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‘Help!’ How to Get the Best Datto Tech Support 24/7/365

Picture of Dale Shulmistra

Dale Shulmistra

Data Protection Specialist @ Invenio IT

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tech-support

When something goes wrong with your BCDR systems, you need to get help ASAP. If your in-house teams are unable to resolve the problems themselves, it’s critical that they have access to knowledgeable support technicians, regardless of the time of day. Thankfully, Datto Tech Support is available 24/7/365 to you and the MSPs that manage your business continuity technologies.

Datto’s got tech support down to a science. But its backup solutions are so simple to manage, you can resolve most issues on your own. In this post, we take a closer look at what makes Datto Tech Support unique and outline some common issues to help you manage your system without having to submit a support ticket.

How Do I Contact Datto Support?

You can contact Datto Support by emailing support@datto.com or by calling 1-888-294-6312 if you are based in the United States. Datto Partners can also use Datto’s online Support Hub by logging into their accounts to get direct-to-tech support.

Datto also offers product-specific support, so you can call the number for your specific Datto solution. However, keep in mind that all of Datto’s support options are primarily for Datto Partners—the managed-service providers that sell and manage Datto’s solutions. If your business is using Datto, you are encouraged to contact your managed-service provider directly for support.

Contacting Datto Support (Example)

Your new intern just lodged a hockey puck into your SIRIS. The device has gone haywire, and you can’t seem to reach the Datto Cloud either. What do you do?

Again, in most cases, your best option is to contact your MSP. We’ll have more to say on that below, but in a nutshell: your MSP will have intimate knowledge of your infrastructure and can thus troubleshoot problems much faster.

But let’s say it’s 4 a.m. and your usual tech guys are on a cruise boat to the Bahamas. In that case, there’s no harm in contacting Datto.

While it’s ideal to contact your MSP, the folks at Datto are extensively trained to assist any Datto user, whether it’s your own IT team or your managed service provider.

So, back to your hockey puck mishap … Before you freak out, here’s how to reach Datto Tech Support right now:

Datto Tech Support Contact Information

Calling from Canada? The UK? Australia? If you’re outside the U.S., there are several other tech support lines you can call, depending on where you’re located. Check out Datto’s contact page for the full list. And if you’re unsure, just email them at the address above.

How Do I Open a Ticket with Datto?

You can open a technical support ticket with Datto by navigating to Datto’s Help Center. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Go to https://helpdesk.kaseya.com/hc/en-gb.
  2. Click the “Get Help” button.
  3. Under “How can we help you?” click the option for Technical Support.
  4. Click “Create Case” to open a ticket. (Or, you may select the options to Chat or Call Datto.)
  5. Select “I have a Partner Portal Login” (if applicable) and enter your login credentials.
  6. Follow the instructions to enter the details of your case.

If you are not a Datto Partner, you will not have access to Datto’s ticket system. Instead, you should contact your managed-service provider directly or use the contact information shown above.

Why Contact Your MSP First?

In an IT emergency, it’s not unusual for a company to want to reach out to Datto directly, especially if a non-IT person is managing the situation. (“I know we use Datto. Let’s call Datto.”) But in the majority of cases, your best bet is contacting your managed service provider – the people who you’re already paying to manage your data-protection solutions.

Here’s why contacting your MSP is important:

  • Your MSP knows you, your business and your IT environment. They have a far deeper understanding of your network infrastructure, your hardware and the software running on it.
  • In other words: they are familiar with the exact conditions in which your Datto appliances and/or DRaaS solutions operate. This knowledge is crucial to a speedy resolution of the problems you’re experiencing.
  • A skilled Datto support technician can of course gather all the necessary information for resolving your problem. But that will require extra time that you probably don’t have. Your MSP will already have that information and may know the solution before you’ve even finished explaining the problem.
  • Your MSP is also well acquainted with the most common errors and known issues that could be affecting your systems. (That probably doesn’t specifically include a hockey pock lodged into the backup device, but it could include known issues caused by physical damage to Datto’s hardware, for example.)
  • Your MSP may not always have the answer immediately, but they can get it—probably much faster than you can—by contacting Datto tech support themselves. Datto’s support teams, which the company refers to as Direct to Tech™, are trained extensively to support the MSPs who manage Datto’s products for their clients.
  • In addition to Datto’s extensive Knowledge Base for common issues and education, MSP partners have access to an additional trouble ticket system for contacting support technicians. Your MSP will have a lot of the highly specific information about your Datto device, like serial numbers, that you may not have access to.
  • Depending on what level of service you receive from your MSP, your MSP may already know about issues you’re having, before you even contact them, and they may already be working on a solution.

So the next time you need tech support related to your Datto product, just give your MSP a buzz. They’ll know what to do.

Why is High-Quality Tech Support So Important?

Here’s the thing about tech support: at some point, you’re going to need it. And when you do, you’re going to want to be able to reach someone who can help you—right away.

The problem is that far too many tech companies are falling short in this area. They’re not investing enough in their support teams, which ultimately results in horrific customer service.

We all have our horror stories of bad support calls:

  • Waiting hours to hear back from a support technician, no matter which contact method you try.
  • Dealing with support people who are based overseas and seem to have only a barebones understanding of the technologies they’re supposed to be supporting.
  • Receiving bad advice that does nothing to resolve your problem or makes the problem even worse.

These scenarios are awful in any industry, but in business continuity, they’re nightmares. In our industry, every second counts. Companies invest in dependable business continuity solutions to keep their businesses running after a disruption. But if there’s no one competent to support the technology when things go awry, then what good is the technology at all?

You shouldn’t have to adjust your RTO to account for the slow response you’ll get from tech support! So it’s in your best interest to use technology providers whose tech support is as dependable as the tech itself.

What Makes Datto Support So Great?

So, let’s take a look at what Datto is doing differently.

A huge part of the reason why MSPs can provide you with ultra-fast support is that Datto is providing phenomenal support to them.

Datto’s support is among the best in the tech industry, and we can vouch for this because we’ve relied on them numerous times ourselves. Every person we’ve ever dealt with, over email or phone, has been a pro. The technicians have the knowledge to promptly address and resolve each problem, and they remain friendly and courteous as they do it, which is always appreciated.

How do they do it? Here’s what we know about Datto’s tech support.

  • What started with one person is now a global support operation
    Datto’s products are used by tens of thousands of companies across the globe. So it’s no surprise that its diverse support team has grown into a global operation with skilled technicians on call in virtually every corner of the world. But it wasn’t always that way. In an old executive brief from Datto, the company revealed its humble beginnings, when founder Austin McChord was essentially running a one-man show: “[Support] originated as just one person; one CEO who answered the support line with a different persona. His policy of being very understanding and helpful to the partner has stayed with the company.”
  • Available 24/7/365
    It doesn’t matter what time it is or whether it’s a national holiday. If you or your MSP needs support, Datto’s got your back. Their support operations literally never close—technicians are available, live, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
  • No outsourced call centers
    Outsourced call centers are often the cause of the most common failures in tech support. While they may save money for some tech providers, Datto hasn’t gone that route. Their tech teams are completely in-house. And when you call, you actually reach someone. No frustrating phone menus. No IVR.
  • Extensively trained technicians
    Datto says its tech support personnel undergo an intensive month-long training program that begins on their first day, and it doesn’t stop there. Technicians continue to receive ongoing training and earn certifications to expand their knowledge.
  • Support in your language
    Datto helps its MSP partners support their customers around the globe by offering support in a variety of languages, including English, French, Spanish and German.
  • An approach that goes beyond quick fixes
    Datto has said that it considers every single support ticket as part of a larger process to prevent future issues: “The goal is not simply to solve the issue at hand, but to work with the [MSP] to avoid the issue from recurring.”
  • Truly quick resolution time
    A 2015 Datto video includes a great story from one of its support technicians. Late one night, a customer called support with an emergency, telling the tech, “We’re going to have to make this quick.” The ceiling tiles were in flames and falling down on the customer. To make matters worse, the customer had only 20 minutes of battery life on his laptop. The Datto technician didn’t miss a beat: “We virtualized the cloud VM for him and hooked up VLANs and got everything running.” Problem solved with time to spare.

We’re not sure how often Datto receives calls from customers inside burning buildings, but we do know that their speedy resolution is not limited to those situations—their support teams work fast to resolve every issue.

What is Datto VIP Support?

Datto VIP Support is top-tier support offered exclusively for Datto’s Blue Partners. This level of support is available to Datto’s top managed service providers, who typically have a greater number of clients and thus greater supper needs.

Datto understands that some of its MSP partners will naturally have more businesses to support and more complex data-protection needs than others. Thus, these MSPs are more likely to also have greater tech support needs.

For Datto’s Blue Partners—who represent the top 5% of the entire Datto MSP community—Datto offers what it calls VIP Support. This includes a dedicated Datto technician and a private support phone line, exclusively for each of these MSPs.

Does that mean you’re going to receive a lower quality of support if your MSP is not a Blue Partner? No, not at all. It just means that Datto Blue Partners, like Invenio IT, will have direct access to the same technician, so that they’re better equipped to handle the larger support needs of their clients. It’s yet another way that Datto is taking the customer experience to the next level.

Common Datto Tech Support Questions

Most Datto Tech Support issues can be resolved without contacting support. Datto provides an extensive range of articles, instructions and knowledgebase content in its searchable Help Center. This is a great resource for troubleshooting common issues or determining the best practices for backup and recovery.

Below, we’ve compiled some of the most common support questions about Datto’s backup solutions.

1. How do you bare metal restore Datto?

Datto’s bare metal restore (BMR) option allows you to restore a backup point to new hardware. This is ideal for scenarios in which the protected machine is no longer booting.

Steps to performing a Datto Bare Metal Restore:

  1. Image a USB stick with the Datto Utilities tool. You can download this tool from https://downloads.datto.com/.
  2. Boot your target machine with the imaged USB stick.
  3. In Datto Utilities, select the option for BMR.
  4. Select the Datto appliance that contains the restore information.
  5. Login to the Datto device with the user credentials you created to access its GUI and click Next.
  6. Select the protected machine you want to restore and click Next.
  7. Select the recovery point you want restored to the target machine and click Next.
  8. On the Partition Machine screen, click Automatic Partition (Recommended).
  9. Click Next and proceed with Data Transfer.

For more information on these steps, check out Datto’s article on Bare Metal Restore for SIRIS, ALTO and NAS.

2. How do I connect to cloud with Datto VPN keys?

You can connect to the cloud network from machines outside the LAN by using Datto VPN keys provided by Datto Support and/or your MSP. MSPs must first add a client VPN to a network in Datto’s Recovery Launchpad. This will generate VPN keys and a VPN link, which can be used to connect to a Datto cloud network.

Steps for connecting to cloud network:

  1. Download the VPN keys from OpenVPN version 2.4.9 (or older).
  2. In OpenVPN, right-click the config file on the machine that you wish to have connected to the cloud network. Then selectStart OpenVPN.
  3. Minimize the pop-up box that appears. This pop-up will display multiple lines of code. Simply minimize it to access other network connections, such as terminal or VNC.

3. How do I restart VSS writers for your Datto?

In some situations, your Datto backups may fail due to the production server’s VSS writers being in a failed state. And often, it may not be possible to restart the server until the close of business. A number of factors can cause the VSS writers to be in a failed state, but it’s usually due to a conflict between the Datto ShadowSnap or Datto Windows agent and other programs trying to use VSS at the same time. Once they are in a failed state, you’ll need to clean up the system before backups can function properly again.

An alternative solution to restarting the production server is to restart each of the associated services for each of the VSS writers showing up in a failed state. Here’s how to do it.

Steps for restarting VSS writers:

  • Identify the failing VSS writers by issuing this command in an elevated command prompt: vssadmin list writers.
  • Create a list of all the failed VSS writers (or use a screenshot).
  • Use the table below to identify the failed VSS writer’s associated Service Display Name. In msc on the target machine, stop the VSS writers which have failed.
  • Open task manager and hard kill the process for the failed VSS writers/services.
  • Return to services.msc and restart the stopped VSS writers.
  • In the command prompt, issue the command “vssadmin list writers” again to confirm the status has changed to “Stable with no error”
  • On the Datto device, repair the agent communications again for that agent. Then take another backup.
  • If the VSS writers fail again, it will be necessary to restart the server.

List of VSS Writers with Service Display Names

List of VSS Writers with Service Display Names: datto tech support

If you are using any other backup products simultaneously with Datto, it’s very likely that they will corrupt the states of various VSS components. Always be sure that Datto ShadowSnap or Datto Windows agent does not run at the same time as other backup software, such as Backup Exec, Acronis, etc.

4. How do I order a Datto Roundtrip?

Datto’s RoundTrip service can be requested through the Datto Partner Portal. This service allows you to expedite the transfer of large data sets to the Datto Cloud by mailing external hard drives to Datto. Alternatively, the service can be used in reverse as part of a failback from a cloud recovery.

In either case, RoundTrip is only recommended when the volume of data is too great for transferring over the Internet in a reasonable timeframe.

Steps for ordering a Datto RoundTrip:

  1. Login to Datto’s Partner Portal by navigating to https://partners.dattobackup.com/
  2. On the Status drop-down, select the option for BCDR Status.
  3. Select the name of the device needed for the RoundTrip drive.
  4. Scroll down to the RoundTrips section. Click the button for “Order RoundTrip.” This will launch the Order form.
  5. Complete and submit the Order form. The system will automatically choose the appropriate size RoundTrip drive based on your device. (If a different size drive is needed, select it from the Drive Options drop-down.)

Datto Partners have access to one complimentary RoundTrip per quarter. Beyond that, additional RoundTrips are priced at a flat rate per request.

Get your support questions answered

If you have questions about Datto, its tech support or its array of business-continuity solutions, we’re here to help. Contact our data-protection experts at Invenio IT by calling (646) 395-1170, or email us at success@invenioIT.com.

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