network

Security Tip: Replace, Upgrade And Secure Your Router

Linksys WRT54g router

Pity the poor forgotten router. You have one in your house or your business. It’s your closest approach to the Internet. The router is the first line of defense that you trust to keep your computers safe. If they do their job, routers do not call attention to themselves and they’re easily overlooked, but they’re crucial to your Internet connection and your security. […] continued

Read more

Amplifi! Orbi! Luma! Eero! And Other Words About Wi-Fi

WiFi - home mesh network

“Before we begin our banquet, I would like to say a few words. And here they are: Nitwit! Blubber! Oddment! Tweak!”

– First words spoken by Albus Dumbledore in the Harry Potter series

Before we begin our article about Wi-Fi mesh networks, I would like to say a few words. And here they are: Amplifi! […] continued

Read more

Meeting The Challenge Of Business Continuity

Bruceb Business Continuity - backup and recovery package

The challenge is clear: how can small and medium businesses maximize continuity and minimize disruption when a server fails?

Business continuity encompasses planning and implementing a process to ensure that your business will be able to recover within a reasonably short time after a serious disaster. The disaster might be a failed server, a fire or theft, or malware that requires taking a server out of service. […] continued

Read more

The Curse Of Downtime: A Story From Real Life

The curse of downtime: a story of a dead server

Servers fail without warning sometimes.

This is what happened in a law office last month when the server failed. Each failure has its own story and the details of your story will be different if you’re ever in this position, but there’s a broad point to be made: unexpected downtime has become hard to tolerate. […] continued

Read more

The Curse Of Downtime: What Happens When Your Server Fails?

What happens when your server fails?

You don’t have a spare server in the closet.

That’s really the important part. You’d have more options if you had two identical servers and kept one in the closet for emergencies. But you didn’t buy two identical servers. No one does. You’ve got one server that does everything for your business. […] continued

Read more

The Curse Of Downtime: Backups Aren’t Always Sufficient Protection

Downtime - definition

We have reached a tipping point. If you’re working in a small business or law firm, you already know this at some level, but it deserves to be brought out into the open.

This is the heart of it:

In the event of a technology crisis, backups of your data are not always sufficient to contain the damage to your business. […] continued

Read more

The Curse Of Downtime: Preface

Downtime - maybe it will be better when the network goes down!

Perhaps you think it will be like this when the office server fails.

“Two weeks ago the network went down; soon after Senior Management assured the company it would have the problem fixed within a few days; now everyone is realizing it is never going to happen. Work-arounds are springing up everywhere you look, like new grass after rain.

[…] continued Read more

The Joy Of Ubiquiti UniFi Wireless

Ubiquiti UniFi wireless access points

UniFi wireless access points provide high performance, extended range, and a well-designed control panel. You can get reliable wireless coverage for large areas at prices that small businesses can afford.

You cannot imagine how satisfying it is to write that.

There has been a sharp divide for years in wireless networks. […] continued

Read more

Bruceb Remote Management: Staying Up To Date In A Dangerous World

Bruceb Remote Management - monitoring & updates

Your brush with danger from the weekend Java vulnerability ought to help you appreciate the importance of staying up to date on all the programs targeted by malware: Windows, Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Java, Flash, Adobe Acrobat & Reader, and the other programs that are under attack by the bad guys. […] continued

Read more

Life Without The Network

Life Without The Network - Dilbert

Boing Boing has an article about the aftereffects of a hacking attack on the Economic Development Administration, a small division of the Department of Commerce. The network was quarantined and all the computers were shut down.

The unexpected result is that the department appears to be functioning just fine. “Remarkably, despite the return to pre-historic fax-machine technology, the EDA seems to be functioning fairly well, perhaps even better in some ways. […] continued

Read more

The Changing Landscape For SMB IT Consultants

helpbutton

When Microsoft announced that it will provide free or cheap support for Windows and Office and common computer problems, it wasn’t a surprise for any IT consultant who’s been paying attention.

This is a look behind the scenes, some thoughts about the trends that are changing the landscape for IT consultants. […] continued

Read more

Improved Wireless Performance And Range With Cisco Business Products

Cisco WAP4410W wireless access point

Recently I set up a Cisco RV220W wireless router, and a Cisco WAP4410N wireless access point. They are part of Cisco’s small business line and cost roughly twice as much as comparable consumer products – roughly $260 for the router, for example.

The wireless range extended far beyond my expectations. […] continued

Read more

Small Business Server 2011 Essentials, Part 3: Backups

Small Business Server 2011 Essentials

Previously:
Small Business Server 2011 Essentials, Part 1: Overview
Small Business Server 2011 Essentials, Part 2: Remote Access

Small Business Server 2011 Essentials has one overlooked feature that fills an important need in most small businesses. Every night, SBS 2011 Essentials backs up all of the workstations in their entirety.

Microsoft originally developed this backup technology for Windows Home Server. […] continued

Read more

Small Business Server 2011 Essentials, Part 2: Remote Access

SBS 2011 Essentials remote web access login screen

Previously:
Small Business Server 2011 Essentials, Part 1: Overview

Microsoft has done more than anyone else to promote remote access to small business networks. Almost ten years ago, Small Business Server 2003 opened up Outlook Web Access and safe remote desktop access to small businesses for the first time. SBS 2008 and the various iterations of Windows Home Server refined that first portal to make it easier and cleaner and more likely to work properly. […] continued

Read more

Small Business Server 2011 Essentials, Part 1: Overview

sbs2011essentials

Small businesses are finally in a position to set up Microsoft Small Business Server 2011 Essentials, the perfect server for many small businesses with fewer than 25 users. Today’s technology world does not offer any one-size-fits-all solutions but SBS 2011 Essentials should at least be closely evaluated by almost anyone with 2-25 users looking either for a first server or a replacement for a dusty server in the closet. […] continued

Read more