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Showing 1 - 16 of 17 white papers, page 1 of 2.
Charity Golf Tournament Sponsorship Results in a Hole-in-One for IGEL and Lockton Companies
Lockton was in the midst of a Citrix VDI roll-out when one of its thin client manufacturers changed some of the key features on the model the insurance broker was using to power its endpoints. This presented a number of challenges that the Lockton team needed to overcome during a critical stage in the VDI roll-out. Lockton was introduced to IGEL by Choice Solutions, an IGEL Platinum Partner, and selected the IGEL Universal Desktop (UD2-LX); IGEL Universal Management Suite (UMS); IGEL Universal D

Although Lockton is the world’s largest privately owned insurance brokerage firm, clients most frequently describe the insurance broker as team members who make their businesses better. Energy, innovation and deep expertise fuel Lockton’s focus on solving its clients’ problems and achieving real results.

It is this spirit of innovation that led Lockton to recently embark on the deployment of Citrix Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) at its headquarters in the Country Club Plaza area of Kansas City, MO., and local office locations across the United States and around the globe.

Lockton was about a quarter of the way through its Cirrus VDI deployment when one of its thin client manufacturers changed some of the key features on the model the insurance broker was using, without warning. This presented a number of challenges that Lockton’s IT team was unable to overcome during a critical stage in the VDI roll-out.

Around the same time Lockton was experiencing issues with the thin client manufacturer, they participated in a charity golf tournament in Kansas City that was hosted by IGEL Platinum Partner Choice Solutions and sponsored by IGEL. Following the golf tournament, Lockton tested the IGEL Universal Desktop (UD2-LX) and the IGEL Universal Management Suite (UMS) management console. The insurer realized immediately that the superior design and secure infrastructure management capabilities would make it possible for them to easily manage their entire network of thin clients in the U.S. from the company’s headquarters in Kansas City, and this was a key selling point.

To date, with the help of Choice Solutions, Lockton has deployed 1,200 IGEL UD2-LX thin clients and expected that number to increase to 1,800 by the end of 2017. Lockton also has a small number of licenses for the IGEL Universal Desktop Converter software which they are leveraging to turn hardware from other thin client manufacturers into IGEL-powered endpoints. Additionally, the insurer is using the IGEL UD Pocket to deliver the IGEL desktop to employees using legacy thin client hardware.

A Journey Through Hybrid IT and the Cloud
How to navigate between the trenches. Hybrid IT has moved from buzzword status to reality and organizations are realizing its potential impact. Some aspects of your infrastructure may remain in a traditional setting, while another part runs on cloud infrastructure—causing great complexity. So, what does this mean for you?

How to navigate between the trenches

Hybrid IT has moved from buzzword status to reality and organizations are realizing its potential impact. Some aspects of your infrastructure may remain in a traditional setting, while another part runs on cloud infrastructure—causing great complexity. So, what does this mean for you?
 
“A Journey Through Hybrid IT and the Cloud” provides insight on:

  • What Hybrid IT means for the network, storage, compute, monitoringand your staff
  • Real world examples that can occur along your journey (what did vs. didn’t work)
  • How to educate employees on Hybrid IT and the Cloud
  • Proactively searching out technical solutions to real business challenges
PrinterLogic and IGEL Enable Healthcare Organizations to Deliver Better Patient Outcomes
Healthcare professionals need to print effortlessly and reliably to nearby or appropriate printers within virtual environments, and PrinterLogic and IGEL can help make that an easy, reliable process—all while efficiently maintaining the protection of confidential patient information.

Many organizations have turned to virtualizing user endpoints to help reduce capital and operational expenses while increasing security. This is especially true within healthcare, where hospitals, clinics, and urgent care centers seek to offer the best possible patient outcomes while adhering to a variety of mandated patient security and information privacy requirements.

With the movement of desktops and applications into the secure data center or cloud, the need for reliable printing of documents, some very sensitive in nature, remains a constant that can be challenging when desktops are virtual but the printing process remains physical. Directing print jobs to the correct printer with the correct physical access rights in the correct location while ensuring compliance with key healthcare mandates like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Healthcare Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is critical.

Healthcare IT needs to keep pace with these requirements and the ongoing printing demands of healthcare. Medical professionals need to print effortlessly and reliably to nearby or appropriate printers within virtual environments, and PrinterLogic and IGEL can help make that an easy, reliable process—all while efficiently maintaining the protection of confidential patient information. By combining PrinterLogic’s enterprise print management software with centrally managed direct IP printing and IGEL’s software-defined thin client endpoint management, healthcare organizations can:

  • Reduce capital and operational costs
  • Support virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) and electronic medical records (EMR) systems effectively
  • Centralize and simplify print management
  • Add an essential layer of security from the target printer all the way to the network edge
UD Pocket Saves the Day After Malware Cripple’s Hospital’s Mission-Critical PCs
IGEL Platinum Partner A2U had endpoints within the healthcare organization’s finance department up and running within a few hours following the potentially crippling cyberattack, thanks to the innovative micro thin client.

A2U, an IGEL Platinum Partner, recently experienced a situation where one of its large, regional healthcare clients was hit by a cyberattack. “Essentially, malware entered the client’s network via a computer and began replicating like wildfire,” recalls A2U Vice President of Sales, Robert Hammond.

During the cyberattack, a few hundred of the hospital’s PCs were affected. Among those were 30 endpoints within the finance department that the healthcare organization deemed mission critical due to the volume of daily transactions between patients, insurance companies, and state and county agencies for services rendered. “It was very painful from a business standpoint not to be able to conduct billing and receiving, not to mention payroll,” said Hammond.

Prior to this particular incident, A2U had received demo units of the IGEL UD Pocket, a revolutionary micro thin client that can transform x86-compatible PCs and laptops into IGEL OS-powered desktops.

“We had been having a discussion with this client about re-imaging their PCs, but their primary concern was maintaining the integrity of the data that was already on the hardware,” continued Hammond. “HIPAA and other regulations meant that they needed to preserve the data and keep it secure, and we thought that the IGEL UD Pocket could be the answer to this problem. We didn’t see why it wouldn’t work, but we needed to test our theory.”

When the malware attack hit, that opportunity came sooner, rather than later for A2U. “We plugged the UD Pocket into one of the affected machines and were able to bypass the local hard drive, installing the Linux-based IGEL OS on the system without impacting existing data,” said Hammond. “It was like we had created a ‘Linux bubble’ that protected the machine, yet created an environment that allowed end users to quickly return to productivity.”

Working with the hospital’s IT team, it only took a few hours for A2U to get the entire finance department back online. “They were able to start billing the very next day,” added Hammond.

vSphere Troubleshooting Guide
Troubleshooting complex virtualization technology is something all VMware users will have to face at some point. It requires an understanding of how various components fit together and finding a place to start is not easy. Thankfully, VMware vExpert Ryan Birk is here to help with this eBook preparing you for any problems you may encounter along the way.

This eBook explains how to identify problems with vSphere and how to solve them. Before we begin, we need to start off with an introduction to a few things that will make life easier. We’ll start with a troubleshooting methodology and how to gather logs. After that, we’ll break this eBook into the following sections: Installation, Virtual Machines, Networking, Storage, vCenter/ESXi and Clustering.

ESXi and vSphere problems arise from many different places, but they generally fall into one of these categories: Hardware issues, Resource contention, Network attacks, Software bugs, and Configuration problems.

A typical troubleshooting process contains several tasks: 1. Define the problem and gather information. 2. Identify what is causing the problem. 3. Fix the problem, implement a fix.

One of the first things you should try to do when experiencing a problem with a host, is try to reproduce the issue. If you can find a way to reproduce it, you have a great way to validate that the issue is resolved when you do fix it. It can be helpful as well to take a benchmark of your systems before they are implemented into a production environment. If you know HOW they should be running, it’s easier to pinpoint a problem.

You should decide if it’s best to work from a “Top Down” or “Bottom Up” approach to determine the root cause. Guest OS Level issues typically cause a large amount of problems. Let’s face it, some of the applications we use are not perfect. They get the job done but they utilize a lot of memory doing it.

In terms of virtual machine level issues, is it possible that you could have a limit or share value that’s misconfigured? At the ESXi Host Level, you could need additional resources. It’s hard to believe sometimes, but you might need another host to help with load!

Once you have identified the root cause, you should assess the impact of the problem on your day to day operations. When and what type of fix should you implement? A short-term one or a long-term solution? Assess the impact of your solution on daily operations. Short-term solution: Implement a quick workaround. Long-term solution: Reconfiguration of a virtual machine or host.

Now that the basics have been covered, download the eBook to discover how to put this theory into practice!

Mastering vSphere – Best Practices, Optimizing Configurations & More
Do you regularly work with vSphere? If so, this free eBook is for you. Learn how to leverage best practices for the most popular features contained within the vSphere platform and boost your productivity using tips and tricks learnt direct from an experienced VMware trainer and highly qualified professional. In this eBook, vExpert Ryan Birk shows you how to master: Advanced Deployment Scenarios using Auto-Deploy Shared Storage Performance Monitoring and Troubleshooting Host Network configurati

If you’re here to gather some of the best practices surrounding vSphere, you’ve come to the right place! Mastering vSphere: Best Practices, Optimizing Configurations & More, the free eBook authored by me, Ryan Birk, is the product of many years working with vSphere as well as teaching others in a professional capacity. In my extensive career as a VMware consultant and teacher (I’m a VMware Certified Instructor) I have worked with people of all competence levels and been asked hundreds - if not thousands - of questions on vSphere. I was approached to write this eBook to put that experience to use to help people currently working with vSphere step up their game and reach that next level. As such, this eBook assumes readers already have a basic understanding of vSphere and will cover the best practices for four key aspects of any vSphere environment.

The best practices covered here will focus largely on management and configuration solutions so should remain relevant for quite some time. However, with that said, things are constantly changing in IT, so I would always recommend obtaining the most up-to-date information from VMware KBs and official documentation especially regarding specific versions of tools and software updates. This eBook is divided into several sections, and although I would advise reading the whole eBook as most elements relate to others, you might want to just focus on a certain area you’re having trouble with. If so, jump to the section you want read about.

Before we begin, I want to note that in a VMware environment, it’s always best to try to keep things simple. Far too often I have seen environments be thrown off the tracks by trying to do too much at once. I try to live by the mentality of “keeping your environment boring” – in other words, keeping your host configurations the same, storage configurations the same and network configurations the same. I don’t mean duplicate IP addresses, but the hosts need identical port groups, access to the same storage networks, etc. Consistency is the name of the game and is key to solving unexpected problems down the line. Furthermore, it enables smooth scalability - when you move from a single host configuration to a cluster configuration, having the same configurations will make live migrations and high availability far easier to configure without having to significantly re-work the entire infrastructure. Now the scene has been set, let’s get started!

How to Get the Most Out of Windows Admin Center
Windows Admin Center is the future of Windows and Windows Server management. Are you using it to its full potential? In this free eBook, Microsoft Cloud and Datacenter Management MVP, Eric Siron, has put together a 70+ page guide on what Windows Admin Center brings to the table, how to get started, and how to squeeze as much value out of this incredible free management tool from Microsoft. This eBook covers: - Installation - Getting Started - Full UI Analysis - Security - Managing Extensions

Each version of Windows and Windows Server showcases new technologies. The advent of PowerShell marked a substantial step forward in managing those features. However, the built-in graphical Windows management tools have largely stagnated - the same basic Microsoft Management Console (MMC) interfaces had remained since Windows Server 2000. Microsoft tried out multiple overhauls over the years to the built-in Server Manager console but gained little traction. Until Windows Admin Center.

WHAT IS WINDOWS ADMIN CENTER?
Windows Admin Center (WAC) represents a modern turn in Windows and Windows Server system management. From its home page, you establish a list of the networked Windows and Windows Server computers to manage. From there, you can connect to an individual system to control components such as hardware drivers. You can also use it to manage Windows roles, such as Hyper-V.

On the front-end, Windows Admin Center is presented through a sleek HTML 5 web interface. On the back-end, it leverages PowerShell extensively to control the systems within your network. The entire package runs on a single system, so you don’t need a complicated infrastructure to support it. In fact, you can run it locally on your Windows 10 workstation if you want. If you require more resiliency, you can run Windows Admin Center as a role on a Microsoft Failover Cluster.

WHY WOULD I USE WINDOWS ADMIN CENTER?
In the modern era of Windows management, we have shifted to a greater reliance on industrial-strength tools like PowerShell and Desired State Configuration. However, we still have servers that require individualized attention and infrequently utilized resources. WAC gives you a one-stop hub for dropping in on any system at any time and work with almost any of its facets.

ABOUT THIS EBOOK
This eBook has been written by Microsoft Cloud & Datacenter Management MVP Eric Siron. Eric has worked in IT since 1998, designing, deploying, and maintaining server, desktop, network, and storage systems. He has provided all levels of support for businesses ranging from single-user through enterprises with thousands of seats. He has achieved numerous Microsoft certifications and was a Microsoft Certified Trainer for four years. Eric is also a seasoned technology blogger and has amassed a significant following through his top-class work on the Altaro Hyper-V Dojo.

Digital Workspace Disasters and How to Beat Them
This paper looks at risk management as it relates to the Windows desktops that are permanently connected to a campus, head office or branch network. In particular, we will look at how ‘digital workspace’ solutions designed to streamline desktop delivery and provide greater user flexibility can also be leveraged to enable a more effective and efficient approach to desktop disaster recovery (DR).
Desktop DR - the recovery of individual desktop systems from a disaster or system failure - has long been a challenge. Part of the problem is that there are so many desktops, storing so much valuable data and - unlike servers - with so many different end user configurations and too little central control. Imaging everyone would be a huge task, generating huge amounts of backup data. And even if those problems could be overcome with the use of software agents, plus de-deduplication to take common files such as the operating system out of the backup window, restoring damaged systems could still mean days of software reinstallation and reconfiguration. Yet at the same time, most organizations have a strategic need to deploy and provision new desktop systems, and to be able to migrate existing ones to new platforms. Again, these are tasks that benefit from reducing both duplication and the need to reconfigure the resulting installation. The parallels with desktop DR should be clear. We often write about the importance of an integrated approach to investing in backup and recovery. By bringing together business needs that have a shared technical foundation, we can, for example, gain incremental benefits from backup, such as improved data visibility and governance, or we can gain DR capabilities from an investment in systems and data management. So it is with desktop DR and user workspace management. Both of these are growing in importance as organizations’ desktop estates grow more complex. Not only are we adding more ways to work online, such as virtual PCs, more applications, and more layers of middleware, but the resulting systems face more risks and threats and are subject to higher regulatory and legal requirements. Increasingly then, both desktop DR and UWM will be not just valuable, but essential. Getting one as an incremental bonus from the other therefore not only strengthens the business case for that investment proposal, it is a win-win scenario in its own right.
Survey Report: Remote Media Workflows for Broadcasters
Survey finds widespread adoption of working offsite that looks to continue post COVID-19. TV Tech magazine early this year undertook a survey to examine remote workflow adoption and usage patterns among television broadcasters and other media organizations. The survey was conducted in partnership with Teradici and fielded between Feb. 1 and March 5, 2021—roughly one year after the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 outbreak to be a worldwide pandemic.
Overall, the survey found prevalent adoption of remote workflows among broadcasters since the pandemic was declared. A total of 88% of all respondents said their organizations had deployed some form of remote workflow in response to COVID-19. That trend was even more pronounced among TV broadcasting and cable TV network respondents (referred to throughout the rest of this report as “broadcast and cable TV respondents,”) with 93% saying the pandemic prompted adoption of remote workflows.

More broadly, the survey revealed COVID-19 had a major disruptive effect on long-established media workflows. While the primary reason to shift from working at the studio or headquarters was to protect staff from potential virus exposure, the survey revealed several other reasons broadcast and cable TV respondents said their organizations adopted a remote work strategy,
including work schedule flexibility and promoting higher productivity and job satisfaction.
Virtualization Monitoring 101
Written to provide you with virtually everything you need to know about monitoring VMs, container, the cloud, and more. It’s designed to discuss virtualization realities from the age-old debate of on-prem vs. cloud vs. hybrid to newer technology like container orchestration. Whether you are a humble sysadmin, network engineer, or even monitoring specialist, this FREE eBook offers context, perspective, and actionable lessons to help you.

Virtualization Monitoring 101 was written to provide you with virtually everything you need to know about monitoring VMs, container, the cloud, and more.

It’s designed to discuss virtualization realities from the age-old debate of on-prem vs. cloud vs. hybrid to newer technology like container orchestration. Whether you are a humble sysadmin, network engineer, or even monitoring specialist attempting to monitor these things for the first time; or you’re more involved in a focused project including one or more of these technologies, this FREE eBook offers context, perspective, and actionable lessons to help you.

Topics covered include:

  • Inventory in the age of orchestration
  • Moving from on-prem to cloud
  • What matters in different environments
  • The most vivid “franken-duck” explanation of how cloud works ever written
RANSOMWARE – How to Protect and Recover Your Data From this Growing Threat
Ransomware is a growing threat to every organization on the planet; it seems we cannot go a day without seeing another high-profile ransomware attack being detailed in mainstream media. Cyber-criminals are innovating at a phenomenal pace in this growing ‘industry’ because they have the funds to do so. In fact many cyber-criminal groups have more funds than most enterprises.

Ransomware is a growing threat to every organization on the planet; it seems we cannot go a day without seeing another high-profile ransomware attack being detailed in mainstream media.

Cyber-criminals are innovating at a phenomenal pace in this growing ‘industry’ because they have the funds to do so. In fact many cyber-criminal groups have more funds than most enterprises.

The disruption these attacks are causing to businesses is huge with billions of dollars’ worth of revenue being lost due to system outages caused via ransomware attacks.

Research has shown that a 41% increase in attacks has occurred since the beginning of 2021 with a staggering 93% increase year over year.

Companies are getting hit via ransomware every day, but how does it get in? Some of the most common ways ransomware is getting in is via the following methods:

1. Phishing emails that launch ransomware attacks via inline links, links in attachments, or fake attachments.
2. Browsing unknown links and websites.
3. Downloading and accidentally running infected software.
4. Inserting or connecting an infected disk, disc, or drive.
5. Operating system based vulnerabilities if the OS is not patched to the latest levels.
6. Plugin based vulnerabilities if plugins are not patched to the latest levels.
7. Infrastructure vulnerabilities (network, storage etc.) if not patched to the latest levels.

Securing the Hybrid Workplace in 2022 and Beyond
New Survey Finds Companies Are Turning Away from VPN in Favor of Zero Trust Architecture as Hybrid Workplaces Become the New Norm.

When organizations abruptly shifted to remote work during the COVID-19 pandemic, they had to scale their network and security capabilities quickly. That meant snap decisions for many companies, deploying more of what they were already using, likely taking some shortcuts that left optimizing security and user experience for another day. 

A new survey targeting IT decision makers polled more than 8,000 respondents across a range of industries about the security challenges that were uncovered as companies moved to remote work. This report discusses those challenges and how companies are planning to increase security as hybrid work models mature and become the norm.

Maximizing Monitoring With Automation
Since the 2015 merger, various teams within the now combined Springer Nature IT department—such as the network, SysAdmin, and infrastructure teams—from different countries and with different backgrounds, methodologies, and vendors—had to collaborate and consolidate. Learn how Springer Nature’s embracement of technology and customization allowed them to employ ways to work smarter, not harder—or more costly—to support various IT teams across the organization.

Since the 2015 merger, various teams within the now combined Springer Nature IT department—such as the network, SysAdmin, and infrastructure teams—from different countries and with different backgrounds, methodologies, and vendors—had to collaborate and consolidate.

Springer Nature was already using SolarWinds® solutions upon Senior Systems Monitoring Analyst Dave Morris’s arrival at the company. He recalls, “It was a smaller SolarWinds environment then, and we’ve since grown it. After the merger, many other legacy products were very niche, and we couldn’t justify the cost of maintaining them as they were no longer suitable for the needs of the company and team. We decided to focus on SolarWinds, and because we utilize so many SolarWinds modules and we keep growing it as we go, the environment—and the benefit we receive from SolarWinds—continues to build.”

Though the Springer Nature IT infrastructure is now immense, it’s managed by a team of two: Morris and Software Engineer Consultant Liam Miller. Together, they comprise the global systems monitoring team for the entire Springer Nature business. As proponents for SolarWinds and in introducing SolarWinds products to the internal IT teams, it has been a process of building a team’s confidence in what the solutions could deliver as they get used to newer ways of working and scalability.

Blast Radius Identification and Isolation
Security teams need access to actionable information about everything in the network—where devices are located, how they interact, and all relevant details about their configuration and state. With the Forward Networks blast radius feature, they have the ability to not only isolate devices and cut off paths after an attack, but they can also prevent hosts from being vulnerable to attackers in the first place.

When looking to identify and isolate compromised network hosts, the following questions are important to answer promptly and accurately:

  • What are all the possible paths attackers can take from the compromised host?
  • What ports can they access?
  • What objects are along these paths, and what do those devices touch?
  • Is it possible for the attackers to move laterally in the network to reach critical systems or exfiltrate data to the internet?
The Forward Enterprise blast radius feature allows security operations professionals to answer those questions with one click. They can get detailed information about a compromised host, all the other devices reachable by that compromised host, and all possible traffic flows.

Once the exposure is identified, isolating the devices is a much simpler and faster process. Read the use case for more details, including an example of how the blast radius feature can locate the host device and document in seconds every destination, protocol, and L4 port it could possibly reach.

The ROI of a Network Digital Twin
The majority of network outages cost at least $1 million in operation disruption, reputational damage, and data and financial loss. Troubleshooting and path searches are frustratingly manual, time-consuming processes. With Forward Networks’ digital twin software, such processes can be completed in seconds with actionable information in a vendor-agnostic format immediately accessible. With reduced time needed to troubleshoot costly outages, Forward’s network digital twin provides a clear and robu
How have large enterprises benefited from deploying digital twin software for their complex networks?
By reducing:
  • MTTR by 80% using Forward Networks search functionality
  • 90% of P1/P2 outages
  • Time to deploy new applications from 24 hours to one hour
  • Audit time by 80%
  • Fire-fighting by senior network engineers
Which, in turn, increases:
  • Companies’ ability to reach growth and revenue targets
  • Network security by proactively removing thousands of vulnerabilities
  • Time spent by senior network engineers focusing on projects that deliver business value
Explore the eBook for more details on how managing networks with a digital twin makes networks more agile, predictable, and secure.
Solving the BIG problems in cloud computing
The two big challenges in deploying and growing cloud usage are cost and security. Shadow IT has contributed to those challenges by causing overspending and exposing organizations to significant security risks. So, how should enterprises address both hybrid (on-premises and in the cloud) and multi-cloud challenges? This research reviews new technologies and approaches that can improve visibility for IT teams, enable security policies across the entire network, and manage costs more effectively.

Vladimir Galabov, Director, Cloud and Data Center Research, and Rik Turner, Principal Analyst, Emerging Technologies, are the co-authors of this eBook from Omdia, a data, research, and consulting business that offers expert analysis and strategic insight to empower decision-making surrounding new technologies.

This eBook covers the following topics:

  • the current landscape of cloud computing, including the BIG problems
  • the advantages of using a multi-cloud approach
  • the dangers of shadow IT, including billing surprises and security breaches
  • the move of mission-critical applications to the cloud
  • the considerations regarding cloud security, including recommendations for IT teams