9000 sign petition to save Microsoft's TechNet subscriptions

Online petition calls for software vendor to reverse its decision to end the service or create an affordable alternative to MSDN subscriptions

An online petition opposing Microsoft’s decision to end its TechNet subscription service, which offers access to a wide range of the software vendor's products for testing and evaluation purposes, has garnered more than 9000 signatures.

The online petition urges Microsoft to reconsider its decision to axe TechNet subscriptions or create an affordable alternative to its Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) subscription program.

Microsoft plans to axe TechNet subscriptions at the end of the month. The company announced in July it would end the service because it has “seen a usage shift from paid to free evaluation experiences and resources”. Microsoft said it will focus on its free learning and training services such as Microsoft Virtual Academy.

The company said the decision to end subscriptions will not impact the TechNet.com website. Current subscribers will be able to use the service until their subscription period ends.

MSDN subscriptions cost significantly more than TechNet, starting from US$6119 to sign up, with annual fees of $2569 to renew. TechNet subscriptions cost $337 to $1048 when joining and then $236 to $1008 when renewed.

The Australian government's decision to limit tax deductibles on work-related self-education expenses to $2000 means that Australian IT workers won't be able to claim on full the cost of an MSDN subscription.

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