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SERVER CONSOLIDATION

Server consolidation is an approach to the efficient usage of computer server resources in order to reduce the total number of servers or server locations that an organization requires. The practice developed in response to the problem of server sprawl, a situation in which multiple, under-utilized servers take up more space and consume more resources than can be justified by their workload.

ERP INFRASTRUCTURE

The new enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions offer significant improvements over prior versions, but those improvements demand a robust network infrastructure. So when you are selecting a new ERP system, you have to take into consideration your existing networks.

Will they be able to support the additional demands of the new ERP solution so that you get the security, reliability, and cost savings you expect from your new system? You can depend on Plante Moran’s independent, experienced IT infrastructure consultants to assess where you currently stand and help you develop a strategy for improving reliability, optimizing IT operations and support, and making your IT environment ready for the requirements of the new versions of ERP solutions.

MAIL AND COLLABORATION

Desk Now is a fully featured and easy to use mail and collaboration server that can handle all the communication and collaboration needs of your company.

DeskNow integrates in a single, easy to administer product:

  • Fully featured mail server
  • Advanced antispam technologies, antivirus integration and content filtering
  • Dynamic webmail interface
  • Digital email encryption and signing
  • Document management
  • Advanced calendaring with meeting planning, free/busy search, shared calendars, task lists, resource booking,iCal publishing (Mozilla Sunbird, Apple iCal)
  • Outlook connector to integrate personal and group calendars, tasks, contacts
  • SyncML synchronization with Palm, PocketPC, BlackBerry and most mobile phones
  • Secure Jabber instant messaging with integrated web client
  • Automatic authentication and account import with Active Directory and LDAP servers

INFRASTRUCURE OPTIMIZATION

Infrastructure optimization is Microsoft’s structured, systematic process for assessing an organization’s IT infrastructure and application platform across capabilities in order to provide an optimization roadmap toward a Dynamic IT. The roadmap helps companies to define and implement optimization initiatives that will enable proactive, IT management and deliver cost and risk reductions across the IT organization. These optimization initiatives also enhance user needs anduser experience in order to increase productivity and amplify the impact of employees. Optimization enables a business to realize the full value of its IT infrastructure and platform investments and establishes IT as a strategic business asset that can facilitate innovation and help organizations respond quickly to change.

In order to help customers assess the effectiveness and potential of their IT infrastructure and application platform, create agility, and reduce costs, Microsoft has developed three Optimization models based on industry and analyst work. The Optimization models are vendor agnostic, “All of the up-front questions are about general technologies, not specific products.” Optimization can be viewed in three perspectives:

  • Core Infrastructure
  • Business Productivity Infrastructure
  • Application Platform

STORAGE CONSOLIDATION

Storage consolidation, also called storage convergence is a method of centralizing data storage among multiple servers. The objective is to facilitate data backup and archiving for all subscribers in an enterprise, while minimizing the time required to access and store data. Other desirable features include simplification of the storage infrastructure, centralized and efficient management, optimized resource utilization, and low operating cost.

There are three storage consolidation architectures in common use: network-attached storage (NAS), redundant array of independent disks (RAID), and the storage area network (SAN). In NAS, the hard drive that stores the data has its own network address. Files can be stored and retrieved rapidly because they do not compete with other computers for processor resources. In RAID storage consolidation, the data is located on multiple disks. The array appears as a single logical hard drive. This facilitates balanced overlapping of input/output (I/O) operations and provides fault tolerance, minimizing downtime and the risk of catastrophic data loss. The SAN is the most sophisticated architecture, and usually employs Fibre Channel technology. SANs are noted for high throughput and ability to provide centralized storage for numerous subscribers over a large geographic area. SANs support data sharing and data migration among servers.