Technology Articles from MPA Networks

Helping Companies Stay Efficient While Transitioning to the Cloud

August 18th, 2020 by admin

A blonde woman working remotely using a laptop

Businesses have been forced to adapt to the coronavirus by moving their workforce to remote offices. Moving to a remote workforce can be challenging, regardless of the circumstances, but doing it in a rush can create problems for your business....

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Posted in: Solutions

Helping Companies Transition From Old Phone Systems that Hindered Remote Work

July 27th, 2020 by admin

A man working from home using a computer while talking on the phone

SAN MATEO, CA - MPA Networks, Inc., a leading managed technology services provider (MTSP), announced today that the company is helping small to mid-sized businesses (SMBs) transition from outdated phone systems that hindered remote worker performance...

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Posted in: Press Release

MPA Networks, Inc. Offers SD-WAN-as-a-Service to SMBs

May 8th, 2019 by admin

Business Team in Modern Office on Computers Sharing Workspace

SAN MATEO, CA – MPA Networks, Inc. a leading managed technology services provider (MTSP), announced today that the company now offers SD-WAN-as-a-Service to their small to mid-sized business (SMB) customers. SD-WAN is a leading technology and according...

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Posted in: Press Release

Making the Switch to BYOD? Pros, Cons and Security Implications to Consider First

June 26th, 2018 by admin

Sleek, slim laptop on a gray business desk

Making the switch to a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) business environment extends well beyond the decision to let employees choose their devices. Your business should look at the pros and cons of the concept before deciding how to approach it and to what...

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Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Giving a Presentation: A Technology Preparedness Checklist

March 19th, 2018 by admin

Stylized graphic of a businesswoman standing in front of a training blackboard

Giving a presentation can be stressful, so dealing with technology issues at the last minute is the last thing you want when attempting a professional delivery. The following technology preparedness checklist can help you make a good impression rather...

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Posted in: Solutions

Managing Messaging Tools in Your Office

March 5th, 2018 by admin

Businessman's hand touching a virtual screen with a white email envelope icon on it

When used well, instant messaging tools can increase productivity while offering secure information exchange in your office. Messaging works in business environments because it's less involved than email, easy to queue and fast to respond. Several free...

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Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Putting Unused Computers Back to Work

December 28th, 2017 by admin

Black MSI laptop with red highlight coloring, opened and facing the viewer

There are many ways to reuse an old computer. Replacing an old computer that still works is a good feeling.   The device survived the replacement cycle. However, some desktops and laptops have the potential to lead second lives in the workplace. Re-assigning...

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Posted in: Solutions

Latest Popular Smartphones Significantly Dip in Drop Test Performance

November 22nd, 2017 by admin

iOS device with cracked and broken screen in the bottom left side

After years of improving smartphone glass durability, a shift design is bringing back the perils of dropping the device only to discover the glass has cracked on impact. The newly released iPhone 8 and iPhone X aren’t doing well in drop tests, with screens...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Don't Neglect Surge Protectors in Your Workplace

November 16th, 2017 by admin

Isolated black surge protector strip with 6 outlets

Businesses use surge protectors every day without thinking about them; however, they are an incredibly important piece of technology that can make the difference between a $20.00 and a $2,000.00 equipment replacement. While uncommon, a power surge can...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Problems with Power Loss: Tips for Workplace Computer Battery Backups

November 8th, 2017 by admin

View of the backside of a wooden desk with 2 Apple computers and an Apple laptop, all in gray

It's inevitable: employees working hard on a time-consuming project and then out of nowhere, the lights start to flicker and the power goes out. Suddenly, those workers express their frustration by pulling out their hair because they've just lost hours'...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Wireless Charging in the Workplace: iPhone Joins Android

October 10th, 2017 by admin

Hand holding a white iPhone plugged in and charging from empty

Wireless charging in the workplace has the potential to make it easier for your employees keep their arsenal of devices running throughout the day with fewer of those pesky low battery warnings. Until recently, wireless charging hasn't been as good at...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Flash Drives: A Productivity and Security Guide

September 26th, 2017 by admin

Wireless dongle, USB drive, micro SD chip, and 2 SD chips on a field of black

With proper planning, your business can take advantage of USB flash drive technology to increase productivity, while eliminating most of the medium's inherent risk. The USB flash drives likely lying around your business offer excellent opportunities to...

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Posted in: Cyber and Data Security, Hardware and Software

Screen Mirroring Mini-Guide

September 19th, 2017 by admin

Conference room with dark wood table, black and silver chairs, a speaker phone, and a tv display on the far wall

Setting up your conference room for wireless screen mirroring is the answer to employees sharing in a collective groan when it's time to connect a computer or mobile device to show a presentation. While setting up the conference room television or projector...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

The System Is Down: How To Stay Online When Your Service Provider Is Offline

September 12th, 2017 by admin

Stylized icons that indicate free WiFi is available

It's easy to take a functional Internet connection for granted until it's no longer working. When that Internet connection inevitably goes down, your business could be left scrambling to figure out how to keep working until service is restored. The best...

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Posted in: Solutions, Hardware and Software

When Windows 10 Support Stops

August 22nd, 2017 by admin

Dark wood desk with a Mac desktop, a gray MacBook Pro, and a white table resting on it

In July of 2017, some Windows 10 users received an error message when trying to install the Creators Update, stating, "Windows 10 is no longer supported on this PC." This first-of-its-kind problem stems from an incompatibility with a handful of Intel's...

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Posted in: Cyber and Data Security, Hardware and Software

Avoiding Hardware Overkill: IT Consulting to the Rescue

July 18th, 2017 by admin

Close up of a circuit board

Spending far too much money on excessively overpowered computer hardware can quickly deplete your company's IT budget, taking funding away from other important expenses. Two exciting products released in June 2017, Apple's new iMac Pro ($4,999) and Intel's...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Amazon Alexa in the Workplace: What Could You Do With a Virtual Assistant?

June 20th, 2017 by admin

Graphic of six people-shaped figures with question speech bubbles above them

Amazon Alexa, the voice-based intelligent personal assistant you may have seen an early adopter friend use at home, has surprising business use potential to increase productivity in the workplace. Like Apple's Siri, Google Assistant, and Microsoft's...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Intranets and Small-To-Medium Business Productivity

June 13th, 2017 by admin

Finger touching an array of icons laid out on a pale blue background

Many small-to-medium businesses (SMBs) have taken to hosting their own intranet to increase productivity in the workplace. For those unfamiliar with the term, "intranet" is not a typo, but rather an internal network that behaves like a private Internet....

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Posted in: Solutions

The Cost of Memory: Trends to Impact Your Upgrade Cycle

June 6th, 2017 by admin

Close up view of a 16Gb G-die DDR3 SDRAM chip K4B1G0846G

Computer memory market trends could play a role in your business’s decision on when to upgrade or replace employee computers. According to PC World, the technology research experts at Gartner predict that prices for both RAM and Solid State Drives (SSDs)...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Android and IOS: Is the Device Just Old, or Is It Obsolete?

May 23rd, 2017 by admin

Relief drawing of a pocket watch with roman numerals I through XII

When trying to determine if a piece of technology is simply old or completely obsolete, keep in mind that there are different criteria for Android and iOS devices than for desktop and laptop computers. An employee stuck using an obsolete device is likely,...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

7 Ways VoIP Increases SMB Productivity

May 16th, 2017 by admin

Wireframe graphic of a desktop business telephone

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) solutions can help small and medium businesses  increase productivity by enhancing your communication potential. VoIP isn't just a simple digital upgrade over your existing office analog phone service: It opens the...

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Posted in: Partners and Industries

Scheduling Security: Take Control of Your OS Updates

May 10th, 2017 by admin

The word 'update' written in chalk on a blackboard, with a red analog clock between the 'p' and 'd' letters

It happens to everyone: You turn your computer back on after you intended to leave the office, or come in early to get a head start on a new project, only to be greeted by a 20-minute operating system (OS) update session. This common workplace frustration...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

The Dock Returns: Anticipating Trends for Productivity Potential

April 19th, 2017 by admin

Stylized graphic of a desktop monitor, tablet, and smartphone, in black and white

Samsung's March 2017 announcement that its flagship smartphone would support first-party peripheral that makes the device work like a desktop computer could mean big changes for how people look at their productivity devices. While this is not the first...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Avoiding Disaster: Overheating Computers

April 5th, 2017 by admin

Shiny, red fire extinguisher with a yelling cartoon face on the side

If one of your office computers always seems to shut down or slow to a crawl at the busiest of times, you may have a case of overheating on your hands—especially if IT can't find anything wrong on the software level. Performance hiccups might seem like...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Mesh Networking for SMB Offices

March 28th, 2017 by admin

Stylized representation of a wireless radio antenna with radio signals eminating from it

If the sounds of disgruntled employees complaining about poor Wi-Fi connectivity are all too familiar in your SMB, it's time to consider switching to a mesh network. Unlike traditional Wi-Fi networks that use a single point of origin and optional...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

The Benefits of Laptop Docks and At-Desk Peripherals

March 21st, 2017 by admin

Overhead view of a computer user typing on a white, detachable Mac keyboard connected to a Macbook laptop

With a little bit of effort, your staff can reap all the benefits of a laptop, and many of the perks of a desktop, with a little bit of planning and some additional hardware. It's a common perception that laptops lead in portability, while desktops specialize...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Network-Attached Storage: Data Backup and Transfer Options for Small Businesses

March 9th, 2017 by admin

File upload icon in 5 colors: gray, green, red, blue, yellow

Network-Attached Storage (NAS) servers are a great asset for small businesses managing data. For the uninitiated, NAS is essentially a streamlined server designed specifically for sharing files between devices. Because of their simplified...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Getting a Clean Start: Managing Windows Startup Programs

February 23rd, 2017 by admin

Stylized depiction of the Windows 8 start menu on a desktop monitor

It's quite common that, over time, Windows systems accumulate a laundry list of programs that load when a user signs in. While generally benign, most of these "startup" programs are unlikely to actually benefit the user—so the computer ends up...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Digital Sticky Notes: A Time-Saver for Your Entire Team

February 15th, 2017 by admin

Stylized depiction of nine sticky notes in various colors

It's a familiar sighting in the workplace: the employee with half a dozen sticky notes attached to their computer monitor. While not the most confidential or elegant solution, these employees are on to something. Fortunately, technology has stepped in...

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Posted in: Cyber and Data Security

Breathing New Life into Middle-Aged Computers

February 8th, 2017 by admin

Stylized depiction of an old-style CRT monitor

Your employees' computers may not be up to speed anymore after two or three years of use, but in many cases your staff can upgrade or tune up these devices to keep pace with work demands. Upgrades can often be purchased and installed for under $100 a...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Using Snap and Split-Screen Modes for Increased Productivity

February 1st, 2017 by admin

Stylized sliding drawers stacked one atop the other, in blue and gray

Multi-tasking wizards have a secret: Modern operating systems offer a handy technique for managing multiple windows while maximizing available screen space, significantly increasing productivity. Depending on the OS, this feature may be referred to as...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Virtual Reality: What does It Mean for Your Business?

January 18th, 2017 by admin

Blue and purple depiction of the concept of consciousness

Depending on your industry, modern virtual reality (VR) devices could offer impressive options to improve productivity. The video game industry, for one, has been a major player in pushing VR technology. Despite a handful of flops like Nintendo’s 1995...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Boost Productivity and Security with Google's Cloud Applications

January 11th, 2017 by admin

Color logo of Google Drive(tm)

For anyone unfamiliar with the Google Applications platform, Google Docs et al. are a Cloud-based spin on mainstay office suite programs that can help your staff work better together. With a zero-dollar price tag (compared with Microsoft Office's...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Looking Forward: Cloud Services Costs and Opportunities

January 5th, 2017 by admin

Blue, green, and orange stylized cloud upload/download icons

If your small-to-medium business (SMB) isn't looking at ways to increase productivity through Cloud services, you could be missing out on exciting opportunities. But while the Cloud offers countless opportunities for business expansion, it can also taking...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Low Battery Life: Bringing Productivity to a Halt

October 26th, 2016 by admin

Stylized graphic of a AA battery with a green cape flying through the air

Work-disrupting messages like “please connect charger” and “plug in or find another power source” can be a huge source of frustration—not to mention a major productivity killer—for employees on the go. Nobody wants to see their phone battery go belly-up...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

IoT Devices to Make Your Office More Efficient

September 21st, 2016 by admin

Stylized graphic of a thermometer

IoT devices have incredible potential to make your office more efficient. Previously we’ve discussed the caveats IoT devices bring to the workplace a few times, but today we’re going to focus on how these devices can increase productivity. It’s easy...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Water-Resistant Smartphones Are Here: What You Need to Know

September 13th, 2016 by admin

Graphic of an iphone with an image of water droplets on the screen

Water-resistance probably isn’t on the feature checklist for your employee smartphones—but judging by how many of these devices meet an untimely end via liquid damage, it should be. It probably doesn't come as a surprise that dropping the device...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Are Chromebooks Right for YOUR Business?

September 7th, 2016 by admin

White Acer laptop sitting on a white table, with a yellow flower in a glass to the side

Google’s Chromebook platform has the potential to replace traditional laptops and increase productivity for businesses, much like it has in the consumer market at large. For the uninitiated, Chromebooks are Cloud-oriented laptops that run most operations...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Are Comatose Servers Draining Your Wallet and Leaving You Vulnerable?

August 30th, 2016 by admin

Black skull and crossbones graphic

Those old servers your business no longer uses—and keeps running anyway—are more than just a security risk: They’re hurting your firm’s bottom line. The term comatose server describes a functional server, connected to a network, that sits idle virtually...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

How To Select a Second Monitor

August 24th, 2016 by admin

White office desktop with 2 Dell monitors and an Apple keyboard around a coffee cup

Secondary monitors have incredible potential to increase productivity in the workplace. It might not seem like much, but minimizing, maximizing, and arranging application windows on a single computer monitor can take up a significant amount of time....

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Is Your Broadband Fast Enough? Here’s How to Check

July 19th, 2016 by admin

Simple representation of a wireless signal: a circle with 3 waves emanating from it

How fast is your company's broadband Internet speed compared to ten years ago? Chances are that while your online connection at work back then was faster than your first home Internet service (think of that annoying dial-up modem noise), if you tried...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

How To Choose a Desktop Monitor

May 17th, 2016 by admin

Graphical render of a standard desktop PC, with monitor, keyboard, mouse, and tower

Let’s talk about desktop monitors. In many companies, large or small, an onboarding employee gets whatever display hardware might already reside in their assigned cube—no matter how old it is. But like most computer products, the technology is always...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Upgrading to Windows 10: Why You Should (Still) Wait

February 11th, 2016 by admin

Red sign depicting in white lettering 'Do Not Enter'

We were as optimistic as anyone about Microsoft's long-awaited release of the Windows 10 operating system. As we discussed last May, we looked forward to real improvements—chiefly a better desktop interface—over its widely unloved predecessor, Windows...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Transitioning to the Cloud? “Know Before You Go”

January 26th, 2016 by admin

Stylized cloud with an open door in the center of it

The Cloud is here to stay—and growing before our eyes. Even the customer segment that the marketing world terms late adopters—the last people to "get on the boat" of tech trends—are finally taking a hard look at migrating at least some of their IT to...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Standing Desks: Could They Improve Your Workplace?

January 12th, 2016 by admin

Woman in a red jacket using a laptop while reaching for a cup of coffee

It's been talked about everywhere from the New York Times to Men's Health and Women's Health: Sitting at a desk all day may be dangerously unhealthy. Medical studies conducted around the world support the same conclusion: When a human body...

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Posted in: Solutions, Hardware and Software

Macs Are Here to Stay. How Well Are You Managing Them?

December 16th, 2015 by admin

Apple monitor, keyboard, mouse, and iPhone resting on a wooden desk

Before you take your teenage kids to see the new Steve Jobs biopic, ask them what Jobs' first successful product was. Don't be surprised if they answer "the iPod"! For most of their generation, the original Macintosh is ancient history. Today's Mac...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Blurring the Lines: Hybrid Devices in the Workplace

December 10th, 2015 by admin

Wooden desk with a gray MacBook Pro, Apple display, iPad, and Mac peripherals sitting on it

Apple announced the iPad Pro in September of 2015. Microsoft announced the Surface Book just a month later. Both devices are blurring the lines between tablets and laptops, offering interesting new opportunities for technology use in the workplace and...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Busting Dust: The Overlooked Cause of Crashes

December 2nd, 2015 by admin

Close up of the ASDF home row on a black keyboard

Your business can take a productivity hit and incur unnecessary expenses because of a very common, often overlooked problem: dust buildup in computers. Dust inside computers can decrease their efficiency and even their operational lifespans. These...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

The Cloud: An Eco-Friendly Alternative?

June 11th, 2015 by admin

Light green poster with a leaf on it and the words 'Earth Friendly' in white

April 22 marked the annual worldwide observance of Earth Day. This made us think about the role small businesses play in the "Go Green" movement. Many companies have a genuine concern for preserving our planet's natural resources—even if many hotels...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Apple TV for Presentations in the Workplace

May 1st, 2015 by admin

Woman's hands holding up an iPad displaying a colorful abstract image

Apple TV, typically used as a video content streaming device for Netflix, YouTube, and iTunes, is fairly common in homes across the U.S. However, this crafty little device that can fit in your palm also has some impressive applications in an office setting...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Surprising New Study: Email an Essential Cross-Generational Business Asset

February 12th, 2015 by admin

Red background with outline of a desktop monitor and mouse, screen displaying '@' sign and icon of an envelope

What was cutting-edge in the 1990s is still relevant today — at least, when it comes to Email technology. According to a new PewResearch report, 61 percent of office workers say Email is “very important” to their work productivity. That same study placed...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Disaster Recovery: Smart Ways to Work Around a Broken System

February 4th, 2015 by admin

Cartoon of a sad-faced computer and a panicked user with '!?' over his head

Computers have a knack for breaking at the most inconvenient time. Murphy’s Law is alive and well. But you don’t need to wait for IT repairs in order to get an employee back to work: smart techniques and planning can minimize your downtime so you can...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Stay Productive with IT Managed Services

January 14th, 2015 by admin

Cartoon graphic of a hand touching an upward pointing arrow against a bar graph

It doesn’t take a psychic to know that one of your business goals is improving efficiency and productivity. You can do both with an IT managed service provider. MSPs specialize in finding technical solutions to streamline your work environment and preemptively...

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Posted in: Solutions

Increase Productivity with Cloud Systems

December 23rd, 2014 by admin

Blue inked drawing of various icons with arrows pointing to a cloud

Cloud-based applications have the potential to increase productivity for your business. By de-localizing your computing resources, your employees can benefit from ease of access, broader device compatibility, and reliance on local hardware. IT Managed...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

Stay Productive with IT Managed Services

December 12th, 2014 by admin

Isolated clock face in silver and blue with roman numerals for the numbers

It doesn’t take a psychic to know that one of your business goals is improving efficiency and productivity. You can do both with an IT managed service provider. MSPs specialize in finding technical solutions to streamline your work environment and preemptively...

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Posted in: Solutions, Hardware and Software

Close Enough to Know You, Small Enough to Serve You

November 13th, 2014 by admin

Black and white silhouettes of businesspeople against a blue background of 1s and 0s

If you've been reading our blog for a while, you know why we believe managed IT services are the smart choice over "going it alone" — particularly for a small business. Over the past few years alone, we've seen several major tech companies — some of...

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Posted in: Solutions

Disaster Recovery: Is Your Data Protected From the Next Catastrophe?

November 6th, 2014 by admin

Eleven blue and white circular icons

Last month, the Bay Area commemorated the 25th anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake. Those of us who lived through that experience remember the sudden, unexpected jolt — and how the event disrupted our lives for several weeks afterward. Of course,...

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Posted in: Cyber and Data Security, Solutions

Use IT to Increase Workplace Productivity - Get the Whitepaper!

April 21st, 2014 by admin

Cover of whitepaper with title 'Zero in on Downtime with IT Productivity'

It is vital that Information Technology enhance workplace productivity, rather than hinder it. With proper IT systems and management in place, it is possible to accomplish your work faster and with far less risk of downtime and technology inefficiencies....

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Posted in: Solutions

To Cloud or Not to Cloud: a Heated IT Debate

March 18th, 2014 by admin

Blue background with white words 'Should You Move To The Cloud?'next to a cloud with an up arrow inside it

With all the hype surrounding cloud computing, it may seem like any business that is NOT in the cloud is woefully behind the times. As an IT Managed Services Provider, we hear the following questions from clients and prospective clients all the time:...

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Posted in: Solutions

Use IT Standardization to Enhance Workplace Productivity and Limit Downtime

February 22nd, 2014 by admin

Dilbert comic strip

What is IT Standardization? Standardization refers to the general uniformity of desktops and laptops across an entire business. Ideally, all workstations and laptops should be identical (or as identical as possible), including uniform software versions...

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Posted in: Hardware and Software

The Remarkable Truth about Information Technology and your ROI

January 24th, 2014 by admin

Blue tinted composite of a keyboard, a woman's eye, and a cd stack

If we asked you a very simple question — what is Information Technology? —  how would you respond?  What would come to mind? We're guessing you would focus on computers, flashing lights, monitor screens, and server rooms, right?  Perhaps even...

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Posted in: Solutions

The Real Cost of IT Downtime

August 18th, 2013 by admin

Frustrated user pulling their hair while staring angrily at a computer screen

Downtime - it isn't always what you think! When you think downtime, I'm sure you're picturing the results of a total IT disaster - perhaps a flood destroying the server room or a malicious virus that hacks the network, forcing everyone to close up...

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Posted in: Solutions