Most of us now rely on our mobile devices to make work easier. To accommodate this, companies are adopting a bring your own device (BYOD) policy. For businesses that don’t want to adopt this policy, another popular option is choose your own device (CYOD).
Below is a brief overview of BYOD and CYOD.
This policy allows employees to bring their own devices to the office and use them for work-related tasks. While it focuses mostly on mobile devices, some companies allow users to bring their computers as well.
Companies cut costs on purchasing and maintaining computers when they adopt this policy. This also leads to higher productivity since employees are familiar with their own devices, eliminating the time and effort needed to adjust to a new operating system or technology.
The main drawback of this policy is the risk involved when you allow employees’ devices to access corporate resources. Companies adopting this policy need to ensure that they have a solid system in place that deals not only with security but how the devices should be used.
CYOD allows users to choose from a set of devices approved by the company.
These devices come with pre-installed business applications and protocols before an employee selects them. The main benefit of this policy is that the devices offered are highly compatible with the company’s current setup and come with security features to ensure that sensitive information is properly protected.
Depending on the policy, a company can either keep the device after an employee leaves or an employee can own the device after paying for it upfront. Some employees may not like the selection of available devices; that’s the major drawback of this policy. Unfortunately, hardware costs are also not completely eliminated, and employees will have to shoulder the costs for maintenance and repairs.
Which policy should companies adopt?
Companies should think about what works best for their current setup before choosing whether to adopt a BYOD or CYOD policy. A BYOD policy is ideal for companies operating on a tight or limited budget, while CYOD is perfect for companies who want to ensure their data is fully secure.
Contact us today to see how we can help you choose the right policy for your company.
Leaving work PCs, tablets, and similar machines to accumulate dirt can lead to distractions, glitches, and worse, hardware failure. To avoid these situations, you must properly care for your employees’ work computers. Here are a few tips to keep them clean.
Cleaning desktop monitors
Employees spend many hours looking at their computer monitors, and a clean monitor makes it easier for them to do their tasks. The best way to clean your monitor is to turn it off first and gently wipe the screen with a microfiber cloth.
If there are still spots, try dipping the cloth in a tiny bit of water — make sure you don’t spray water onto the screen. Don’t press too hard on the screen, as this could damage your monitor’s pixels. Also, it is not a good idea to use paper products like paper towels or tissues, as they will not only leave a residue, but may also slightly scratch the monitor.
Cleaning mobile screens
Mobile and other touch screen devices will usually get your fingerprints all over them. The best way to clean these screens is also with a microfiber cloth. For tougher spots, dip the cloth in a small amount of water and then gently wipe the screen. Don’t splash water onto the device itself, as water could get inside, ruin internal components, and void the warranty.
Some people suggest rubbing alcohol to remove fingerprints and disinfect the device. While this will be okay for some screens, many manufacturers recommend against it because the alcohol can eat away at the protective film on some devices.
If you notice that there is a lot of dust or gunk on the edges of your screen, or even in cracks, you may need to take the device to a mobile shop for more thorough cleaning. Do not open the device yourself, as this could void the warranty.
Cleaning your keyboard
Because we use keyboards almost every day, they may get a bit grungy, with debris and dirt accumulating between the keys. Before you start cleaning, be sure to unplug the keyboard, or turn it off if it is wireless. To clean the upper parts of the keys — where your fingers strike the keys — try dipping cotton swabs into rubbing alcohol and then cleaning the keys with a gentle rub.
To clean between keys, you will need compressed air, which can be purchased at most office supply and computer stores. Spraying in between keys should be enough to get rid of most of the dust and grit.
Cleaning your mouse
Like the keyboard, the mouse can get quite dirty with grime from your fingers and dust. To clean a mouse, unplug it first then use cotton swabs dipped in rubbing alcohol to gently clean it. There’s no need to open your mouse, as most models are designed to not be opened by users.
Cleaning your laptop’s body
To clean your laptop’s body, turn it off, unplug it, and clean it with cotton swabs dipped in rubbing alcohol, or Mr. Clean Magic Eraser or a similar cleaning agent. Be careful not to scratch the sensitive components of the body.
Cleaning your computer tower
You may also clean the desktop computer’s tower by taking a slightly damp microfiber cloth and wiping down the front and sides of the tower. However, we strongly recommend avoiding the back and certain areas of the front, as there are ports and components that could be easily damaged.
As always, be sure to disconnect the power source and all wires before cleaning, as any water damage could ruin your computer.
Cleaning the inside of your computer
Dust will eventually get inside your computer and clog up cooling fans, causing them to stop working properly. This can potentially lead to other components overheating. The internal components of your computer are extremely fragile and need to be handled with great care. Do not take the case off of your computer, as this usually voids your warranty.
For all of your computer needs, our technicians are here to help.
People who buy desktop or laptop computers today need to choose between getting a solid state drive (SSD) or a hard disk drive (HDD) as a primary storage component for their device. But which one is the better choice? In this article, we outline the differences between SSD and HDD, as well as their pros and cons, so you can make the right decision for your next purchase.
What is an HDD?
A hard disk drive (HDD) is a computer storage device that’s comprised of metal platters with a magnetic coating, spindle, and various moving parts to process and store data. The common size for laptop hard drives is the 2.5” model, while a larger 3.5” model is usually found in desktop computers.
What is an SSD?
A solid state drive (SSD) is another type of data storage device that performs the same job as an HDD. But instead of storing data on metal platters, an SSD uses flash memory chips and an embedded processor to store, retrieve, and cache data. It is roughly the same size as a typical HDD and looks like a smartphone battery. .
HDD and SSD comparison
Now let’s take a closer look at the two devices. We break it down into the following main categories:
This is where SSDs truly prevail. While HDDs need a long time to access data and files because the disk must spin to find it, SSDs can complete this task 200% faster since data is instantly accessed through flash memory chips. This is why an SSD-equipped PC will boot within seconds and deliver blazing fast speeds for launching programs and applications, whereas a computer that uses an HDD will take a much longer time to boot the operating system, and will perform slower than an SSD during normal use.
As of writing, SSD units max out at 60 TB storage capacity. Although there are large SSDs, anything that’s over 512 GB is beyond most people’s price range. HDDs, on the other hand, have large capacities (1–2 TB) available for much more affordable prices.
HDDs consist of various moving parts and components, making them susceptible to shock and damage. The longer you use your HDD, the more they wear down and eventually end up failing. Meanwhile, SSDs use a non-mechanical flash storage mounted on a circuit board, providing better performance and reliability, and making it more likely to keep your files and data safe.
An HDD can sometimes be the loudest part of your computer. Even the highest-performing HDDs will emit some noise when the drive is spinning back and forth to process data. SSDs have no moving parts, so it makes no noise at all.
More moving parts means more heat, and HDD users will have to accept that their device will degenerate over time because of the heat HDDs produce. An SSD uses flash memory, generating less heat, so they have a longer lifespan.
SSDs are much more expensive than HDDs, although today the price difference has narrowed considerably. This is why most computers with an SSD only have a few hundred gigabytes of storage. HDDs are about twice as cheap as SSDs.
Despite the higher costs and lower storage capacity, SSD is the clear winner over HDD in terms of performance. While you’re paying more for less memory with an SSD, you’re investing in a faster and far more durable data storage option in the long run.
We recommend using an SSD as the primary storage for your operating system, applications, and most-used programs. You can install an HDD on the same computer to store documents, movies, music, and pictures; these files don’t need to leverage the incredible access times and speed of SSD.
Explaining the concept of virtualization is no easy task and failed attempts to do so have left it with a less-than-ideal reputation. We want to set the record straight about virtualization’s many benefits by dispelling four of the most common misconceptions about it.
Myth #1 – Virtualization is too expensive for SMBs
Many people assume that the more advanced an IT solution is, the more expensive it is to install and maintain. That’s not the case at all for virtualization, which is a strategy to boost hardware efficiency and cut costs.
Sure, a virtual server requires more support than a traditional one, but the capacity boost means you won’t need to purchase a second server for a long time, resulting in a net reduction of hardware and IT support expenses. Furthermore, managed virtualization services usually follow a pay-as-you-go model that costs just a few bucks per hour.
Myth #2 – Virtualization adds workplace complexity
Most people feel comfortable with the traditional computing model, wherein one set of hardware equals one computer. Contrary to what many may think, adding a new model isn’t necessarily more complicated than a traditional setup. With virtualization, one “traditional” computer can run as two or more virtual computers.
The technical aspects of how that’s accomplished may be confusing, but virtualization actually reduces complexity because it allows business owners to expand their IT systems whenever necessary without having to worry about hardware limitations.
Myth #3 – Support is hard to come by or inconvenient
You may be more familiar with the cloud than with virtualization, but that doesn’t mean the latter is a niche technology. In fact, it was one of the most in-demand technologies in 2016. Virtualization also works well with remote support, which means technicians can install upgrades or resolve issues without having to travel to your office.
Myth #4 – Software licensing is more difficult
There’s a misconception that if your server is running three virtual Windows 10 computers, you’ll have to jump through extra licensing hoops. In reality, virtualization follows the same licensing rules as traditional computing: one desktop, one license. This means you won’t need to rethink your software budget.
It’s natural for new technologies to cause confusion, and virtualization does require a new way of thinking about IT hardware. But as long as you have certified technicians like ours on hand, everything will run smoothly.
Give us a call today to find out how we can lower your hardware costs and simplify your IT support.
Virtualization addresses many challenges that businesses face when upgrading their hardware and network. That’s because deploying virtualized systems offers an affordable and flexible solution to a typically arduous problem. But before you invest in a virtualized infrastructure, consider the following costs and benefits.
One of the most significant advantages of virtualization is that it eliminates the need to buy more hardware to supplement your company’s requirements. Because it consolidates your physical servers, there’s no need to maintain and update unnecessary hardware. This means less time and money spent on maintaining and running your servers and managing desk side support.
Moreover, virtual machines have made backing up your entire data center a lot less demanding. That’s because virtual machines take up-to-date snapshots of your servers and redeploy them seamlessly to another device. Unlike physical servers that require you to create backups of your server and current data, virtual backups cut the waiting time for server reboots.
Virtualization also eliminates the risk of accidentally losing files. Should disaster strike your physical servers, you can easily migrate your virtual machines to another device and keep working as if the incident never happened.
Additionally, opting for virtualization allows your company to have a higher degree of technological versatility because virtual machines have the added flexibility to run on different platforms, servers, and hardware. This means you won’t be tied down to a single IT provider. What’s more, your company has the freedom to upgrade hardware without long server downtimes.
Finally, utilizing virtualization solutions puts your business in a good position to easily migrate to a prolific cloud environment.
Factors to consider
With no apparent disadvantages to virtualization, you’re probably getting ready to set up some virtual machines. But before you start virtualizing your business, consider the following factors first:
- Initial costs to set up your network’s hardware and software still exist, so thoroughly check the services and devices that your company needs before moving forward.
- Note that virtualization is an effective solution when you start with 5–7 servers running at your workplace. Usually, 10–15 is the optimal number of servers when you’ll start seeing a return on your investment. If you have fewer servers than the ones suggested above, then it’s probably best to opt for a different IT solution.
- It’s important to consider your staff’s skills and experience with technology before switching to virtualized systems. Do they need training? How can you help them transition quickly to the proposed infrastructure?
- Will your business have enough storage capacity? As a general rule, you should set aside 30–40 GB per user.
- Think about setting up failovers to ensure the security of your virtual system.
- Some applications are not compatible with virtualization such as mobile, media-rich, and certain security apps. So if your employees tend to use these types of software, it would probably be best to deploy a smaller-scale virtualization solution.
- Pay attention to the conditions of your software license. Installing some applications on several computers could lead to increased costs.
Overall, the increased flexibility and reduced cost that a virtualized system offers are well worth the effort. While there are initial challenges to implementing virtual machines, many small businesses believe that the benefits outweigh the costs. To find out if virtualization solutions are for you, contact us today.