IT News

  • Windows 10: A Brief First Look. Part 1 of 2

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    Windows 10: A Brief First Look. Some things to look for, some things to look out for… ( Part 1 of 2 )

    After its public release on July 29th, and so far I’m happy with this release. The big question for most is do I upgrade? I will discuss some cool things about Windows 10 and few things you need to watch out for.

    1. New Platform

    Windows 10 was designed to operate on many platforms from our regular PCs down to your X-Box and Raspberry Pi with the Windows 10 IoT version (internet of things). With a common platform, apps designed under the Windows 10 framework should run on any version or device.

    1. User InterfaceWindows 10 Start Menu

    With all the controversy surrounding Windows 8, everyone can now celebrate the return of the start menu. Users migrating from Windows 7 will not be lost if they upgrade. The start menu has integrated the tile apps from Windows 8 and the user can customize the layout. An expanded Start Menu is also available if you are using a touchscreen device or tablet. Windows 10 should have been what Windows 8 was.

    1. New Applications

    Windows 10 released some new apps worth mentioning. Edge the new internet browser, Cortana, a Siri like search assistance and Virtual Desktops.

    Edge

    A new re-designed web browser that not only is fast; it also gives you the ability to make notes on a page which can be shared with others. The Reading list function is cool as well as it strips out graphics and other distractions on a page and you can just focus on the text. Not sure if Edge is going to replace what you are currently using, especially when you consider all the extensions already in place for Chrome and Firefox. It will be interesting to see how Edge evolves over time.

    Cortana

    Is our new search assistant. It has voice activation and you can customize what content, such as news and weather that pops up. Simple voice commands like “show me today’s weather” work great, but something like “show me traffic from home to work” will take you to Bing search rather than showing you a map. Cortana if far from my Siri standard right now, but should improve with time.

    Virtual Desktops

    This is my favorite feature by far. To Mac and Linux users, this is nothing new. Virtual Desktops gives you the ability to run applications in another desktop window. I can have all my day to day operations like email, CRM and Excel in one desktop and have a virtual desktop dedicated for another purpose, like research and toggle between the two.

    Part 2 will focus on how to avoid the some of the minor pitfalls of Windows 10.

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  • Data Lost After Lightning Strikes Google Data Centre

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    On Lightning strikeAugust 13th , Google had lost data at one of their Data Centres in a Belgium facility.

    http://money.cnn.com/2015/08/19/technology/google-data-loss-lightning/index.html

    The data centre was struck by lightning 4 times causing some of the hardware to fail. Even though some data was lost at the Data Centre, Google had replicated the data to other locations. The company Azendoo had to wait for 12 hours to get service restored.

    If this could happen to Google, can this happen to you? I’m not saying we need to abandon the cloud, but “God happens” to the best of us. On a positive note, Charley David, who works at Azendoo was wise or lucky enough to have data backed up at another Google data centre. However, it still took Charley four days to fully recover.

    This should be a reminder on how we look at our processes around disaster recovery and business continuity planning.

    Do we have local and remote backups? Are the schedules for every backup operation documented?

    If we lose internet or cloud services, what continuity plans are in place and how quickly are they executed?

    Are these plans reviewed on a regular basis? This is just a very small sampling of questions.

    If you can’t answer or get the answer quickly to those above questions, you have work to do. To make that work easier…

    TechTarget has an excellent resource for free DR/BC planning templates

     

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  • Welcome, Northern Sun Mining!

    Northern Sun MiningWe would like to extend a welcome to Northern Sun Mining as one of BIT Incorporated’s most recent client additions. BIT will be functioning as the complete RMM and Managed Services Provider solution for Northern Sun. We will be managing their IT infrastructure both in Toronto and Timmins and supporting their staff located across the globe.

    Northern Sun (formerly Liberty Mines Ltd.) has historically focused on the exploration, development and production of nickel and related base metals from its assets in the Shaw Dome, a prospective nickel belt near Timmins, Ontario. Over the longer term, the Company plans to increase its’ asset and resource base in the Timmins area. This will be accomplished through aggressive exploration in the region, joint venturing of advanced Resource projects, or through project acquisitions.

    To learn more about Northern Sun Mining, click here!

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