How We Work

Linux/Unix support we provide

We hope this page answers most of your questions but please do not hesitate to contact us to find out more or to share specifics of your Unix environment.

How does Tech Stack provide support?

The most basic arrangement is quite simple:

  1. You log an issue with our support team (via email)
  2. An engineer is assigned to your task and follows up

Our engineers will usually require access to your servers, so we have a Getting Started page that lists steps for your technical staff to take in order to provide Tech Stack team with access. We also bring your team’s attention to things like backups and securing remote access because these are keys for any server that’s online these days.

What are the common tasks that you can help with?

Glad you asked. Here’s just a few ways how we can help you focus on your business while we deal with Unix stuff:

  • find what’s filling up your filesystem (/ and /var are the ones we’re asked about a lot)
  • set up passwordless (public/private key based) SSH access
  • install/update an SSL certificate on your webserver
  • setup log rotation for some of the logs
  • investigate why one of your users can’t log in
  • install/update a package or a whole OS using yum or aptitude
  • install (compile) a software package from source code
  • review your server for performance bottlenecks
  • securely transfer files between your servers

Any tasks or services that could REALLY save us time?

Sure! How about:

  • we review error messages and log a hardware call for one of your servers
  • our staff member captures your Unix server configuration in a handbook-style report
  • you get help with reviewing access and error logs of your webservers
  • someone reviews your software setup and builds an up-to-date infrastructure diagram
  • our expert helps your team spec a new solution and pick the right hardware and software

How many tasks can you do in a day/month?

You can submit as many tasks as you like and our team of experts will tackle them on a first-come, first-served basis. We process your support requests one by one, so tasks will not be done in parallel unless there is an arrangement in place.

Because we usually require a sign-off from your technical team on a task’s completion, it is not always possible to deliver more than one solution per day.

After the first month or two of Tech Stack support you should have a reasonably healthy server, so we do not expect more than 5 support issues to happen in any month. This said, you may have development process dependencies or release dates which we will be happy to support as they will (hopefully) be a well documented process rather than a unique issue that requires extensive troubleshooting.

All support plans are delivered by the same (small) team at this moment, but higher-level support plans get priority so if buying support for multiple servers it makes sense to get most critical hosts supported by our Premium Support plan.

Support arrangements

See how we mentioned arrangements in the previous section? They are nothing fancy. Just take your time to notify us a few days before a particularly important task and we’ll do our best to orchestrate tasks in the most suitable way. This is also how you coordinate your release dates and and maintenance windows.

We do not provide support out of hours (yes) but if your release schedule relies on such a model we will do our best to accommodate, especially for the servers on our Premium Support Plan (which includes Virtual Lead Team Member – our team will be copied on important emails within your team and will advise on best ways to arrange Tech Stack support).

How soon should I expect a response or fix for my support request?

We try to keep our response time to under 4h during our business hours and although we reserve 24 hours to fix an issue we usually do it in a much shorter time. If your task is proving to be a particularly tricky one, we’ll be sure to keep you updated about a progress (or a lack of) in a timely manner. If the nature of the technical issue is agreed to be not urgent, we will work with your team on implementing a long-term solution (may take slightly longer than 24h, mostly due to communication).

Just like with the specific arrangements, please don’t hesitate to notify us in advance – it’s quite possible that we can investigate/research your query and then agree on the specific date and time of when the solution is deployed.

Do you provide 24/7 support?

We don’t at the moment, no.  This will change if there’s enough demand for such an offering. Our basic hours are 9am-6pm GMT and yes, we do make exceptions for customers in different times zones. We may provide monitoring and email/SMS alerting for the services that can be monitored externally, but it is expected that issues are resolved on the customer’s side by inhouse professionals and oncall team.

Do you provide remote on-call?

Not yet, but give us a shout and let us know how you see such a collaboration – perhaps we can come up with a custom support plan? Such arrangements usually involve not only the call-out hourly rates but also a stand-by rate which makes on-call arrangements be quite impractical compared to the pricing of our monthly support plans.

We don’t know which service plan to pick

Unless you have a Unix issue that’s both urgent and critical, it’s probably best for you to start with the simplest offering we have – the Essential plan. This should help with small maintenance tasks and provide peace of mind.

If you have an urgent issue or just want to make sure your Unix issue will be covered by a particular plan, please get in touch and we’ll advise accordingly.

Remote Access

How do you provide remote support?

Our preferred way of remote access is via SSH. We will provide your technical team with two public SSH keys (for privileged and unprivileged user access) that need to be added to your SSH gateway and all the hosts that you need us to manage. We’ll gladly assist your team with deploying the keys onto your servers.

What if our SSH server is not accessible from Internet?

We know that many companies do not have SSH servers easily accessible, but usually it’s easy enough to sort remote access out. If you have a NAT or VPN solution, we’ll most likely integrate without an issue. And if your company is only planning for such a remote accessibility solution, we know how to help you get started with OpenVPN or similar solution.

Payments

How do I pay if I want more than one host supported?

The easiest is to simply click the Subscribe button again, but if you have plans for supporting more than 3 hosts it’s probably easier if you contact us directly so that a single custom subscription can be arranged.

Is it possible to get a custom support plan arranged?

Absolutely! If you have more than 10 hosts that you plan to get supported by Tech Stack Solutions, we should be able to arrange a discount.

The same goes for additional support services – if you can think of some additional way for us to be helpful for your company, please let us know and we’ll generate an individual offering and subscription plan tailed to your company.

Is there a refund?

We offer a 30 days guarantee, so if your company is not 100% satisfied with our Unix support service we will refund your subscription.