Congratulations to the UCONN Huskies, the NCAA March Madness champs! It's always exciting when the underdog prevails. When the odds are stacked against you, as an IT pro, that is, you need to be prepared to manage through a bunch of problems that can make life difficult.
The goal of every NCAA March Madness team is to reach the Final Four. The experts say this validates the season and makes it a success. Yet, is it enough to just get there? Or does true satisfaction only come when the confetti drops and you are the last team standing? We’ve had a heck of a tournament thus far and it's a shame only one team will win, but that’s just the way the bracket goes. (If you are wondering what this is about, check here for the full Ipswitch Madness.)
I was asked recently to speak on a panel entitled “What IT Skills/Roles Should Reside in the Business” Premier CIO Forum in Boston. The event, held earlier this week, was a well-attended and engaging event supported by SIM (Society for Information Management). There was an impressive roster of IT executives from across New England.
Today's tale from the front lines of IT comes from a customer who works at a global conferencing company. His firm's customers use online services that require real-time responsiveness for video and voice. So it was a shock when a playback service for recorded calls was suddenly afflicted by sporadic slowdowns several months after its launch. It pitched users into a black hole of lost recorded conference calls.
A university network supports a broad population of students, faculty and others who all rely on a wireless network to do their work. Consider the user population. A big segment of it grew up with the Internet. And they have little patience for dead spots that don’t provide access to it.
When the IT Administrator at an Italian manufacturing company started his job, the IT team was manually monitoring the network on a problem-by-problem basis. It was a understandable drain on resources. And was also affecting the quality of service provided to their business users.
Any large city puts its network of traffic signals to a severe test during drive-time rush hours as cars, trucks and other conveyances stream through the city. That’s why a major Canadian city came to Ipswitch for a network monitoring solution to monitor equipment installed in hundreds of traffic locations throughout its sprawling metropolis.
Two regional auto parts companies merged to increase their competitiveness with national chains. But they almost immediately ran into an unexpected network monitoring problem. The IT manager tasked with consolidating the two companies’ network infrastructures found that neither company’s network monitoring products had Layer 2 and Layer 3 discovery capabilities. This would give them enough detail to determine what devices to keep and which to upgrade and force them to spend more than they had budgeted for the project.
A facilities manager at a global real estate firm called recently. He was literally hot under the collar. Company headquarters on the U.S. West coast had been fitted two years earlier with a new HVAC system. It was designed to showcase the firm’s commitment to environmental efficiency. A month before we heard from him, temperatures at HQ started to unexpectedly spike up to the high 80s. And just as quickly subside. More than a few hot heads began to complain.
Convenience stores are the fast way for folks on the road to run in, grab what they need and be off to the next stop in their busy days. But when a regional convenience store chain known for its speedy service found itself spending as much as 6 hours to recover from fairly frequent failures of DVR servers used to help secure its stores, they gave Ipswitch’s network monitoring division a call.
By the time a network manager at a Midwestern U.S. non-profit organization called us for help, his 5 year-old wireless infrastructure was buckling under BYOD. Employees trying to work during lunch were complaining that their applications were slowing or even failing to operate.
Today we are glad to announce the availability of WhatsUp Gold version 16.2, a new upgrade to our flagship product that provides network, server and application monitoring. It helps make our customers’ jobs a lot easier to do while they work hard to manage and tame networks at companies and government organizations around the world.
Imagine fielding a barrage of support calls from upset college students. Up in arms as they can't access a wireless network. Not long ago, that was the reality for a large university. The help desk was overwhelmed as they tried to manage a network of 2,500 access points. On top of BYOD chaos and students' big appetites for downloads.
Halloween represents the time of year that we embrace ghouls and ghosts, celebrate the macabre, and eat too much candy. This coming Thursday I’ll be greeted at my front door by trick or treat’ers, lined up for their packaged sugar rushes. In between trips to the check out the little ghosts and ghouls, I'll be watching one of my favorite horror movies. For me, being scared is part of the fun.
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