The Most Common Uses of Cloud Computing Services

Cloud computing is everywhere nowadays, being an integral part of our everyday life. In most cases, the average user does not even realize that he or she is using a service of this type – the infrastructure employed for operating these services is so perfectly “wrapped in a cloud” that the user sees only the interface necessary for using the service. In what follows, we will present a few of the most common uses of cloud services to demonstrate how naturally we use these solutions both as individuals and at the level of corporate operations.

Social Networking

The main idea behind social networking sites is to share information with others by using the infrastructure of the service provider without having to download any kind of large software application on your computer. Social networking sites are in permanent development, attracting more and more users, gaining more and more ground in the corporate field as well – so much so that there is a new profession in development: that of the social media marketing expert.

Online Banking

Financial and banking services are available over the internet for private and corporate customers alike. What lies behind this type of services is also cloud computing: the users are given access to an interface through which they can initiate transactions and manage their bank accounts with no tool required other than the internet.

Creating Backup for Photos, Documents and Other Important Files

There are numerous websites nowadays that offer backup services to protect your files. Keeping your files on your computers without any backup on other carriers can be dangerous: just imagine the loss if your home or work computer suffered any damage or virus attack or some other type of security breach. Online backup services have been developed to safeguard your contents, and they are available for a certain fee or even free of charge. With some of these services, the copies of the files on your computer are kept on a server in the cloud, while others keep these files on synchronized individual computers and in the cloud, too.

Document Hosting

Cloud computing has made it possible to share images and videos as well, revolutionizing not only the world of business, but entertainment as well.

Web-mail

Web-based mailing services make up an important segment of the cloud service industry. Web-mail accounts are easily accessible from anywhere, giving the users the freedom of movement, while also providing enhanced and extended access to their communication tools.

As you see, cloud computing is everywhere indeed, more and more sophisticated each day, making our lives easier while the tools themselves remain almost unnoticed.

About Dolomite

Dolomite Technology is a Managed Service Provider that provides services and consulting on technology services to customers across the nation. A core concept of of Dolomite’s service portfolio is cloud computing services. To learn more about Dolomite services please contact us. You can also learn more about cloud computing on our website.

Fortinet – BYOD – Bring Your Own Device and You Will Not Regret It!

As everybody knows, the business environment is changing every day, bringing personal devices into the business process and slowly erasing the thin line between the personal Smartphone or tablet and the PC at work. Given the circumstances, the BYOD, standing for Bring Your Own Devices, is an abbreviation that we find discussed more and more, both online and offline.

What Is BYOD and What Is Its Purpose?

In order to answer this question, we first have to review the large variety of relations encountered within a company and between two or more companies:

  • Between managers and employees
  • Between employees and partners
  • Between  all of the above and customers
  • Between customers

Often without anyone realizing it, many of these relations happen at the core of the company, using the most popular of the company’s communication environments: the network.

Using the network to connect so many people, all bringing their own devices in the process, the company always exposes itself to inherent threats, many of them making their entrance in the system without being spotted by the people who interact using their devices.

Fortinet BYOD security is a high level, state of the art system developed by Fortinet in order to allow employees, contractors and workers to use their own devices safely in order to communicate on your network and ensure your company’s progress.

What until recently was a constant fight with spam, a continuous investment in firewalls, hardened Wi-Fi technologies, network segmentation and a lot more, is now just a detail in the process meant to turn your business safe and profitable.

With high flexibility and low costs, this Fortinet service encourages you to secure your business network without interfering with any of the Mobile Device Management and Virtual Desktop Infrastructure systems.

Fortinet’s BYOD solution is so flexible that it allows you to deploy the exact amount of protection you need, by combining different levels of familiar concepts, such as the well known and completely configurable firewall.

The intrusion prevention system can also be configured to meet your company’s security and flexibility needs. The already known antimalware/antivirus is now included in the package and no extra fee is required.

Some features developed over the past few years, such as application control and data loss prevention, are also fully integrated in the system, allowing you to decide who has access to what.

To ensure that attacks are not being initiated online, the software is not being seeded and that browsers are not being exploited, Fortinet BYOD solution came up with another great feature – web content filtering.

For the vast majority of companies for which tunneling is one of the great challenges, a VPN solution was added. As if it were not enough, protection was highly increased with the two-factor authentication, which requires more than one attribute in order for one to be able to authenticate on the network. The level at which this feature is integrated is fully customizable and can differ from company to company.

All in one, Fortinet BYOD solution is a leading technology that we can expect to see surviving for the following years and turning into the end user experience on any company network.

Cloud Computing Services – Choosing the Most Adequate Provider

When used in a corporate environment, cloud computing services can significantly reduce operational expenses, while also contributing to a more streamlined workflow, allowing large, medium-sized and small enterprises to benefit from outsourcing their needs for hardware, software, applications and storage capacity. However, the service provider chosen must meet a number of requirements, so, in what follows we will present a few aspects to consider when selecting your supplier.

Competence and Reliability

When looking for the right cloud computing service provider, you must make sure the supplier will be able to deliver on all the promises made. You need a provider which is in possession of the right technology and is able to provide the best performance, continuous availability and 24/7 technical support. The supplier must be able to demonstrate all these features before you sign up to any service.

Security

Another feature that makes cloud services attractive is the enhanced security of your contents. Your supplier must provide several different levels of security such as identity management, access control and authorization.

Cost Tracking

One of the major benefits of cloud services is that the consumers can use exactly the amount of resources they need, and they will be billed only for the resources consumed. You must choose service providers that offer a monitoring system of your consumption so that you can have accurate information of the related costs at all times.

Customization

The cloud computing solution you choose must cater to your exact needs. In other words, you must avoid providers that offer one-size-fits-all type of services and, most importantly, you need the terms you negotiate with the supplier to be included into the Service Level Agreement. The agreement must contain the detailed list of the services you sign up to, the metrics used to evaluate the performance of the service provider, the obligations of both the customer and the service supplier, as well as the measures to be taken in case any of the parties fails to fulfill these obligations, and reference to future changes in the contents of the Service Level Agreement.

Choosing the right cloud service provider must be a complex decision making process that involves not only the management, but also the experts working in the IT department. If you are able to define your exact needs and you negotiate your terms with a reputable cloud computing service provider, the results will surely be beneficial for both parties of the agreement, making your operation much smoother and more cost-efficient.

Fortinet Cloud Computing Management – To Keep Your Business Down to Earth

Fortinet Cloud Computing Management, or simply Cloud Management, is a solution offered by Fortinet’s FortiCloud product, an extension of FortiGate, along with a log retention program. Without requiring the installation of additional software or hardware, this feature provides reports and analysis of the traffic on log retention and configuration in real time.

For a better application and for increased traffic visibility, FortiCloud added a tool that simplifies the subscription management process. Part of a compliance and security program, the log retention, it administrates a separate storage system.

This process can be cumbrous, and that is why Cloud Management represents a step ahead, doing everything automatically, storing the information from the logs in the cloud. System events, traffic, web, security events or applications information can be stored too.

Another useful feature of this system is the real-time alert and monitoring. Allowing the monitoring is a way to improve the user’s experience and certify the network’s critical availability.

For the network’s security and health, reports and analyses are vital, which is why FortiCloud came with a reporting and analysis tool for their program.  For any compliance, custom reports are always available, enabling a shortcut in case that similar requirements are made. It can even send an email with different period PDF reports.

In order to maintain the high-level performance and security standards, the devices within the network are kept under the same configuration.  Doing the same for the operating system firmware, Cloud Management counts on the advantages of the latest features.

Additionally, the system’s security is top-level. Any type of information changes between the clouds and the device is encrypted. This way, the data can be seen or retrieved by the owner only.

For a good start, Fortinet’s FortiCloud provides clients with a free 1GB dashboard widget for licensing after registering the device.

Besides the application and traffic visibility, real-time monitoring, log retention hosting, analysis of the log reports and management of the configuration, Cloud Management also provides: a dashboard for real-time monitoring and a widget for system, a log viewer, filtering the download capability, drill down analysis for network and independent users, reports generating  and device management, including back-up for configuration and firmware, history of the configuration, script manager and profile alert for real-time monitor.

Along with this, Cloud Manager has its benefits:

  1. It comes with a central, simplified management system;
  2. It allows individual or aggregated views of the device;
  3. It allows visibility over the applications and traffic;
  4. It offers log retention hosting, expandable if required;
  5. It provides real-time alerts for monitoring;
  6. It delivers customized reports;
  7. It lets the user analyze the traffic;
  8. It allows thorough configuration management, backup and upgrades;
  9. It does not require specific software or hardware;
  10. It does not need any deployment on premise and at least no operation and maintenance costs.

This is what Cloud Manager offers to its clients together with the pack of benefits that come with using the last hour Fortinet FortiCloud services for networks based on cloud security management.

Cloud Computing – The Types of Cloud Services and Their Field of Usage

The number of the companies understanding the advantages of cloud computing is in permanent growth, and the cloud services available are also in constant evolution. However varied and versatile these services are, they can still be categorized into three major groups. In what follows, you can find a short description of these three categories of service.

Software as a Service (SaaS)

This type of cloud service provides access to software and applications without making the customer pay for expensive licensing and without the necessity to store large program files on local computers. The user is given access to the software applications run by the service provider either free of charge or in return for a fee, and the network used for accessing is usually the internet. The most common examples of SaaS is online banking and e-mail services – the user of these applications is no longer dependent on hardware, the service can be accessed from any place with a connection to the internet.

Platform as a Service (PaaS)

PaaS is primarily used for development environments and platforms. With this type of cloud computing service, the provider undertakes to manage the customer’s data base and operating system so the customer no longer has to manage its own platforms. The service is mainly used in development projects with extended computing needs that would require a very long time to complete if done on individual, local computers; it also shortens time-to-market considerably, while making the complete control of costs possible.

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

With this type of service, customers can significantly and consistently reduce capital expenses by outsourcing infrastructure like hardware and storage, eliminating the need to purchase large capacity servers. What the customer gets with this type of cloud computing service is access to storage space and processor usage without using any dedicated software to create such space. The system is very flexible, as it allows the user to increase and decrease the size of the space any time and the provider invoices the client only on the size of storage space and of the resources used for delivering the service.

The growing need for outsourced solutions is setting the quick pace of development for these cloud services and accounts for their popularity among corporate and individual customers alike. The storage space, the networking tools, the applications provided in the form of cloud computing services all serve purposes of cost reduction and enhanced efficiency, enabling competitive functioning in a demanding economic environment.

About Dolomite

Dolomite Technology is a Managed Service Provider that provides services and consulting on technology services to customers across the nation. A core concept of of Dolomite’s service portfolio is cloud computing services. To learn more about Dolomite services please contact us. You can also learn more about cloud computing on our website.