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Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

What is Cloud Computing?

Think of Cloud Computing as a metaphor for the word Internet. The basic premise behind Cloud Computing is taking a utility approach to the IT services your business uses day to day. Services such as email hosting, file sharing, video conferencing, offsite backups, amongst many others can all be accessed through the Internet on a pay as you go model. For business, the advantages of Cloud Computing are immense. Not only can businesses of all sizes now appreciate enterprise class IT services, they can eliminate on-premise server hardware and the costs associated, plus add a disaster planning to their IT goalsSimply and easily! Cloud Computing provides enhanced IT services and an incredible value for small and medium sized business. Imagine complete, secure, reliable global access to all of your important information while only paying for the services that you need and use, this is Cloud Computing.

Is Cloud Computing only for large business?

Definitely not! The way IT services are being consumed is driving the demand for quality cloud solutions for businesses of all descriptions and sizes. Major software providers, including Microsoft, Google and Apple have created robust cloud solutions to appeal to the mass market. The security, reliability and feature set of these solutions offer an incredible value to all individuals and businesses alike. The massive demand for cloud-based online services has opened the door to a new competitive marketplace. This marketplace is where businesses of all sizes can benefit from an incredible opportunity to gain a competitive advantage and grow their business.

How does Cloud Computing effect my software licensing?

Since Cloud Computing is based on a pay per use model, software licensing is usually included with the service. In fact all of the services we provide come with full licensing for applications such as Microsoft Office, Windows Enterprise 7 and Intune Endpoint virus protection. With these types of services an added benefit is you will never need to purchase a full application or software upgrade ever again. As new versions are released it will become available to you at no additional charge.

How does Cloud Computing reduce my IT costs?

Cloud computing reduces your network hardware, computers, software and your overall IT expenses. This is because, with cloud computing, you only pay for what you use. This allows small companies to compete more effectively with some of the larger businesses, balancing the playing field. Making IT affordable with Cloud Computing, your small business can utilize the same tools that Fortune 100 companies use.

Are Cloud-Based Applications easy to use?

Yes, in fact most cloud-based applications use familiar, highly customizable web interfaces and common applications like Microsoft Office. Learning how to use cloud-based applications can be as easy as opening a web browser, visiting a website and collecting your email or sharing a document. Charvar offers full training to make your move to the cloud fun, easy and productive. Using common productivity applications and helping customers take full advantage of a mobile computing experience is our specialty.  

How safe is my data in the Cloud?

When choosing a cloud solution Charvar only affiliates with providers that adhere to the highest standards for data security, protection and privacy. When moving your services to the cloud a strong security policy should be implemented within your organization to assure passwords are protected and Internet based communications are fully encrypted. In todays world we are open to many different vulnerabilities that we need to be conscientious of at all times. Many security threats exist whether your information is on-premise or stored off-premise in the cloud. The best safeguard is to always protect your personal access codes and passwords.  Never leave your PC or mobile device logged in while your away and always protect your mobile devices with a passcode!  If you do ever suspect any suspicious activity report the issue to your service provider immediately.

Will Cloud Computing help with my disaster recovery planning?

Yes. Managing business continuity and recovery internally requires a dedicated focus so companies typically concentrate only on the most critical applications. Utilizing cloud environments allows organizations to safeguard their full IT infrastructure because the clouds inherent scalability integrates disaster recovery capabilities.

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Office 365

Is Office 365 Expensive?

Office 365 has a variety of plans to suit your business needs. Office 365 plans are designed to be very cost effective and offer a complete range of services to provide your business with the tools you need on a pay-as-you-go basis. Visit http://www.microsoft.com/en-ca/office365/compare-plans.aspx for a full list of services, plans and pricing for Canadian consumers.

Can I use my own domain name with Office 365?

Yes, you can have many domains associated with your Office 365 account. Charvar takes care of all of the domain and DNS requirements to direct your mail to the Office 365 service.

What is the difference between Office and Office 365?

Office is productivity software, for example Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook that is installed on your desktop or laptop computer. Office 365 is an online subscription service that provides email, shared calendars, the ability to create and edit documents online, instant messaging, web conferencing, including a public website for your business, and internal team sites. All services are accessible anywhere from nearly any device.

How Many users does Office 365 support?

Office 365 is scalable and can support everyone from a one-person business to companies with tens of thousands of users. Office 365 for small businesses (Plan P1) is best for companies with up to 25 employees and can accommodate up to 50 users. Office 365 midsized business and enterprise plans (E1-4) and kiosk plans (K1-K2) fit organizations ranging in size from a single employee to 50,000-plus users.

Is Office 365 Secure?

Microsoft takes security and your trust very seriously. Charvar only aligns with reputable companies that take an extreme measures to assure your security and privacy is protected. Please visit http://www.microsoft.com/en-ca/office365/trust-center.aspx  to learn more about Microsofts trust principles.

How long will it take to set my business up with Office 365?

Our process for integrating Office 365 within your organization is seamless and efficient. We do all of the planning and setup for you. We handle all of the data migration and work with you to deploy a fully functional system typically within a few hours..yes hours, not days!

END FAQ

Types of Cloud Computing

What is Private Cloud Computing?

Private cloud computing is where data is privately stored and accessed typically by a single organization. The private cloud infrastructure may exist on or off premise and may be managed internally by the organization or by a third party. The services offered by a private cloud are not available to the general public.

What is Public Cloud Computing?

Public cloud computing is where infrastructure is owned, and cloud services are hosted by a cloud services provider. These cloud services are available to the general public, and typically sold on a subscription based model. Access to public cloud services relies on the Internet and are typically governed by industry standard security policies and standards.

What is Hybrid Cloud Computing?

Hybrid cloud computing is a combination of private and public cloud services. An organization may host some if its applications in a private cloud and others on the public cloud. In a hybrid scenario the two clouds can be separate, or can share data securely between them. Hybrid clouds offer a significant amount of flexibility for more complex business environments and can address many specific business requirements involving data management, control and custom application hosting.

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Service Models

What is Infrastructure as a Service(Iaas)?

Infrastructure as a Service is defined as computer and networking equipment delivered as a service. An organization outsources the hardware equipment either physically or through virtualization to be used to support operations, including data storage, computer hardware, servers, and networking components. The IaaS service provider owns the equipment and is responsible for housing, running and maintaining it. The client typically pays on a utility basis for what is either what has been allocated or consumed.

What is Platform as a Service(Paas)?

Platform as a Service is defined as a computing platform being delivered as a service. This type of service provides an environment which is well suited for many types of application developers. PaaS offers a complete solution for complex development environments without organizations having to own the hardware and software layers for the creation, testing, and deployment of applications. With PaaS, applications can be deployed from a unified environment and access to programs and services can be easily accomplished through the Internet.

What is Software as a Service(Saas)?

Software as a Service is defined as a software delivery method that provides access to applications remotely, typically through a web browser and the Internet. SaaS provides a cost effective means for business to utilize software applications without the need for software licensing. SaaS is based on a subscription model and eliminates the need for organizations to purchase or manage their own hardware and software. SaaS service offerings are delivered through an Application Service Provider or ASP. An example is Microsoft with their Office 365 solution.

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