Posts Tagged ‘chester’

Dell award Smart IT Premier Partner Status

Smart IT has teamed up with the world’s largest computer provider – Dell.

As a result Smart IT will enjoy greater access to Dell Technical resources, even better pricing and priority customer service through a dedicated accounts team.

Commenting on the new partnership, Managing Director Barry Weaver said “we’ve been trying to work a deal with many manufacturers for some time now and have practically covered the world looking for the right partner”.

“Dell are the most responsive to our needs and have gone above and beyond the call of duty to assist us in offering maximum value for our customers”.

“The savings and benefits will directly impact our customers in an extremely positive manner”.

“With other suppliers we always felt there was a compromise between good quality and good value.”

“Dell is different. They are much more than just “box shifters” and offer a wide variety of products and solutions from printers and software to storage and servers with the technical pre and post sales knowledge and back up we find extremely helpful right through their product range”.

“It was these qualities that made Dell the natural choice and swung the deal for us”.

“We are all delighted to be working with Dell and look forward to a positive long term partnership”.

Microsoft Open Up

Microsoft has promised to make sweeping changes to the way it designs and shares information about its products.
In a clear acknowledgment of the growing importance of open-source software Microsoft has promised to introduce a number of measures including:

* The publication of APIs for “all high-volume” products.

* Sharing 30,000 pages of documentation for Windows client and server protocols that were previously available only under a trade secret licence.

* Indicating which of its protocols are covered by patents, and promising not to sue open-source developers for development or non-commercial distribution of implementations of these protocols.

* The creation of new APIs for Word, Excel and PowerPoint to enable developers to plug-in additional document formats, and set these as their default format in Office 2007.

“These steps represent an important step and significant change in how we share information about our products and technologies,” cliams Microsoft chief executive officer Steve Ballmer in a pre-prepared statement.

“For the past 33 years, we have shared a lot of information with hundreds of thousands of partners around the world and helped build the industry, but today’s announcement represents a significant expansion toward even greater transparency.

“Our goal is to promote greater interoperability, opportunity and choice for customers and developers throughout the industry by making our products more open and by sharing even more information about our technologies.”

In a later conference call, Ballmer claimed Microsoft’s new philosophy is key to its survival. “Microsoft’s long-term success depends on delivering software that’s open, flexible and delivers choice,” he says.

However, Ballmer says the new approach won’t be a free-for-all. “We still have trade secrets we need to protect. In some ways you can say we’re opening up, in others we have valuable intellectual property assets that we need to protect.”

Microsoft’s general counsel, Brad Smith, admits the move is at least partially motivated by satisfying regulator concerns. “Microsoft is fully committed to making sure we’re in full compliance with EU law,” he says.

“We recognise people will assess us not by our words, but the actions we take to implement them. We’re not just issuing principles. At the same time the principles went up on the web, so did 30,000 pages of documentation. It’s a first step to implement these principles. Over the coming months we’ll be issuing many more thousands of pages of documentation.”

Source – PC Pro

Sky Wireless Broadband – Not Safe

Sky Broadband advises customers to consider changing their default Wi-Fi passwords – because the apparently random network keys are guess-able.

The ISP issues customers with a wireless router that is pre-configured with wireless security switched on, and an apparently random network key. This sounds like a good plan. However, the key is based on the router’s MAC address, which is broadcast “in the clear” – i.e in unencrypted form.

The Register Website reader James, who brought the issue to our attention, said that getting the MAC address is trivial and working out the algorithm that links it to a network key is “not exactly rocket science”.

The security shortcoming affects only Sky Broadband’s original router, a rebadged Netgear DG834GT, and applies only where customers keep the default network key. This leaves plenty of scope for problems. “With about a million Sky customers using the original DG834GT router, there’s likely to be hundreds of thousands of Sky customers thinking that they’re safe, when in fact they are not,” James notes.

Sky has not issued a general alert, even though it was informed of the matter a month ago, through its SkyUser community support forum. “Sky offered advice to users on that forum, to either disable wireless networking, or change their wireless password, but they still haven’t told their wider customer base about this problem,” James said.

In response to our questions, Sky Broadband said users can improve security by changing their default password (as explained here), comparing this, more or less, to adding a lock to an already bolted door.

“A wireless router is great for flexibility and convenience but no one wants to unwittingly share their connection with another user. We pre-configure all our routers with security settings so that customers’ bandwidth is protected from day one. Our website offers advice to customers on how to further enhance this level of protection by changing their default password to another of their own choice,” a Sky spokeswoman told The Register website.

 Source – The Register

it support liverpool

Recently BT released a document via their website explaining Voice Over IP (VOIP) to its customers and made some stark predictions for the future as well as dispelling many myths about Voice Over IP.

Here are some extracts from their website.

They say –

VoIP take-up is growing rapidly and we expect to see almost half of small businesses in the UK using internet calling in the next year. BT is also investing £10 billion in its 21st  Century Network (21CN) initiative, which will move the UK’straditional (PSTN) telephone network over to one that is entirely Internet Protocol (IP) based. The first PSTN customers moved over to 21CN in November 2006 and by 2012 all calls in the UK will be made over IP.

The majority of people first look at VoIP services because of the cost savings that are available, but this isn’t limited to calling other VoIP users. Many services offer reduced local and national call rates, along with capped prices for domestic, fixed-to-mobile and international calls.

One of the criticisms that has been leveled at VoIP services is that it is still a relatively new technology and voice quality isn’t quite as high as on conventional fixed-line telephone services. However, paid-for services from reputable suppliers are very much the same as fixed line and can be better than mobile reception. As with any new technology, in the early days VoIP services could be unreliable. However as the technology has matured, reliability has increased and is now at a level that is appropriate for business use.

VoIP services are not linked to a local exchange in the same way as traditional telephones. As a result, VoIP numbers do not have to be specific to a town or region, which gives companies the ability to choose the type of number they want to use, whether that is a geographic, VoIP (for example an 05 prefix) or national (for example an 0845 or 0800 number).

Extract from BT Article
by Barry Weaver Feb 2008