John McAloney MBA, BSCS, MCP

Computers, Servers, Networks, Wireless
for Vero Beach, Sebastian, and the World



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Here are some real world, hands-on ways I have helped customers get the best return on their computer data sharing investments. Sometimes it has been with a Windows Server and sometimes with a non-server computer or Network Attached Storage acting as the server.
For a free, no obligation, on-site assessment of the best way to handle your business needs to centralize control of your computer data, call John at 772-913-5433.


Allied Brass: Move Server 2012 Terminal Services server from AWS to private dedicated server, including MultiUser QuickBooks Manufacturing and Wholesale. Setup Terminal Services in a Server 2012 Workgroup, user mode. Avoided the overhead of unused Active Directory.
Brandts Appliance Service: One Windows 2003 server, 2013-current, ten users. Recover very unstable Windows Server 2003 Domain Controller computer. Transition from Windows Active Directory to workgroup management while maintaining stable application server computer. Transition to Windows Server 2012 R2 RAID 5-capable as workgroup, with Remote Desktop Services to support offsite users. The server provides Remote Desktop services, application server service, and data backups. Use PPTP vpn for convenient, after hours server and workstation maintenance.
Calvary Chapel Merritt Island: One Windows 2003 Server in workgroup with Windows and MAC users, 2005-2009, fifteen users. The server provides application server, print server, and file server services for file sharing and data backups.
Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy: One Windows 2003 server, 2006-2008, ten users, Exchange Server. The server provides Exchange Server for multiple shared calendars, and file server services for file sharing and data backups.
Fifth Element Fire Protection: One Windows 2003 server Domain Controller, 2009-current, five users. The server provides file server services for file sharing and data backups. Use PPTP vpn for convenient, after hours server and workstation maintenance.
Mnemonics Incorporated: One Windows server 2000 Domain Controller, 1987-2004, 100+ users. RAID 5 and redundant power supplies. Transition from PLEXUS to DEC VAX and MicroVAX to Windows NT with Microsoft POP Mail Server to Windows 2000 as file server, print server, and Exchange Server.
Pisgah Pest Control: One Windows 2012 server, 2008-current, ten users. The server provides SmartBiz multi-user application server services, file server services, and workstation backups. Swap w2k server out and 2012 server in remotely with very little onsite support and no business interruption. Transition from Active Directory to workgroup control to reduce load on server and simplify user logins. Use site-to-site IPSEC vpn for convenient, after hours server and workstation maintenance.
Polylinks: One Windows Server 2003, 2009-2009, Domain Controller, Exchange Server with Kaspersky AV, FTP Server, one year, 10 Windows XP workstations. Worked with Server on Kaspersky issues, full wireless networking, and pc-based pbx.
TCM Sharing House: One Windows Server 2012, 2011-current, 11 Windows 7 and Windows 8 computers. Transition from XP Pro-based file and printer server computer to Windows server 2012 for more secure and granular file and folder access control. Develop Powershell script to check workstation computer data backup status. Use site-to-site IPSEC vpn for convenient, after hours server and workstation maintenance.
Transylvania Vocational Services:Four Windows 2003/2008 servers, 2009-2013, 25 W98/XP/W7 workstations. Transition from W2K server with two web and email servers to one RAID 5 W2003 server Domain Controller, one Terminal Services (thin client) and application server (2008), one backup Domain Controller + ftp server (2008), and one VMWARE virtual pc server. Several networked printers. Transition from internal mail servers to GoDaddy domain, email, and web hosting (significant savings and more stable). Transition to full Active Directory, all workstations as domain members, use group policy to enforce systems policies, use logon script to define desktops and shares access. Transition from clone workstations in dusty environment (had to manually clean frequently) to Wyse diskless and fanless thin clients running XP Pro hosted on VMWARE server. Use site-to-site IPSEC vpn for convenient, after hours server and workstation maintenance.
Western Carolina Tool & Mold:One Windows 2012 RAID 5 server, 2008-current, eight users. Transition from computer-based file server and Flex license server to Windows Server 2012-based file server and Flex license server to gain more secure and more flexible control of file and folder access. Replace server RAID 5 hard drives (tripled capacity) by imaging over a weekend without interrupting business. Use site-to-site IPSEC vpn for convenient, after hours server and workstation maintenance.

Servers handle all our emails, messages, web browsing-pretty much everything in the networked world. I have worked mostly with businesses that want to share data in an office environment.
Computer server hardware can range from an old computer with an IDE drive to redundant hot-swap power supplies and hot-swap RAID 5 SCSI or SAS drives. Computer server operating systems can range from Windows 7 Home or Pro (up to 20 users), to Windows- or LINUX-based internet web server with thousands of users.
The difference with a real server is granularity of access controls. Since WFW, non-server Windows has shared all-in or all-out, UNIX/Linux has very fine granularity of access control, as do Novell and DEC/PATHWORKS.
Windows Active Directory ties compatible computers very tight, security-wise. It controls user logins, it is scalable, and it manages access control over all compatible computers, so related network assets are accessible only thru the server security controls.