IT support Los Angeles

Business Continuity

When you enable 2-Step Authentication, you add an extra layer of security to your account. You sign in with something you know (your password) and something you have (a code sent to your phone). Two-Step Authentication is a method of confirming a user's claimed identity by utilizing a combination of two different components. These components may be something that the user knows, something that the user possesses, or something that is inseparable from the user.[1] A good example from everyday life is the withdrawing of money from a cash machine. Only the correct combination of a bank card (something that the user possesses) and a PIN (personal identification number, something that the user knows) allows the transaction to be carried out.

7/6/2016

4/23/2015



Virtualization, in computing, refers to the act of creating a virtual (rather than actual) version of something, including but not limited to a virtual computer hardware platform, operating system (OS), storage device, or computer network resources.  By running multiple operating systems and multiple applications on the same physical server, virtualization lets you reduce costs while increasing the efficiency and utilization of your existing hardware.  Virtualization offers the following advantages:

  • Consolidate machines 
  • Isolate performance, security, and configuration 
  • Flexibility
  • Rapid provisioning of new services 
  • Simplified failure/disaster recovery (when used with data replication) 
  • Reduced management, networking, power, maintenance, and purchase costs


Virtualization Is Not Cloud Computing!
Cloud computing is essentially the delivery of shared computing resources (software and/or data) on demand through the Internet. Cloud computing is one thing you can do with virtualization. Whether or not you are in the cloud or not, you can start by virtualizing your servers and then move to cloud computing for even more agility and increased self-service. In virtualization, you are controlling the internal management of hardware and in cloud computing, services are already taken care by the provider of your wide area network.

We use, build, and deploy the following virtualization platforms:




Contact us to discuss if virtualization is beneficial to you.

5/23/2015

Firewall

In our daily activities, our smartphones increasingly store or access sensitive business and personal data -- not just email, but also financial and medical information, company systems, travel itineraries, etc. Many of us also use smartphones to access cloud data repositories like Dropbox, Evernote, Google Docs, Microsoft OneDrive and Apple iCloud. And then there's the growing use of smartphones in other privacy/control-sensitive aspects of our personal lives -- as home monitors, for example, or as smart keys for doors. Given the important information and accounts that your smartphone and tablet can access, it's essential to keep unauthorized users from using it as a gateway to your data. Unfortunately, since your mobile device travels with you almost everywhere, the odds of it being misplaced, lost, hacked or stolen -- and, in turn, putting your data and apps at risk are high.

Cloud computing" is a type of computing that relies on sharing computing resources rather than having local servers or personal devices to handle applications.  The phrase cloud computing means "a type of Internet-based computing where different services — such as servers, storage, and applications — are delivered to an organization's computers and devices through the Internet. 

Cloud computing provides numerous benefits both to end users and businesses of all sizes. The following are some of the benefits to moving your business to the cloud:

  • Cost Efficiency: The cloud is available at lower initial cost than traditional technology. It can lower your company's IT expenses.  By using cloud computing technology, you can save on licensing fees and eliminate charges such as storage cost, software updates, etc.  With cloud computing, you don’t need to make large upfront investments in hardware and spend a lot of time on the heavy lifting of managing that hardware.  Furthermore, you only pay when using computing resources.
  • Scalability: You can change your operation or storage needs allowing flexibility that suits your situation and scalability is a built-in feature of cloud deployments.  The cloud instances are deployed automatically only when needed.
  • Backup and Recovery: It is much easier to perform backup and recovery of the data on a physical device. It provides flexible and reliable backup or recovery solutions.  
  • Unlimited Storage: You can store the data on the cloud as it provides unlimited storage capacity. There is no need to worry about increasing your current storage space availability. 
  • Easy Deployment: Cloud computing allows to you to deploy quickly which is the most important advantage of this technology.  The entire system can be fully functional within few minutes.

Firewall helps to keep attackers or external threats from getting access to your system in the first place. Most people are aware that worms often travel through email. They generally arrive as an attachment to an email that the user is enticed to click on by the text of the email itself. We call these threats “mass-mailing worms.” The best thing to do with these threats is simply to delete the email and not click on the attachment. This is exactly where a firewall can help protect you. The firewall monitors all network traffic and has the ability to identify and block unwanted traffic. Since most computers these days are connected to the Internet, attackers have many opportunities to find victim computers. These attackers probe other computers on the Internet to determine if they are vulnerable to various types of attacks. When they find a suitable computer, they can compromise it and insert themselves onto that computer. At that point the attacker can make the victim computer perform almost any task he desires. Attackers will often try to steal personal information for the purposes of financial fraud. All of this activity takes place in the background without the user knowing what is happening.

Business Continuity is often described as ‘just common sense’. It is about taking responsibility for your business and enabling it to stay on course whatever storms it is forced to weather. It is about “keeping calm and carrying on”! BC is about building and improving resilience in your business; it’s about identifying your key products and services and the most urgent activities that underpin them and then, once that ‘analysis’ is complete, it is about devising plans and strategies that will enable you to continue your business operations and enable you to recover quickly and effectively from any type disruption whatever its size or cause. It gives you a solid framework to lean on in times of crisis and provides stability and security. In fact, embedding BC into your business is proven to bring business benefits.

Hyper-V

What is Cloud Computing?

Why Virtualize?

5/5/2016

2 Step Authentication

Slow PC? Read this for guidance.

6/10/2016

4/19/2016

Network and Security

10/19/2015

Does your Windows system run slow and sluggish?  Do programs take ages to open and it's just not fun? What to do?  Move back to Windows XP?  Upgrade to Windows 8?  Do you need to buy a new PC?  More Memory?

Fear not!  You can fix your slow Windows system.  This web page is a community service that provides a few recommendations to help you fix your Windows problems and make your Windows PC run properly.  

  • Step 1: Scan for Viruses and other Malware from your PC using a free Anti-Virus/Spyware program

One of the most reliable and popular virus checkers is the free AVG; it does not slow down your PC.  Uninstall any other AntiVirus software first, then download and install the latest AVG version.  Make sure you enable automatic updating.

  • Step 2: Remove any "Garbage" on your computer: two free Windows Clean-up programs


Delete unnecessary files: Go to Start -> Programs -> Accessories ->  System Tools and run "Disk Cleanup", check all boxes but not "Compress Files", unless you want to increase your disk space.  After a while you will get a list of the files to be deleted; click "OK".
Move older files into an archive using either an external USB drive or a cloud storage provider.  
Delete unnecessary programs: Go to Start -> Settings -> Control Panel and run "Add or Remove Programs".  Carefully remove any programs you don't want on your PC.  Leave all Windows programs and patches alone.


  • Step 3: Fix "wear & tear" on your computer 


Check and fix your hard disk: Go to Start -> Run..., then type in "cmd" (without quotes), then type in "chkdsk" (again, without quotes).  The PC will either run the disk check immediately or when the PC is next rebooted.
Fix registry problems (and delete more unnecessary files) with the free CCleaner utility.  Download, install (unclicking the Yahoo Toolbar option) and run both CCleaner functions: "Cleaner" and "Registry".  The "Registry" option will search for problem entries in the registry - mostly broken links.  Scan first, then Fix.  The program will ask if you want to save a backup before fixing - choose "yes" so you'll be able to put things back the way they were if necessary.  
Defragment your hard disk: Go to Start -> Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools and run "Disk Defragmenter".  To efficiently defragment your hard drive you need to have a minimum of 15% free disk space, but 25% or more is better.  The first time you run this, it can take several hours to complete.  Re-run until no more fragmented files are reported.


  • Step 4: Optimize Windows 7 settings for faster operation


Unnecessary programs running on your PC can decrease performance.  You can see some of these programs as small icons in the System Tray next to the clock, the volume control and - for laptops - the battery meter.  These additional and mostly unneeded  programs use up your memory and processing power.  You don't need CD burning, video settings, printer management, instant messaging and similar programs to run continuously.  Rather than these program starting automatically when you boot up your PC, start the programs when you need them - your PC will run faster and respond quicker.  To stop unnecessary programs from starting at boot-up: Go to Start -> Run..., then type in "msconfig" (without quotes), click "GO" then go to the "Startup" tab.  All the programs you see listed are not part of standard Windows 7.  Your goal is to remove as many of the programs as possible.  Un-check any program listed that you don't need and re-boot.  If you are missing an add-on function that is important to you, just go back and re-enable the program.  After you reboot, you will see a message saying the configuration utility was edited - mark the check box at the bottom and continue.
Choose simpler and faster display style: Start -> Settings -> Control Panel -> System -> Advanced -> Performance -> Settings -> Visual Effects -> Adjust for best performance
Fix page-file size:  Start -> Settings -> Control Panel -> System -> Advanced -> Performance -> Settings -> Advanced -> Virtual Memory -> Change -> Custom Size and set the Initial Size and Maximum size to 1500.


  • Step 5: Set up an automatic maintenance schedule


Update and run the Virus/Malware checker as described in Step 1
Delete unnecessary files as described in Step 2  (You can also check if some unwanted programs have been installed...)
Defrag Registry and hard disk as described in Step 3

Windows performance continually deteriorates with use and time, so the above must be run regularly.  We recommend at least weekly.

Enjoy your tuned-up system.  Happy computing!!  Check back frequently for more computing tips.