Home > Small Business IT > Is Your Small Business Ready for a Server?

Is Your Small Business Ready for a Server?

Are you or your employees sharing files by walking across the office with an USB stick? Are you emailing the same document to each other for editing, then emailing it back? Does your company use a shared calendar or just email a weekly schedule to one person who in turn emails out the details to every employee?

When your small office starts to grow, using the “sneaker net” becomes tiresome and inefficient. When this happens it may be time to consider installing a server in your office. Today’s server operating systems offer a variety of options and scalability.

Adding a server to your office will provide:

  • Networking
  • Security
  • E-mail and calendar capabilities
  • Database and line-of-business support
  • Document and printer sharing
  • Remote Access
  • Backup Support

You will be able to take advantage of these benefits and more depending on the server operating system and the needs of the office. As your business grows additional functionality can easily be switched on.

Server operating systems can be Mac OS X Server™, Windows Small Business Server™ or Windows 2003/2008 Server or even Linux. You would choose the operating system which is best suited for your current operating environment. For example, if your users use Mac OS X, a Mac based server operating system would be a better fit. This is not to say you could not use a Windows operating system, but it may require further tweaking in order to make all the pieces work together.

Mac OS Server™ and Windows Small Business Server™ have been designed with the small business in mind. Both are easy to setup and configure, but if you are unsure it is best to work with your IT Specialist. A server installation should make your life easier not create hours or days of frustration. An IT professional can configure your server that best meets your needs. When dealing the Linux, Windows 2003 Server or Windows 2008 server I would suggest you have a certified IT Professional configure these systems.

Once you have settled on the operating system you will need to select the appropriate server hardware. Your server will be handling many different processes and users at once therefor e using proper server hardware is imperative. Server hardware has been optimized for server operating systems which will provide the best performance. This is a situation providing inadequate hardware resources can seriously compromise performance and efficiently.

Adding a server can significantly increase the workflow in the office. The benefits will outweigh the initial costs very quickly. Spend the time and do the research or hire and IT Specialist and you and your small business will enjoy the benefits of a collaborative work environment.

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