In the good news department, small business owners have more tech choices when it comes to technology than ever before. The bad news they also have more tech trends to keep up with, and they don't always have the time or the IT staff to make the best call or provide the requisite support.
Acronis Software, a company that specializes in disaster recovery and data protection, offers up a few tips to help small businesses start thinking about the best way to approach new technologies, and how to think proactively about protecting their data.
Some of the questions Acronis hears from small business owners involve concerns around upgrading to Vista, remote applications and, of course, data recovery.Vista and Service Pack 1
Doing so provides a fall-back position, Lawton said, and gives you the ability to return the PC to a point in time when everything worked the way it was supposed to. "If the worst happens and your systems crash, you'll be able to restore your PCs to working condition," he said. "If your systems go down, you cant work and your business may not survive."
The company also advised that, regardless of the Windows operating system you use, you should keep your computers up-to-date with the latest upgrades and patches.Collaboration Software
"There are a number of great solutions to the collaboration problem including wikis, remote access software and Web conferencing tools. Even something as simple as shared group calendars helps keep far-flung teams rowing in the same direction," he said.SaaS
You must keep data protection in mind, said Lawton, no matter whether you're dealing with on-premises software or an SaaS application.
"Corrupting a file in Windows is not hard to do," he said. "Anytime you change your system or add layers of complexity, you increase the risk of corrupting files. Remote applications can make changes to your registry or master boot record, and you'll never see the change.
"You need disaster recovery software that maintains clean images of your system files so you can restore computers to a working condition," said Lawton.New Hardware
The nature of computing is that things will go wrong. "Small businesses face challenges caused by run-of-the-mill products," said Lawton. "The key is planning in advance, and making sure you have recovery software that can back up and restore your computers to a pre-disaster condition."
Lauren Simonds is the managing editor of SmallBusinessComputing.com
This article was first published on SmallBusinessComputing.com.