NAS, virtualized, or cloud—it all depends on your needs
World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee said, “Data is a precious thing and will last longer than the systems themselves.” So true. But data is only as useful as your storage plan. Data that’s scattered all over your company on PCs, laptops, and smartphones or other personal devices can be hard to manage and susceptible to loss. If this sounds familiar, it might be time to revamp your storage strategy.
Small businesses have access to the same storage options as the biggest corporations, but that doesn’t mean those options are necessarily appropriate or cost-effective for you. For instance, you may not have the funds for or need to hire a full-time IT person, much less a dedicated storage expert. So the solution you choose should be easy to manage. It should also be easy to expand, because the third certainty in life after death and taxes is that you will need to buy more storage.
Improve hardware use and manageability as well as reduce costs with storage virtualization.
Virtualization was initially developed for large companies to make their infrastructure, particularly servers and storage, operate more efficiently and to cut spending costs on new hardware. Like many technologies, server and storage virtualization products are now being developed for small businesses to bring the same benefits to their networks.
Many smaller companies start by creating a virtualized server environment. Using hypervisor software, you can divide a single server into multiple virtual servers, each one running its own operating system and associated workload. This lets one server run many more different applications than the one operating system, one workload model of an un-virtualized server.
You’ve heard us say it before, there’s nothing small about the small business initiative at Cisco. Rick Moran, our WW vice president of SB Solutions Marketing, has this week been discussing our latest news with ‘connect’ and ‘secure’ products focused on Small Business with analysts from across the globe.
The launch this week is particularly exciting as it includes a expansion of the “built for small” portfolio with a range of Ethernet switches, a business-class network security Firewall as well as a backup Service for storage products and the financing offers and options for small business to go with them.
It’s an exciting time for small businesses to evaluate their needs – there are lots of challenges for growing businesses to overcome, but lots of solutions to those needs as well. And yes… cost is a major component of successfully running IT, that’s why Cisco Capital is currently offering competitive financing for small business customers so they can get the technology they need to stay competitive and profitable. Three-year, 3 percent financing in the U.S and zero-percent financing in Europe and Canada is now available to small business customers.
Of course, we’re always listening to our customers, acting on their feedback and developing new solutions that can help drive their business performance to the next level. Analyst feedback is a great prism through which we can look at the challenges, and opportunities for small businesses, and so discussions with analysts really build on this process and are an invaluable part of helping us to push ourselves and our products as far as possible.
Our latest discussions re-iterated many of the key things that matter to a small business – good value, ease of use and reliability. Small business remain hungry for advice on how they can innovate, while keeping things simple. For example, we recently ran a Talk2 Cisco webinar session on how small businesses can gain an edge on the competition. Ian Pennell, senior vice president for Cisco’s small business technology group and co-lead of Cisco’s small business council, and Andrew Sage, vice president, worldwide small business sales, enjoyed discussing many of these issues and answering small businesses’ questions on these areas. To paraphrase one of the analysts we were speaking with, ‘small can still be complex we still want quick and easy to use solutions’. Amen to that.
Eren Hussein, Director of Solutions Marketing for Cisco Small Business, shares details about new products, services and financing offers announced today, including:
Check out what Eren has to say, and then give us your feedback!