Monthly Archives: October 2014

Steps to Follow When Migrating to the Cloud

Many small to medium sized businesses are migrating to the Cloud – backups, better security, regulations, security, and the Cloud ensures that your company is always up to date without having to continually invest more time and money. So, how can your business make the leap? Here are 3 steps to get you started with your migration to the Cloud:

Start With Hosted Email

An easy first step is to move your company email to a hosted email solution. Cloud email solutions may include a number of additional services for spam protection, antivirus protection, email archive and more.  When you move your email, first consider how many mailboxes are in use? Can you consolidate or eliminate email inboxes? This is a good time to consider how you can reduce costs and improve security and performance. When moving email to the Cloud, consider starting with just the last six months worth of emails, then move older data over time.

Move Data and Files to Cloud Storage

Moving your files is a logical next step to getting your business to the Cloud. Consider what data you need to migrate to the Cloud. Now is the perfect time to clean up customer data and archive historical information, such as office documents, financial history and email archives. Planning out your migration carefully will save you time and cloud storage costs in the long run.

Move Servers that Support Legacy Applications

Consider how you will move servers that support line of business and other legacy applications. Unfortunately, not all legacy applications can live in the Cloud. But, many legacy applications can leverage at least some of the technology advances you currently use on your on-premises software. When considering moving servers that support line of business applications to the Cloud, it is important to ensure your SaaS suppliers use common APIs so they can easily integrate with one another. So, make sure you understand your requirements so you can identify when integration will become an issue.

If you are considering moving your business to the Cloud, contact your trusted IT advisor to get more helpful tips on migrating to the Cloud.


Are You Prepared for the End of Windows Server 2003?

If your business depends on Windows Server 2003, you and your colleagues have less than a year until Microsoft will discontinue Server 2003 R2. Server 2003 currently accounts for about 20% of total Windows Server installations, but on July 14, 2015, all Windows Server 2003 extended support will end.

Although Windows Server 2003 comes in a number of editions to serve different sizes and types of businesses, all variants serve to provide email services, share files and printers, act as an application server, and many more tasks essential to everyday business.

If companies transition from Windows 2003, there may be compatibility issues with older software, especially when it comes to moving your applications. Server migrations require a lot of planning and ample forethought, so make sure to do your research. Here are three important steps in planning your migration from Windows Server 2003:

Take an Asset Inventory

Take an inventory of which applications and workloads are still running on Windows Server 2003 and check with publishers to ensure all of your software is upgradable to the latest version of the Windows operating system.

Plan your Windows 2003 Migration

Choose a migration date and decide where each application and workload will go. Will they be stored onsite, on premise, or is it time to move to the Cloud? Consider moving non-mission critical systems and file data first. Moving applications is complex, and if you do not do it carefully, you could be putting your company at risk. Consider integration with legacy applications, broadband internet requirements, and security needs over a wide area network.

Migrating from Windows 2003

When migrating your applications consider establishing a test environment to ensure data integrity and performance expectations are met. Train your employees as needed if you are moving to a new version of your application, as features, functions, and security requirements may have changed.  Are you in over your head? Contact your Managed IT Services provider to learn more about your options well before July 14th.