What does a Network Server do?
Traditional servers allow a group of computers to run in collaboration with one another – sharing files, programs, storage space, and printers. Newer servers provide additional features and benefits relevant to today’s business needs. In particular, a server facilitates improved Internet and email access, data protection, and helps reduce the amount of paper in your office – all of which are important for the smooth running of most small and medium sized businesses.
Internet and Email Access
Just a few years ago, this was a major factor for installing a server. Today, the need to add a Proxy Server to share broadband for the office has been replaced by a simple DSL/Cable router you can pick up from a local Computer store for about $100. This simple device also has made networking a snap, with a built-in DHCP server, the nodes and IP addressing almost eliminated the common IP addressing many of us techies learned in school.
Access to the Internet can give your business a real competitive advantage – all of which is lost if time is wasted by sharing modems and dialing for a connection. A network server gives you a single, constant Internet connection that everyone can share. This means that email can be sent and received in “real time”, and by everyone (not just on one designated email computer).
A server provides you with a centralised, secure place to store all your data. Complete backups can be easily made, along with controlling who has access to the information. A server also protects the network against viruses, by scanning all the files that are stored and transferred across the network.
A server reduces the amount of paperwork in the office through internal email and electronic faxes. Rather than waste time with the fax machine, staff can send and receive faxes directly from their desktop PC’s. Documents are all stored electronically which can be quickly and easily accessed for future reference.
Your business will benefit from a server if you:
- Have more than 6 computers
- Have a database shared by your office
- File sharing and consolidating storage
- Want to regularly share printers and files
- Value your data and want a complete backup
- Require your computers to run more reliably
- Value staff productivity
- Want to work away from the office
Your business will not benefit greatly from a server if you:
- Have less than 6 computers
- Do not want to regularly share files or printers
- Only require Internet access to one computer
- Do not store much valuable informations
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