Top 3 Technology Misnomers and Misunderstandings Explained

We’ve all had a moment when the right word didn’t come to mind. Technology words are no exception. Using the right word can be the difference between your technician scheduling an onsite call for tomorrow, or resolving the issue remotely today. In many cases, you can dramatically expedite the process of diagnosis. Here are the top 10 misnomers and misunderstood terms in technology we would like you to know, to help us help you.

 

1. Hard Drive and Desktop PC or Tower

Your PC Tower or Desktop PC is the computer. It is made up of components including the casing, the motherboard, the optical drive, power supply, the RAM, and the hard drive. Often this device is miscalled the hard drive which is a single component. It’s an easy way to worry your technician by telling him ‘my hard drive has failed to boot’, versus, ‘my PC failed to boot’. If your hard drive failed, your technician has to look into restoring a good backup, while, if the PC failed to boot there may be a problem with the power supply or a few other components in the system.

A typical Hard Drive

 

 

 

Example of a Desktop PC/ Tower (Dell Optiplex 3050)

 

2. Storage and Memory

Although there are a few exceptions (i.e. certain windows errors) Memory refers to data in the RAM, Storage refers to data in the hard drive. RAM (or Random Access Memory) is often referred to as memory but you wouldn’t call RAM storage. As a result, Neither should you call data in the hard drive memory because that data is stored until you access it. Here’s an example:

 

The story of Little Timmy and the Big Idea… the end…

 

 

Yesterday Little Timmy scored a goal in soccer, the memory of the sad look on the goalie’s face (bad luck Bruno) is stored in his mind forever. Today though, Little Timmy has an idea that could forever change the world.

Now imagine little Timmy is a computer. Well, RIGHT NOW he has a Big Idea that could change the world. That Big Idea is in Little Timmy’s Memory (RAM) he is not thinking of bad luck Bruno’s face. Bad luck Bruno’s face isn’t gone though, Little Timmy is not thinking of that face now so it is stored (Hard Drive).

So when a PC is out of storage space, there are no more memories it can store. If a PC doesn’t have enough memory, it cannot think of too many things at once i.e. Little Timmy can’t think of 5 big ideas at once but he has thought of 20 in the past.

3. Cloud Storage and Cloud Backups

Cloud storage builds upon what we know about Little Timmy’s story and adds another layer. Little Timmy’s memories of Bruno’s face are transported far away to a server farm in Ireland. He can still recall the memory but it’s somewhere else. Some common cloud storage services are Google Drive, Onedrive, and Dropbox. Here’ where we leave the Little Timmy’s story today. Cloud storage is volatile.

Cloud Storage’s purpose is convenience: your data accessible anywhere so you can edit, download and upload new files to your cloud storage service. Files can also be inadvertently deleted or overwritten with a bad version if we are not paying attention. That’s what cloud backup is for (specifically cloud to cloud backup).

Cloud Backup’s purpose is recovery: cloud backups copy a version of your file and places it elsewhere where it can’t be touched unless you want it back in a file restore. It saves the files at different intervals, hourly daily, weekly, or even yearly, with multiple versions available to you. Here’s an example:

As a result of cloud storage volatility, there are even cloud-to-cloud backup services available for cloud-hosted email and cloud storage through Barracuda Cloud Archiving Service.

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Top 4 Ways to use Technology to Reach Your 2018 Business Goals

2018 is almost here! Automated Business Solutions is here to provide you with some tips to make sure your office’s technology helps you reach your goals. Here are a few ideas:

 

1. Use productivity apps to help you meet your personal goals in the office

One of my favorite productivity apps is Forest by SeekrTech. If you’re anything like me, you may easily be distracted by your phone. When it isn’t productive for you to be using your smartphone, use Forest. With Forest, you can set a timer for how long you need to remain focused on a task outside of your smartphone. If you keep Forest open until the timer runs out you will earn credits and plant a virtual tree. These credits are exchanged to plant real trees in the world. Forest accomplishes this in partnership Trees for the Future. Using Forest makes your productivity time charitable, and rewards you for staying focused. Forest is available for iOS, Android, and now has a Chrome webapp and Firefox addon. You can find out more about Forest at the website at https://www.forestapp.cc/en/

Mindfulness meditation has proven to boost productivity and focus in the workplace and its practice is often a New Year’s resolution of its own. Headspace and Calm. are apps designed to assist with practice of mindfulness. Headspace now comes with business plans and is used by companies like Linkedin, Airbnb, Google, and Spotify. Each app walks you through guided meditations designed to relieve stress, anxiety, and to improve positivity, focus, and energy. Although each comes with a free trial, both require paid addons or subscriptions in order to continually progress with the app.

Calm.
Headspace

If you don’t have a personal goal yet (we won’t tell anyone) there is an app help you find vision and ease to attain it. The TED app gives you access to thousands of videos of TED talks on almost every topic. Speakers offer inspiring and visionary ideas in your area of expertise. If you need motivation, start with the TED app to set your 2018 skyrocketing.

TED app

When using your phone as a productivity tool, use the Outlook app to access your calendar, set reminders, access email from your smartphone. The Outlook app integrates with Office365 so your Outlook webapp, Outlook desktop application, and phone application will always be in sync. Just sign in with your company’s Office365 account and get moving!

Outlook for iOS

 

2. Check your backups

When backups are initially set up they don’t operate under the policy of ‘set it and forget it’! Although your managed services provider may be getting positive backup reports they may not know that you want a new drive backed up, or that the new laptop that came in holds mission critical data. Take the time to think through where some of the most important information is being saved and have your managed services provider check to make sure those areas have backups, If its only a few files that are the most critical such as a Quickbooks file, Barracuda MSP backup may be the best solution for you, if it’s the whole network, ask about our Barracuda Backup appliances, that keep a local copy of your backups on the network and uploads to the cloud to provide high reliability and efficiency in your backups, ABS covers both solutions in our MaxxD plans. Hard drive failures don’t happen often, but when they do, give yourself the peace of mind that you have a backup.

Barracuda Backup Appliance

3. Have your network evaluated for efficiency and security

Your office may be less secure than you think. Hackers and malware creators use phishing methods that, without a careful eye can deceive some of the most vigilant technology users. It’s good to have powerful antivirus on your network to combat viruses and malware but it is better to prevent malware from landing on your network. Using tools such as a Dell Sonicwall firewall or a Barracuda Essentials Email security filter can reduce the risk of malware by more than half.

Sonicwall
Barracuda Essentials

 

4. Have toner replacements ready to go

If you’re looking for greater efficiency from your office in 2018, there is nothing more frustrating than having that efficiency interrupted by a stalled printer, this can leave a whole department down until  that printer is serviced or until toner arrives. You can prevent that from happening by keeping backup toner on hand or if you have a supplies contract sign up to use a tool like FMAudit to make sure your printing supplier is aware when your toner is starting to run low or if a maintenance kit is close to expiring, That way replacements will arrive before you run out.

 

Canon Toner

 

 

 

We hope you can reach every goal you set this coming year.

From all of us at ABS have a Happy New Year!