Is Cloud Computing More About Business than Technology?

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Thursday, June 8th 2017 — Categories: Cloud Hosting

Focusing on cloud initiatives as a technology problem rather than business realignment can be a major mistake. Success in the cloud comes from more than just telling your CTO that you want your systems on a cloud platform. It requires a shift in overall business strategy and clear messaging from leadership on down.

You need to identify your business goals and work backwards from there to figure out how specific cloud technologies can help solve them. This may involve the creation of a cloud team or adjusting your organization to be an agile, “DevOps” style operation.

Ultimately the core technologies your team will use in the cloud aren’t much different than the old model of IT (at least if you were already virtualized), but they do require a shift in your business model to better use the flexible resources available from cloud computing, or the development of a plan that boosts efficiency, reduces costs, and thereby improves your bottom line.

Here are a few tips to keep cloud strategy front of mind.

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Be Prepared for a Breach with a Cloud Forensics Protocol

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Friday, May 26th 2017

While the goal of most infosec professionals is ostensibly to prevent data breaches and security incidents, the daily headlines about major hacks prove that no one is completely safe. If — or perhaps we should say “when” — you are breached, one of the first steps is to perform digital forensics to help locate the attack vector, identify compromised systems, and tag any stolen data.

Cloud environments further complicate the digital forensics process, especially in an increasingly multi-cloud world, where multi-tenant hosting environments and hybrid IT infrastructure is more and more common.

Preparing a cloud forensics protocol can help your organization reduce the overall cost of a security investigation and disclosure, quickly figure out how the attacker gained access, restore system operations faster, and even garner discounts on any cyberinsurance you may have.

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Three Ways for MSPs to Find Cloud Opportunities

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Wednesday, May 17th 2017 — Categories: Cloud Hosting

Cloud opportunities are multiplying, and if your MSP organization doesn’t make moves to introduce your customer base to the cloud, they’re going to find someone else to do it. That doesn’t necessarily mean all cloud, all the time. Instead, focus on finding the right services to fit your client needs.

E-mail, productivity apps, and server resources are already reaching a cloud-first mentality even among SMBs, while the migration of CRM, ERP, and retail applications to the cloud is increasing in popularity. Cloud disaster recovery also remains a great first step into the cloud.

Here are three strategic ways to focus your cloud efforts and start selling more managed cloud services.

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Sustainability Report 2016: Did Our Data Centers Get Greener?

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Thursday, May 11th 2017 — Categories: Data Center Design, Green Data Center

Green House Data released our first Sustainability Report last year, covering the calendar year of 2015. Our goal for this initial report was largely to set a baseline by which we can measure our environmental impact from year to year, as well as to maintain our goal of transparency as a company.

As we’ve written about many times before, the data center industry is not particularly environmentally friendly. We consume millions and billions of kilowatt-hours of electricity annually, which is our biggest contributor to emissions. But computing equipment also has a significant toll on the environment. We also consume quite a bit of water.

By focusing on energy-efficient design and operation methods like free cooling and aisle containment, data centers can reduce consumption. Green House Data goes beyond low PUE ratings and tries to be as green as possible throughout our operations.

How did we fare in 2016? Let’s take a look at some Sustainability Report highlights to find out.

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Keep Exchange Secure: A Checklist

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Monday, May 8th 2017

It’s impossible to imagine modern business without e-mail. While your users may scoff at the idea of a fax or hard line phone, in the background your IT department is working to make sure the e-mail systems your business relies upon continue to function smoothly, both in the moment of sending and receiving and for long term archive and retrieval.

A key element of a functional Exchange server is security. E-mail is an easy route for phishing, social engineering, and malware to enter your environment. It’s also a great way to access confidential information.

To maintain Exchange server security and the integrity of your business e-mail, follow this security checklist.

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