Are you tired of dealing with computer, technology, or cybersecurity issues? Slow internet? Email problems? My PC Techs is for you.
Our friendly and reliable team of IT experts come to your office at a fraction of the cost of an in-house IT department. We free up valuable time by helping with:
Computers and Servers
Email and Databases
Cloud, Software, and Website development
My PC Techs is a local, family owned IT firm trusted by hundreds of Phoenix area businesses just like yours for 20 years.
Do you need help when migrating your existing business email to Microsoft 365 (Formerly Office 365)? After your business has made the intelligent decision to switch email services from outdated POP3 and IMAP servers to Microsoft 365 and Exchange, you’ll need to determine a quick and reliable method to complete the transition. The goal is to avoid any email downtime for your business, so an IT professional should be hired who can assist you with seamlessly migrating your entire company email services from an old email server to Microsoft 365.
Here are some of the many steps that an IT professional will be able to assist you with during the move:
Determining the best Microsoft 365 licenses for your organization based on your anticipated usage scenarios
Gaining access to your DNS host and performing tests to determine if records can be modified in a timely fashion
Configuring the initial Microsoft 365 account and user details and generating passwords and licenses
Figuring out email forwarding scenarios, distribution groups, and other factors in advance
Determine which method of migration you will want to use, such as cutover, staged, etc. and making sure that the chosen method will not result in any downtime for the organization’s email
Configuring SPAM filters
Modifying the domain records and pointing MX records
Performing the live migration (usually done over a weekend)
Copying over all emails and other Outlook items to the new accounts
Testing the ability to send/receive in the new accounts
Installing MS 365 software to user machines and devices and testing
Integrating other aspects of Microsoft 365 into the organization
There are a multitude of technical steps when moving your emails from an old email server such as GoDaddy, Gmail, Cpanel, an old web host, or other email services to Office 365 (Microsoft 365). Hiring an experienced IT professional to assist your business with the move can make everything easy on you, will be extremely effective and helpful, and will save your business time, money, and avoid potential downtime and errors with email performance in the future.
Migrating Email to Microsoft 365
my PC Techs has assisted hundreds of businesses with email migration from outdated servers to Office 365, now Microsoft 365, and Exchange Servers and can help you migrate and manage your Microsoft 365 accounts long after the migration is done. If you’d like help upgrading your email to MS 365 please give us a call.
In our previous blog we talked about the need to back up a variety of data and systems to protect your company’s most valuable resource, its’ data. But how, exactly, do you get that data back if it has been lost to a hardware or software malfunction, hacking, theft, server crash or even human error? Let’s take a look at different ways we can recover data that has been lost.
Four Data Recovery Methods
There are four main data recovery methods. Which of these you’ll need depends on many factors including, how was the data lost, do you have a working backup of the lost data, and whether or not the original equipment is still available.
Method One – Software File Recovery. File recovery, if previously enabled, is the easiest of the four data recovery methods. Many modern operating systems, such as Windows 10, can be configured to automatically save backup copies of files. This feature, called Previous Versions, creates a copy of a file and holds in a special backup storage area. In addition, server software such as Microsoft Exchange for example, have configurations where you can specify that backup emails should be retained for a certain period of days even after a user deletes them. Other software, such as Quickbooks or Microsoft Office, have features that automatically save or prompt you to save backup copies of databases and files each day. With a previously enabled file recovery feature setup in your software, restoring a lost file is sometimes as simple as right clicking on a folder to quickly browse through all files available for recovery.
Method Two – Restore from Backup. In some cases, restoring from backup is the only possible way to get your data back, especially in the event of theft or some types of hardware damage. Backup restoration is moderately difficult and there are two major factors that contribute to making restoration from backups so difficult. First, you must identify the method used to generate the backup and verify that you have a valid, recent backup containing the data you are looking for. Second, you must find a way to restore the data in a way that brings back data you need without destroying other working parts of the system in question. If everything lines up correctly meaning you have a recent, valid backup of the missing data, and you have the necessary equipment ready to restore it, restoring the data from backup can be accomplished quickly.
Method Three – Scanning for Lost Files. This is a highly advanced data recovery method and is only necessary when a backup isn’t available, file recovery is not enabled, but the original hardware is still working. With this method, various software tools, such as GetDataBack, are used to scan a hard drive and evaluate data fragments that have been lost but are still available to recover because they have not yet been overwritten. Unfortunately, this method is not guaranteed to recover lost data but has been known in some cases to help retrieve missing files.
Method Four – Clean Room Hard Drive Recovery. This is definitely the most advanced data recovery method and, sadly, is the last resort to restore missing data. This method is only necessary when all other methods have failed. File recovery was not setup, there are no recent backups, and scanning for lost files is unable to find any available files. This method is often the only way to recover data when a hard drive completely fails and a backup had not been made. In this method, the equipment is sent to a special processing lab where they attempt to physically extract data from a failed hard drive.
Preparing for Easy Data Recovery
As with everything in life, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The best way to make sure we can recover all of our data in the event of data loss is to plan ahead. Proper data disaster planning involves setting up and maintaining all of the software and equipment so that the previously outlined steps work as intended. It means that, while everything is working correctly, we must configure file recovery options in our software, make sure that our data backups are running on a daily basis and backing up all important data, and secure our hardware and backups from theft and damage.
Hiring a competent IT firm such as My PC Techs to protect your data, systems, databases and e-mail ensures that you’ll have technology experts on hand who can keep your backups and data secure. In addition to evaluation and configuring data backups and security, another part of the data recovery process is practicing recovery – even when recovery isn’t required. Making sure you can recover data on a regular basis ensures that, when the worst-case scenario hits, down time is minimized and access is restored quickly.
Data Recovery Help for Your Business
Give us a call today at 602-456-0150 and we’ll come to your business and show you how we can eliminate the worry of data loss by installing the perfect backup and recovery systems for you. We look forward to the opportunity to help!
Let’s face it, the most important asset your business has is data – without it, your business could be lost. Given that, it’s surprising how many businesses don’t do enough to protect this incredibly valuable asset. Whether your business is small or large, it is imperative to have a data backup and recovery strategy in place so you’re not scrambling to put something together after a data loss or breach occurs. With such a plan, you can have your systems backed up and running quickly even in a worst-case scenario.
Here at my PC Techs, data backup and recovery are just two of the many computer maintenance functions we perform for our clients, from both a prevention and recovery perspective. Today’s blog will deal with the various types of data backup, how they are different, and the need to maintain and update your data on an ongoing basis; our next post will deal with the recovery process.
Let’s go over a few terms before we get too far into the types of backups. First off, a data backup is simply a copy of all your business’ records and data, stored in a storage system that is separate from your regular business operating system. This could be in the cloud, an off-site storage facility, or in a separate, on-site location. These backups can take many forms depending on what you are backing up, how secure it needs to be and how quickly you may need to retrieve it in the event of a data loss, hardware failure or theft. With the proper system, you will be able to restore data to your business computers or servers quickly, so your business is equipped to continue operating seamlessly.
Even the most comprehensive data backup and recovery plan is useless, however, if you don’t back up the data frequently – if you suffer a data loss event and the last backup was a week or 10 days prior, you have just taken a giant step backward.
Types of Backup
There are four primary types of backup, each of which has its own specific benefits and levels of security. These types of backup are data; system; database; and e-mail. Let’s take a closer look at each of these types of backup and exactly what each of them protects.
A data backup is exactly what it sounds like – it makes copies of your business’ files from their desktops or work stations and assures that data and information your company needs to operate is secure and available. Data backups are a good general solution to keep your business up and running in case of a data loss or breach, but does not back up your operating system, databases, or e-mail, any of which could be lost in a hard drive failure. It does, however, give your employees access to all their work files, and the primary cause of data loss is human error – accidentally deleting a file.
While a data backup provides a baseline level of protection, a far more comprehensive solution is a system backup. This goes well beyond a standard data backup, saving operating systems, programs and settings as well. With a system backup, should you suffer from hardware failure or theft, a computer’s entire operating system can be restored including all the software and configurations. It also is an excellent tool to have in the event of a software upgrade: by constantly updating and saving your system settings, it allows you to implement changes in the system and know there is a reliable backup in place to protect you from crashes or accidental data loss. System updates are generally ran nightly and, in the event of a server with mirroring RAID drives, in real-time.
This is exactly what it sounds like – a copy of the back-end databases for your production software or servers. Any business that relies on a software solution to manage projects, accounting, or reaching out to clients or prospects on a regular basis should consider this type of backup. Like a system backup, this too is a “snapshot” backup that saves everything up to the moment of the last backup. With this type of backup, you also will have access to the backup to restore your database without affecting other system operations.
E-mail is an extremely important communication tool for modern business. Most businesses use email heavily all day long, both to respond to incoming messages, as well as searching previous messages to recall prior conversations. And e-mail data is lost more often than you think, but not from servers crashing or hard drives failing. The most common way e-mail in formation is lost is by human error: accidentally hitting the delete button on an e-mail message or contact. To protect against this, my PC Techs recommends backing up your e-mail so your contacts, messages, calendars and other vital information can be retrieved in case of either a system failure or human error.
Which Backup Option is Best for Your Company?
Obviously if your budget allows it, implementing all these backup options provides your business the greatest security. The cost of these services varies depending on the size of your network. If you are looking for computers experts who are capable of helping you setup and manage the correct backup solutions for your business at a fair price, you’ve come to the right place. my PC Techs has delivered expert IT solutions you can trust for over 15 years and we can help develop, install, and implement a data backup and recovery plan that is capable of handling virtually any event.
Backup Help for Your Business
Give us a call today at 602-456-0150 for a free systems evaluation and get recommendations for a custom data, system, database and/or e-mail backup plan. We look forward to the opportunity to help!
Hopefully this post can help you solve an issue if you’re experiencing a situation with no audio while connecting to a Windows 10 VM in Hyper-V, but audio is not passing through via RDP.
A client had a Hyper-V deployment on Server 2012 R2, hosting a Windows 7 Virtual Machine. They were using Remote Desktop via a Windows 10 client computer to connect to the Windows 7 VM. Within the RDP shortcut on the Windows 10 machine, they had several options checked under ‘local resources’, ‘configure remote audio settings’:
Remote audio playback, play on this computer was checked
Remote audio recording, record on this computer was checked
In addition, within the same RDP shortcut file were the following applied settings (edited with notepad):
From within the Hyper-V host, the VM had ‘allow enhanced session mode’ and ‘use enhanced session mode’ applied for both user and server.
Under these settings and while connecting to the Windows 7 Virtual Machine, audio pass-through via RDP was functional. The Windows 10 machine was able to RDP into the W7 VM and play audio files within the VM that would pass through to the local machine’s speakers.
The problem arose after performing a Windows Update that updated the Windows 7 VM to a Windows 10 VM. The update went smoothly and all application data and user data was preserved during the update process. The client was using the same RDP connection settings to connect to the new Windows 10 VM as described above. However, no audio was passed through the VM to the local machine. In fact, there was a red X shown on the speaker icon from within the VM in the taskbar, and upon hovering over the red X the message displayed was “No audio device” and “Code 45”.
Several troubleshooting steps were attempted, including all the following:
Verify on the local windows 10 machine that the following services were running and set to automatic startup: Windows Audio, Remote Desktop Services, Remote Desktop UserMode Port Redirector
Verify that all of the same services were running on the Hyper-V host server
Look for the ‘Remote Audio’ device from device manager on the Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V host system, which existed.
Attempt to uninstall, then re-install the ‘Remote Audio’ device on the Windows 10 VM, which failed.
Verify that all updates were applied to both the Hyper-V server and the Windows 10 Virtual Machine, which had no impact on the issue
On the server, looked at the Group Policy settings under Computer Configuration, Administrative Templates, Windows Components, Remote Desktop Session Host, Device and Resource Redirection and verified that “Limit audio playback quality” was set to “Enabled” and “Audio Quality” was set to “High”
SFC and DISM scans were ran within the Windows 10 VM to verify that no OS files were corrupt
The most unusual aspect of this issue was the fact that, when connecting to the Windows 10 Virtual Machine using the Hyper-V Manager, and using ‘Enhanced Session’, the remote audio played on the VM would work just fine and would transfer through for playback on the local machine. Since audio redirection worked just fine when connecting via the Hyper-V Manager, but not RDP, I was certain that it was a setting pertaining to the RDP that connection that was the source of the problem.
After some additional reading, we first thought that the VM was faulty, as it was initially setup as Generation 1 for Windows 7, whereas most recommend using Generation 2 for Windows 10. However, after several days of tweaking settings and testing, we finally found the true source of the issue.
The fix was found in the group policy “Enable Remote Desktop Protocol 8.0”. This setting was set to “Enabled” under the Windows 7 VM for whatever reason. After the update to Windows 10, the setting remained, and caused the audio redirection to fail. Changing this setting from “Enabled” to “Not Configured” followed by a reboot allowed audio redirection to work again. Finally, audio could be passed from the Windows 10 VM to the local Windows 10 machine for playback.
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