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Free upgrade for all existing CMO Cloud Platform Hosting Clients

This is a notice from our CMO Cloud Hosting Platform Department to say a big thank you to all of our existing clients.
From today, all clients can now experience unlimited email accounts, domains, and FTP Accounts. In addition to this, there is now 10 times as much Storage and Bandwidth for our Starter hosting package holders who have now been upgraded to our Standard package.
If you are interested in a having your own professional hosting package fully managed by our team of experts, please do not hesitate to contact us directly on (250) 562-0907 or click CMO Cloud Platform Hosting

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Maintaining Connections

Maintenance

At CMO, we see a wide variety of technological issues that affect the performance of computing equipment. Whether it’s a tablet that can’t receive email, or a server that’s failing to back up, nine times out of ten the problem could have been avoided if regular maintenance schedules had been kept.

It is understandable why maintenance gets neglected for IT equipment. Every day, we use computers and they do just what we need them to do. We can check our email, process documents, or update statuses on social media. Sometimes the computer freezes up but a simple restart fixes that.

Stop right there! If your car occasionally had no brakes would you continue to drive it?

The analogy between automobiles and computers is fitting. Both are complicated machines with multiple moving parts and components. All of these parts need to be maintained in order to keep the entire machine in good working order. By ignoring maintenance on your IT equipment, you are putting your data and your system in unnecessary jeopardy.

For businesses this is even more important. Failure of IT equipment can severely interrupt productivity and result in extended downtime. In today’s competitive market, such a situation is unacceptable and potentially damaging for a business’ reputation. In order to minimize any workflow interruptions, we schedule maintenance to occur during off-peak times so that you can reply on your IT equipment when you need it the most.

At CMO we are always here for you if the worst happens, but we would much rather help you maintain a healthy system than perform a disaster recovery on a failed one.

Please call in to arrange a maintenance call today.

CMO IT Services

(250) 562-0907

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Dell Venue 8 Tablets

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We have a new stock of Dell Venue 8 Tablets that come fully loaded and are business ready. These great 8 inch tablets come with a full version of Windows 8 and an activated copy of Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013. Come in to CMO and try out Windows 8 as it was designed to be used: on a sleek, modern touchscreen device.

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Laptop Overheating

fan error crop 3

Have you ever had to shut down your laptop because it was either too hot or its fan too noisy? Your laptop could be running the risk of overheating, which can be a danger to both the user and the system itself.

At CMO IT Services, it’s a problem which we help clients with all the time. Typically, there are two main reasons for a laptop to overheat: insufficient air is passing through the system to effectively reduce heat or the cooling system is not functioning correctly.

The first cause it fairly easy to check: locate the vents on the back and side of your laptop and insure that they are not covered during operation. It can happen easily if the laptop is placed on bed covers or even thick clothing instead of the recommended hard flat surface. Try to always allow for both the intake and exhaust vents to be free of obstruction whilst you use the laptop. If you have ever had your laptop shut itself down due to overheating this way, please bring it to us immediately to check for any thermal damage to your CPU which may have occurred. We will be able to ensure none of your data is lost and investigate the extent of any damage.

The second cause of overheating is not quite as easy to check for as it is caused by the malfunction of internal components, but if your laptop has ever shutdown unexpectedly while running on a hard flat surface, then you may be a victim of overheating. One thing to check is the operation of the fan: simply turn the laptop on and put your hand next the to the exhaust vest at the side to feel for any air movement. If you feel none after the laptop has been running for some time, please turn off the system and bring it in to CMO IT Services for further diagnosis. With the expert knowledge we possess, malfunctioning cooling systems can be repaired and so-called ‘broken’ laptops brought back to regular working order.

A special note for Apple Macbooks:

As Apple designs their laptops to be very sleek and slim, the internal components are more closely packed together and, as a result, are more susceptible to issues of overheating. In fact, almost all Macbook clients that we speak to bring up the subject of their machines ‘getting hot’. Of course, the above mentioned causes of overheating apply but we also recommend that Macbooks undergo regular cooling system maintenance checks in order to avoid heat migration damage and the possible system failure and data loss it leads to.

As with all complicated instruments and systems, prevention of damage is key. As IT experts, there is nothing more difficult for us then to have to let clients know that their data has been lost due to damage that could have been prevented. So if your laptop is feeling hotter these days, please do bring it in to us immediately and insure your data isn’t running the risk of being lost.

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Recent Microsoft Tech Support Scam Activity

The have been a large amount of Microsoft Tech support scam activity in the local area of the last 7 days.

 

The typical scenario is that the phone rings with a helpful Microsoft ’employee’ informing the recipient of the call that their computer system is compromised.

The ’employee’ then directs the computer owner to a website to download a program which allows them to access the computer.

After revealing fake virus results, the scammer requests a payment of, typically, $150 to clean everything up.

If the computer owner refuses,  the scammer deletes or encrypts data, holding it and the system hostage.

 

CMO Data Systems would like to publicly remind all end users that Microsoft will NEVER contact anyone directly regarding viruses on computers. Your personal data and settings should always be protected from outside attack. Giving anyone you don’t know access to your computer is a serious security risk.

Should you, or anyone you know, receive a call of this nature, CMO Data Systems recommends that you record the phone number and immediately hang up. Please report the number to the RCMP and bring in your system for a damage review to CMO Data Systems at 835 Victoria Street.

 

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Windows XP Support ends April 8th, 2014

XP support ends

 

After 12 years, support for Windows XP will end on April 8, 2014. There will be no more security updates or technical support for the Windows XP operating system.

Potential risks of staying with Windows XP

Running Windows XP SP3 in your environment after April 8, 2104 may expose you to potential risks, such as:

Security:

Without critical Windows XP security updates, your PC may become vulnerable to harmful viruses, spyware, and other malicious software which can steal or damage your business data and information. Anti-virus software will also not be able to fully protect you once Windows XP itself is unsupported.

Lack of Independent Software Vendor (ISV) Support:

Many software vendors will no longer support their products running on Windows XP as they are unable to receive Windows XP updates. For example, the new Office takes advantage of the modern Windows and will not run on Windows XP.

Hardware Manufacturer support:

Most PC hardware manufacturers will stop supporting Windows XP on existing and new hardware. This will also mean that drivers required to run Windows XP on new hardware may not be available.

– Sourced from the Microsoft Website here

What to do:

Any business still using Windows XP in any way should immediately arrange a meeting with one of our network experts about an efficient migration strategy. It must be stressed that anti-virus and security software will not be able to protect against attacks on an unsupported operating system. We strongly advise contacting us before support ends for Microsoft XP in April. Set up a meeting today on (250) 562-0907.

All home computer users are advised to bring in their XP machines to CMO, before the 8th of April, to safeguard data.

Our friendly staff can offer advice on migrating to a supported version of Windows, such as Windows 7 Professional.

Let us help you discover how your legacy software can still be run within a supported, safe operating system.

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Service Vs Sale

I get home, check my email, spend a few minutes dreaming over holiday deals to the Dominican, then it’s on to catch up with my favourite TV series. As I sit back I think: was my state-of-the-art Ultrabook really worth the price? I mean, it’s nice-looking and shiny and everything but…

How much of your current computer do you currently use every day?  As a new member of the team, I thought I would take the opportunity to share an experience which sheds some light on the service philosophy at CMO.

A gentleman came in to repair a computer that was clearly well beyond its service life. Put it this way: a floppy drive was mentioned once or twice! And so having explained that the repair for the machine might outweigh the cost of a new one, I gave him the option of purchasing a replacement from us.

At CMO we routinely carry quality Business Grade off lease computer equipment – computers that were designed to withstand the rigours of everyday use in demanding enterprise. The customer in question had a limited knowledge of computers in general, and not knowing really what he wanted, asked me:

“So is this a good computer?”

“Yes, it is,” I replied. “But what do you usually use your computer for?”

“Oh, you know, checking email and using the Internet and stuff.”

And at which point, I realized that I could sell him one of our laptops, but that it would definitely be too much machine for his needs. At CMO, we make a point of providing machines we feel confident in supporting. We simply see so many of the problems that can come from using consumer grade equipment and so don’t regularly stock it.  In other words, I had met an ethical business question: I could point the customer in the direction of a ‘use-appropriate’ computer elsewhere or I could just make a quick sale. Unsure of the direction to take, I asked my manager what to do. His answer was interesting:

“What do we usually do here?” he asked.

“Solve people’s computer problems,” I answered.

He raised his eyebrows to let me know that I had given myself the answer I needed. I came back to my customer and gave him an idea of the range of tablets or consumer grade machines that would be good for him. I also suggested a few places where he could try them out before he decided on what computer he needed.

It was then that I could realize the CMO philosophy. Here, it’s not so much about ‘moving product’ but about improving how clients can interact with technology. I gave my customer the information he needed to make a good decision regarding his new computer. I provided him with a valuable service.

So the next time a sales associate points you towards the most impressive model on their shop floor, you may want to ask yourself: ‘Is this really the computer that I need?’

If you don’t know the answer, or are not sure, CMO is always available to help you make an informed choice.

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