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Windows 8: To Convert or not to Convert?

There’s bound to be controversy whenever Microsoft introduces a new version of Windows. People complain about the new interface, about compatibility issues, and more. However, the controversy usually dies down after a while as consumers and businesses alike make the switch. Windows 8, on the other hand, has now been out for a year and a half, and the debate about it is still hot. When looking at your own business, is converting to the new Windows worth it?


Speed

One thing that Windows 8 offers over previous versions of the operating system is more system speed and better memory management than ever before. This is due in large part to the interface being optimized for use on mobile devices, which don’t have the luxury of massive amounts of processing power that you would find on a typical office computer. If you have done everything you can to optimize your business computers and your employees are still encountering slowdown, a switch to the faster Windows 8 might be in the cards for you. This is especially true if your company makes heavy use of laptops and tablets that need to run memory-intensive programs.

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Exploring the Pros and Cons of Switching to a Linux Server

So you’ve decided that going with the mainstream and using Microsoft Windows isn’t quite the right fit for your business. Where do you go from there? One possibility to consider is making the move to Linux. Linux is an open source operating system that requires some training but is quite easy to modify and improve upon once you have somebody experienced in its operation. More details about the pros and cons of moving to a Linux server are provided here.


Installation

One of the biggest advantages that Windows has over virtually every other operating system is that it is very easy to run and install. Linux, on the other hand, requires more consideration and customization when installing onto a server. There are many different kinds of applications available to Linux users, and the plethora of choices can sometimes become overwhelming. By comparison, Windows users only need to install and run the recommended software configurations. The winner in terms of ease of installation is Windows, although it is worth noting that Linux doesn’t require as many critical updates and reboots, so it can be more stable once you have your server up and running.

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Alternatives to Windows and How to Make them Work for your Network

Most businesses use Microsoft Windows in some form or another, but it is not the only operating system out there. Whether for business reasons, compatibility purposes, or just personal preference, some companies choose to use an alternative operating system for their business network, such as Linux, Apple’s Mac OSX, or Novell’s NetWare. Is this a move you should make? What are the possible implications? Read on to find out more about these alternatives.


Why Seek an Alternative?

If Windows is so popular, why would anybody seek an alternate system? There are a number of answers to this, and it usually boils down to business needs and personal preference. First of all, it’s important to remember that Windows isn’t used because it is unquestionably the best operating system out there, but rather because it is most convenient to many users. It comes bundled on most computers, which means that those who don’t want to look for alternatives have something suitable right in front of them. However, there are other systems that work better in some ways than Windows. Mac OS, for example is ideal for design work, while Linux offers more customization.

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Pros and Cons of Windows Remote Desktop Services

The Windows Remote Desktop Services, or Windows RDS for short, is Microsoft's remote desktop tool which is customized specifically to the features of Windows in all its various iterations. This service is available in both Windows 7 and Windows 8, and offers a free way to access a Windows computer remotely. More information about RDS, including a complete rundown of all the pros and cons of this software, can be found below.


What is RDS?

This service, which is also known on some systems as the Windows Terminal Services, is targeted toward providing access from a distance for Windows users. This is ideal for businesses, especially if you have a centralized file storage but have employees who do a lot of traveling or who work from home. Because the technology was developed specifically by Microsoft, it has a great deal of compatibility with Windows and takes advantage of some special Windows only features. You can generally expect this system to work with both 32 bit and 64 bit applications on Windows, although you may have some compatibility issues when it comes to the remote access of certain third party products and programs.

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A Brief Overview of the Windows Built In Firewall

Windows has had a built in firewall since Windows XP, and maintained that feature during transitions to Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8. The goal of the firewall is to enhance security for users, particularly those who are not thoroughly experienced with potential online hazards. Some more advanced users consider the Windows firewall to be a bit too cumbersome. This guide will give you a quick rundown on the firewall and when it should and should not be used.

Different Version of the Built In Firewall

The Windows built in firewall has seen steady evolution since it began in XP. In a base install of Windows XP, the firewall blocks only inbound connections that have not been initiated by your computer, and the setting is turned off by default. Service Pack 2, however, turns on the firewall default and also gives administrators group control over the firewall. Vista saw additional filters put on the firewall, and Windows 7 and 8 have worked to provide the user with more control over what information you allow. This includes being able to designate different connections as either a home network, a work network, or a public network.

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