If you are one of our Managed Services customers, one of the services provided to you is scheduled patching of your computers . Microsoft releases patches on a regular basis as do some other application vendors and our remote management software (LabTech) will apply these patches to your machines as needed and as approved by our staff.
Once patches are applied to your machine, if those patches require a restart of the computer you will be prompted by LabTech to reboot your computer with the dialog box below.
If it is inconvenient for you to restart your computer at the time the reboot is requested, you can simply dismiss the dialog by clicking the No button. The dialog box will count down from 90 seconds and if no response is given during that time the dialog box will dismiss itself and not restart the computer. This is to prevent loss of unsaved data should you be away from your computer and not able to answer the question in a timely fashion.
If the dialog box is dismissed it will pop back up hourly to remind you that a reboot is needed. Since the patches will not be effective until after the restart, it is a good idea to save any unsaved work and allow the reboot as soon as possible.
Having recently installed Windows 8 on my laptop to take advantage of the Client Hyper-V, I’m working through the kinks that come with a new OS on my daily driver. Hyper-V leverages the built-in Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) to provide NAT and DHCP for internet access for VM’s running on the hypervisor. This isn’t quite as intuitive as the network implementations in VMware Workstation or Oracle’s VirtualBox, but that’s a different discussion.
I recently had some trouble establishing the VPN connection, and set about re-installing Cisco AnyConnect as a result. During the install, a notification box popped up numerous times to warn me: “The VPN client agent was unable to create the interprocess communication depot.”
The install completed after clicking OK on the notifications, but would not establish a VPN connection, with a not so informative message “Unable to establish VPN”. A bit of searching later, I found that AnyConnect is not compatible with Internet Connection Sharing, which Cisco states in the AnyConnect VPN Client FAQ.
The solution is to disable the ICS service before installing AnyConnect. Subsequently, when trying to connect, I encountered connection failures:
The solution is again to disable the ICS service, establish the AnyConnect VPN connection, and then enable ICS. Oddly, it seems that after the first failed connection attempt followed by stop / connect / restart cycle of the ICS service, AnyConnect can be reconnected without any trouble. Tedious, but it works. Ping me back if you know a better way!
Have you ever been in the middle of an important document when your computer crashes or freezes and realize you didn’t save it? You are not alone! I think we’ve all been there a time or two…or three! But there may be hope for us yet! The Auto Recovery (AutoSave) feature is here to help!
Depending upon the Microsoft Office version that you have, AutoRecovery (AutoSave) is a feature that will recover a document if your computer loses power or if a program error occurs while working in a document.
This feature will create a file similar to “AutoRecover Save of <file name>.doc.” When the program is restarted, the application will search your system for any of these files. Some documents may not be recoverable especially, if you’ve never saved the document before. And even if you have saved the document, you may lose recent changes. Once the program you were working in is restarted, it will automatically attempt to open the autorecovery files. If it does so successfully, then you will be able to save the document.
This is a truly valuable feature that Microsoft Office offers. But in order for it work, it must be enabled. To view instructions on how to enable this feature, go to:
Our Enterprise Solutions team has been hard at work in the lab, training to become solutions experts for Veeam Data Protection and Backup tools. Their hard work, dedication and opportunity to train with Veeam’s technical team has earned Lewan the recognition of Gold Partner status in the Veeam ProPartner Program. Congratulations!
View all of Lewan’s Vendor Partners:
As I talk to more and more SMB customers about their IT needs I’m finding a theme that drove us to look hard at how we can help our customers with IT support and infrastructure. For most of our customers, IT is a necessary element to their business but the business doesn’t know how to run or manage IT.
We developed a suite of services that enables our customers to enjoy a higher level of support, security, availability and predictability of SLAs and costs associated with their technology needs. It’s tough for smaller businesses to hire the right IT talent to support the technology, make technology choices and help align the business and IT. When our customers choose Lewan they get access to a large team of experts in the time slices they need. They can’t afford to hire a team of experts to cover each area.
In addition we provide IT “by the drink” to help customers scale their businesses whether its the talent or the technology itself. Its cost effective and predictable. How much time do businesses waste trying to determine what technology they need to support their businesses from an IT standpoint? Time researching, talking to vendors , comparing technologies, learning to implement something one time and will never do it again. It’s a waste of time, and with no economies of scale, they end up “guessing high” and over buying. They also waste a lot of time to learn how to implement and integrate a solution as a one time event.
We have developed a suite of services that address this challenge by applying the right expertise, tools and infrastructure as pooled resources for our customers to use while maintaining segregation and security. This way our customers can leverage the scale of our expertise, people, infrastructure and tools and only pay for what they need and use.
Our solution includes data protection, IT infrastructure, security, help desk, email, monitoring, print management and 24×7 support for day to day IT support and we also have teams of specialists to help advise and roll out new solutions to address particular business initiatives that are enabled by technology. We meet monthly with our customers to review what we’ve done, what we’ve seen and share information and suggestions to improve the IT experience and alignment with their business.
We also provide “account services” that are included with our relationship to help our customers save even more time and money by managing their maintenance contracts, telecommunications costs and any product or project procurement needs they have. We truly have a full service offering for supporting all business and IT technology needs with one phone number to call.
In addition to the services our customers utilize from us to build and support their IT environment they also don’t have to worry about the capital and operational costs of all the elements that comprise the IT environment. Our service is all-inclusive up to the business applications. Below is a list of some of the items that are included in the service that the customer doesn’t have to buy anymore yet making this approach more cost effective:
Element management software
Backup hardware and software
I could continue but you get the idea. In addition to all the “stuff” our customers no longer need to buy we include the support services to manage, report and react to issues within the environment and the proactive management to avoid issues and keep the environment up to date.
For more information on how we can help your business optimize your technology needs please email me at email@example.com
Been drinking the VMware koolaid the past few days and there is a very consistent theme.
1. SDDC (software defined datacenter)
2. Hybrid Cloud
3. End User Computing
Other notable items I need to learn more about that fit into these buckets are:
-Software defined networking and storage
More to come…
We have been discussing internally the need for a follow me data solution that has the ability to work in larger team environments. We found that several of us had Dropbox accounts and other such solutions and we also had a mix of iOS, OS X, Windows and Android platforms. The Dropbox thing was pretty convenient and we found our users were not using Sharepoint due to the lack of simplicity, mobility and multiple platform support. We are also into an implementation of Docushare to replace Sharepoint, but again, it didn’t solve the same problems that something like Dropbox might solve. We do see a need for both ECM and follow me data solutions as we see the ECM tool being used for company records especially when compliance is needed and also incorporates many other features like electronic document signing and workflow routing. We see the follow me data solution aimed more at unstructured data that is more transient in nature or aren’t considered formal company records. It also addresses the need for having mobile copies of data that may reside in the ECM, e.g., marketing slicks and presentations that its nice to have local for ease of presentation.
So, what we did was a formal evaluation of some platforms that had team oriented features and also checked for enterprise class security features. We looked at ECM platforms and follow me data platforms. As noted earlier in this post we saw a need for ECM solutions but we couldn’t find one that addressed both the ECM and follow me data needs we had. After eliminating those solutions from the follow me data choices we narrowed the field to Dropbox and Sharefile. Being a Citrix Platinum partner some of our guys had been demoing Sharefile and most of us also had Dropbox accounts as well. Sharefile won hands down when considering auditing and security controls and the ease of use was on par. Sharefile also has the ability to create storage zones that can reside behind our firewalls in our datacenter if we so chose, so we gained more control as well.