April 21, 2019

Antivirus Solutions

We’ve all heard it on the news.  There’s another virus or malware effecting millions of computers users around the world.  We’ve been advised to install or upgrade existing antivirus software; and scan our computers.

Exactly what is a virus or malware program?  And what damage can it cause?

A computer virus is much like a flu virus.  It starts in the host computer and then replicates itself to other computers.  This can be through email; shared files; or a local area network.

A malware program tries to appear as if it’s a normal program; you may see a new icon on your desktop; a new program listed in the Programs that are installed on your computer; or you may see a pop-up prompting you to take action.  In reality, this malware is running code in the background causing a variety of issues.

Both a virus or malware can cause slowness on your computer and local network; annoying pop-ups displayed on your desktop; loss of data; and countless hours in loss of productivity.  What starts with one computer can have a ripple effect and cause an entire office to stop functioning.

How can you protect and defend against these threats?  There are many software manufactures of antivirus and malware programs.  But how do you know which one is best?

Whether you have one computer or fifty, Zephyr Networks can assist you determine an antivirus solution that is best for you and your company.

The Google Drive Suite Of Google Apps Part 2 – 13 Premium Apps

Beyond allowing a company to store and access files from anywhere, Google Drive allows access to an amazing suite of Google Apps

This is the second part of a two-part blog focusing on the remote access potential of Google Drive and the variety of Google Apps available in the cloud. Zephyr Networks has seen first-hand with our clients that Google’s cloud-storage solution is a valuable resource for small to mid-sized businesses. Beyond allowing a company to store and access files from anywhere, the first 5 GB of cloud storage are free. What is even more impressive is that Google Drive allows access to an amazing suite of Google Apps, including full integration with third-party applications.

In Part 2 of this article, Zephyr Networks extends the list of productivity applications that work with Google Drive to include the Google Apps that have to be paid for on an ongoing basis. You can find the comprehensive list of all of the apps available, including those in the Beta-testing phase, at the Chrome Web Store. Zephyr Networks helps to guide our client companies in knowing what Google Apps makes the most sense for their business model and needs.

Part 1 of this article focused on 20 completely free Google Apps. Part 2 focuses on 13 Google Apps that need to be paid for based on usage rates, monthly subscriptions and premium plans. The majority of these paid apps are free to try, and some of the apps continue to be free if the usage rates remain beneath the pay threshold.

Part 2 – 13 Premium Google Apps

  1. HelloFax makes it easy to sign documents and send faxes online. Send and receive faxes. Sign documents and fill out forms. Price: Up to 5 fax pages per month free.
  2. SlideRocket creates stunning presentations. Save and share directly from Google Drive. Manage a library of presentations, slides and assets. Price: Lite is free; Pro is $24/month.
  3. Balsamiq Mockups lets you create, edit and share sketch-quality wireframes, all within Drive. Price: Full functionality starts at $5/month.
  4. Floorplanner gives you the tools to make floor plans fast. Recreate your home, garden or office with a library of objects to reshape, resize and rotate. Price: 1 project is free; 5 projects is $14.95/year.
  5. Conceptboard is an app for visual online collaboration using whiteboards. Price: Individual plans range from free to $9/month.
  6. MindMeister Create, edit and share mind maps. Plan projects, manage meetings and sketch out business plans online with partners and colleagues, all in real time. Price: Personal plan is $4.99/month.
  7. Smartsheet Project Management combines a familiar spreadsheet interface with automated workflows, sub-tasks, dependencies, and collaborative worksheets with interactive file sharing and notifications. Smartsheet Price: Paid plans start at $15.95/month.
  8. WeVideo makes video editing easy for everyone and accessible from anywhere. Features optional storyboard mode for quick and easy editing. Style your video with creative and professional themes. Price: Up to 15 min export is free; 1-hour export is $4.99/month.
  9. Zoho Writer is an online word processor that lets you access, edit and share your documents online. Features instant collaboration, inline commenting and chat facilities. Price: Personal plan is free; Standard plan is $3 per user/month.
  10. Zoho Sheet is an app to create and edit spreadsheets from anywhere. Share spreadsheets and collaborate in real time. Price: Personal plan is free; Standard plan is $3 per user/month.
  11. Zoho Show is an online tool for making powerful presentations. It allows users to collaborate on presentations and make remote presentations to clients. Price: Personal plan is free; Standard plan is $3 per user/month.
  12. Heap Note is a note-taking, task-managing, and task-scheduling app, all in one. Price: Up to 5 tables free; Premium plan is $1.99/month.
  13. PowToon is a video animation and presentation application. Create an animated video, and then convert it into an animated presentation. Price: Monthly plans start at $9/month.

The Google Drive Suite Of Google Apps Part 1 – 20 Free Apps

With a vast variety of Google Apps in the cloud, remote access can be taken to a new level of excellence

Zephyr Networks knows from experience that Google’s cloud-storage solution is a valuable resource for small to mid-sized businesses. Beyond allowing you to store and access your files from anywhere with the first 5 GB of cloud storage free, it also allows access to an amazing suite of Google Apps, including full integration with third-party applications. With the vast variety of Google Apps in the cloud, remote access has been taken to a new level of excellence.

In this two-part article, Zephyr Networks offers a list of productivity applications that work with Google Drive. You can find the comprehensive list of all of the apps available, including those in the Beta-testing phase, at the Chrome Web Store. Zephyr Networks helps to guide our client companies in knowing what Google Apps makes the most sense for their business model and needs.

Below is the first part of the article that covers the available free Google Apps offered in the Google Drive Suite of Applications. Part 1 focuses on 20 completely free Google Apps. Part 2 focuses on 13 Google Apps that need to be paid for based on usage rates, monthly subscriptions and premium plans.

Part 1 – 20 Free Google Apps

1. Google Docs Access, create, and edit old Google docs in Google Drive. Edit documents with collaborators, and see changes as they type. Price: Free.

2. Google Slides creates presentations with rich animations, drawings, transitions, themes, and more. Presentations are automatically saved and stored in Google Drive. Price: Free.

3. Google Sheets creates and shares spreadsheets. Then publish them publicly, share them with others, or keep them private. Price: Free.

4. Google Drawings builds diagrams, and creates flowcharts. Easily add them to other documents, or embed them on a website. Price: Free.

5. Google Forms creates online forms and surveys, and then check the results in a neatly organized spreadsheet. Share forms from a link, embed them on your website, or right inside an email. Price: Free.

6. Google Apps Script is a JavaScript cloud scripting language that provides easy ways to automate tasks, across Google products and third-party services, and build web applications. Price: Free.

7. RealtimeBoard is an easy to use whiteboard that helps you visualize and collaborate. With markup tools and mini-chats, work on your projects and discuss in real time. Price: Free.

8. Pixlr Express is a photo editor with nearly 250 effects, including borders, overlays, color adjustments, crop and rotation editors. Price: Free.

9. PicMonkey is a free photo editor with collage, touch-up, fonts, effects, filters, frames, and stickers. Price: Free.

10. draw.io. draw.io is a free diagramming application that enables you to draw flowcharts, network diagrams, wire framing and mockups, and more. Price: Free.

11. Pixlr Editor is a full-featured web-based photo editor. Tools include drawing, clone, sharpen and blur, filters and adjustments. Price: Free.

12. Gantter is an enterprise cloud-based project scheduling application. Easily import and open existing Microsoft Project files. Price: Free.

13. Marqueed is a collaboration tool to discuss and work on images and designs. Price: Free.

14. PDF Mergy provides a simple way to merge PDF files. You can either select the files you want to merge from you computer or drop them on the app using drag and drop. Price: Free.

15. Open Drive is a collective encyclopedia project based on cloud public files. It’s designed to provide free reusable contents. Price: Free.

16. Form+ provides an interface to create forms by just dragging and dropping components. Supports the creation of forms with a wide variety of input types. Price: Free.

17. Ultradox generate contracts, invoices and much more from Google Docs templates. Create personalized documents from your own templates by turning Google Docs into a template engine. Price: Free.

18. Presentation Remote enables you to use a smartphone as a remote control for presentations. Price: Free.

19. TwistedWave is a full-featured audio editor that allows you to edit audio files from your computer or Google Drive. Save in one of the many supported file formats with multiple export capabilities. Price: Free.

20. Revisu enables creative teams to share their designs, track versions, and collect feedback. Automatically keep collaborators in the loop whenever a new version is uploaded. Price: Free.

Orange County IT Services Provides Company Stability So You Can Work On Your Business, Not In Your Business

The key to Zephyr Networks approach to providing Orange County IT Services is stability. By ensuring that your company has the very best in information technology, system virtualization and network security, we give you the freedom to work on your business and not in your business. How many top executives have seen time and resources drained by network interruptions, data breaches, and poor technological planning? At Zephyr Networks, we truly believe that such challenges should be non-issues that no longer present problems or take up the time of our client companies.

By focusing on solutions that are both proactive and preventative, Zephyr Networks provides our clients with the freedom to do what they do best. After all, the point of going to work every day is not to work in your business, but to work on your business, being productive and profitable. Technology is supposed to make work easier. The very point of technological innovation is to improve your productivity and profitability. When IT issues get in the way of your core business, something clearly is not right and needs to be addressed. Zephyr Networks is designed to provide effective solutions to such problems.

The four-tiered approach of Zephyr Networks is at the very heart of why we do what we do so well. The beating core of this heart is setting the technological groundwork of consistent stability for our clients when it come to their IT needs. Like the consistency of a heartbeat, we want your company’s technology and networks and computer systems to operate consistently, effectively and efficiently. After ensuring stability, Zephyr Networks delivers ongoing maintenance and monitoring to help with business continuity. Business continuity is not merely an issue of what to do during a catastrophic event. Rather, business continuity is an ongoing day-to-day focus on the smooth and reliable operations of a company’sinformation technology, computer systems, and networks.

The third part of Zephyr Network’s four-tiered approach is like the armor a knight wears to protect the stability of his heart. Network security, cyber defense and contingency planning make up the defensive attributes of this armor. By making sure that your company is protected from data breaches, cyber criminals and casual hackers, Zephyr Networks prevents problems before they happen. The fourth part is about helping you do what you do best: Zephyr Networks helps you work on your business by keeping your computer systems up-to-date and making sure you remain on the cutting edge of technological updates. If there is an innovation that can help your company without consuming too much time or too many resources, Zephyr Networks wants you to have the freedom of knowledge to make such a choice.

Zephyr Networks understands that the focus of our work remains the IT stability and security of your company. By making sure that your technology base is strong, we help to give you the freedom to grow and improve your core business.  If you want to take your Orange County IT services to the next level of excellence, please contact Zephyr Networks today. To learn more about how we can help your company, call Zephyr toll free at (800) 884-7559 or fill out our handy contact form.