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Is A Leased Line Right For Your Business?

As broadband speeds increase, the price of leased lines has decreased – making them more accessible and affordable. A leased line is a permanent network connection between two points, typically being the local telephone exchange (also known as the PoP – the Internet Service Providers Point of Presence) and a company’s premises. They are an ‘uncontended service’, meaning that the connection is completely dedicated to you. Whether or not your business chooses to opt for leased lines really does depend on three main factors: Users: A leased line is usually recommended for organisations with 20+ users in order to give them an improved user experience. Internet Usage: If your user count is below 20, a leased line may still be a good idea if your internet usage is high. For example, regular use ......

Testing SD-WAN To Validate Application Performance And Determine Best Solutions

SD-WAN is one of the latest technologies to originate from the new wave cloud of software defined whatever. Traditional wide area networks (WANs) were not developed or architected for the cloud, so as cloud adoption grows evermore popular at the enterprise level, so does the need for cloud-based WANs. Boasting the ability to optimise the capacity, flexibility and reliability of any managed network, and to reduce the number of network connections and devices within an enterprise, SD-WAN may even make WAN technologies like Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) obsolete. The SD-WAN market is expected to be valued at more than $8 billion USD in 2021 (IDC). Yet enterprises are hesitant to adopt over concerns such as potentially degraded performance, deployment costs, and security. Most readers h......

Encoding And Transcoding In Enterprise Video

Are you managing enterprise video across a variety of platforms? If so, you’ll need to consider a number of options as you prepare media for company-wide and possibly global distribution. But before you do, it’s important to understand the difference between two key video concepts: encoding and transcoding. In a nutshell, the process of encoding involves taking raw, original and uncompressed source content and converting it to a compressed digital format. Often used in the context of encoders—which can be software or hardware based—encoding takes a live video source and converts it to a file, so it may be live streamed or archived in a digital format. A simple example of this would be taking a live camera feed from your onsite broadcast studio and encoding it to an Apple HLS live video for......

Net Neutrality: Why It’s Vital For Digital Transformation

Until a few months ago, it was thought that the issue of net neutrality had been definitively settled by the ruling of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in 2015; however, that all changed with the new Trump administration and statements by the new FCC president – just reappointed for 4 years by the US Senate – that called net neutrality rules a “mistake”. The FCC has since launched a process to challenge the principle of net neutrality; a move that some web users and tech companies view as a frontal attack on a basic guiding principle of the internet. There was a day of protest from the main digital platforms and many other companies. For many people, the net neutrality principle and the unrestricted flow of data fuels innovation – think YouTube, Net......

What Is Object Storage And What Does It Have To Do With Parking?

Object storage is a highly-scalable storage model that manages data as key and value pairs in a single flat namespace. All storage schemes employ the concept of an individual identifier for a specific piece of data, such as a physical disk address in a block-based system like a storage area network (SAN), or a file name in a network attached storage (NAS) or file system. In object storage, the keys are the identifiers for the data objects (values) stored within the system. The values are the actual data payloads, or to reinforce the nomenclature, they are the “objects” in the object storage system. Analogy: Valet Parking Object storage gives us a way to store and retrieve objects via keys— to illustrate, think of object storage as a valet parking system where you hand over your ticket (the......

Not All AVoIP Solutions Are Created Equal

There is a bit of a buzz in the video communications industry at the moment around AV over IP (AVoIP). Research has shown that equipment sales have rocketed by 130% year on year. This is a trend, we’re told, that will shake up the industry. We’d be the first to acknowledge that for any company looking to deliver broadcast-quality content, IP-based distribution solutions are the way to go. But this is not new. For over ten years, companies, including ourselves, have been designing, building and installing content distribution systems that maximise the benefits of IP networks. Interoperability with other devices is one advantage, use of high bandwidth to ensure low latency is another. But AVoIP is not as simple as it sounds, and there is a danger, lurking in the marketing hype, that complexi......

Renewable Energy Will Account For More Than 50% Of The UK’s Electricity Generation By 2025

Renewable energy will account for more than half of the UK’s electricity generation by 2025, according to a new report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), driven in part by the falling cost of generating energy from wind and solar. Highlighting the significance of BNEF’s findings, Dr Nina Skorupska, chief executive of the Renewable Energy Association, said: “The study shows that wind and solar power are now the cheapest form of new build generation in many cases, and costs will continue to fall dramatically. “Massive increases in future renewable power generation mean that industry and government must start planning now to ensure low-carbon, cost-effective ways of balancing demand and supply.” Balancing supply and demand will be one of the biggest challenges for the National Grid as ......

Bright Ideas: Ensuring Effective Digital Platforms In The Energy Sector

In a world increasingly focused on energy efficiency and customer choice, digital platforms as a means of delivering information have never been more important in the energy sector. There are a rich array of online tools used to dynamically communicate everything from energy usage in the home, to planned engineering works and potential disruption along the supply chain, to the relative costs of switching providers. In short, energy companies’ websites have become far, far more than just static online information sources – they are now the gateway to highly sophisticated digital portals and platforms. Managing these platforms is not always easy. As ever, the front-end priority always has to be getting the right information to the right users at the right time, while back-end priorities incl......

Why IT Should Be The Driver Behind Strategic Innovation

Research shows that organisations with an IT focus are more than 25 percent more profitable than competitors. Because of this, IT department members should be more involved in strategic organisational decisions, but the department is, however, too often seen as nothing more than an expense centre. For those that realise that this, they are likely to perform better. Even so, how can others bridge the gap between ambition and reality? The Dilemma Of IT Budget Restrictions What might surprise many is the financial impact that many IT departments face. For example, IT managers are expected to keep their organisation’s technology running smoothly, but they’re also expected not to spend too much money in the process. Even so, these same folks are not often seen as serious conversation partners w......

Is High Availability Low Priority?

Some tech services – connectivity, communications, security, among others – fall firmly into the ‘high availability’ bracket. They need to be protected, preserved and ideally, work uninterrupted. Yet, as illustrated by the recent Microsoft Outlook service outage, even the biggest global providers experience problems.  So, is high availability a big enough priority? Are organisations taking the right steps to ensure key services remain up and running under extreme circumstances? It can mean different things to different organisations. Every business running high availability services will have their own definition of what that means, and how difficult things become if it fails.  What’s The Problem?  Whether the technology in question is in-house or delivered via a service provider, ev......

5 Ways Colocation Data Centres Can Help Your Small Business

Running a business of any size is always a challenge and small and medium enterprises (SME’s) come with their own set of unique difficulties. According to data from the House of Commons, the allure of London’s economic stature means that over 1 million SMEs call the capital home as of 2016, but as everyone knows, space is an in-demand commodity that London based businesses pay a premium for. Every penny counts, particularly for SME’s with a modest budget, and in the data-driven world of today, solid IT infrastructure is crucial. Colocation is a great alternative data management solution with an abundance of colocation centres in London. No longer a luxury strictly for large multinationals, these data centres can help to improve performance and reduces costs in comparison ......

The Hardware Load Balancer Is Dead, Long Live The Software Load Balancer!

Traditional load balancers were undoubtedly a useful (if sticking plaster) solution to a problem that came from the olden days challenges of WAN management. Effectively, these were appliances that maintained the equilibrium of networks, so they didn’t go wonky when certain workloads tried to hog bandwidth. The load balancer was the appliance that tried, against the odds, to maintain an even playing field, calling the shots to ensure connectivity and performance when applications contended for bandwidth capacity and other network resources. The hardware load balancer was the Switzerland of the datacentre: an honest broker that tried to ensure peace and justice even when the wars between applications, connectivity, and compute resources were raging. They worked… up to a point. Hardware load ......