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Mar 28, 2018

It’s Time to Evaluate Your Company’s Backup Strategy

INAP

There are a few things you can always depend on at the end of March.

The weather gets a little warmer, a Cinderella team will bust your college basketball bracket (we see you, UMBC and Loyola-Chicago!) and that one guy in your office pulls off an April Fool’s Day prank that isn’t as funny as he thinks.

But one event that happens every year in March is often overlooked. We’re talking about World Backup Day.

What is World Backup Day

Held every year on March 31, World Backup Day was created by a biology student at Youngstown State in 2011 to encourage users to back up their files, like cell phone photos, home videos, documents and emails.

Users are asked to take a pledge, declaring:

“I solemnly swear to backup my important documents and precious memories on March 31.”

Moving these personal files to the cloud or an external hard drive gives you insurance in case your phone is stolen or your computer gets a virus. Of course, smart IT people like you already know these risks and take precautions against personal data loss, but enough of the general public is unaware of the risks, so World Backup Day became a thing.

Your Corporate Backup Strategy

World Backup Day is also the perfect opportunity to review your company’s backup strategy.

You’ve probably seen the statistics highlighting the consequences of data loss. For instance, 60 percent of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) that lose data will shut down within six months. And perhaps more startling, nearly 60 percent of SMBs are not prepared for data loss.

So, what can you do to make sure your business isn’t just another statistic?

A few years ago, INAP published this list of essential tasks you need to consider when evaluating your corporate backup plan.

  • Determine what data is critical to your business
  • Evaluate backup solutions that meet your data’s security requirements
  • Select a backup solution provider
  • Implement your backup solution
  • Regularly test your backups to ensure everything is working as expected

Pay close attention to the third bullet on that list. Sure, you could go it alone and backup your files internally, but that doesn’t protect you from a catastrophic event that completely wipes your servers.

Your best bet is to work with a backup solution provider.

INAP’s Backup Solutions

Fortunately for you and your business, INAP is equipped to help with your backup needs. Our managed backup services give you the capability of replicating your important information in dedicated and shared environments – in both INAP or off-site servers.

If budget is a factor (and we know it always is), cloud backup provides an affordable alternative. Your server will be shared with other users, but you’ll receive the same level of encryption and security as you would a dedicated server, so your files and critical information will remain safe.

Regardless of the type of solution you require, our robust backup offerings will give you the flexibility and performance you desire to protect your important files from data loss.

Contact us today and speak with an INAP specialist about the backup services best suited for your business needs.

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Dec 6, 2017

3 Signs Your Business Might Need Managed Storage

INAP

How to Win the Storage Wars

New technology is both a blessing and hindrance in the IT world.

Data is becoming more complex and businesses are demanding faster access to larger amounts of digital information. As a result, new equipment is constantly being developed which can accommodate more speed, storage and performance.

This new technology is great if you’re in the market for all new equipment; but let’s be honest, you’re probably not. And even if you are looking to do a full upgrade of your systems, investing in top-of-the-line equipment is likely a more expensive solution than most businesses are comfortable spending.

The result is a less than optimal solution which may not seamlessly integrate into your existing environment and cause more problems down the road. Plus, you risk untimely disruptions and downtime while deploying your new infrastructure. And we won’t even get into changing SLAs and business priorities.

Fortunately, there is a solution which can provide the options you need with the convenience of passing the grunt work to someone else: Managed storage.

Does Your Business Need Managed Storage

Managed storage is a service that allows all aspects of your data storage – from monitoring to maintenance – to be administrated and supervised within your environment. This reliable and high performing solution combines flexibility and scalability with the speed and efficiency you need to keep your applications running smoothly.

It doesn’t matter which industry your business occupies, you will likely have a need for managed storage. The bigger question isn’t if you need managed storage, rather when you will need it.

[Tweet “The bigger question isn’t if you need managed storage, rather when you will need it. #managedstorage”]

Here are three big signs your business might be ready for a managed storage solution today.

1. Your Current System is Outdated

Just like how a new car loses value the moment you drive it off the lot, your IT infrastructure can quickly become outdated after it’s deployed.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise considering the innovation and speed at which new technology is unveiled. Just look each fall when the major cell phone companies release their latest and greatest devices.

It’s not feasible or practical to replace your storage system with each tech advancement, so some IT departments are getting by with patchwork improvements or continually adding capacity to legacy systems. This may temporarily solve the problem, but with limited flexibility, you will run into more problems when you inevitably need to scale up your storage capacity again.

2. You Are Constantly Playing Catch Up with Your Storage Plan

Did you know the International Data Corporation (IDC) estimates that enterprise data doubles every 18 months?

If you’re not adequately planning for this surge of digital information, you’ll soon be faced with a situation that involves investing more of your budget to storage instead of spending capital dollars elsewhere, which could negatively impact the overall performance of your business applications.

Even if you have a solution in place, are you proactively managing your storage capacity and performance? For instance, your environment should allow you the flexibility to seamlessly scale out when you reach your capacity limit. If you’re not planning with your current and future needs in mind, you’ll always be playing catch up when it comes to your storage solution.

3. You Don’t Have Time to Properly Manage Your Storage

It’s no secret that running an effective IT infrastructure takes time and hard work. In addition to maintaining the upkeep of your equipment, you are constantly monitoring performance and storage to ensure your website and applications are running optimally to provide the best experience for your end users.

And when you do need to evaluate your storage lifecycle, you may find the process is lengthy and complex ­– providing insufficient data that’s not conducive to making an informed decision.

If you’re looking for a solution that can streamline the storage management process by making proactive decisions using predictive analytics, and allowing you more time to focus on your core business, you might want to consider managed storage.

Why INAP’s Managed Storage Solution Makes Sense for You

INAP offers a storage solution that meets or exceeds all of the standards you’d expect and require from a managed hosting provider. Our service provides performance, reliability (99.9999% availability) and security, with proactive flexible and scalable options so you’re never caught off guard when you are running out of space. Plus, our team of experts provides all the maintenance to keep you operating 24x7x365, so you can focus your time and resources on more important business matters.

Contact us today to learn more about how our managed storage solution can improve your performance and efficiency.

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Mar 13, 2014

Customer spotlight: Vix Technology enables contactless payments for mass transit

Ansley Kilgore

Mass_Transit_Vix_train_680x340While many transit agencies still rely on collecting cash from riders, that model is fast disappearing as a result of advancements in the area of fare collection for mass transit. Vix Technology, a global provider of integrated transit and mobility systems, continues to deliver an exceptional experience for public transit commuters through its innovations in contactless payment technologies.

With worldwide headquarters in Australia and North American headquarters in Seattle, Vix Technology delivers hardware and software solutions for electronic fare collection (EFC) systems. Vix recently received the Transport Ticketing Technology of the Year award for their latest product innovation, designed for Salt Lake City’s UTA (Utah Transit Authority). This system gives transit riders a variety of ways to pay their fares, including student and employee ID cards, bank-issued credit cards, ISIS mobile wallet and Google Wallets, in addition to the new FAREPAY pre-paid contactless card issued by UTA. The ability to accept multiple payment formats differentiates Vix Technology’s customers from other transit systems.

With features such as mobile account management and lost card protection, the UTA FAREPAY system creates value for riders and transit agencies alike. In order for Vix to provide a seamless, integrated commuter experience, they require an IT infrastructure that can handle large numbers of transactions in multiple payment formats. In Seattle alone, the ORCA system processes more than 100 million transactions per year.

Prior to transitioning to Internap, Vix leveraged dedicated colo cabinets in local data centers. In addition to purchasing and deploying the hardware, Vix also managed the environment. Not only was it expensive to purchase hardware up-front, but having dedicated operations and support staff available 24/7 to monitor the environment was also costly.

In its desire to move away from this model and evaluate options for outsourced hosting, Vix sought a more affordable solution that provided superior support, physical security and offered a highly scalable and flexible service. After evaluating three local companies, Vix selected Internap as the best fit.

Today, Vix Technology uses Internap managed hosting service via its Seattle and Santa Clara data centers. The Internap solution met Vix requirements in three main areas:

Security
With strict regulations governing the privacy and storage of personal information and processing financial transactions, Vix requires complete visibility and control over how passenger data is managed. Internap’s infrastructure provides a secure, reliable environment to process payments and maintain data integrity. Vix Technology can leverage the benefits of cloud without the security and performance concerns of being on a shared platform with other users.

Scalability
Internap’s flexible infrastructure provides the scalability of cloud computing in a dedicated, secure environment. Scalable storage solutions ensure that Vix Technology can accommodate increased amounts of data and traffic as business demands change. This is especially important for transit agencies planning to scale their services and expand ridership levels. With Internap’s global data center locations, Vix Technology can support service expansions across multiple countries.

Support
With support from Internap’s Network Operations Center (NOC), Vix Technology can focus on meeting the needs of their customers instead of worrying about system maintenance. Certified Internap engineers are available 24/7 to provide support across worldwide locations and help ensure high availability.

Vix Technology’s innovations also give transit agencies the ability to analyze rider data, enabling them to predict and adjust routes and schedules accordingly. Analytics such as these are critical to the planning of mass transit systems in the future.

Whether you’re travelling by bus, train or ferry, Vix Technology is transforming the way people connect and commute. Through an innovative technology journey that includes reliable, scalable infrastructure from Internap, Vix continues to make mass transit more convenient for riders and less expensive for transit agencies.

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Nov 19, 2013

Customer spotlight: Rhapsody International cranks up IT infrastructure for global expansion

Ansley Kilgore

Music_Notes_680x340Rhapsody International, the parent company of leading subscription music services Rhapsody and Napster, gives members unlimited on-demand access to a global catalog of more than 32 million tracks, whether they’re listening on a PC, laptop, Internet connected home stereo or TV, MP3 player or mobile devices. In December 2011, Rhapsody International acquired Napster International and is now available in 19 countries worldwide.

As Rhapsody International looked to bring Napster to new markets across Europe and Latin America, Rhapsody needed to address a new set of customer demands. An Internap customer since 2010, Rhapsody must make sure its IT infrastructure can provide the scalability, storage and speed required to ensure subscribers consistently enjoy a premium streaming experience.

Managed Hosting
With a growing footprint across Europe, Rhapsody International needed to optimize the content delivery to Napster. To solve this problem, Rhapsody added Internap’s managed hosting service in London, which significantly streamlined the exchange of content through faster performance and reduced latency.

Colocation footprint
The continued global expansion of Napster meant a huge increase in the amount of data that must be transmitted and stored. As a result, Rhapsody International secured options to increase their colocation footprint in Internap’s Seattle data center, including more power and racks, to accommodate the influx of data. High-density power capabilities allow Rhapsody International to continue scaling up their storage needs and get the most out of their colocation services.

Performance IP
Rhapsody’s global account management services uses Internap’s Performance IPTM service, which ensures the data is transferred as efficiently as possible. Instead of relying on a single ISP, Internap’s internet service leverages up to 11 major carriers simultaneously. All Internet providers experience outages and latency at some point, so having multiple carriers reduces the risk of poor performance. In addition, Managed Internet Route Optimizer™ (MIRO) analyzes Internet performance across the globe, and makes intelligent route adjustments based on real-time data. By finding the fastest route available with the lowest latency, Rhapsody International can provide a better quality music streaming experience for users.

Through managed hosting, colocation and Performance IP services, Rhapsody International has set the stage with the right IT infrastructure foundation to accommodate their expansion needs. With a solid business model and an eye for even more growth in the near future, the scalability of their infrastructure will continue to be a critical part of their strategy.

Learn more about how Rhapsody International uses Internap’s services.

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Feb 20, 2013

Choosing the right provider can alleviate cloud security concerns

Ansley Kilgore

 cloud security concernsCloud hosting solutions and other cloud offerings provide organizations with a powerful, cost-effective way to improve operations. However, cloud computing is a relatively young technology that many businesses are still trying to figure out. This has led to many security concerns because issues of control, data ownership and availability come into play. While these concerns are limited, all of them can be dealt with by choosing the right service provider to partner with.

Understanding cloud security issues
The core security issue in cloud environments stems from control. The data is placed in the hands of a third-party vendor, putting organizations in a position where they have to iron out the details of who owns the data at various phases of the partnership. Boundaries are unclear across the industry, creating problems with control and availability if the partnership is not effective.

The primary issue at the center of this is the newness of cloud technology. To a great extent, companies are still searching for the line between their responsibilities and those of the cloud provider. Inconsistent standards across the industry have led to many of the cloud security concerns, but individual providers can overcome these problems and protect data in the cloud more effectively than most businesses can do on their own.

Improving cloud security through an effective partnership
Collaborating with a cloud vendor is the first thing businesses need to do if they want to secure cloud assets effectively. Understanding everything from how the virtual servers will be established to data flows through the network can give IT departments a better idea of how the system will work and when the security responsibility falls on them. This communication can also allow both parties to establish clear lines of demarcation identifying data ownership, availability and control standards within the cloud deal.

Developing this type of collaborative partnership can be difficult. Working with a provider that is flexible and capable of offering a powerful security foundation is key when striving for such a relationship. If the vendor has a good security program and a clear Service Level Agreement (SLA), both parties will understand which responsibilities fall to the client and which ones stay with the provider. This knowledge can act as the starting point in building the type of working environment that overcomes many cloud security issues.

Recently, 54% of companies identified security as their main concern for transitioning to the cloud. Check out our infographic, Cloud Security: Perception vs. Reality, to learn how the right provider can alleviate your concerns and provide a secure environment for your data.

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Jan 9, 2013

Atlanta Data Center Achieves Green Globes Certification

Ansley Kilgore

What comes to mind when you think of Atlanta, Georgia? Maybe it’s the 1996 Olympic Games, the home of Coca-Cola or the captivating Georgia Aquarium.  Or maybe it brings to mind one of the best music and art scenes in the South, or the fact that more than 70 street names contain the word “Peachtree.” But wait, there’s more—did you know that Atlanta also has the fourth largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the U.S.?

As a major business and technology hub, Atlanta has a high demand for efficient, secure colocation and hosting services. While performance is always top of mind, the local business community also has an opportunity to minimize their environmental impact when evaluating the best Atlanta colocation and data center solutions for their organization.

Internap’s Atlanta Data Center is now the first public data center in Georgia to achieve Green Globes® certification.  This provides Atlanta businesses with the best of both worlds – a scalable, flexible data center with hybridization options, as well as the knowledge that the facility incorporates sustainable green design techniques. This recent accolade marks Internap’s fourth successful Green Globes certification and demonstrates a commitment to environmental responsibility.

So the next time you’re drinking a Coke on Peachtree Street, think about the technology backbone that runs this town. Take a video tour of our recently expanded Atlanta data center to learn more. Explore our Atlanta colocation and data center offerings.

Our Atlanta data centers are conveniently located in the Atlanta metro area:

 

  • Flagship Downtown Atlanta Data Center
    250 Williams Street NW
    Atlanta, GA 30303
  • Atlanta POP
    1033 Jefferson Street NW
    Atlanta, GA 30318
  • Atlanta POP
    56 Marietta Street NW
    Atlanta, GA 30303

More About Our Flagship Atlanta Data Center

Our flagship Atlanta data center is located at 250 Williams Street NW, Atlanta, GA 30303. This Atlanta colocation data center connects to Dallas and Washington, D.C. data centers via our reliable, high-performing backbone. Our carrier-neutral, SOC 2 Type II Atlanta data center market facilities are concurrently maintainable, energy efficient and support high-power density environments of 20+ kW per rack. If you need colocation Atlanta services, or other data center solutions in the Atlanta metro area, contact us.

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Jan 3, 2013

Game publishers turning to web content, making managed hosting essential

INAP

Video game content is no longer about what you see while actually playing the game. During the past few years, more and more developers and publishers have been implementing web and mobile sites that allow users to interact with their games anytime. As these types of community interaction methods become more popular, Managed Hosting solutions (layered with great performance options) become important for game publishers. Let me explain.

Using web content to supplement game experiences
EA Sports is a prime example of the trend toward supplementing game content on the web. Over the course of the past few years, the company has used various web systems in conjunction with its Madden and NCAA Football franchises. These solutions have ranged from team-building platforms that let users load teams into the game to blog pages that track happenings in online leagues and allow players to do write-ups of league games and seasons.

The technical ramifications of web-based experiences
These types of web systems offer video game enthusiasts the ability to get involved in their games in more ways. For example, somebody commuting to work using public transit or on the bus to school can use a tablet or smartphone to access the mobile version of the website and interact with friends involved in the league and keep up with what is going on with teams. It is also the kind of thing that more developers and publishers are experimenting with in other genres.

However, using web-based content to supplement the in-game experience also puts pressure on the publisher to not only host the data-rich systems, but also ensure they are available and secure. Most game developers and publishers do not consider maintaining a data center a core competency. As a result, it can be difficult to afford and manage the types of web systems needed to get end users the content they want in a way that makes them happy. Another area that publishers forget to consider is the IP and Content Delivery Network (CDN) that their games are traveling over. There are differences, and they matter.

This is where Managed Hosting plans can pay major dividends. A cloud or Dedicated Hosting plan can give game developers and publishers the server space and customization capabilities they need to create content that can meaningfully supplement their games and engage users. Layer that with Performance IP and CDN and you have an excellent platform to deliver your gaming solution. This adds value to the game experience and creates revenue opportunities. Managed Hosting + Performance IP and content delivery is the winning ticket in gaming.

Check out our online gaming solution sheet to learn more.

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Dec 27, 2012

Sahara Force India Formula One Team creates fast online communication with fans

Ansley Kilgore

How do F1 teams stay connected with their international fan base? Some of the challenges Sahara Force India faced when creating a new website included integrating social media and providing real-time video, news and information. As a key competitor on the Formula One racing circuit that includes 20 races across four continents, they pride themselves on being a global team with a worldwide fan base. And, they pride themselves on performance, both on and off the circuit.

Naturally, Sahara Force India wanted their website to perform quickly and reliably, even during unpredictable traffic spikes on race weekends when fans are anxious for the latest happenings. So, the team seamlessly migrated to Internap’s hosting platform and streamlined communication with fans through a single web site portal.

Learn more about how SFI drives fan loyalty and stays competitive with a high-speed, scalable IT Infrastructure.

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