What Are Your Disaster Recovery SLA's?
When it comes to recovering data, faster is better. It does
not matter if your data was lost because of a power failure,
data corruption or a system crash, the result is the evil and
dreaded word "downtime". Service Level Agreements (SLA's) on
a guaranteed time for getting systems back up are under pressure.
Why? Your data usually grows. The bigger the database gets,
the longer it takes to get things back online. Or does it?
The traditional view of restoring data is obviously based on
tapes and tape drives. So people tend to throw a lot of money
toward bigger and faster drives. There is a cheaper solution
around this SLA problem though. Separate your 'active' from
'inactive' data, and replicate the active data in real-time to
another server. You could call this strategy 'Active Archiving'
or data replication. It really is worth looking into it, as per
server it's only about $2,500. Double-Take is the leading tool
in this field. Here are the specs and a 30-day eval:
Why iHateSpam Server Edition Is A Smash Hit
First, some smaller issues. We have created a special list server
(Forum) for admins that are testing this, or have already purchased
iHateSpam Server. Here is the List Charter with how to subscribe/unsub and what topics are discussed:
Second, we have expanded our special offer "Save Our Schools From
[email protected]" also to Universities. These organizations are now eligible
for deep discounts.
Third, if you thought that Exchange 2003 has an 'Anti-spam tool',
well, listen to what Windows Guru Paul Thurrott has to say: "With
Exchange 2003, Microsoft is adding a weak blacklist feature that
you must constantly update for it to be even remotely effective.
I find it insulting that Microsoft would even consider offering new
messaging solutions that include such meager anti-spam technologies."
We think that MS is being careful to not trigger the anti-monopoly
So, now why is the iHateSpam server version 'flying off the shelves'?
If you think you know all about spam filters, we urge you to read
on, it's not like those 8 other tools that you tried, and found
wanting. Or even the one you are running now in fact may not
really be up to the job. If this article seems a little harsher
than my usual tone, well it is. Because we HATE spam too, and the
time it demands, in users lost productivity and in admin time that
could be better spent on other things.
Consider these Exchange Administrator scenarios:
"We have filters in place, we use DNS Blackholes, another third
party product that is 'integrated' with the antivirus solution at
great expense, and we block IP's at the firewall, we use Outlook
Junk mail filters too, and WE STILL get spam!
"And, since I use all this filtering, I have an administrative
quarantine folder that I have to check for false positives--when
I can--between screaming emergencies, and sometime days after the
fact. We lose at least one WHOLE "Exchange-Administrator-Day" per
week, checking and forwarding so as not to miss some important
client email, "Eyeball filtering" the few false positives that are
there, wading through all that annoying and sometimes more and
more offensive junk."
So now you've basically done this: You've doubled your workload
having to check the quarantine folder, spent a ton of cash on some
integrated third party tool, not to mention time, checked out open
source gateways that took two weeks of admin time to 'sort out'
the scripts on, and your management and users and STILL are
inundated with spam. And still complain. Loudly.
Well many of you bought our iHateSpam client product to 'solve '
this dilemma corporately. We thank you, but all that does is keep
the users from screaming and adds to the workload of the guys who
maintain and update workstations. The admin and infrastructure
demands for maintaining your current filtering system is now
1/8th to 1/3rd of your week. Spammers and their tactics have
changed, and spam has grown exponentially. You think that perhaps
legislation will stop it? Last we checked there are plenty of
laws, and still plenty of crime.
Wading through spam is not the road to job security. In some places
there are internal politics and OS group wars in IT and "we've
always done it like this" but it's not working.
So you say "But we have a central quarantine mailbox/public folder
that ANYONE can check for false positives so the admin does not
have to!" Right. All umpteen users are going to browse through that
and, well, that's great if they don't have to work. The security
aspects of having your CFO's emails from your auditor bounce into
the 'public' quarantine folder don't even have to be explained.
And even in the central administrative quarantine scenario where
only the administrator has the folder, do ALL organizations WANT
the Exchange team reading the false positives? No. There is sensitive
data in your email, maybe about the Exchange team as above? [grin]
Well to answer the question posed in the first sentence of this
article, iHateSpam Server Edition SOLVES all of the above, in less
than an hour. No kidding, in less than the time it takes to read
your current admin/public quarantine folder, you can have this puppy
up and running--filtering ALL of your Exchange users mailboxes.
We didn't limit the number of mailboxes you can filter on the eval
copy. We've thrown 30,000 spams an hour at it and it swallowed
them all. It scales. It won't hurt your server or even load it
down processing spam. There is no service to add to a loaded box.
Each user gets his own quarantine folder solving the admin/privacy/security problem.
The user gets his or her own spam, and any RARE false positive
which the user then whitelists for his own mailbox regardless
of the admin. It's even simple enough for your less than computer
savvy users. No buttons to click, They can't break it. Incoming
quarantined spam doesn't set off the new mail notification. Every
so often user checks the folder: "yep it's all spam" CTRL-A, SHIFT
DELETE. Gone. That is the extent of training they need. Anything
that the user does blacklist because spammers change tactics and
things slip through, you can ensure, automatically, that it never
gets to the user's mailbox again. (Deleted off the server, upon arrival).
The iHateSpam Server filter engine will nail well over 90% out of
the box with default settings: no tweaking, no blacklist setups, no
rules definitions or "you-put-it-together" open source tools. The
iHateSpam engine DLL is tuned. Some people say Bayesian filters are
the best. We beg to differ. And if the sales are any indicator,
you'll like it. Quote from one of your Admin colleagues: "If they
install it, they'll want it, and most of all the USERS like it."
Try it. We've got some serious Artificial Intelligence in there,
and we update it via our Learning Network of spam fighter iHateSpam
clients, near 100,000 now, with our secure iHateSpam Server Edition
update server, often.
Then an admin can do what he does best: tech, go to meetings, fool
with your new wireless gadget :). Since you are an admin you like
to tweak things. If there is a setting, you can change it. If there
is checkbox that can be checked we know you will. It's adjustable
and flexible so you can with minor tweaks, adjust to new spammer
tactics globally. In this manner you can, from one place, via the
MMC console tweak the iHateSpam settings for even better than its
already stellar performance.
Next week's subject: False Positives and how they are affecting
your business. Especially YOU Financial Institutions, law firms,
CPA's, Consultants and Tax advisors. It's no secret that a lot
of spam is money and finance related. But so is your legitimate
email. Other spam filters and blacklists are stupid when it comes
to these. You get the picture. How much legitimate email does
not get to you? With us, it will.
Come see iHateSpam Server Edition at TechEd in booth 366, we'll be
throwing spam at it from far and wide, live, and you can SEE it work.
Download the 30 day fully functional unlimited users eval copy here:
Get More From Your Disk Storage with Sunbelt hIOmon
Are you struggling in these tough economic times to get the most
out of the disk storage that you've already got? Or maybe you've
been lucky to finally get a budget to buy some new disk storage?
In either case, maximizing the utilization of your disk storage
is a top priority. Questions like: "Is that SAN paying off?"
Since capacity consolidation can often breed performance bottlenecks, "best practices" for optimal disk storage utilization
involve a focus upon performance as well as capacity. With its
unique "focus on files", Sunbelt hIOmon File I/O Performance
Monitor enables you to measure and monitor disk I/O operations
at the file level so that you can easily, quickly and precisely
identify (as just one example) your specific "hot" files and
their respective performance.
Armed with an extensive set of file I/O performance metrics that
only Sunbelt hIOmon provides, you can continually verify that
those steps taken to maximize disk storage utilization (such as
moving files around within the storage hierarchy, SAN, NAS, etc.
to improve performance without spending IT dollars on new hardware
or by making best use of your newly purchased hardware) are indeed
of benefit. Moreover, you can substantiate benefits in terms of
actual performance metrics specific to your key files and their
Now available in the latest version, the Sunbelt hIOmon Command-Line-Interface (CLI) support has been significantly enhanced to
allow for real-time file I/O operation performance metrics (for
both files and devices) to be displayed based upon a sorted order
that you can specify. With more than thirty (30) performance
metric sort options supported, you can now quickly and easily
determine your particular 'Top Ten List' of files based upon
your specific metric of interest and all in real-time.
Get your eval here: