Sky High IT

Rapidly advancing information technology means the most efficient ways of doing business can rapidly change and cause headaches for management looking to stay on top of operations resources. But there’s a solution.

There has never been more options for business IT.

With technology moving forward faster than ever, outsourcing IT needs has become the norm.

The advantages are much simpler than the technology itself – there is no costly installation of servers and computer systems that will become nothing more than paperweights in six months.

One significant development is the rapid introduction of cloud computing.

OntheNet marketing manager Peter Lepherd, explains that computing is a loosely used term that in reality is a model for large scale delivery of IT services and infrastructure over the internet.

“Marketing professionals often use the cloud computing term to describe a range of services, but in reality it is only used fully as high-end solutions for big businesses,” he says.

“One technology that has enabled cloud computing to be delivered by enterprise giants globally is virtualisation – the separation of the operating systems and applications from the hardware so they work more independently.

“It involves adding a layer of software between the two with major benefits being greater efficiency, greater redundancy and enormous flexibility in operational terms,” says Lepherd.

“Virtualisation at the server level has allowed a new hosting product called ‘virtual private servers’, which are used in-house by many large businesses and enterprises today. Now a share of such an enterprise grade system is available.”

What impact will the technology have on Gold Coast SMEs?

“Small business owners, like their larger counterparts have content and applications that they wish to share with customers, partners, suppliers, staff, and various ‘remote users’ out on the internet,” says Lepherd.

“They often can’t justify the large capital cost of their own servers being installed into their premises, or even collocated in a data centre.”

For business owners looking for more than a standard website, Lepherd says virtualisation means all the headaches of owning and managing such a resource goes to the professionals.

“SMEs can now afford to rent one or more ‘virtual private servers’, that is part of a much larger enterprise grade system, housed in a local data centre with redundant power, high speed internet, fire suppression, air conditioning and so on,” he says.

“They ensure the virtual private servers run continuously, that operating system updates are done, and that a backup of the servers’ contents is made to another city every night. You just focus on the applications and content on that server, ie; your core business.”

Business owners can also save by not having to outlay large capital for the latest, greatest, fastest server in an effort to make it last until the next upgrade.

“The virtual private server is really a software configuration and the resources available to it can be changed with relative ease,” says Lepherd.

“Start with the specification you need and upgrade only when you actually need it.”

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