Microsoft Partner Support Community Frequently Asked Questions

About the Microsoft Partner Support Community

Who is entitled to use the Partner Support Community?

All Microsoft partners with an active membership are entitled to support through the Microsoft Partner Support Community.

back to topWhat type of support can I get through the Support Community?

The community provides support in English in each of the following areas.

  • Partner Membership – Ask questions about the Microsoft Partner Network, including gold and silver competencies, Microsoft Action Pack subscriptions and community membership. The Partner Membership forum is moderated by Regional Service Center agents.
  • Product Support – Product support can provide answers to technical questions, covering product installation, features, and functionality issues. Product support can also help you resolve a specific problem, error message, or functionality that is not working as intended. Product support questions can be asked in any forum except Partner Membership.
back to topWhat products are supported through the Support Community?

The forums provide presales and technical support for the following products. Support is also available in a number of additional languages, but certain forums may not be available in all languages or regions.

  • Microsoft Dynamics – Includes Microsoft Dynamics AX, Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Microsoft Dynamics GP, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, Microsoft Dynamics RMS, and Microsoft Dynamics SL.
  • Online Services/Cloud – Includes Office 365, Microsoft Exchange Online, Microsoft Skype for Business Online, Microsoft SharePoint Online, Windows InTune, Microsoft Azure, and Microsoft CRM Online.
  • Data and Platform – Includes Microsoft Exchange Server 2013, Microsoft Skype for Business Server 2015, Microsoft SQL Server 2014, Microsoft System Center 2012 R2, Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013, and Windows Server 2012 R2.
  • Client Solutions – Includes Microsoft Office 2013 (Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Access, Project, Visio, Microsoft Skype for Business), Windows 8.1, and Windows 10 Pro.
back to topHow quickly can I expect an initial response?

Initial responses are provided during regular business hours in the time zones shown below (excluding holidays).

Language
Time zones in which responses are provided by Microsoft*
English
Pacific Time Zone (09:00 - 18:00)
Spanish
GMT - 6 (09:00 - 18:00)
Portuguese
GMT - 4 (09:00 - 18:00)
Japanese
Japan Standard time (09:00 - 17:30)
Simplified Chinese
China Standard Time (09:00 - 18:00)
Traditional Chinese
Taiwan Standard Time (09:00 - 18:00)
Korean
Korea Standard Time (09:00 - 18:00)
French
Central European Time (09:00 - 18:00)
German
Central European Time (09:00 - 18:00)
Italian
Central European Time (09:00 - 18:00)
Russian
Central European Time (09:00 - 18:00)

*During regular business hours only. Excluding holidays. Response times vary by membership level. See table below for details.

Partner Membership Level
Initial Response Time
All partners: Microsoft Partner Network membership questions
  • One business day
  • Gold and Silver competency partners
  • Four business hours for product support queries
  • Microsoft Action Pack subscribers
  • Eight business hours for product support queries
  • Network members (Community)
  • One business day for product support queries
  • back to topIs the Support Community visible to the public?

    On March 22, 2017, the Partner Support Community will enable read-only access to the public. Microsoft Partners will still have the exclusive ability to interact with Microsoft Support once signed-in to the Partner Support Community.

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    Searching the Community

    How do I find information in the Partner Support Community?

    Search first. There's a good chance that someone has already written about the topic you have in mind.

    1. In the search box, type your question, keyword, or topic.

      Description: Search field

    2. Click Search, and then look through the results for your solution.

      Description: Search button

    back to topCan I refine my search?

    Absolutely. There are a number of ways to narrow your search:

    • At the top of the screen, click Categories, and then select a product or service to search in that category.
    • Use the drop-down menu on the Search button to refine your search by product or category.

      Description: Search dropdown

    • Go to any category list page, and select a version and or topic in the dropdowns, and then click Apply. You can also select a content type: questions or discussions. You'll be searching with those filters. If you don't find what you need, you can remove the filters in the search results window to widen your search.

      Description: Forum dropdown

    back to topSomeone posted my question, but it hasn't been answered yet.

    If you find the same question you wanted to ask in the forum, but it hasn't been answered yet, click the Me Too button. That way you'll be notified via email when your question has been answered.

    Note: You can click Me Too even if the question is answered, to get updates on that thread.

    back to topThere are a lot of posts replying to a question. How do I know which is the best?

    Posts that contain the correct answer to the question will be marked Answer by the original poster or a moderator.

    You can also look for posts with a high number of Helpful votes, even if they haven't been marked as answers yet. These may appear with the designation "Most Helpful Reply."

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    Asking a Question or Starting a Discussion

    How do I create a question or discussion post?

    If you've searched the community and you can't find a question or topic that is the same or similar to yours, it's time to post your own.

    1. Click the Participate menu and then click Ask a Question or Start a Discussion.

    2. Type in any details about your question or discussion topic that you think would be useful. Include details like what you are trying to do, what you have already tried, and your computer type if you are asking a question.

      Description: Post form

    3. From the Category dropdown list, select the product or service you're asking about. This may generate other dropdowns. Use these to make your post as specific as you can.
    4. Select the Post a question or Post a discussion radio button as appropriate.
    5. Select "Notify me when someone replies to this post" in order to get an email notification when others respond to your question or discussion.
    6. Click Submit. Your question or discussion has been posted.
    back to topWhat is the difference between a question post and a discussion post?

    Question posts are used to get an answer or solution to a specific question or issue.

    Discussion posts are used to share opinions, discuss tips and tricks, and chat about Microsoft technologies.

    Both types of posts have the same formatting and similar options. The most noticeable exception is that no answer-marking is needed or available on discussion posts.

    back to topHow can I edit a question or discussion I've posted?
    1. Go to your post.
    2. Click the Edit option and make your changes.
    3. Click Submit when you are done.
    back to topCan I delete a question or discussion I've posted?

    Yes, if no one has replied to it.

    1. Go to your post and click the Edit button. The "Edit" screen opens.
    2. Click the Delete button. The "Are you sure you want to delete your post?" window opens.
    3. Click OK.

    If other users have replied to your post, you can't delete the post unless the other users delete all of their replies first.

    back to topNo one replied to my question or discussion. Should I post it again?

    No. Posting the same question or discussion multiple times creates distraction. Just wait--someone will reply, and you'll be notified when it happens.

    back to topCan I get notified when someone responds to a question or discussion?

    Yes. Just click the Subscribe to updates option on any post. If you didn't provide an email address at sign-in, you'll have the opportunity to provide one when you click Subscribe to updates.

    back to topHow do I stop getting notified when someone responds to a question or discussion?

    If you clicked Me Too, Subscribe to updates, or checked the Notify me when someone responds to this post box, a Stop emails option will appear at the bottom of the post. Just click the Stop emails option.

    back to topI had a question and somebody else posted the answer. How do I mark it as Answered?

    If you posted the original question, you can mark the question as answered yourself. Just click the Mark as Answer button.

    If you didn't post the original question, you can still mark the post as Helpful.

    back to topI had a question and marked a response as "Answered," but then I found out it was wrong. What should I do?

    You can go to the response and click Unmark as Answer.

    back to topI had a question and I posted the right answer. Can I mark it as Answered?

    No one can mark their own post as an answer. Only the person who posted the original question (if it someone else) or a moderator can mark as post as Answered.

    back to topI found a great discussion, how do mark it?

    You can follow the discussion and let others know it’s worthwhile by clicking Me Too on the Recommend button.

    If you like a specific reply in a discussion, click Like.

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    Contributing to the Forums

    How do I post a reply?
    1. Click the Reply button.
    2. Type in your reply.

    3. Select "Notify me when someone replies to this post," in order to get an email notification when others respond to your reply.
    4. Click the Submit button.

    Note: You need to be signed in to post a reply.

    back to topWhat does "Reply with quote" mean?

    When you click this link, your reply will be posted with the content of that post at the top of your reply window.

    back to topHow can I edit a response I've posted?
    1. Go to your response, click the Edit button and make your changes.
    2. Click Submit when you are done.
    back to topHow can I delete a response I've posted?
    1. Go to your response and click the Edit button. The "Edit" window opens.
    2. Click the Delete button. The "Are you sure you want to delete your post?" window opens.
    3. Click OK.
    back to topAre there guidelines about what I can say on the forum?

    Yes. Please read our Code of Conduct for using the community.

    back to topHow do I report abuse?

    If someone has posted content that is abusive, offensive, threatening, or otherwise violates the Partner Support Community Code of Conduct, you can report it.

    1. Click any "Report abuse" link.
    2. A pop-up menu opens. Select the type of abuse you're reporting.
    3. Briefly describe the abuse you saw.
    4. Click Submit.

    A Microsoft representative will review your report and decide how to proceed.

    back to topI was notified that I have a private message, what does that mean?

    Only a Microsoft moderator can start a private message. If you receive a private message, it means that the moderator needs to address your question or issue in private or requires information that may be more personal (such as an email address or account details). Only you and Microsoft moderators can see the contents of the private message—other community members cannot see it.

    1. Open the private message.
      • From an email notification, click the link provided.
      • From a thread, click You have a private reply to this message. Click here to read it on our secure private messages section.
      • From anywhere else on the community, click Messages in the top navigation. Your Private Messages inbox appears. Click the appropriate subject line.

      Description: Private message inbox

    2. If the moderator has asked for a response to the private message, click Reply above the private message box.
    3. Type your response and click Send.

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    Your Profile

    How do I find my profile?

    Click your screen name anywhere it appears in the community (for example, in one of your posts or questions, or at the top of any page) to go to your profile.

    back to topI previously set up a profile on the old Online Technical Communities site. Do I have to make any changes to my profile on the new Support Community site?

    You will need to edit your profile to set up your email address for notification and verify that your Display Name is correct.

    back to topWhat's on my profile?Profile tab

    The personal profile information that you choose to share will appear to all users on the Profile tab.

    • Your username
    • Your picture (if you decide to upload one)
    • Your title, if you have one (for example, Community Moderator or Guardian)
    • Your introduction (if you decide to write one for your profile)
    • Bonus links (if you are eligible)
    • Your accomplishments and badges
    • Any weekly awards you may have won
    Activity tab

    All of the threads including forum articles that you participated in, voted for, or are subscribed to appear on your Activity tab.

    • Click Applied Filters to filter by types of content or by products and services.
    • Use the sort options to put your content in a desired order.
      • Questions
        • Helpful Votes: Sort posts by the most "helpful" votes
        • Me Too Votes: Sort posts by the most "me too" votes
        • Replies: Sort posts by the highest number of replies to a thread
        • Latest: Sort posts by most recently posted
        • Views: Sort posts by the number of times a thread has been viewed
      • Discussions
        • Recommended: Sort posts by the most "recommended" votes
        • Replies: Sort posts by the highest number of replies to a thread
        • Latest: Sort posts by the most recently posted
        • Views: Sort posts by the number of times a thread has been viewed
    Statistics tab

    The totals displayed on your Statistics tab represent the actual number of actions you performed since you joined the community.

    • Thread statistics. This is summary of thread activity in Question and Answer threads and Discussion threads combined.

    Note: Totals do not reflect any posts that were deleted by you or by a moderator.

    Edit profile tab

    From the Edit profile tab, you can:

    • Change your profile picture
    • Change your display name
    • Write or edit your bio
    • Add a signature that will be displayed with your posts
    • Update your email address
    • Choose to get email notifications or not
    • Select advanced user options
    back to topHow do I edit my profile?

    Click the Edit profile button on your profile page. Change your publicly-facing profile information, subscribe to email notifications, and select advanced user options as desired. When you've finished editing your profile, click Save.

    back to topHow do I delete my profile?

    You can delete your profile from this community, but keep in mind that it will also be deleted on all communities that use this profile. The communities that use this profile are Microsoft Community, Microsoft Partner Support Community, and Microsoft Training and Certification Support Community.

    When you delete your profile, all of your posts, awards, votes, and subscriptions will be permanently disassociated from your profile. The profile name will become “A.User” and the profile details and signature line will be removed.

    Note: Once a profile has been deleted, it cannot be restored.

    1. Click the Edit profile button on your profile page.
    2. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click Delete My Profile.
    3. Confirm that you want to delete your profile and click OK.
    back to topDoes my profile picture have to be a picture of me?

    No. You can use a picture that you own (for example, a picture of your cat or dog) or a picture in the public domain, like license-free clip-art or photographs.

    Please read our Code of Conduct to make sure your profile picture is appropriate.

    back to topHow do I get badges and weekly awards on my profile page?

    They will appear automatically as they are earned. To learn about the badges you can earn, see Building your reputation, below.

    back to topCan I see other people's profiles?

    Yes. There are two way sto view another community member's profile.

    • Browse to a profile page. Whenever a profile name appears as part of thread activity, or award recognition, you can click on it to open the profile page.
    • Search for a profile page. Enter the exact profile name in the search box and select Search community member in the dropdown. Click the search icon. If an exact match is found, the profile page will appear.
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    Building your Reputation

    You can start earning badges with your very first answer and continue building your reputation every time you ask a question, post a reply, or vote for something helpful. All of your badges appear on your profile and help others understand your level of community involvement. Meet the community leaders who have earned their reputation as contributors within the community.

    Accomplishments

    These badges are awarded to community members who have demonstrated a long-term commitment to helping build a community of high quality content in a safe, healthy environment.

    This is an ongoing, dynamic process. Badges earned for accomplishments can be lost if your community activity no longer meets the badge criteria.

    MCC: Content Creator badge Description: Content Creator badge

    Each time one of your question and answer posts is marked as helpful or as an answer, you get a vote toward your Content Creator badge. When you have a high enough percentage of posts marked as "helpful" or "answers," you'll get your badge.

    Benefits of being a Content Creator:

    • Your profile will be featured in the Top Contributors rotator
    • You'll be awarded space for 5 additional links in your profile
    • A Content Creator badge is added to your profile
    back to top MCC: Content Curator badge Description: Content Curator Badge

    When you vote a question and answer post or a forum article as helpful or you recommend a discussion post, you have started on the path to a Content Curator badge. If enough of the posts and articles (in any combination) that you have voted for end up as answers or as the most helpful or recommended post and articles in that category, you'll get your badge.

    Benefits of being a Content Curator:

    • Unlimited votes per day (ordinary users get up to five votes per day)
    • Your profile will be featured in the Top Contributors rotator
    • You'll be awarded space for 5 additional links in your profile
    • A Content Curator badge is added to your profile
    back to top The Guardian badge Description: Guardian Badge

    Every time you report legitimate abuse in the community, you get a vote toward your Guardian badge. When you have reported enough actual cases of abuse and accurately pointed out the type of abuse, you'll get your badge. Reporting content that is not actual abuse will not get you votes and will slow your progress toward earning this badge.

    Benefits of being a Guardian:

    • A Guardian badge will be added to your profile
    • Content the Guardian reports as abusive is automatically hidden until moderated.
    back to top The Conversationalist badge Description: Conversationalists Badge

    Conversationalists are community members who have consistently started and participated in discussion threads. Many of the discussion threads they’ve started are highly recommended by other members of the community.

    back to topAwards

    Every week we recognize the contributions of our community members with badges awarded for the best content in each category. These award badges are yours to keep and cannot be lost.

    The First Answer badge Description: First Answer Badge

    The first time one of your question and answer posts is marked as an answer, a First Answer badge will appear in your profile.

    back to top The Quickest Answer badge Description: Quickest Answer Badge

    This badge is awarded to the person who posts to a question and answer thread in the shortest amount time after a user asks a question and which is marked as an Answer either by the person who asked the question or by a moderator in the past week.

    back to top The Helpful Post of the Week badge Description: Most Helpful Badge

    This badge is awarded to the person whose question and answer post gets the most "Helpful" votes in a given week (minimum 5 votes). Every week this badge will be awarded to a poster in each category.

    back to top The Most Important Answer of the Week badge Description: Most Important Answer of the Week Badge

    This badge is awarded to the person whose question and answer post gets the most "Me Too" votes in a given week, and is subsequently marked as an answer. Every week this badge will be awarded to a poster in each category.

    back to top The Most Answers for the Week badge Description: Most Answers of the Week Badge

    This badge is awarded to the person who creates the greatest number of question and answer posts marked as answers in a given week.

    back to top The Most Recommended Discussion badge Description: Most Recommended Discussion Badge

    This badge is awarded to the person whose discussion thread gets the most “Recommended” votes in a given week. Every week this badge will be awarded in each category.

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    Who's Who in the Community

    Community Moderators

    These are volunteers who are here to help the community. Community Moderators answer questions, and work to keep the community healthy and fun. Community Moderators are members of the community, not Microsoft employees. People who make extraordinary contributions to the community may be asked to be Community Moderators.

    back to topSupport Engineers

    Support Engineers are experts who are engaged by Microsoft to answer your questions.

    back to topForum Moderators

    Forum Moderators are experts engaged by Microsoft to mark the best answers, manage abuse, and maintain community health.

    back to topForum Owners

    These are Microsoft employees in charge of a particular category. Forum Owners are ultimately responsible for the health of the category.

    back to top Microsoft Staff Description: Microsoft Employee Badge

    Microsoft staff participating in the community have a badge that says Microsoft. These community members may work in the community, or they may be general employees who choose to participate

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    Supported Browsers

    What browsers are supported?

    To take advantage of all Microsoft Community features, use a supported browser.

    In general, Microsoft Community supports the current and previous major releases of each browser. This enables us to provide new features made possible by modern browser technologies.

    back to topIs the community mobile-friendly?

    Yes, the community uses responsive web design to scale the webpage to the right size for your device. To expand a menu in the tablet or mobile device experience, simply tap on it. Some advanced features might not be available in the tablet or mobile device experience due to space constraints.

    back to top