuntu/Linux.

Besides that it is mainly getting yourself informed by reading blogs, Q+A sites, problems others had and got fixed on-line.

Ask Ubuntu is one of the sources for individual support. Free of charge but it will not be at your actual home and it will need to be on this site since we all want to know how you messed up and learn from it ;)

  • 3
    Thanks for your answer. Upvoting because it is helpful. But what I'm looking for is a guaranteed response time and service level, which I am willing to pay for. – Todd Chaffee May 11 '17 at 14:19
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Phone support plans can probably be acquired from most consultants and some smaller boutique developers. >$100/hr I imagine.


Solution proposed in comments

Create a network of Linux systems professionals spanning many disciplines including kernel, distros (Ubuntu, Arch, Red Hat, etc), bash, python, raid, encryption, networking and major applications (LibreOffice, Wine, Imaging, Videos and Audio). Initially this would be hundreds of experts around the world but most would only work ~10 hours per week as they have full time jobs or University studies.

Create database of clients (thousands initially). They would log into website to setup basic information for each computer and printer they use.

Create mirrored Websites hosted in California, New York, Florida, Toronto, London, and Sydney. Clients will sign on when they need help via chat, mail or VOIP. The website links a given client to available experts.

A utility can be run from website to get diagnostics on the machine in question which is visible to expert. Expert does not get direct access to the client machine for security and bond-able reasons. Expert can look at configuration files on client machine but could not, for example, copy off customer list to the expert's machine.

Client's pay $100 minimum per incident and expert receives $50 minimum per incident assuming professional service is provided. Expert is expected to type in notes after incident is solved so the next expert has access to them when client calls again. All chats are logged into history.

The core website software is essentially a help desk with global dimensions. Initially there will only be one global Linux support company but with millions of desktops this will grow to dozens of support companies and settle down to 3 or 4 majors.

The same website software would likely be tailored for other industries.

  • With an individual consultant I would be concerned about the "bus factor". But if that's the only solution it might be better than nothing. Where would I find Ubuntu or Linux sysadmin consultants I can rely on? – Todd Chaffee May 11 '17 at 19:00
  • @ToddChaffee Personally I don't know of any companies large or small that provide Linux phone support. Are you looking for on-site support though? In an ideal world I'd take a couple dozen people from around the world who frequently post well thought out solutions in Ask Ubuntu and use them as resources to provide phone, email, chat & remote access support to a few thousand clients through a private secure website. They could continue their full time jobs (or studies if in University) and devote ~10 hours a week servicing the "grid". – WinEunuuchs2Unix May 11 '17 at 23:13
  • I don't need on-site support. Just phone or even text chat. Could you add your comment to the answer? It's a good suggestion. – Todd Chaffee May 12 '17 at 14:55
  • @ToddChaffee I didn't think you wanted on-site support but the other answer mentioned local support so I needed to confirm. I've added the internet support business model to the answer. – WinEunuuchs2Unix May 12 '17 at 23:09

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