Following the earthquake that has devastated many parts of Christchurch and the Canterbury Region this month, Microsoft New Zealand is making the following support offerings available to affected customers and partners:

- For consumers (typically with 1 or 2 standalone PCs) experiencing software issues related to Microsoft products, as they restart their PCs, or have to reload software on new PCs, please call our support line for free Telephone based support on 0800 800 004.

- For small businesses affected by the earthquake (typically with 1 or more PCs and Servers, and not actively managed by a Microsoft Customer or Partner Account Manager), Microsoft is making available Telephone based service incident support calls free of charge by calling 0800 800 004.

- In addition to the above, Microsoft Managed Partners and Enterprise Managed Customers (defined as the Customers and Partners that have Microsoft Account Manager) also have the ability to receive free priority telephone based technical support subject to availability.

Microsoft is also making available to affected Microsoft Managed Partners and Enterprise Managed Customers, on a case-by-case basis, access to assistance and advice from our Consulting and Premier Support personnel, and access to Microsoft Online Services (Microsoft Cloud based Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Office Communications Online and Office Live Meeting) for situations where their infrastructure is damaged to the point where they require an alternative messaging & collaboration suite on a temporary basis until such times as they can rebuild.

This offer is for customers in the Canterbury Region for an initial 90 day period – Microsoft will review the offer and the period as they learn more about the precise assistance most commonly needed.

Separately Microsoft New Zealand is making a donation of NZ$50,000 to the Red Cross Christchurch Earthquake Appeal, and donating ten Xbox 360 gaming consoles and ten LCD televisions and a selection of games to various Centres for children.

Microsoft New Zealand thoughts remain with those people and their families affected by the earthquake.