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Easily Reduce Costs With Remote Management

Riptide Managed Services offers full remote support with custom software developed and configured for customers’ networks. Depending on the level of access, technicians can access servers at any time without the need for customer interaction, while desktop interaction typically requires the end user to grant a technician temporary access. Riptide Managed Service technicians will often access customer networks after hours when their businesses are closed. This allows for uninterrupted work for both the technician and the customer.

Immediate Cost Reduction
It is customary for Managed Services companies to charge a “dispatch fee” or “call fee” when a customer requests a technician to come to their location. With Remote Management, these costs are often completely eliminated. For customer tickets, technicians will first attempt to resolve the issue remotely without setting foot on the customers property. For routine maintenance, technicians will often access customers locations after hours. For emergencies, it’s quite often much faster for a technician to remotely access the network for an initial over view of the situation that would determine if an on-site visit was even required.

Other expense areas directly effected by the use of remote management are

System, Device, and Network Monitoring
Network Maintenance, Troubleshooting and Support
User Training
Software Installation and Configuration
Software and Computer Updates
Spyware and Malware Scanning and Removal

System, Device, and Network Monitoring

Riptide’s custom network agent continually monitors devices and components on our customers networks. In the event of a machine or device interruption event such as power or signal loss, Riptide Technicians will recieve an notification alert. Often times, customer issues are resolved without the custmoer even being aware that there was an issue.

Software and Computer Updates

In practically every scenario involving a work place and a computer, it’s safe [...]

Answers To The Top 5 Questions About Windows XP Discontinued Support

As of April 8, 2014, support and updates for Windows XP are no longer available. Don’t let your PC go unprotected.
While your computer running XP will still run, the support Microsoft provided for your system – including updates, security patches, and malware protection – has ended. The chances of your computer becoming vulnerable to security risks will rise exponentially as new exploits for Windows XP are discovered, and left unpatched.

This article will address the top five questions Riptide Managed Services is asked about upgrading from Windows XP now that support has officially ended.

What will happen if I don’t upgrade my XP computers?
First and foremost, they’ll continue to operate as normal. While Microsoft has ended their support for Windows XP, you can still log in and do your work. However, Microsoft is no longer updating Security Essentials or IE 8, meaning the chances of your computer becoming infected with spyware, malware, or viruses increases on a daily basis. Additionally, new software and new hardware being released on the market will simply not work with your computer running Windows XP. Your computer will no longer receive automatic updates from Microsoft, meaning that as threats increase, there’s nothing you’ll be able to do to protect yourself.

How much will upgrading from XP cost me?
A typical business class new computer will cost between $300 and $600, depending on your actual business needs. Multiply the cost of the computer by the amount of computers you have, and then add about two hours of labor per computer for the data transfer, and setup and configuration of the new machines. You’ll be on the high end of the price range for your upgrade, but at least you’ll have an [...]

How To Get Rid Of Spyware and Malware

Spyware, Malware, Adware, Ransomware… the annoying family of software we all hate has a variety of flavors, but they all essentially do the same thing. They get installed on computers, make our days miserable, and slow us down. “How did it get there?” is a question best left to answer once the spyware is gone.

We see spyware infections on computers multiple times a week. Some are trivial to get rid of, while others require some pretty advanced registry editing.

If you’ve gotten infected with spyware, here are some steps you can take to get your system back to health:

Run rkill
RKill is a program that was developed at BleepingComputer.com that attempts to terminate known malware processes so that your normal security software can then run and clean your computer of infections. When RKill runs it will kill malware processes and then removes incorrect executable associations and fixes policies that stop us from using certain tools. When finished it will display a log file that shows the processes that were terminated while the program was running.Why: Things don’t clean/uninstall well when they’re running. Instead of rebooting the computer and taking it off the network, this program kills the processes, checks the firewall, combs the registry, and some other nifty things. Saves time.Download latest: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/download/rkill/dl/10/
Run Adwcleaner
AdwCleaner is a program that searches for and deletes Adware, Toolbars, Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUP), and browser Hijackers from your computer. By using AdwCleaner you can easily remove many of these types of programs for a better user experience on your computer and while browsing the web.Why: Fast, reliable, works. No nonsense.Download latest: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/download/adwcleaner/dl/125/
Run Malwarebytes Anti-Malware
Malwarebytes is a light-weight anti-malware program that is excellent at removing the latest [...]

Messy Server Room? We Can Help!

There are only two reasons to have a messy server room. Either you personally have no idea what any of that stuff in there does, or the person you hired to handle that mess has no idea what any of that stuff does. Either way, both reasons are horrible ones, but luckily, ones we can easily fix.

Aside from the obvious safety risks associated with having cables thrown every which way, there are some important factors to consider about a messy server room or wiring closet:

Lost Productivity
I’m not referring to the users on the network, I’m referring to whomever is the person going into the mess to try to fix something. If they have to spend any more than 30 seconds determining who is connected to what, there’s an issue. Lost time that you’ve paid for and will never get back.
Security
If your wiring closet or server room is a mess like the ones I’ve pictured here, how certain are you that nobody has planted a rouge device on your network? I’m not here to fill you with fear, uncertainty, or doubt – just the truth. A mess like that just invites someone to eavesdrop on your network.
Misconfigurations and Down Time
OK, the time has come for someone to get their hands in that mess. What plugs into where? No idea? Open spot? Plug it in! Network speed plummets as packets are sent colliding into one another, and now nobody is getting anything done. Your network is down. Which one did you plug in, by the way? No idea.
Sheer Profesionalism
Granted, this point may [...]