December 17th, 2013
Services like Dropbox and Google Drive are great for syncing data across all of your devices. Unfortunately, many businesses rely on syncing services for backup and disaster recovery without realizing that the products aren't meant for those tasks.
If you're relying on a Dropbox-like service for backup and disaster recovery you may be in for an unpleasant surprise when a disaster does happen.
Backups include everything
True backup solutions are automatic and all-inclusive. Backup software grabs everything on your system, requiring you to exclude things you don't want backed up, instead of having to include all the data you want backed up in a particular folder,
Backup solutions copy all your data on a set schedule, ensuring you're covered on every front. If you're having to pick and choose which data you want backed up, you're guaranteed to miss something and that will be the data you need when an event occurs that makes you lose data.
Backups are robust
Backups allow you to go back to a specific point in time. This functionality has recently been added to Dropbox, but is not very robust and only works for files.
If your computer or server was running fine yesterday, but is broken today, you could restore it to functioning order with a backup. That's not an option with a syncing service like Dropbox. Similarly, if you have a server that goes down and need to get it back to an exact working configuration, you may be out of luck.
Getting the best of both worlds
Luckily, you can have both the convenience of Dropbox with the functionality of backup and disaster recovery via the hybrid cloud. We offer a storage vault solution that uses a local device to host and sync data to client computers and then syncs to a remote location. Compared to a stand alone traditional backup or syncing solutions you wind up with several benefits:
- Just like Dropbox, your data is available anywhere you need it to be.
- If you're onsite, you get faster access to your data than going straight to the cloud.
- You get point-in-time restores for entire computers and servers, not just data stored in a particular folder.
- The process is automatic and inclusive. You don't have to worry about employees saving their data in the right place.
- Smaller offices can use the vault appliance as a small business server for file sharing and other services.
If you'd like to learn more about the hybrid cloud and how it can be used for backup and disaster recovery, give us a call.
December 3rd, 2013
Managing cell phones and tablets has become a huge issue for small businesses. Mobile devices issued to employees are difficult to keep track of and expose companies to a number of security and HR issues.
Large companies can afford to purchase expensive management software and dedicated staff to handle mobile hardware. Small companies obviously don't have the same resources, which usually means they don't manage the devices at all.
So what can you do?
If you're a small business owner worried about managing all your company cell phones and tablets, Mobile Device Management (MDM) may be the right solution for you. Instead of making expensive investments in software and staff, you can pay a low monthly fee per device and access the same tools used by big corporations.
Mobile devices are subject to all sorts of security issues, from mobile-specific viruses to employee misuse. MDM allows companies to configure security policies to protect devices from external attacks and prevent employees from engaging in activities that threaten corporate security.
MDM can be used to erase mobile devices if they're reported stolen or a terminated employee fails to turn their device in. You can also enforce settings like password complexity and strong encryption. All this ensures that sensitive company information is protected.
Preparing phones and tablets for employees can become an all-day task for IT staff when they have to configure each device manually. Using MDM allows each phone or tablet to be configured automatically. Software and settings can be deployed from the management software for both the initial configuration and for future changes.
Deploying a new app or new e-mail settings to all your employees' cell phones can be as simple as a click of a button. Many companies see a complete return on investment just from the time saved by centralized deployment.
Inventory & monitoring
As your company grows, keeping track of devices gets more and more difficult. MDM allows you to track all your mobile devices from a central console so you always have an up-to-date inventory.
You can also use MDM to monitor cell and data usage, giving you a real-time view of your mobile costs. MDM reporting gives you data to compare against your mobile bill and discover areas for potential cost savings. You can even configure alerts to warn employees when they are using too many minutes or too much mobile data.
If you'd like to learn more about MDM and how it might help your business reign in control of mobile devices, give us a call.