5 Predicted Tech Trends of 2020

5 Predicted Tech Trends of 2020

2020 is well and truly here, and with it comes a whole lot of innovation and excitement as technology continues to evolve. With the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) having just wrapped up, the team at Zycom is excited to spotlight several predicted upcoming tech trends. Some have carried over from 2019, while others appear set to break new ground.

Without further ado, let’s dive in and take a closer look.

The 5G Revolution

Over the past couple of years, there’s been plenty of chatter about the onset of the new standard in consumer devices. Now, 2020 seems to be the year when everything really kicks off, especially with handset makers such as Samsung and perhaps even Apple poised to introduce 5G-compatible smartphones, thereby embracing the new standard. With network speeds between ten to a hundred times faster than 4G and improved low-latency performance, it’s easy to see why the tech sphere is excited to see 5G take off at last. From remote commuting to conferencing, cloud-based wholesale VoIP and autonomy all poised to benefit from upgraded networking, we’re certain that many businesses will see improved communications and performance efficiency once they upgrade.

Our favourite perk of 5G is the potential to connect a massive number of devices, far more compared to what’s possible with current networking capabilities.


Internet of Things (IoT) integration will continue to build momentum into 2020 and beyond, has become a primary focus of many businesses seeking to optimize supply chains, IT, and other aspects of their operations over the past few years. Thanks largely to improved cloud connectivity and satellite performance, it’s easier than ever to transfer data, implement SaaS and more. Plus, bolstered security frameworks to match the increased adoption of IoT will continue to protect against thefts and hacks.

Digital Security

Many businesses hold proper security close to the hearts of their operations, seeking the most proactive protection possible from various threats. However, security adoption has been struggling to transform in a way that’s conducive to a workforce overconnected at the edge. Today’s demands need to be adequately met as the digital workplace continues to become the new norm in 2020 and beyond. The increased deployment of IoT devices, as well as the onset of the 5G revolution, means that compute and analytics tasks are situated close to where data is being created, representing less of a need for a centralized source. As these other trends continue to become more widely adopted, so too should edge-based data encryption, failover management, and optimized access control. As a result, not only will data be accessed and processed correctly but also more securely. 

Data Analytics

The continued enhancement of data analytics will pick up the pace as software becomes increasingly optimized and user-friendly. Simple-yet-intuitive platforms are the way forward, enabling companies to better track spend, allocate resources, and monitor day-to-day operations performance. As businesses continue to optimize processes and complete tasks more efficiently thanks to valuable data insights, their potential for growth may very well increase.

Smart Tech and AI

AI has been one of the most dominating trends of the past several years, and there are no indications of it phasing out. From wireless mesh networking to smart lighting and sensors aimed at reducing energy costs, the very environments we work in are set to become even more tightly intertwined with technology. Along with that comes the increased reliance of companies on machine learning for data analysis purposes, enabling them to better understand their customers and create more personalized solutions for them.

The Zycom team is excited to see where cloud-based managed services, virtualization, IoT and many other tech trends lead throughout 2020 and beyond. This new decade looks to be one full of surprises, continued innovation and plenty of great opportunities for businesses who modernize. Contact us to learn more about our provided services, many of which involve technologies we’ve highlighted today.

Your Guide to Container Management Software

When it comes to creating, deploying, and scaling software containers, efficient management is a must. By isolating processes based around the same OS into a single deployable unit, you can experience improved operational efficiency, lower costs for platform migrations, and much more. Today, let’s explore what goes into CMS integration and why Zycom has been able to help more businesses across Canada become truly cloud-ready.

Understanding How Containerization Works

Containers are created by bundles that represent system, application and environmental data known as container images. In short, containerization is the process of packing and distributing this data via specialized software to ensure streamlined operations. In that sense, containerization is an essential process for almost all developers. As a streamlined means of packaging applications and deploying them in a standardized manner, it enables support for different varieties of infrastructure. This is also handy for operators who want to get the most out of their system, as containers will run on any host that supports them.

Image Backups Enabled by Default

Due to the widely supported formatting of container framework, keeping backups that are compatible with your setup is easier than ever. This is largely because container images behave like templates that can be used to create other containers, meaning the same image can be used to spawn and run more of them. This is achieved through the integration of application dependencies supported by the container formatting.

High Value for Enterprises: The Nutanix Story

Investing in the right container management software for your needs is an ideal way to maximize growth and cost management potential with relatively low risk. This is largely due to the fact that deploying such technology occurs when it is in in-pilot mode, meaning it is open to testing and continued tweaks.

That said, perhaps it’s a leap that you’re not quite ready to make. If so, consider the recent changes Nutanix has undergone. Their new desire to go deeper with key channel partners on assisting customers with cloud-based work stems from a complete about-face from their traditional way of operating. By focusing on its subscription business as more and more clients flock to cloud technology, they are better positioned in the market. From object storage and micro-segmentation via network products to fliers and storage, their data plane has proven to be a trustworthy and readily available alternative, made possible by leading-edge container management software.

As an Elite Nutanix partner and 5-time Partner of the Year recipient, Zycom has worked very closely with Nutanix in Canada to pioneer this Hyper-Converged Infrastructure. Delivered as a managed hosted or HClaaS variant, it helps businesses shift to private cloud networking for considerably less than public cloud alternatives. The rapid time to market combined with lower risk enables enterprises to handle everything from design and sizing and ops automation to complete platform migrations with ease – meaning being cloud-ready doesn’t have to involve high costs or resource allocation.

Other Benefits

Container management software enables for simplified administration of hosting environments – even those that are inundated with traffic. This is achieved through operations automation, as the naked eye could never possibly keep up with rapid-fire changes. This gives a CMS a considerable advantage over VMs – the software can effectively think and react proactively on its own. Once again, the way data is packed into containers enables for lighter applications, increased interoperability, and more.

Want to learn more about whether CMS is the right choice for you? Reach out to our team at Zycom today if you’d like to discuss further. We’re excited to help you open the doors to a wealth of new, cloud-based potential through sheer automation and process refinement.

What is Autonomous Response and What Does it Mean for My Business

What is Autonomous Response, and What Does it Mean for My Business?

The Gartner Security & Risk Management Summit 2019, taking place in London this September, is set to host several future-facing representatives of the latest digital security innovations. Among them is Darktrace, one of the most trusted cyber AI companies in the world and the creator of Antigena, the world’s first autonomous response (AR) technology. It responds to threats in seconds and designed to behave very much like the human immune system, this technology fends off viruses and malicious invaders alike.

However, what do autonomous response and the onset of AI-assisted cybersecurity mean for your business? Let’s explore in further detail.

Under the Hood

Autonomous response technology is used by over 3,000 organizations around the world. It is capable of safeguarding cloud and hardwired networking, IoT, industrial systems, and standard fare such as email and company intranet. Using sophisticated AI and machine learning algorithms, it analyzes network data at scale, adapting processes based on billions of probability-based calculations. Autonomous Response is therefore designed to monitor and rectify threats even when you’re out of the office – in fact, it reacts every three seconds to a security risk somewhere in the world. All the work is carried out behind-the-scenes, so the technology won’t interfere with everyday operations, taking appropriate action without disrupting organizational effectiveness.

Use Cases

There are multiple instances where autonomous response can prove to be useful in safeguarding your operations. Let’s highlight some examples as specified by Darktrace themselves:

  • In external attacks on cloud servers, AR observes access attempts and identifies all source addresses. Even systematic attempts can be caught and neutralized before attacks are carried out. 
  • If a device downloads a suspicious executable containing advanced ransomware, AR will detect it and raise an alert. Should behaviour change over even a few seconds, Darktrace works to update alerts accordingly in real-time.
  • Internal data thefts with hidden devices siphoning data can also be detected, leading to the discovery through a physical process of elimination.
  • Self-modifying keylogger malware can be caught by AR by combining data on anomalous behaviours to reach an accurate conclusion, acting appropriately to mitigate the threat. 

Fighting Fire with Fire: Why AR Matters

As the first enterprise-grade form of autonomous response technology, Darktrace Antigena is paving the way forward. Such solutions are critical in fighting cyber-attacks that are executed at machine speed, impossible for humans to keep up with manually. Even detecting such threats is a bigger challenge than ever before. Your team won’t always be in the office, either – vacations, holidays and weekends aren’t always factored into the effectiveness of older digital security solutions. This is where autonomous response makes a tremendous impact – it’s always ready to react within seconds to malicious behaviour and notify you of the risk at hand. 

How Autonomous Response Can Help You

In an age when everything is always online, connected and software-based, protecting your assets, employees, and company growth may seem like a loftier challenge than anticipated. However, autonomous response truly is the cure for what ails you. Here are some situations the technology is specifically designed to address:

  • Addressing internal security flaws and data siphoning
  • Limited budgetary funding for a physical security workforce
  • Ensuring “smart” tech in your organization can’t be used as backdoors 
  • A need for a self-healing IP system that can keep pace with machine-speed hacks
  • Relying on multiple data points
  • Continuous observation and rectification of digital threats
  • Real-time reporting

We’ve only scratched the surface on what this technology is capable of, but in time, autonomous response technology will become the new standard in cybersecurity. To learn more about Darktrace, a Zycom partner, and its many benefits, contact our team today. We’re happy to help address your security concerns with an ideal, future-facing solution.

It’s time to take the fear out of networking.

4 Cost Control Strategies Conducive to Efficient Spending

4 Cost Control Strategies Conducive to Efficient Spending

An increasing number of businesses are making the jump to cloud-based networking solutions, but what many of them don’t anticipate is the “sticker shock” sensation accompanying some costs. At least, that’s what will happen if you haven’t optimized your processes to address spending. With this technology having increased in popularity over the past few years, even multi-cloud deployments are becoming quite common. With new innovations comes a need to understand how they work in order to address cost-related concerns.

With so many companies overspending when it comes to their cloud budgets, let’s go over some cost control strategies that are conducive to your goal of reducing operating costs while maximizing growth potential.

Asset Management

Cloud spend is often stemming from end-user departments, largely due to the fact that these services are quick and easy to set up with fewer IT-related hoops to jump through. However, that selling point becomes an Achilles’ heel of sorts if company-wide budgets struggle with the expense. Implementing an IT asset management system is one way to get around this, detecting when new services are active. This is made possible through Zycom and partners such as Darktrace, offering 100-percent visibility in addition to unprecedented cybersecurity. Having no more hidden costs means no more unexpected spend. 

Minimizing Idle Resources

A common directive when implementing cloud is to only upload data that you need to be accessed and handled by the service. However, many companies still veer towards packages that offer the maximum compute load rather than what they’ll actually use – it’s similar to purchasing a new smartphone and opting for the costliest, highest-capacity storage variant possible, “just in case.” You may only really need a fraction of that amount, which could lead to lower costs if you go with a lower-tier plan. Reuse your idle infrastructure and work towards cutting down on the amount of performance you pay for, but don’t fully utilize.
The Right Tools for the Job

There are multiple highly effective software solutions that can help to manage not only your network efficiency but also the costs associated with running it. They incorporate innovative, feature-rich toolsets that enable you to cut down on resource sprawl. There are also many services available that can help; Zycom’s IT health checks are one such example, performing best-practice analysis to address a cost-effective migration of workloads to the cloud. Above all else, you want tools that enable for thorough network assessments so you can keep a close eye on where spend is being allocated towards. You may also be interested in Nutanix’s Xi Beam or Virtual Instruments’ VirtualWisdom, both offering multi-cloud environments ensuring secure deployment and automation, leading to lower IT spend. 

Proactive Rightsizing

Growth forecasting is essential to balancing spend and innovation, contributing to growth and justification for switching to cloud in the first place. If you’re fully aware of the infrastructure needed over the course of the next year or two, use that data to your advantage and enact a little rightsizing. As the expression goes, slow and steady wins the race – except there’s no real race. You’re at no risk for gradually performing a cloud integration rather than going all-in – literally, in terms of spend. See how the new network is addressing the team’s needs and collaborate to determine whether sticking with the current pricing model is justified. You can always upgrade to a different plan a few years down the line if need be; by then, your company will be more accustomed to how cloud connectivity benefits everyday operations.  

Combined with reputable SaaS and WaaS services, Zycom is also proud to offer cloud migration services. With our assistance, you can reduce costs associated with migrating and managing cloud workloads through automation and impeccable support. To learn more, reach out to us today.

Hybrid Cloud Security

Security is of utmost importance for businesses. It’s crucial that you have proper technologies and practices put in place to protect your business from many things that can be detrimental to your productivity and success, such as downtime, cyber threats, and loss of data. This is particularly important when using a Hybrid Cloud as it uses a combination of on-premises, private and third-party cloud services. While there are many advantages to using a Hybrid Cloud, in order to maximize the benefits, it’s imperative to ensure proper security is put in place to avoid a breach.

What is Hybrid Cloud Security?

Hybrid Cloud Security can be defined as security measures that have been designed specifically for hybrid infrastructures. It offers protection of your applications, data and infrastructures across all aspects of a hybrid cloud – both the physical, virtual and cloud, as well as public and private clouds being used.

Why Is Hybrid Cloud Security Important?

Premium protection of data, applications, and infrastructure is imperative for all businesses using any type of cloud. For hybrid clouds, in particular, your environments are separate items that are connected to private and public clouds. As such, there are some unique challenges that come with hybrid clouds, such as:

  1. Data Protection
  2. Vendor Security

While your data is a separate entity, migrating between the different environments that make up a hybrid cloud means that you are still connected to other environments in some ways. As such, it’s crucial to limit data exposure through encryption, which can be done with hybrid cloud security.

Vendor security is also another challenge with hybrid clouds as such environments often include software and products from several vendors. The way such vendors test and manage their software and products can pose a risk if hybrid cloud security is not implemented.

Is Your Hybrid Cloud Strategy Secure?

There are many ways you can check to see if your hybrid cloud strategy is secure. The first is to determine whether or not your business has a detailed plan on how data will be transitioned to the cloud securely. If there is no plan, this is problem number one. It is vital to develop a plan that foresees the details of transitioning to a hybrid cloud so any discrepancies and concerns can be addressed before they impact your business.

If your organization does have a hybrid cloud strategy put in place, take time to analyze it. A superior hybrid cloud strategy must determine and have a plan for the following information:

  • Which applications can be moved directly to cloud-based servers
  • Which applications require customization or changes prior to migrating to the cloud
  • Which applications must be rewritten or migrated to a different cloud that is compatible
  • The destination for each asset
  • Risk assessment schedule

Additionally, you’ll want to analyze the hybrid cloud services you’re using. You must ensure the policies and compliance of your private cloud, public cloud and both cloud as one entity comply with your policies and requirements. It is also crucial to determine if your intellectual property on the hybrid cloud is protected.

Security tool compatibility is also a key component for a secure hybrid cloud strategy, as it enables the use of imperative security tools, such as antivirus software, IPS devices and firewalls.


Hybrid Cloud Security can be complicated to understand but it is mandatory to ensure the protection of your data, applications and infrastructures. Zycom is building out a hybrid cloud workshop that will provide you with valuable information about maintaining optimal security when using a hybrid cloud.




What Is the Next Technology That Gets Commoditized? 

The consumerization of IT started with the rapid adoption of the smart Tablet by companies like Apple with the iPad.  The corporate workforce wanted their IT to work with the ease of use they experienced with the iPad and one-click or one- touch applications.  Applications on demand from the free iTunes platform started a revolution of transforming how users interact, and rising expectations pressured IT to keep up.  That transformation has led to Shadow IT, where non-IT departments started consuming virtual server workload resources in the form of cloud and software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications. This was done to get around perceived hurdles in user experience and time to market.

The next round of technology is expected to change the digital world as we know it in many ways. They are ranging from advancements  in artificial intelligence to more secure cloud computing, private on-premise cloud cost parity, automated workloads and more. Here are the next technologies you might expect to get commoditized in the near future.

The Future of Server Technology

Servers are already highly commoditized, and vendors are now differentiating in terms of the application of form factors, out of band management tools, support and power consumption.  While highly optimized and infused with premium technologies that enable businesses to operate at superior levels, further consolidation is likely to occur. Though there is always room for advancement, and server-less computing is utopia, the in-house or on-premise servers are not going away.  They are, however, becoming more commoditized in terms of parity and performance expectations.

Traditional cloud environments for the most part still run virtual workloads and the hyperscale public cloud providers are still consuming physical servers at a high rate, based on pricing and availability.  As the software community develops next generation applications, they do so more by using containers and developing to a cloud native standard. This allows the freedom to ignore underlying operating systems and hardware.  A cloud native standard is particularly beneficial for developers as they’re able to focus their attention on their expertise, instead of worrying about the operating systems and servers, or the management and provisioning aspects.

The change to server-less technology is the result of developers beginning to divide applications into smaller micro-services, which can operate in lightweight containers. This change enables function-as-a-service (FaaS) computing, which is anticipated to replace the need for most traditional servers used today.  Make no mistake, servers are not going away, they are just moving to a more transparent and commoditized part of the IT stack.

What Corporate Desktops?

The landscape of the client workstation and notebooks in business has been under pressure for over a decade with consumer-grade devices abundant in the workplace.  Operating systems are moving to subscription models, applications started moving to subscription years ago, and next, we will see more of our devices application move to these models as well. and the device’s applications have typically run on are also moving to as-a-service models, like Desktop as a Service.

Supply and demand are going to determine the future of most end user clients.  Security, however, is still a battleground for innovation in the market, where vendors are now fighting over who has the most secured or the most ‘private’ device for conducting work.  When we think of the mobile worker, we see notebooks, tablets and smart phones, not only abundant on office floors but also in coffee shops, restaurants, fitness centres, subways, trains and planes.  The digital and social footprint of where our employees work and interact with others has changed rapidly.  What may save the corporate PC or notebook from further commoditization, is security.  To the vendor with the most robust secured end user productivity device will go the spoils.

The next desktop technology to be commoditized is the virtual desktop broker.  With more and more applications moving to browser SaaS based access, the need for fat clients like a PC or Notebook are becoming less and less a requirement.  Consumer tablets and even some smart phones are becoming good enough to run corporate applications on.  Even at Zycom we demonstrate using Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) technology on most smart phones…if we squint hard enough.  Look for more competition and more parity in the VDI broker solutions available in the near term.

Hypervisor is Next

Consolidation in the Data Centre can be largely attributed to the hypervisor. The hypervisor makes it possible to share server hardware with multiple applications, each running on their own operating systems.  This led to maximum utilization for server hardware investments and soon led to increased availability and resiliency of applications using hypervisor innovation.

Fast forward to 2019; multiple hypervisors are on the market with very similar features and price points.  Some hypervisors are very low cost, even free, and are enterprise-grade by today’s standards, and some are good enough.  VMware continues to enjoy the market share, but competition is shared, shifting that dominance away with the choice.

Hypervisors have become centric to most virtual server workloads and are a pre-requisite in most cases to migrating a workload to public cloud.  Hypervisor to cloud compatibility dominates discussions for hybrid cloud but no one ever asks how the public cloud giants are running their virtual workloads.  Why?  Because you do not need to know how in most cases.  For that reason, public cloud has driven the highest amount of hypervisor commoditization in the market.

Layer in hyper-converged or software-defined into the mix, and you see solutions that are hypervisor agnostic.  Why agnostic?  The market demands choice and one hypervisor over another may be very similar today, but customers still drive choice based on experience, training and a willingness to change.


For more information on how commoditized technologies can benefit your business, visit Zycom.

DELL EMC World 2019 Highlights of Announcements

Dell recently hosted one of their biggest events yet, Dell Technologies World, which highlighted several of their latest products, services and new enhancements that companies such as yours can begin to harness. The event was a four-day endeavour that allowed the more than 14,000 attendees to learn more about Dell Technologies’ and what they can do for their business and success. The even started with one of the most important changes, the collaboration of Microsoft, VMware and Dell Technologies coming together to unveil revolutionary technologies available all in one place.

For everyone who was unable to attend the event, we’ve created this article that highlights the most important announcements you should be aware of.

The Partner Program

Microsoft 365 and VMware’s Workspace ONE come together to incorporate Office 365’s cloud-based office productivity suite with the management platform. This allows for all management of Office 365 using Microsoft INtune and Azure Active Directory across all devices.

Unity XT Offers 2X The Speed

Dell EMC announced the launch of the next generation of its storage system, the NVME-Ready Unity XT. This storage system offers two times the speed than previous versions and is 67% faster than its closest competitor. It’s optimized for better data efficiency with up to 5:1 data reduction and is designed for a multi-cloud environment. The Unity XT provides easier, faster seamless and non-disruptive service for companies utilizing a cloud platform.

VMware Cloud on Dell EMC

Dell announced that their Technologies Cloud is a VMware Cloud on Dell EMC which offers a consumption-based management service for those using this infrastructure. The integration offers a combination of market-leading hyper-converged infrastructure features, including VMware Cloud Foundation, VxRail and VMware Cloud Stack.

With this change, Dell Technologies are able to deliver public cloud agility and simplicity for all on-premises workloads that are managed by Dell. It also offers bi-directional connection to public clouds for data portability and application through a hybrid cloud system.

Additionally, this is an extension of the VMware Cloud, which delivers a software-defined datacenter infrastructure, and hardware as a service to on-premises that have built-in technologies such as VeloCloud’s vSAN and San SD-WAN.

Seamless Connection to Public Clouds

Another major change made to Dell EMC Technologies is the launch of the Cloud Storage Services. This change enables seamless connection to public clouds while also delivering high-speed, low-latency connections from a public cloud directly to Isilon, PowerMax and Dell EMC Unity in their datacenter.

The Cloud Storage Services also provides automated Disaster Recovery as a DRaaS supporting PowerMax and Unity platforms and multi-cloud access for things such as tests/development and workload analytics.

Hybrid Cloud Platform

The new on-premises Dell Technologies Cloud Platforms that are built on hyper-converged infrastructure, is being hailed as the best hybrid cloud platform in the world. It provides both integrated cloud infrastructure and cloud management services for applications operating in both public and private cloud environments. The cloud platform is built to enhance flexibility that caters to a vast array of workload and performance requirements.

Rebranding of the PowerSwitch

Dell EMC rebranded their networking switches to offer exponential volumes of data traffic across the entire core, cloud and edge. PowerSwitch S5200-ON delivers 2.5X the performance of other models and includes a half-width option designed specifically for HCI (hyper-converged) environments. The PowerSwitch S5200-ON is available in both 12 and 24-port options, offering low density, top-of-the-line connectivity, and cost-effective automation and transformation of networks for storage, HCI implementations and storage.

Dell Technologies World released the new products and services, and enhancements you can harness to transform your business and to increase your success. From the Partner Program to Dell Technologies Cloud, the Cloud Storage Services and much more, these changes are revolutionary options all integrated into one.

Nutanix NEXT 2019 Conference Highlights: Revolutionary Changes for Businesses

Nutanix Next Conference provides hands-on learning with experts and a look at the latest Nutanix products. The conference discusses everything from datacentre modernization to multi-cloud and automation; applications and workloads, emerging technologies and more, providing attendees the upper hand on revolutionary business practices and technologies. For those of you who are unable to attend one of the many Nutanix Next Conferences being held over the course of this year, we’ve put together this article of the most important updates that can take your business to the next level.

Nutanix Mine Simplifies the Complexity of Enterprise Backup

Nutanix Mine is a new product launched by Nutanix that is designed to simplify the complexity of enterprise backup. It’s a revolutionary solution that integrates secondary storage operations with Nutanix’s Enterprise Cloud Platform. Nutanix Mine integrates with industry-leading backup vendors so businesses can easily manage their HCI environments and backup performances all from a single console, which reduces the cost and complexity of storage management.  At General Availability release both Veeam and HYCU options are supported.  There will be 3 form factors initially in Small, Medium and Scale out configurations with a varies number of storage heavy nodes and capacity and backup software licensing.

Important to note is that Nutanix customers will have a near similar backup GUI experience form Prism with all 3rd party backup software partners.

Additionally, Nutanix Mine provides companies with the option to have the best data software without the need for complicated configuration of standalone secondary storage solutions. The availability of products within the Nutanix toolset can be deployed and managed with a single click within the Prism solutions console.

Xi Leap Provides Data Recovery Services

Xi Leap now offers DR services for all enterprise workloads. This change simplifies the process of transforming existing applications into a hybrid cloud service. It offers automated DR processes for on-premises and within Xi Cloud processes, allowing for easy, automated experiences for both scenarios.   Xi Leap is being offered with 3 service levels offering different options for quantity of maintained recovery points and recovery time objectives to restart services.  Different storage capacities per VM and length of time for workloads to run each quarter are inclusive of the new service levels.

Xi Clusters Enhance Hybrid Cloud

A new product released by Nutanix that accentuates its hybrid cloud story is the Xi Clusters. It is designed to allow customers to harness the same feature set from on-premises Nutanix deployments with the added benefits of AWS EC2 Bare Metal instances giving added resiliency and adjacency. This is done by enabling customers to stand up new clusters on bare metal hardware, which provides more control of their consumption across varied workloads.   All of this is managed via Prism giving companies a single Hybrid Control Plane from which to operate in a Hybrid environment.  Customer using Nutanix Flow for workload security will be happy to see those security policies transferred to AWS EC2 instances for a seamless experience and insurance of a secure hybrid cloud infrastructure.

At the conference, the Nutanix Move workload migration tool was utilized to migrate workloads from on premise Nutanix infrastructure to AWS EC2 Bare Metal instances with only a few clicks of the mouse.

Xi Beam Improves Multi-Cloud Security

Building on Xi Beam’s Cloud Cost Control and Governance features, Nutanix released enhancements to Xi Beam’s security.

Changes made to the Xi Beam SaaS tool, allow cloud operation teams to enhance their multi-cloud security through real-time security processes. Xi Beam is designed to identify any critical weaknesses within the cloud infrastructure as soon as they happen and to execute specific actions of remediation. This allows for companies to fix any security risk prior to it impacting their business.

Changes to the Xi Frame Increase Flexibility

Nutanix announced at the Next Conference that Xi Frame (a cloud based Desktop as a Service VDI broker) received a significant update that provides customers with the ability to run VDI workloads not only in the cloud within AWS or Azure, but now native on-premises AHV based infrastructure.

The new on-premises supported deployments and workloads, which essentially includes any app, infrastructure, browser and storage, allows Xi Frame VDI sessions to run on-premises and maintain data compliance.

This now gives Nutanix customers further choice to run VDI workloads in the public cloud or on-premises with Citrix XenDesktop on AHV or ESXi, VMware Horizon View on ESXi and Xi Frame on Cloud or AHV.

ROBO Updates

To meet the need of more use cases, Nutanix has extended support for single node and dual node Remote Office/Branch Office solutions with hybrid and all-flash options.  These ROBO deployments are built from the same Nutanix software stack and are managed with the same Prism Element and Prism Central consoles that you are used to using in the datacentre. You can also enable async replication between ROBO clusters and central datacenters to provide additional levels of resiliency and can now also enable Nutanix Files on ROBO deployments.

Managed via Prism Central, Prism Pro becomes a requirement to perform centralized upgrades on ROBO based nodes.  You can also use a combination of Calm and Prism Centrals Image Management capability to control application deployment and updates across ROBO sites.

Nutanix Era

The Nutanix Era (Database as a Service) services have been enhanced to provide seamless one-click provisioning of database engines (including SQL and Oracle), database catalogues and database recovery SLAs.  Also enhanced are easy to manage copy data management (CDM) using Time Machine, one-click cloning and refresh and one-click backup.

At the conference an Oracle RAC 4-node database infrastructure was auto provisioned to best practices in minutes utilizing Era and Calm templates.

More Hardware Options

A significant announcement made at the Next Conference is the availability of new hardware options. Nutanix customers can enjoy newly announced appliances from Intel, HPE, Inspur, and Fujitsu, as well as support for any Intel Optane SSD and AMD EPYC processors.

As Hyperconverged use cases expand – Nutanix Files (CIFS and NFS solution) and Nutanix Buckets (Object Storage solution) provide Nutanix integrated examples – so does the need for deeper storage across fewer nodes.  Through leveraging hardware choice, customers can drive up to 80TB of HDD (10 x 8TB) on a single node and a total RAW capacity of 92TB (24 x 3.8TB SSD) of high-performance flash.

The HPE partnership announcement is a different appliance partnership for Nutanix, unlike Dell and Lenovo whom OEM Nutanix software.  With HPE, Nutanix is OEM’ing HPE server hardware as another option named DX to Super Micro’s NX named appliances.  For existing HPE customers that enjoy ProLiant servers this is welcomed news knowing they can now run Nutanix software on their preferred hardware vendor.

From the emerging technologies and enhancements made to existing ones to modernized datacentres; from multi-cloud options and automation to new applications and workloads that enable the best practices for businesses, Nutanix’s latest products offer exciting new opportunities and solutions for businesses.

Microsoft Support and How It Relates to IT Managed Services

By choosing to outsource your IT management, you’re able to free up space for your in-house managers to dedicate their time on tasks that will grow your enterprise. Nearly all businesses are now opting to hire management services to further their company. Though, in order to harness the benefits of outsourcing, it’s imperative to find an IT managed service that aligns with your business standards, mission, and quality.

What are managed services?

Managed services is the practice of outsourcing tasks within your business to improve operations. Managed services have been used by enterprises since the beginning of the tech market. Originally, companies would choose outsourcing their services to gain access to the Internet and to rent server space so their business applications, such as their company website, could have a POP (point of presence) on the Internet. Since then, managed services have evolved to encompass every business tasks, from managing the hardware, operating system or applications on the server to overseeing business-to-business integrations and operations; from planning and processing transportation to marketing; from account management to customer service, and more. Managed services provide a vast array of solutions to relieve businesses of day-to-day operations that can be done off-site.

What are the benefits of managed services?

Outsourcing managed services enables your team members to invest their time focusing on the tasks that require their direct attention. It allows a third-party service to handle daily tasks, such as account management and customer service, without taking valuable team members away from the duties that are imperative to ensuring optimal day-to-day operations.

When you allow managed services to carry out certain responsibilities, your enterprise is able to advance as a result of the following benefits:

  • Prioritize support with the fastest response times for communication with your customers
  • Generate new business opportunities
  • Increase technical readiness
  • Solve complex IT challenges
  • Minimize downtime with in-depth support services
  • Increase productivity and performance
  • Reduce operational costs
  • Optimize processes, automation and workflow by removing unnecessary manual effort

Managed Services with Microsoft Support

Microsoft Support via help desk is a leading managed service that offers flexible support across all Microsoft technologies. Utilizing helpdesk and operational services frees up your staff of mundane daily tasks, such as responding to emails requesting a new password or answering phone calls where a customer needs help navigating the website. This allows them to devote their expertise to business operations that require their skillset, business operations that you hired specific people to oversee due to their experience. The services available provide you with a support plan that delivers superior services to your customers.

Additionally, Microsoft offers SharePoint Helpdesk App for businesses running O365. SharePoint can be used by both internal departments for communication with customers. It’s entirely supported on the hosted app to ensure your data never leaves your Office 365 tenant, which offers optimal security and protection of your business’ most valuable information. Integration is made easy with the Active Directory, and the app is compatible with all browsers and is fully integrated with services such as Skype, Yammer, MS Teams, MS Dynamics and more.

What are the benefits of Microsoft Support Services?

Microsoft Support includes premium services tailored to your business needs to maximize revenue and prioritize customer value. It enables a collaborative workspace that allows team members to work collectively to provide premium service. Tasks are able to be completed faster and with fewer distractions to your in-house IT operations due to the unique advantages of using Microsoft Support specifically:

  • Dedicated support with hands-on assistance
  • Training tailored to your business needs
  • Training courses available on a variety of topics
  • Flexible support across all Microsoft technologies
  • An assigned account manager and escalation management services
  • Self-service portable*
  • Create teams specific to specialty, department, location, etc.*
  • Collects complaints from social media channels and creates tickets for them*
  • Transform phone calls from customers and employees into tickets*
  • Routing algorithm to ensure tickets go to the correct team*
  • Adds closed tickets to a knowledge base for future reference*
  • Reporting*


* Services available with Sharepoint


Whether you are migrating, updating or planning a new solution for your business, managed services can help you achieve your business goals. Microsoft Support offers superior options that reduce unnecessary workload while maximizing customer support and value.

What’s Minimal Downtime and Disaster Recovery Worth to Your Business

When determining a budget for your company’s Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity plans, you must consider the impacts of infrastructure downtime. Understanding the costs associated with productivity loss, customer satisfaction concerns, employee morale, potential revenue loss and the possibility of losing clients will allow you to set a budget that protects your business.

Determining the Cost of Downtime

The most accurate way to determine the cost of downtime is to determine how many hours your company experienced downtime in a set period of time. Once you have collected the total hours of downtime, consider the number of offices and the number of employees you have, along with the average hourly salary. This will allow you to calculate the hourly cost of disruptions to business operations.

It’s imperative to consider all three factors – number of offices; number of employees, and average hourly salary – when determining the cost of downtime. An interruption to business continuity affects employees within your entire organization as they will be unable to access vital business applications which will contribute to a sizeable loss to productivity.

Determine Your Company’s Forbearance to Data Loss

The next step is to analyze your business’ compliance requirements and to compare them with the downtime tolerances as stated by the law. If your industry is in the healthcare, financial, legal or government industries, you will need to look through the regulatory requirements. HIPA and PIPEDA have implemented specific guidelines with regards to how company data must be stored and made available, and it is imperative to comply with these requirements to avoid the risk of legal complications.

Your company compliance policies on digital data protection will also help you understand your organization’s forbearance to data loss. These policies often state what data retention policies must be in place, and are key to protecting your company’s valuable information.

Additionally, all laws regarding file access controls, sharing controls and retention settings should be clearly defined in your compliance policies.

Determine Your Company’s Recovery Goals

Using the information collected from the two previous steps, determine recovery objectives that can be executed in the event of a disaster. These objectives will help you determine the necessary recovery procedures and timeframes to minimize downtime.

It’s crucial that your disaster recovery plan includes a Recovery Time Objective (RTO) and a Recovery Point Objective (RPO).  The RTO details the maximum time allotted to recover systems after a disaster event occurs, whereas the RPO pertains to the maximum permitted age of the data when recovering your operative system, or the maximum data loss recorded by time.

Importance of a Quality Disaster Recovery Plan

With a superior disaster recovery plan put in place, your company will experience minimal losses in revenue and productivity in the case of a disaster event occurring. The budget you allocate to your plan must be based on your company’s Recovery Time Objective (RTO) and the Recovery Point Objective (RPO) to ensure an optimal plan of action to minimizing the impacts of downtime, and the risk of legal and financial issues.

To learn more about determining the risks associated with your IT infrastructure crashing and how to create a powerful disaster recovery plan, speak with a Zycom specialist today. Zycom offers premium services that enable your business to focus on key competencies, while our experts focus on ensuring a smooth transition of your data to the cloud.

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