Networking and Servers: Vital Business Components
Servers, especially database servers, are essential to organizations big and small. Hospitals use them to store patient information and medical records, ensuring this information is accessible to doctors and nurses. Small businesses use servers to access order entry systems, reporting systems, sales summaries, and more. Simply put: servers keep organizations up and running, making them a vital component to business.
The Importance of Regular Server Maintenance
Servers aren’t perfect. Despite server protections, cloud security, and other threat stoppers, servers can still come under threat. Moreover, the hardware isn’t perfect. Software and hardware can fail, but failures are less likely to occur if your business participates in regular maintenance.
It’s important that software updates are scheduled to run automatically, as soon as they become available. As soon as a patch or driveway becomes available, you should implement it. That being said, even when there is failure, all is not lost. There are many tools that specialize in data recovery and server virtualization, such as VMWare Data Recovery, which basically ensures data isn’t lost.
Here’s a few ways you can ensure your business is protected:
· Implement antivirus software
· Limit employee access to sensitive data
· Encrypt everything…everything
· Set up a private network (VPN)
· Save data on the cloud
The Benefits of a Server
If you’re employing more than five individuals, you should be utilizing a server network. Dedicated servers are more secure and faster, both of which are important to your businesses’ success. Peer-to-peer networks simply don’t provide that additional security. Unlike data peer-to-peer networks, servers operate 24/7 and are able to manage, store, send, and process data all the time. This includes seeking and destroying viruses that will attempt to infiltrate your business after hours.
Webopedia lists the following benefits as the most important to small businesses:
· File and network security
· Increased reliability
· Centralized data storage and shared resources
· Virus management
· Centralized backup
Servers and International Workers
Here’s a little discussed benefit of servers, especially virtualization: it greatly benefits jet-set entrepreneurs. If your business is conducted online while you travel, a server can improve your working systems. Basically, no matter where you are in the world, you can invoice, manage documents, manage projects, and give and receive secure access to internal systems.
This allows for quality work no matter if you’re in a different time zone than your client (cloud data can be updated and worked on 24/7). Although it is a bit expensive to implement these changes, your international delivery times will speed up as well as your communications, your ability to sell, and the speed at which you work. These benefits make the decision to upgrade your servers a smart one, and one that will surely be profitable in the long term.
How to Choose a Server
It’s important to invest in a server that comes from a company that is reputable, and has been in business long enough to have a positive track record and positive customer reviews. Look to server providers that have high-quality customer service. Consider your needs, including application and storage needs, processing needs, and form factor needs. Don’t settle for a server provider that doesn’t offer everything you need, no matter how trivial it may at first seem.