IT Administrator working in a Data Center

Posted on September 19, 2012 by Trevor Jones

For businesses large and small, managing the computer network and keeping it running smoothly is a major concern.  We use our networks to communicate with customers and employees, store customer data and inventory, and keep our books. More and more, businesses are turning to managed IT services to help keep their networks in line with accepted best practices.   Most managed IT services allow you to pay a fixed monthly fee to a service provider that …
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Posted on September 12, 2012 by Colin Haley

As the doors have closed for the pre-registration program for Google Fiber in the Kansas Cities, I thought I would take a moment to give you an update on the Company’s initiative. According to reports, of the 202 “fiberhoods” that were created within the cities, at least 180 of them have met their pre-registration target and will eventually be getting Google Fiber service.  Though those numbers may rise in the ensuing weeks, it appears that …
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Posted on September 5, 2012 by Trevor Jones

Two  of the biggest threats to the home computers are viruses and spyware, and it’s very important to protect yourself from these threats.  Unfortunately, far too often people have inadequate or outdated protection. When you bought your PC, chances are the store provided  a 30-90 day free trial on some form of Internet security software.  After the trial period expires, you may lose all protection or stop getting updates to keep your protection current unless …
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Posted on August 29, 2012 by Trevor Jones

If you operate a multi-location business, you’re usually faced with the challenge of moving data from office to office quickly and securely in some form of Wide Area Network (WAN).  Also, in today’s environment of converged voice, data and video networks, most IT managers must design their networks to provide Quality of Service (QoS) so that calls are clear and video is skip-free. Today’s Wide Area Network technologies fall broadly into three categories: VPN Tunneling, …
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Posted on August 22, 2012 by Trevor Jones

Like most Twitter users, I get a lot of questions from my friends about the social network and I hear “I don’t understand Twitter” a lot. I’m afraid that generally my answer doesn’t help much either which is usually “Twitter is what you make it.” There’s also a misconception out there that everybody on Twitter is tweeting what they had for lunch and what they are doing right now in a nonsensical way. Truth is, …
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Posted on August 20, 2012 by Trevor Jones

Since long before we announced Gigabit Main Street, our first mixed-use gigabit Internet network for business and residential customers in Orono and Old Town, we’ve been watching the progress of similar efforts in other states.  The best known is probably Google Fiber, a project to build gigabit Internet over fiber to the home in Kansas City Kansas and Kansas City Mo, although there are several other projects nationwide including Sonic.net in San Francisco and municipal …
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Posted on August 15, 2012 by Trevor Jones

More and more businesses are making the decision to outsource IT functions through a combination of cloud computing and managed services.  One of the first places your business can achieve greater functionality, reduced costs, or both is by outsourcing email, calendar management, and document collaboration. Each of the many hosted email and calendar solutions out there is worth considering for any business, but how do you choose, beyond price?  Here are seven considerations that we …
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Posted on August 8, 2012 by GWI

Loss of computer equipment or data in business networks due to lightning damage is not happenstance, but a combination of chance and preparation. Lightning can indeed strike anywhere, but the damage it does is manageable or preventable in most cases because it is caused by nearby lightning activity that creates surges in wiring. If electronics take a direct bolt of lightning there is little you can do to prevent damage, but direct strikes are thankfully …
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Posted on August 1, 2012 by Trevor Jones

Internet technology has changed business in many ways. Cloud computing, voice over IP and e-commerce are just a few of the ways businesses are using the Internet to complete vital tasks and transact business. However, today I want to take a moment out to talk about how social networks have changed the way we do business, because increasingly, social networks are a key component of how we use our business Internet connections. Listening and interacting …
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Posted on July 25, 2012 by Trevor Jones

If you’re a regular reader, you know we’re very interested here at GWI in ensuring that all Mainers have access to broadband Internet access. We’re also very interested in ensuring that the U.S. keeps pace or gains ground against the rest of the globe in building out ultra high speed, gigabit Internet access networks.    These are daunting tasks in any rural state for a variety of reasons, and there are some challenges that are peculiar …
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Posted on July 18, 2012 by Trevor Jones

Last year, we completely lost our 10Gig Internet backbone connection in Boston for several hours due to a power failure in one of the city’s biggest telecom hubs, and yet not one of our thousands of business and residential customers called in a ticket.  The reason for that may surprise you: You might think it was because we had a backup connection in New York. You might think it’s because there was enough capacity in …
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Posted on July 11, 2012 by Colin Haley

In the modern economy, access to reliable, high-speed Internet is a critical factor determining where there will be jobs and economic opportunity. Much of the work of expanding access to “broadband” Internet is being done by the private sector. However, it is important for everyone to realize that the public sector – elected policy makers at the city, state and federal level – will play a substantial role in determining how, where and how fast …
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Posted on July 9, 2012 by Colin Haley

Recently, Josh Broder, President of Tilson Technology Management, spoke to an audience at a TEDxDirigo event regarding the changing economy and the importance of driving innovation in Maine and nationally, something that we at GWI feel strongly about. One of the key points that Josh touched on is that our economy is evolving from the old, industrial economy to an information economy and just as our parents and grandparents had to build the infrastructure of …
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Posted on July 4, 2012 by Trevor Jones

Recently, a customer posted a question on the GWI Facebook Page:  “Is GWI participating in the “Six Strike Plan” that is said to start today?” While I answered his question promptly “No,” I thought perhaps a few of our readers might not have heard about Six Strikes, so I wanted to take a few minutes to explain what it is. The Copyright Alert System – Education or Punishment? Six Strikes is an agreement between major …
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Posted on July 2, 2012 by GWI

After the recent blog posting about GWI’s 10Gb Metro Ethernet Network, a few readers have asked us to describe our Cyan metro Ethernet network in a little more detail. So let’s take a look at the before and after views of the GWI network. Before moving to the new Metro Ethernet network, GWI’s transport technology was a mix of Ethernet and SONET (Synchronous Optical Networking). The legacy Ethernet network had geographically diverse paths from Portland …
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Posted on June 25, 2012 by GWI

GWI is currently working on building a next-generation network to take full advantage of the Three Ring Binder and extend our service offerings throughout Maine. As part of this effort we’ve begun migrating our network backbone to a Carrier Grade Cyan 10 Gigabit Ethernet platform that is Metro Ethernet compliant, but what does that mean? Why Cyan? Cyan is a leading supplier of purpose built, next-generation packet optical transport platforms. They are currently ranked sixth …
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Posted on June 21, 2012 by GWI

A single major event can make or break a business. Fires, flooding, storm damage or even a simple power outage can deny you the use of your office space, and a virus or network failure can cripple your company’s operations if you are caught unawares. In an environment where even a few hours of down time can have a serious impact, having the right measures in place to keep your business running is critical to …
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Posted on June 19, 2012 by GWI

“Pipes” are an idiom often used to describe dedicated Internet connections. Techies use the term “fat pipe” to mean a very high capacity Internet connection, bigger than most people need. Don’t call them tubes though or you’ll be mocked like Senator Ted Stevens. (Check out this clip from the Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Be patient through the commercial!) On Squirrel Island, the water pipes and the Internet pipes are closely related.   We started …
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Posted on June 14, 2012 by Trevor Jones

It’s been 18 months since Fletcher Kittredge wrote the very first article in the GWI Blog entitled Greetings from Fletcher.  In that time, Fletcher, Colin Haley and I have written 100 posts on broadband expansion, cloud computing, telecommunications services, economic development and public policy – with a little help from the rest of the GWI team, of course! For our 100th post, I wanted to highlight the top 10 posts since the inception of the …
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Posted on June 11, 2012 by Trevor Jones

Recently, a few customers have asked us for updates on our progress building out our Gigabit Main Street gigabit Internet network.  Although we’re still a couple of months away from turning up our first customers there is a lot of progress being made, most of which is invisible to people not directly connected to the project.  In the interest of being as transparent as possible, we wanted to explain the steps required to build  a …
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