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Archive for the ‘Small Business’ Category

Outgoing email issue to outlook365 accounts

June 24th, 2014 Comments off

Around, 9:30 Am today we started to get some calls from customer about outgoing email issue with people whom are hosting their email with Office365. The issue only seems to be effecting those that use 0365 and only outgoing traffic. The emails are not being bounced, they are only being delayed a few hours.


We are going to be looking at this more over today and do our best to get it all resolved.


GoDaddy Down – Millions of Websites Down

September 10th, 2012 Comments off

GoDaddy, a large low cost hosting company has been down much of the day today, this also includes all of GoDaddy’s Email and DNS services. If you are a local business affected by this outage give us a call and see how a local webhost can make your life easier. Take a look at all of our hosting plans: and work with with the local experts in hosting.

Routers and Switches 101 – Part 1

April 1st, 2012 Comments off

A router, in simple terms, is a device that forwards data between computer networks. You are probably most familiar with routers that connect a local area network to an internet service provider’s network and through that, the Internet.  Unlike routers designed for home use, routers for business networks are often required to support many users (including guests); and to make sure company data is locked down to prevent access by unauthorized users or even hackers.

If your network consists of only a few computers, network printers or Wi-Fi devices,  a simple small-business router should be sufficient.  They usually provide a minimum number of ethernet ports for wired connection computers and other devices on your network.  Optional Wi-Fi capabilities are often available on these models.  However, if you need to support more than a few computers and devices on your network, or if security is crucial to your operations, or you need to provide remote access to your network, a more sophisticated router is required.

The two most common business routers are the VPN (Virtual Private Network) router and the UTM (Unified Threat Management) gateway.  Both types of routers serve as your internet gateway and usually come with integrated firewalls.  The VPN router contains a server dedicated to remote user access, and sometimes offers advanced features such as VLAN (Virtual Local Area Network) support and multiple SSIDs (Service Set Identifiers) for wireless networks.  The UTM routers, in addition to providing a VPN server, typically also include virus and malware protection, content filtering, spam filtration functions, and network intrusion detection and prevention.  UTM routers are usually ethernet only, requiring separate access points for Wi-Fi connectivity.

The additional security features of a UTM router usually require monthly or yearly subscription fees. Virus and malware protection on each user workstation is still necessary because the routers can’t monitor local behavior on PCs or inspect encrypted data traffic.  If you have a server or another device that needs direct access to the Internet, some routers have a DMZ  (Demilitarized Zone) port to isolate the rest of your network from direct internet access. QoS (Quality of Service) support lets you prioritize network traffic, which is an important consideration on networks offering guest WiFi access.

If you require more ethernet ports than what a router, gateway, or firewall device will provide, an additional ethernet switch is required. An ethernet switch is a smart device that increases the amount of ports you have, similar in concept to a USB hub or even a cable tv splitter. As with routers, switches are also with or without advanced features and configuration options.  Unmanaged switches are the simplest, not requiring any configuration but also lacking advanced features.  They are best for small and uncomplicated networks. Smart or managed switches allow configuration of individual ports, supporting features such as VLANs, bandwidth control, user authentication, and SNMP (simple network management protocol), and are suitable for most small to midsize businesses.  PoE (power over internet) allows power required for certain connected devices such as wireless access points and VoIP telephones to be transmitted over ethernet cables. PoE can save the time and money necessary to place these devices near existing electrical outlets or to install new ones.

In our next article we will be covering some of the above “alphabet soup” topics in greater detail, including WiFi issues, VPN configurations, VLAN support, and others.  Please contact Small Business Technology Solutions to recommend the proper routers and switches to achieve your business IT goals and make sure your network is designed and configured for maximum speed and reliability.

Efficiency Expert: Data Backup and Disaster Recovery

November 8th, 2011 Comments off

Performing regular data backups is a mundane but essential job that is often not appreciated until the inevitable happens – the loss of your business’ critical data. This can be caused by many occurrences – hardware failure, data corruption due to a malware infection or virus, physical damage to your place of business such as fire or storm damage, theft or vandalism, or simply an innocent employee error. The task is becoming ever more difficult due to exponential data growth, which leading IT research and advisory firm Gartner, Inc. estimates to be about 45% annually. It is challenging to find backup and disaster recovery solutions that are both efficient and cost-effective as the amount of your critical data continues to grow.

Data backup and disaster recovery planning are best practices for every business, regardless of size. Small Business Technology Solutions can provide you with a simple, reliable, affordable AUTOMATED backup system that integrates both on-site backup for situations where local data recovery is feasible and cloud-based off-site backup in the event of the complete loss of data. Backups can include email messages, contact lists, files, databases, or even entire volumes. Data is encrypted during transmission to the cloud and is immediately available for remote recovery. Three copies of the data are maintained at separate locations – one locally at your place of business and two others in geographically separate data centers. All backups are managed and monitored by professionals and require little effort or expertise on your part.

Contact Small Business Technology Solutions today for a review of your data backup needs. For just a reasonable monthly fee, you can have this little slice of heaven and rest easier knowing your data can be restored if and when the need arises.


What is Unified Communications?

October 11th, 2011 Comments off

Cisco UC320WUnified communications (UC) is the integration of real-time communication services such as instant messaging, telephony, video conferencing and data sharing with non-real-time communication services such as voice mail, email and fax.  In its broadest sense, UC can encompass all forms of communication that are exchanged via the medium of the TCP/IP network.  UC allows an individual to send a message on one medium and receive the same communication on another medium. For example, one can receive a voice mail message and choose to access it through e-mail or a cell phone. If the sender is online according to their presence information and currently accepts calls, the response can be sent immediately through instant messaging or video call. Otherwise, it may be sent as a non real-time message that can be accessed through a variety of media.

The main advantage of unified communications is the reduction of communication response time, which often is essential in customer service, decision making and acting upon instructions.  Unified communications integrates all systems employees might already use, and helps those systems work together in real time.  It allows users to seamlessly collaborate with others, even if they are in separate locations.

Small Business Technology Solutions can provide the best unified communications products to fit your business needs.  Contact us today to schedule a review of your communication systems and start on your way to improved customer service and employee collaboration.