SpireTech Blog - Author: Chuck Stephens
SpireTech has been monitoring developments relative to security questions being raised about Kaspersky Anti-Virus software, including the US federal government’s restrictions for federal agencies announced on September 13, 2017. SpireTech is currently investigating the best alternative options in consultation with both our peers and software suppliers.
While respecting the geopolitical issues impacting this product, from a technical standpoint Kaspersky Anti-Virus has been continuing to provide security updates and patches. Once we have determined available alternatives we will inform all clients to inquire whether their organization wishes to change antivirus vendors.
Please contact us with any questions you might have in the meantime.
Fire in a trash dumpster located in the parking lot caused damage to the electrical system which controls our generators. Core electrical and network connectivity remained up during the fire. Repairs needed to address all damage are underway. We will post additional information on our blog as it becomes available. If you have any questions or issues with regard to Wednesday night’s outage please get in touch. A big thanks to the Portland Fire Department for their fast, professional and efficient work to keep our people and property safe. Also a big thanks to our electrical contractors who immediately came out to make repairs. And, of course, thanks very much to all of our customers as well for their understanding and support.
10th Annual MSP 501 Ranking and Study Identifies World’s Most Progressive MSPs in Information Technology
SpireTech ranks among the world’s most progressive 501 Managed Service Providers (MSPs), according to MSPmentor’s 10th-annual MSP 501 Worldwide Company Rankings. The top MSP 501 companies ranked this year include organizations from around the world and from diverse technology and business backgrounds. Collectively, they amassed $14.48 billion in total revenue (based on 2016 results), up more than 15 percent from a year earlier.
The complete 2017 MSP 501 list is available at MSPmentor.net. In addition to honoring SpireTech, this year’s MSP 501 list and study showcases the top ranked MSPs worldwide.
Scott Cook, SpireTech President said: “Making the MSPMentor 501 list is an achievement similar to a growing small business making the Inc 500 list, except in the Managed IT Services space. We’re proud to have made it, and thankful to our employees and clients for making it happen.” Read more...
Within the last month SpireTech has hit several major milestones in providing superior solutions to our customers. We have earned our Microsoft Silver CSP status, and earned our SMB Cloud Competency. What does this mean for our customers? Read about each of these below:
Microsoft Silver CSP
Microsoft Partner Signature Support provides partners with support to help keep their customers’ services operating smoothly. Signature Support handles technical support scenarios for Microsoft Office 365, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online, and Microsoft Azure. This means that if you ever need help with your office products, such as a Hybrid Exchange server, or Sharepoint Online site we have Microsoft Partner Signature Support backing us up.
Microsoft SMB Cloud Competency
IDC forecasts that worldwide public IT cloud services revenue (i.e. SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS) will reach $141.2B USD by 2019, a 19.4% compounded annual growth rate (CAGR): almost six times the rate of overall IT spending growth. Read more...
You may have heard about a recent vulnerability that has affected Cloudflare, and therefore certain sites that use cloudflare services. Cloudflare is a “Content Delivery Network” or CDN, and is used to speed up websites by acting as a “cache” that sits between your web browser and the certain sites you may visit.
SpireTech does not use Cloudflare services, so none of our data or customer data would have been exposed. However, some customers that host websites with us use Cloudflare – typically this is setup and managed by your web developer. If you fall into that category, you should contact your site developer or SpireTech for advice, which would vary depending on the function of your website.
Despite this not affecting our data directly it may effect many of the sites you frequently visit. If you have accounts with Uber, Yelp, Fitbit, OKCupid, 4Chan, or sites listed at the end of this bulletin, it would be a good idea to go and change those passwords now. Read more...
SpireTech has launched a new website! Our new design is intended to simplify and focus our content on how our business can help you with yours. We’ve also made our site fully mobile responsive with layouts that work on everything from smartphone screens all the way up to the large monitors. We invite you to check out our new look at www.spiretech.com, — and let us know what you think!
Our new pages are designed to offer all the information new visitors might want, while still allowing our customers to find the pages they use most. If you can’t find a page that you have used in the past, or if you happen to come across something that isn’t working correctly, please do shoot us an note at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!
As SpireTech’s customer base has expanded, we have done the same to continue to provide the same high level of customer support while keeping your wait times low. Most recently we added Brian Ellis to our staff of support technicians.
We are excited to welcome Brian, who has relocated from Chicago, IL to Portland, OR as he joins the team at SpireTech to continue his career journey and providing exemplary IT services.
Brian brings 15+ years of knowledge and experience working for internet service providers, handling remote and onsite helpdesk clients, providing managed services and IT consulting to businesses. Additionally, as a former business owner he not only focuses on clients’ immediate IT needs, but helps consider overall IT strategy from an ownership perspective.
In his personal time Brian enjoys outdoor activities, photography, and is currently learning how to play the guitar.
Now when you see Brian’s name on a response to your support tickets, you’ll know a bit about who it’s from. Read more...
As the year comes to a close this holiday season, we wanted to say we are grateful to our clients for your continued business. Happy Holidays from everyone at SpireTech!
As many Windows 10 users have found out, the new update procedures can cause massive problems for users. No longer can you delay updates until it is convenient – only reboots. Now windows will run updates as soon as Microsoft decides you need them, and worst of all this latest round of updates seems to be slowing even the most powerful machines down to a crawl while the updates are applying. Hopefully Microsoft will see fit to add control over updates back in.
Here at SpireTech we have firsthand experience with just how crippling it can be to have many of the machines in an office become unusable at once. Last week several of the Windows 10 machines in our office started responding slowly at first, but within minutes we were unable to perform most basic tasks.
Things like the control panel and task manager would take upwards of 10 minutes to load. A little digging revealed that it was the Delivery Optimization process, this process handles the Windows 10 feature that allows it to send and receive updates from other machines on your network. Read more...
Moving into the cloud can be a daunting task, but if your company is looking to update from a legacy version of Microsoft Office then Office 365 will almost always be the most cost effective upgrade route. SpireTech can help make the transition painless.
The biggest difference between Office 365 from Office 2016 is that rather than buying software to keep, you pay a monthly or annual subscription; essentially renting the software. This is far from being the only difference. While Office 2016 can only be installed on one computer, Office 365 can be used on up to five PCs (and Macs) for one price. Office as a one-time purchase includes applications such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for use on a single PC or Mac. For Office 2016 the applications are not automatically updated; to get the latest version, you must purchase Office again when the new version becomes available. Read more...