But what most people may not realize is that you can also find Ubuntu support from other Linux support vendors. Sometimes this can even happen locally, from local Linux support firms. In other examples, support may be provided by national firms that offer assistance with a wide variety of distributions. Finding the right solution for you will depend largely on your budget and preference.
On the flip side of this, finding paid support for casual Ubuntu users who aren't part of a business isn't always an attractive option. Unless you need ongoing assistance, you may find paid support to be cost prohibitive. In cases like this, it's recommended you seek out a local Linux user group for assistance, since they'll be able to offer you help at no cost.
When it comes to seeking or offering Ubuntu support, most of us may not have any idea what software we'd use to offer remote assistance. While Windows has made their option readily accessible, even across the Internet, Ubuntu only offers a remote tool best suited for LAN work.
Now this isn't to say that a method using VNC over SSHisn't possible for remote access over the Web, rather that Ubuntu users would be better suited to use applications not provided by default to tackle this task.
If you do opt to go this route, I'd recommend utilizing something such as DynDNS to make connecting to remote computers over the Web a lot easier.
For someone wishing to use an easy to use out-of-the-box remote support solution, I'd recommend looking to Team Viewer or Chrome Remote Desktop. Either of these two options will make cross platform remote support incredibly simple, bypassing NAT through routers and anything else you throw at it.
If instead, you'd prefer to lean on an enterprise Ubuntu support, you might consider a Bomgar appliance, which will make enterprise level Ubuntu support simple and reliable. The other enterprise remote support tool I'd recommend is called iTivity. It's cost effective, secure and easy enough for your IT manager to get running quickly.
You may have noticed I completely glossed over IRC support in this article. The reason for this is because the same practices for forums apply to the IRC as well. It’s as simple as that.
Going forward, finding the best Ubuntu support for your needs, really comes down to how much support you're looking for. For the casual Ubuntu enthusiast, using the advice given above for support will generally yield good results. Just remember to use Google first, then ask your question in the forums if no helpful answer is found.
And for enterprise Ubuntu support, make sure you consider each of your options. Sticking with Canonical does seem like the most obvious answer here, but as you learned in this article, don't discount other Linux support specialists as they, too, can provide you with enterprise grade support that can still meet your IT department's budget.