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Business datacentre hosting

Jolt web hosting established at Timico Newark datacentre

Jolt web hosting launched in the UK

My pal Matt Russell is, at the tender age of 30, a veteran of the web hosting industry. He is a successful self starter and has owned a number of businesses in the space. I got to know him when he set up some services at our Newark Datacentre when I was CTO there. In those days Matt was joint owner of WebHostingBuzz which as well as the UK and Europe (Amsterdam) had resources across the USA. Matt is now rebranding WebHostingBuzz.co.uk to Jolt web hosting.

He is doing this to help focus the business on UK and European markets. Most of the support resources of WHB are on this side of the pond so it made sense for him to put his efforts into his home market. Matt has been remarkably successful in building a fully automated and integrated hosting system that can easily be applied to different brands. He keeps the same back end infrastructure and support teams and just replaces the front end.

The fact that he makes use of a seriously high quality date centre resource as is the TImico facility just underlines the quality of his approach to service provision. Timico massively over provision their connectivity to the datacentre to ensure the best experience for their customers.

If you are looking for some cost effective and quality web hosting take a look at Jolt. Try them out for responsiveness.

I asked Matt for an elevator pitch for Jolt and he gave me this:

“Jolt web hosting provides 24×7 support via helpdesk and also real time live chat. best blend of latest hardware, timico’s network, low prices”

There you go. It’s nice to be able to help and support a business in your home town. Matt lives half a mile from me and the Morning Star pub is approximately half way between our two houses:)

Happy Chinese New Year

shey shey

Tref

Categories
Business hosting

Amusing superfast broadband in Leicestershire snippet

Superfast broadband in Leicestershire reaches rural parts, as far as we know.

Sasha of broadbandrating.com wrote a little news post about the roll out of superfast broadband in Leicestershire reaching rural areas this morning. She’s a good girl and an asset to the business.

pleskleicestershireI read the post and clicked on the project link:  http://superfastleicestershire.org.uk/ .

Nothing happened, or at least the white screen of the featured image hung around for a while. I checked my connection, which I normally do by accessing the BBC website – usually guaranteed to load like lightening.

rain stop play at headingleyThe BBC loaded like lightening and informed me that the start of the England v New Zealand Headingley Test was delayed due to rain. Not surprised. The cats and dogs have been knocking frantically at the office window here in Lincoln.

 

plesk superfast broadband in leicestershireHaving waited maybe a minute or two for the website not to load the following image screenshot appeared. Ooo. Interesting I thought. Plesk. Ironic chipped in Sasha. Ya gotta laugh really. No gloating though, Happens to us all from time to time.

Hopefully neither the http://superfastleicestershire.org.uk/ website and the cricket will have too much delay. Leicestershire will have all these folk seeing the publicity clamouring to visit their site.

Yorkshire, together with the rest of the country, will have millions of cricket fans eager to see play begin. At least those at the ground can take shelter in the bar.

Yorkshire weather forecastJust as a final bit of community service I’ve looked up the weather forecast for Leeds for the next five days, ie the length of the test match. Today not looking too great but Saturday and Sunday looking ok. Unfortunately Monday and Tuesday back to looking distinctly dodgy.

We have a cricketer in the Davies family and he has games coming up on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. In Lincoln but I imagine the weather will be simlar. Maybe get two out of three in. Two out of three aint bad, as Meatloaf would have it.

Categories
Business hosting social networking

Website seems to be down – how am I supposed to book a train ticket @VirginTrains_EC

Virgin East Coast website must be affected by the wind

You see before you the words of a disappointed man. I have some trips coming up and thought I’d just pop on the Virgin East Coast website to check out the schedules and pricing.

To my annoyance I was unable to access it. Darn Ja.net I thought to myself. Then I tried from my mobile and also a few other sites – this one for example. No problemo so not ja.net after all (sorry Rob Evans).

There’s been a lot of wind today. My pal Rob was delayed because wind had blown some plastic sheeting onto the overhead electric cables somewhere near St Neots. The hazards of modern train travel eh? I thought maybe the website was similarly affected. Or maybe lots of people were trying to access the website to check if their train was running. Wouldn’t surprise me.

I knew what to do. I looked up the Virgin East Coast titter account. It goes by the handle @VirginTrains_EC. Amazingly the last tweet from this account was on February 28th:

https://twitter.com/VirginTrains_EC/status/571822158189617152

virgin east coast twitterI insert a screenshot for your general information. Looks like they must have had a flurry of followers when they set up the account but they will all now be disappointed.

Seems a remarkable oversight on the part of @VirginTrains_EC. The old @eastcoastuk account seems to have had all it’s content removed.

I have nothing else to say really. I was motivated to write this post because I didn’t think it was a particularly well thought out social media plan on the part of Virgin East Coast.

Now that I’ve written all this the website is back up. Winds must have dropped. It’s too late though. Having gone to the effort I’m leaving the post as is. I await with interest to see what improvements Virgin have to offer. So far all they seem to have done is delay when breakfast is served on the 07.20. Instead of dishing it out as soon as we leave Lincoln I now have to wait until Newak. Also it was overcooked the last time I had it. Ah well.

I wonder if they will notice this post? It gets tweeted.

Hasta la vista baby.

Footnote. Hey…

virgin east coast website

Categories
Business hosting

Bandwidth limit exceeded

Bandwidth limit exceeded message on Peel Swimming pool website.

Regular readers will know I’m on holiday – this week its Peel in the Isle of Man. When one is on holiday one goes for bracing walks along the Coastal Path and relaxing strolls around the harbour and castle. One also has multiple cups of tea in favourite caffs and quite possibly a dip in the sea. This week it’s too cold to swim in the sea so I thought I’d check out the local pool. Unfortunately their website is down and shows only the following message “bandwidth limit exceeded”.

This is rare but not totally unusual. The slight eyebrow raiser here is that one imagine that Peel Swimming Pool is publicly owned and therefore unlikely to have a website hosted by a commercial entity. I can’t check because the website is unavailable – bandwidth limit exceeded! Maybe it’s a not for profit job.

Anyway I did a quick “who is” and it would seem that the domain name  westernswimmingpool.im is owned and managed by  Techcentre Limited  of Technology House  Woodbourne Lane, Douglas. IM1 3LJ. They, Techcentre, are a Microsoft Gold partner and fwiw I note use the same image library as Timico’s website (for years).

Wasn’t totally sure where this post was going but here it is. Techcentre are somewhat disingenuous in registering the domain name as their own. It means that the Western Swimming Pool in Peel are stuck with them for hosting unless they are happy to change domain names. In turn the swimming pool itself is naive in allowing this to happen.

I can’t believe that techcentre would let the website get to situation where the “bandwidth limit exceeded” message comes up. There’s something else going on. The message has moved on to

Internal Server Error

The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was unable to complete your request.

Please contact the server administrator at webma[email protected] to inform them of the time this error occurred, and the actions you performed just before this error.

More information about this error may be available in the server error log.

Additionally, a 500 Internal Server Error error was encountered while trying to use an ErrorDocument to handle the request.

 

At this rate I’m going to have to nip up to the pool to find out if it is open to the public this afternoon. No harm I suppose. I’m on holiday. There is no rush.

Another  internet bandwidth related post here

Categories
Business Cloud hosting UC voip xaas

Hosted VoIP/UCaaS is Going Upmarket!

Trefor.net welcomes VoIP Week contributor Huw Rees, Senior Vice President of Business Development at 8×8

The hosted VoIP/UCaaS (aka cloud communications) market is growing strongly in the US and it seems that the UK market is not far behind. According to Frost and Sullivan, Gartner, and others, US CAGR is somewhere around the 25%+ mark, and certainly the results from the few pure play publicly traded companies in this space seem to be consistent with these figures. So what is really driving this growth? What is really going on under the bonnet (or hood, for those of you in the US)?

What appears to be happening is that cloud communications is being adopted by much larger businesses than it was even two or three years ago. The early adopters for hosted PBX services were the very small businesses, typically less than 20 employees. In terms of IT, these businesses were generally unsophisticated and the owner could make the decision rapidly without asking a lot of detailed questions, especially when the provider would clearly save him/her money and often offered some kind of money-back guarantee. Thus, with nothing to lose, these small businesses signed up in significant numbers. Larger business were not so quick to jump on this bandwagon, however, as they needed clear answers to such questions as availability, reliability, feature set, scalability and — of course — compliance and security. Their questions in these areas were not easy to answer in the early roll out of these services, and unfortunately some of these items (especially compliance and security) are still not being properly addressed by many providers.
8x8 logo

As some of the vendors started to address these mid-market and even enterprise-level concerns, CIOs started to pay more attention. They began to see the clear benefits of a sophisticated, scalable service that they could subscribe to, effectively getting out of the telephone management business and concentrating their IT resources on projects that were critical to their business and part of the differentiation their business had in their markets (i.e., stop managing boxes in closets and start bringing real value to the business). Gradually at first, businesses of a few hundred employees signed up, followed by 500+, and now businesses significantly greater than 1000 employees subscribe to these services.

For the service provider, larger customers provide major benefits. For instance, they have more sophisticated IT teams, and so the ratio of support calls to deployed phones is reduced. Also, the acquisition cost is potentially less on a per-phone-deployed basis. And perhaps most importantly, the churn rate from larger customers is dramatically less, as larger businesses are generally more stable and therefore tend not to cease business with anywhere near the frequency of the very small businesses. This reduction in churn rate clearly benefits the service provider’s top line, as to grow revenue you must, of course, stem any revenue loss from defecting customers.

As we look forward to 2015, the trend of larger businesses moving to cloud-based communications will continue, to the point where the enterprise market will also start to adopt these services. Soon enough, it will not be uncommon for businesses with many thousands of employees — perhaps even tens of thousands of employees — to start subscribing, which will result in a booming business for the service providers that are truly ready to tackle such a scale.

VoIP Week Posts:

Categories
Business Cloud hosting

Chelsea Pensioners take cloud mainstream at Cloud Expo Europe

This morning I went to meet @natmorris at Cloud Expo at ExCel. More of what he is up to anon but a few things struck me about the exhibition.

First of all “cloud” has become seriously mainstream. It must have if three Chelsea Pensioners thought it worth a trip. Unless they thought they were going to something else? “Might as well take a look now that were ‘ere Albert”.

chelsea_pensionersSecondly I was amazed by

Categories
Business Cloud hosting

WHD.local event in London – free Samsung Galaxy Tab

Earlier this week Lonap agreed to promote a WHD.local event that is being held in London next week. It’s the baby brother of the big one in Germany in April. Lonap Director Will Hargrave is doing a very interesting talk that you should all go along to. Also there is a free lunch and free drinks at the post conference networking event.

The old adage has it that there is no such thing as a free lunch but on this occasion it needs to go further because they are also offering a free Samsung Galaxy Tab!!!!!????? wtfwtfwtf (that’s a NLA).

The only thing is you have to visit every booth on at the trade show and get a stamp on a card. So you do have to do something but in my mind that’s a gift horse you definitely should not look in the mouth. I’ve not looked to see who is exhibiting or how many there are (ok if it is hundreds of companies I’d look that horse in the mouth but I doubt there are).

Other than the fact that I am a Director of Lonap I have no vested interest in promoting WHD.local, and all Lonap is getting really is some exposure unless enough Lonap members sign up in which case we get a private room in which to have our own private lunch.

The reason I have posted this is because I’m not sure I’ve ever heard of a trade show giving each of its attendees a Tab before. Is this a first?

Click on this link if you want to go. LWGVWE4 – Click here to sign up for WHD.local 2013!

Also let me know if you do sign up. I’m not going to be there due to other commitments but if enough people get in touch I’ll arrange the private get together.

html of the official invite is linked to here – Mailing_LONAP_EN.  There’s some more photogenic stuff in there including a picture of Will. I couldn’t be bothered to work out how to embed it so you just get the link.

Hasta la vista baby…

PS my signoffs are getting somewhat off the wall. I must be going crazy hahahahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaa.

Categories
Cloud End User gadgets hosting

Bluetooth speakers for your mobile & consumer personal clouds Western Digital

Bose bluetooth speaker

bose_bluetoothIt was chucking it down on Saturday so no golf and there was no rugby on so I wandered down to Currys on Tritton Road in Lincoln for a bit of a browse. I wasn’t after anything in particular but found myself in front of a portable Bose speaker system that allowed you to hook your phone up using bluetooth. So I did.

The sound quality was mind blowing and it was really easy to get set up. I got chatting with a sales assistant and mentioned the fact that at £249 the price was a bit rich. “You’re paying for the label” he said so I asked him whether there were some equally good but cheaper systems where I would be just paying for the quality. He pointed me vaguely at a Sonos system so I went along to look at that one.

Standing in front of the Sonos I did a bluetooth scan and took a guess as to which was the right kit to hook up with. Playing Queen’s Another One Bites The Dust nothing seemed to be happening. Then I realised the sound was coming through a different Sony product a few feet away. Someone was standing in front of it talking to the sales guy so I whipped up the volume:)

samsung bluetoothThe Sonos didn’t work using bluetooth – it’s WiFi apparently. What struck me, apart from the fact that it was so easy to set up and the quality of the sound was the number of devices in the shop with bluetooth connections. The screen shot shows loads of Samsung TVs. I’m a bit of a luddite when it comes to TVs & simlar but was astonished to see how thin they are these days.

Wandering round the shop I also noticed they were pushing your own “Personal Cloud” from Western Digital. This looks like a solid state hard drive with a WiFi connection – no resiliency. It doesn’t matter. It recognises the fact that people need to store data away from their pc or mobile device. I’m still more comfortable with having lots of resiliency in a backup though I guess two WD devices would do the job. The Smart Home app is working brilliantly btw. I made a donation.

The fact that Currys was using the term cloud is pretty significant. It supports the whole move of operations into the cloud. It wouldn’t surprise me to see sales of Chromebooks shooting up this Christmas. It’s the way ahead.

PS might ask Santa for the Bose speaker for Christmas.

 

Categories
Business Cloud hosting

Meet Tom Moores – expert in cloud and hosting

tom mooresTom Moores is a new starter at Timico. He is a market specialist in cloud hosting and part of a wave of investment we are making in this space. It’s a pleasure to meet people who are driven to succeed and I look forward to working with Tom.

You will notice that Tom is holding the Network Operations guitar. Every now and again when I have a visitor to my office I take a picture of them with the guitar. Usually they can’t play it.

Tom can play the guitar. Looks like he is putting some soul into that song:)

People buy from people.

Welcome aboard Tom 🙂

Categories
Business Cloud hosting

Meet Colin Bell – Director of Hosting and Cloud Services

Colin Bell of TimicoNine days ago one of our customers dropped me an email saying he had read in the London financial news vehicle City AM about our appointment of Colin Bell as Director of Hosting and Cloud services. “Seems like a high level good recruit!” was his specific comment.

That customer, as the customer always is of course, right. Colin’s pedigree is as EMEA Sales Director for Rackspace and subsequently as Managing Director of business-critical managed hosting provider NetBenefit.

It’s really important if you want to succeed in business to be one of the best in your market. That means you have to have top people. It’s a joy to work with Colin and clearly he is already making an impact if customers are sending me emails patting us on the back.

Other than to say it’s nice to know we are able to attract more top talent into the business I’m not going to gush on any more about this. You will be able to see the effects of his appointment in the months and years ahead (on our march to global domination nyahahahahahahahaaaaa).

I will say that Colin likes motorbikes and keeps bees. People do business with people, not automatons. Drop me a line if you want to meet Colin or buy some hosting services (or a copy of my book:) ). Copy of press release here.

Ciao…

Categories
Business hosting internet piracy Regs

RLSLOG.net Suspended Following Universal Music Removal Request

Doing the rounds today is news of the removal of the RSLOG.net site. The italicised text is from their temporary holding page.

RLSLOG.net was suspended by its German hosting company after removal request from law firm representing Universal Music, although we never hosted any files or copyrighted data on our server. Our site is strictly informative.

We found a new host and moved our site, but it wasn’t powerful enough to handle the site.

We should be back tomorrow on more powerful server.

Check our forums in the meantime: rlstalk.net.”

Now I’ve never been on RSLOG.net. A quick “Google” tells me this about it:

Links. RSS | IRC | Contact · New releases | posts · AuTo.RLSLOG.net · NewTorrents.info · NTi forums · Leecher’s Lair · PornLeecher · Rapidshare King …

It doesn’t look like my kind of site. I then did another quick Google on “NewTorrents.info” and it came up with about 1,950,000 results. That’s a lot of sites promoting free availability of copyrighted material (presumably).

The Government was naive in the extreme to think that filtering websites would go anyway towards solving the problem of unlawful copyring infringement. It is a complete waste of time, effort and money that also establishes a very dangerous precedent.

If this ludicrous law somehow sticks I’d like to see the Government take on Google, Bing (Microsoft) et al and trefor.net.  We are all accessories to unlawful activity here.

Categories
Business Cloud hosting

School moves homework into cloud #digitalbritain #bbdf

This will fan the flames of the Final Third Campaign when I tell them that my kids school now provides a cloud based facility for them to deposit and retrieve files.  These files can be their completed homework, or anything. 

The school uses the facility to post notices, questionnaires, information about homework and social events.  Anything!

This is great. The service uses an external site called skillspace.com. Each child gets a 10MB allocation of space. Apart from my getting excited about this from a technical internetty perspective it also brings into stark focus the whole issue of Digital Britain and the Digital Divide – what ever you want to call it, as discussed at length by Gordon Brown this morning in his live broadcast.

Edited screenshot below.

another screenshot from school cloud storage space
another screenshot from school cloud storage space
screenshot from school cloud storage space
screenshot from school cloud storage space
Categories
datacentre Engineer H/W hosting

Containerised Storage

In the process of checking out our datacentre expansion options I have been meeting with a number of vendors. Today I met Verari Systems who manufacture high density blade based storage solutions and sell datacentres in a container. Yes that’s the same type of container you see hauled around on the back of trucks world-wide.

The beauty of containerised datacentres is the time to market. Four months from ordering you can be up and running with new capacity. You just need to supply the power and a secure place to put the container.

What impressed me was the quoted 11Petabytes of storage that Verari could achieve in a 100KWatt container designed to hold between 10 and 15 racks. This, for the mathematically challenged/lazy amongst us is in round terms the equivalent of eleven thousand Terrabyte PC hard drives.

Keeping the maths simple a rack can hold 42 servers (PCs) so ten racks would have the equivalent of 420 servers. The Veraris solution offers 26 x more density of storage than a PC. I have been buying Servers with 3Terrabytes of resilient storage – Verari still offeres 8 x the density.

Categories
Business hosting

CoLocation rack support

Companies with their own colocated racks might want to consider getting their set up audited, particularly if the rack has been managed by a third party.

Timico engineers went to Docklands yesterday to perform such an audit for a customer. Their rack was intended to be set up with a fully resilient server architecture. In fact, although, there were two redundant switches in the rack the ethernet connections from each server were connected into the same switch. Each switch had a single power supply. It is easy to see that a problem with a single power feed could have resulted in a total outage for this customer.

Our audit report will include the proposal that the equipment should be distributed across two locations to provide a genuine level of resiliency. Of course Timico could provide this.