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Network Deployment: 3 Best Practices

It can be extremely challenging to manage an enterprise network. Or any network for that matter. Most businesses are heavily dependent upon real-time data sharing, online transactions, and operational processes making network systems a critical component to ensuring business efficiency. From backup and load balancing to stringent security controls, the quality of every aspect pertaining to the network is heavily dependent upon an effective deployment process.

Below are some best practices related to network deployments that your business must know.

Embrace the power of Ethernet

We have seen an unprecedented improvement and progress in the ability of Ethernet in the last decade. Networks that power over Ethernet offers greater scalability, flexibility, and reliability to enterprises, supplemented by the improved security provisions. The installation involves a simple routing process using Ethernet cables compared to complex VPN and MPLS setups. Business Ethernet also supports the existing network configuration. Carrier Ethernet can handle massive volumes of traffic and facilitates in high-speed connectivity of data centers to transfer substantial data loads efficiently. Moreover, Carrier Ethernet is easily upgradable and helps an organization cope with adaptive networking and ever-changing application and service demands.

Copy physical media to a hard drive

To keep it short and sweet, copy your physical media to a hard drive. This will accelerate the process of the deployment while immunizing the risk of errors and file corruption. Using this practice will also ensure that no communication errors occur and data installation is performed smoothly without any bugs or connectivity issues related to private networking.

Use a Uniform Naming Convention (UNC)

When specifying network paths during the deployment, using a Uniform Naming Convention (UNC) instead of mapped drive letters can be extremely beneficial. Each computer has different mapped drive letters and utilizing UNC paths help to navigate this problem and facilitate error-free network deployment. An example of a UNC path is using “\\server\share\folder” instead of “E:\folder”.

Final Thoughts

Using the techniques as mentioned earlier and other best practices and data solutions will allow you to avoid bottlenecks and issues related to deployment and enable you to get your network up and running swiftly and smoothly.

Network, security, and application performance are critical to business operations. Adaptive and responsive data services are our specialty. Transform your technology connectivity, today!

4 Ways Ethernet Boosts Data Center Needs

Data centers are continually searching for ways to push more data at a faster rate. The increased demand for swifter enterprise-class data transport has resulted in substantial changes in Ethernet speeds in the data center.

Carrier Ethernet has become the networking norm in the past few years as customer data-center servers are required to handle the massive amount of traffic from smarter, data-intensive applications, IoT devices, and more. 

The Need For Increased Speed

Most hyper-scale data centers are equipped with 100 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE), and it is anticipated that they will move to 200 or 400 GbE by 2021. Moreover, there is an expectation that they will move from Gigabit Ethernet to Terabit Ethernet in the next few years.

If we talk about enterprise data centers, they are trying to catch up as currently, we have only seen 10 GbE, which is much slower for adaptive networking, especially in this demanding business environment. However, as the Ethernet speeds are increasing at an accelerated rate, it is likely that we will see enterprise data centers upgrading to at least 100 GbE.

There are many reasons why data centers require higher speeds, the primary one being the significant growth of hyper-scale networks from tech giants such as Amazon, Facebook, and Google. Furthermore, the availability of higher Gigabit Ethernet products at a lower price has also amplified its demand, supplemented by an increased amount of data load and private networking.

Adaptive Networking

In addition to that, workloads are becoming more adaptable and flexible as organizations branch away from the conventional enterprise data center. Enterprises are becoming more mobile, more distributed and more hyper-scale oriented, which further warrants the need for adaptive networking and fast speed in data centers.

Other important reasons include usage of data for multiple applications, including, but not limited to, financial trading, traffic management, car and airplane design, private networking, social media drug discovery, and even national security. Most data centers are considering fiber backbone for their Ethernet cable to support increased GbE speeds, higher bandwidth, and future expansions.

Another important reason is the requirement for fast and high-speed ports and increased amount of data being driven from the dense edges of the network, which is further driving the advancement in this area. It will be fascinating to see how high-speed Ethernet boosts data center needs in the future.

Network, security, and application performance are critical to business operations. Adaptive and responsive data services are our specialty. Transform your technology connectivity, today!

Colocation: Why SLA Agreements Are Smart For Business

Colocation and service level agreements. What are they and why do you need them? In this article, we’ll review what colocation is, how its services are useful to businesses, and then why service level agreements are so important.

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Compromised Data: Important Backup Service Inclusions

It’s no secret – businesses are prime targets for ransomware.

All it takes is one infected user to bring a department or entire organization to a halt. In fact, 72% of ransomware victims are unable to retrieve or access their data once it has been compromised for up to 2-days. Moreover, a lot can happen in two days.

Here’s the down low on compromised data…

How Infections Happen

Phishing attacks, unpatched programs, compromised websites, poisoned online advertising and free software downloads are common ways that users of your business systems are exploited and how an infection begins.

Examples of User Infections

Ransomware is hard to detect. Because user files are encrypted with the infection, an IT Admin may not recognize that the malware is already inside the network until the damage is done. There are, however, a few ways a user can detect it. Some examples of these are:

  • A user can no longer open normal files
  • A user gets errors such as the file is corrupted or has the wrong extension
  • Window pop ups appear to ransomware programs that the user cannot close
  • IT admins see files in the company directory with names like ‘HOW TO DECRYPT FILES.TXT’ or ‘DECRYPT_INSTRUCTIONS.HTML.’

Business Repercussions

Aside from losing time and money, your business reputation is scrutinized. Which, in turn, can affect sales goals. Regarding data – once your server is infected your mission-critical files and applications become inaccessible and your customer’s data is no longer secure. This too can wreak havoc on your margins.

Compromised Data Solutions

IT admins can remove the machine from the network and reset the bios time to contain and eliminate the malware. For a company wide containment, especially when your anti-virus, firewall, and employee education programs fail, your best bet is to rely on a backup solution.

Not all businesses are built the same. Therefore a backup service should provide much more than just a simple file backup solution. However, there is a range of standard options that your IT staff should become familiar with when considering a backup service. Because backup services are a dime a dozen, we’ve come up with a list of items to be aware of during your review of backup providers.

Important Backup Service Inclusions To Consider Are:

  1. Limited versus Unlimited History

It is important to know the difference. A backup service that only retains a limited history may not be able to restore all of the critical files your business needs to clean up the infection. A proper enterprise-grade cloud backup service should maintain a complete history of your data, that way you can retrieve a recovery point that is reliable.

  1. Detection Ability

Some Cloud Backup Services include Anomaly Detection that alerts your IT admin when the number of “new” or “changed” files increase dramatically. This feature is important to have so you can quickly isolate a ransomware infection and recover data before the entire network is frozen.

  1. Backup Protection Coverage

An infection is not limited to just one device. To protect all of your data and all your devices from mobile phones to Exchange Servers, you should select a program that offers backup services from device-to-device.

  1. Compatibility

Not all cloud backup services are created equal. In fact, many of them have limitations. Some services do not allow file sharing or storage. So, before you pull the trigger on a service you selected, make sure your IT staff does a system compatibility check to avoid any “ooppss” moments after you have signed the contract.

  1. Fees

Some backup service plans include retrieval fees per GB. Most of the time, the service provider will maintain an uptime of nearly 100 percent; however, as part of their service agreement, you can receive credit for those occasions when you get less than 99.9 percent. Be sure to keep an eye on any notifications about interruptions.

  1. Accessibility

Accessibility is important. Being able to manage all of your settings quickly and easily provides flexibility. Most service providers offer a web browser interface giving you the ability to view alerts, load balancing, status checks, manage groups and tags, deploy app versions, view configuration details as well as events. Be sure to inquire about what monitoring systems are available.

To protect your company from data corruption invest in a cloud backup service that is scalable based on your businesses requirements.