What We Do
In addition to direct support for normal "computer guy" needs, we offer something no one else does: peace of mind.
You're familiar with the concept of preventative medicine. Taking good care of your body helps to ensure that you get sick less often. And when you do start to come down with something, recognizing and treating it right away helps to keep it from turning into something more serious that will have you home sick for days or weeks at a time.
The same concept applies to your computer. Using an automatic updating service helps ensure that there are fewer chances for a virus to get into your system, and having a monitoring system in place helps you catch small problems while they are still small so you can keep them from becoming big.
But you don't have the time to push every update button, to make sure that every update or download did what it was supposed to, or to crawl through your computer's logs checking for signs of upcoming hard drive failure. That's where we come in. For about $0.50/computer, per day, you can put the responsibility of your computer's preventative medicine into our capable and experienced hands, and get on with the other things you need to get done.
Is it worth the price of a cup of coffee to keep peace of mind?
We've partnered with a cloud-based service provider who enables us to access and check on your computers remotely. We don't need to be in your office, we don't need to have you on the phone, all we do is install a small piece of software you'll never even notice. After that, the service provider's servers pull the necessary information from all the different parts of your computer where it's stored, and send all of it to us. From there we can look at how efficiently your computer is running, if there are any abnormalities in the way it's handling everyday processes, and whether there is any indication that a hardware or software issue is about to come up.
Backups can be a pain in the butt and feel like a waste of time. There's the waiting for the process to initialize, waiting and waiting and waiting for it to back up, and then waiting for it to finish so you can move on with your day. With all this waiting, most people are pretty inclined to put off backing up their files or even just ignore the need altogether. However, you probably know just how vital backups can be to your ability to operate your business. If a system suddenly crashes, it's good to know that all of the information on that system is safely contained somewhere else and won't be affected by the breakdown.
We initialize your backups remotely, at a time when it won't inconvenience you, and on a regular basis. The program that we use to back up your systems pulls only new and changed information, so it takes less time. Because we do this frequently, you're more likely to get all of your information back in the event of a computer failure or corruption of data. And because we back your system up to the cloud, you can access it from anywhere in the world, provided that you have internet access and your security credentials.
Why Cloud Based?
Having a cloud-based service instead of physical servers in our office does a few things for you:
First, it keeps your information more secure. The cloud is maintained in a system of hundreds of servers in various super-secure locations all over the world. It's protected with extremely high-security protocols that are backed up by the security protocols of the service providers, and then again by our own security protocols. With your information in the cloud instead of at our office, you don't have to worry about the potential of something like someone being able to break into our office and harvest your sensitive business, client, and employee files.
Second, it keeps our cost down. As you probably know, servers get very hot. If we were to maintain your information in servers in our office, we would need to install various cooling and security systems to make sure that your information doesn't get stolen or damaged. With your information being accessed and stored as necessary in the cloud, we don't need to pay for the installation and maintenance of these systems - and we pass that savings on to you so that instead of paying hundreds of dollars per month per computer, you're paying less than $20.
Third, it keeps your information accessible to you. You can access information in the cloud from anywhere in the world as long as you have internet access – which means that if you or one of your employees loses or damages a laptop or thumb drive on a business trip, getting the information needed is a simple and quick process. In addition to that, having your information in the cloud means that if we have a power outage or internet connectivity problem at our office, your business can still operate the way you need it to and without interruption.
Daily Safety Checks
A computer is just a computer and we all know that sometimes computers just don’t do what we tell them to do.
Daily safety checks are processes that we run to make sure that your computers are doing what we tell them to. Among other things, we check to make sure that your antivirus knows what to look for, that your backups are completing properly, that no-one has recently attempted to hack into your system, and that your hard drive isn’t getting too full or showing signs of soon-to-be failure. We also check your computer’s event log, which records other failures within the system, to make sure that you’re not about to have a computer that just won’t work anymore.
24x7 Health Monitoring
Some parts of your computer need to be checked on more than just once a day if your computer is going to keep running the way you need it to. 24x7 checks happen every 30 to 60 minutes, depending on your preference, and send you an email or text message if a process fails to do what it’s expected to. These checks don’t slow down your systems, and you probably won’t even remember they’re happening unless something fails. These checks include things like website checks to make sure that your customers see what you’re expecting them to see when they visit your website, and windows services checks to make sure that your windows-based programs are operating the way they should.
Inventory and Reporting Services
Have you ever had to replace one of your computers or update your software licenses? If you have more than one computer, you know just how much of a headache that can be. You have to search for the paperwork, and then search through the paperwork hoping that something will tell you what computer it matches up with.
Our inventory and reporting services take that headache away. We can track your individual computers, their warranty information, which software licenses apply to them, and when those licenses are going to need to be renewed. We can track serial numbers and important information so that if you need to buy more memory, for example, you can easily find the exact piece of hardware that matches that computer. And we give you this information every day, week, and month, in a summary report of your workstations and servers.
Expert Report Review
If you choose, we will review your summary reports for you for just a small per report fee. Having one of us review the reports ensures that someone who knows what to look for can catch any abnormalities or signs of failure and let you know about it, without you needing to take the time to look through the daily, weekly, and monthly emails.
Automatic System Maintenance
Just like your body, or a vehicle, your computer needs regular maintenance so that it can do its best work for you. We can take care of these maintenance items automatically, and take a load off your back. For example, we can:
- Clear out accumulating temporary files: In the process of doing what you do with your computer (general program operation, browsing the internet, etc.) temporary files that help certain programs to run get installed on your system. These files are only needed temporarily and once you're finished with the program or activity, they are never used again. Unfortunately, they don't delete themselves and after a while they can accumulate on your system and slow it down. We can automatically find and delete these temporary files so that your computer continues to work quickly and without problems.
- Run defragmentation processes: In order to run even a simple task like opening a file, your computer has to access a lot of other files that tell it what to do. When these files are put in place, they're not all in the same area of the computer or in the order that they need to be in and this slows the computer down. Imagine having to go through an entire room full of unlabelled, unsorted file boxes looking for five very specific files - just to say 'hi' to a customer! The defragmentation process grabs all of the related files and puts them in one place, in the right order, which makes your computer faster and more efficient. We can run this process automatically, taking the responsibility of it off your plate and freeing you up to focus on other business matters.
- Installing updates: You may not know this, but if you don't install all of your updates right on time, you're creating a space in your computer for viruses to get in. There are a lot of viruses that attach themselves to pieces of sites you may trust, and then target holes in your system's protection – like an Adobe or iTunes program that is just one update behind. These viruses can then use that hole to get into your system and corrupt or steal important and sensitive data. We would like to help you avoid the hassle of getting one of these viruses! We understand that you don't have time to go looking for every update and wait for it to install. That's why we include this service as part of our automatic system maintenance. We can automatically update these programs and make it less likely that you'll get a virus on your computer – just like wearing a jacket outside makes it less likely that you'll catch cold!