Category Archives: Hosting

Outsourced IT

Years and years of trying to find the right it solution for my businesses has had me doing some amazing and really stupid things.

I ran my own servers from my own data centre for many years – until someone stole a server! Yes, they stole a server. Thank goodness for encryption and backups but I can tell you it was my worst nightmare. Then the Internet got a bit better and we could move some computers to other people’s data centres – better security, better UPS facilities and, dare I say it, better support.

Then it all got way too expensive – charging for bandwidth – chocking bandwidth and the list goes on. Back to my own systems. Well, not exactly, it was a migration from my hardware in someone else’s data centre, to virtual hardware anywhere in the world I wanted it located, with unlimited bandwidth and free upgrades. The downside – well at first there wasn’t one – I had RAM, HDD which they converted to SSD for better speed and many, many processors. The support was first rate and the control was all mine.

Then along came the privacy laws, data protection laws and EU directives – now we had to get permission from people and in some cases governments to be able to host somebody’s personal information outside of the country they were resident in. Mass panic as we moved the data back within the borders almost tripling our infrastructure requirements.

As electronic security got better and the data protection laws were understood, it got easier to have data in one place provided you had all the right security and permissions in place. I now have a full set of IT Infrastructure that is all outsourced, secure and complies with many ISO standards, EU directives and US and UK data privacy laws.

If you want to know more about how we can help you with your infrastructure, help desk, application hosting or data backups, please drop us an email and we will arrange a consultant to give you a call and assess your requirements.

Why are you reinventing the wheel when it comes to your website framework?

I have recently been approached by various people who have had their websites ‘designed’ by a custom website building professional. The reason, they want to make changes, add a blog and the ‘designer’ is either too busy, too expensive or on holiday in Nepal for a month 🙂

I do apologise to the all website designers and builders for my blatant sarcasm and apparent disapproval of a very legitimate business model. My issue is not with brilliant bespoke websites, nor the brilliant designers and builders – my issue is with the way we as customers go about choosing an appropriate solution.

For me, a bespoke website comes after you have had a website online, figured out what is working and finally realised that you have such a unique offering or requirement that you need a bespoke solution, not the other way round.

I think ego has as much to do with it as well as just lack of knowledge in this particular area. Nobody wants to research for months on end and nobody wants to buy something that they will throw away in a few days (aka cheap hosting solution website builder models). We also all want the best, most unique and quirky possessions out there. The thing with websites is that they need to work, be easy to adapt or change to a changing market and they need to be easy to maintain.

For this reason I recommend using a framework of sorts – preferably one that is open-source, has a decent community and is regularly upgraded. WordPress is just such a framework and whilst there are plenty of detractors and also plenty of issues if you just click and install without understanding the security, these frameworks are still way better than trying to pay for something that must be built from the ground up.

So to get started setup WordPress site, play with it, see what works, find add-ons or plugins and experiment. Then, and only then, you can make a decision on how different your needs are – my guess is you would have to have some very technical or very specific requirement that cannot be dealt with by a framework before you would need to move away from something like WordPress.

Be sure to read this article about Taking Control of your Web Presence BEFORE you rush off and get yourself a website.