A Philosophy to Work By
We would like to provide you with some information about terabyte.net® and the services we provide our customers. First and foremost terabyte.net® is a consulting and training company. By specializing in Windows-based networks, we are able to concentrate on our customers’ particular needs. We have never tried or claimed to be a “sure, what ever you want...” type of company. If a client needs the services of a product that we are not very familiar with, we will help them find support elsewhere. Our philosophy is that our customers are only well-served when we can give them the best information and service available for their needs. We know you can and will go elsewhere if our services are not up to your expectations.
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We provide networking services from running cable and installing switches, to installing and configuring PCs, Server, and entire networks. Furthermore, we provide a full range of training for users on how to use their systems' word processor, spreadsheet, and e-mail to printing to network printers, to connecting to one or more locations on the network, and to PC-based faxing. The level of training on network usage is at the discretion of management of each individual company.

When consulting with customers on their needs, we follow a several step process to make sure the customer gets what they need. These steps are:


1. Determine exactly what their needs are;
2. Determine which vendor(s) can fill those needs;
3. Help the customer acquire the product;
4. Install the product;
5. Train the user(s) on the new product.

This process helps insure the customer:


1. ...really has a need for a new product rather than needing to change the way they use their current product.
2. ...is comfortable with the recommended vendor(s).
3. ...gets the product promptly at a reasonable price.
4. ...has the product properly deployed.
5. ...has their users trained properly on how to use the product thus helping to avoid problems frequently associated with a lack of knowledge on a new product.

We have found that hardware generally has a useful life of two to three years before the task that the system was originally purchased for is in need of a major upgrade (meaning upgrades costing more than 33% to 50% of the cost of the original system). With that in mind, we make recommendations on hardware purchases based on projected needs of 12 to 18 months down the road, thus keeping upgrade costs to a minimum and perhaps prolonging usefulness of the system. We will not, however, make recommendations based on projected needs of 36 months down the road because the cost of current technology will continue to drop as time goes on. For example, if you foresee needing 2TB of hard disk space within 18 months but only require 500GB today, our recommendation would be to purchase a 1TB drive today and add another in 18 months since a larger drive 18 months from now is likely to cost far less then than it does today, even when you factor in the cost of labor to install the new drive.
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We understand that our clients may have confidential and proprietary information and as such will consider non-disclosure agreements upon request. 

Dealer Authorization

As we said earlier, we are a service company first and foremost; however, we are an authorized dealer for many of today'ws leading hardware and software companies. We have been a Microsoft Partner since the 1990's.  For those vendors that require additional authorization, such as Xerox, we are vendor authorized where necessary or will work to find a partner to help you source your required equipment.

You may notice there are some major players missing from our Select list. Many of those companies require dealers to sell a minimum of $x/year of their product. Since our business relies on our reputation to make sound recommendations based on real need, becoming a dealer for any company that makes this requirement removes our objectivity. However, if we determine that you need a product from one of those vendors, we will happily make that recommendation and help you find a dealer for you to purchase that product.

There are also some companies we have chosen to stop doing business with because of problems with quality and/or customer service. If you happen to mention one of them we will be happy to discuss what problems we have had with that company in the past and recommend an alternative vendor.
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Final Requirements

We have some requirements of our customers. These requirements are for the protection of the customer's data. Our customers must:


1. Backup user data, system security information, and system setup information every day data is modified. This must be done on removable media such as an external portable hard drive and must be removed from the site daily.  The backup procedure should be automated and run at off-peak hours. terabyte.net® will not support customers who do not backup their data.

We also recommend that customers cross-copy data between systems on your network.  This would be like having all data on computer 'A' backed up to computer 'B' and vice versa.  If you are running Microsoft Windows Server 2003/2008 or XP Pro, Vista or Windows 7 Business this process is very simple and all the software necessary to do this is included in the operating system.  This is NO replacement for off-site backups; however, since no backup process is foolproof, this adds one more level of protection.

Customers must, however, understand that even though their data is backed up, there is no guarantee that their data can be retrieved and that removable media, while usually reliable, only provides an added security against data loss. In no way shall terabyte.net® or Terabyte Computers, Inc., their owners, officers, employees, and/or investors be responsible for loss of data in any way regardless of the device used to backup data.

One final note on backing up.  Customers considering Microsoft Windows Vista should understand that we do not consider the native Vista "backup" solution a viable backup solution for any customer.  We will be happy to discuss its shortcomings and limitations as well as alternatives; however, please be aware that alternatives can cost as much as $100 per system. 

2. Protect all equipment connected in any way to the customer’s network by equipment maintaining at least the minimum specifications of American Power Conversion’s (APC) Network power protection products. This equipment does not have to be manufactured by APC, only meet the minimum specifications of APC products including SmartUPS, BackUPS, and Network SurgeArrest devices. Computers must be on a UPS while accessories such as printers should be on surge suppressors or line conditioners.  Connected equipment includes, but is not limited to, computers, monitors, speakers, printers, external modems, phone lines, dumb terminals, serial lines running to dumb terminals, hubs, switches, firewalls, routers, print servers, and anything attached via network cable. Power protection equipment can cost as little as US$40 for high quality products.  terabyte.net® will not support customers who do not use this level of power protection.

Please note that no protection is perfect even when using high-end power protection it is still possible to have a system failure due to power problems.  terabyte.net® is not responsible for power-related problems even if the customer is using equipment at or above the recommended protection level.

3. Use only licensed software on their computer systems.  In general, you must own a license for each piece of software installed on each machine.  For example, if you use Microsoft Word 2003 in your office on 10 computers, you must own 10 licenses for Microsoft Word 2003.  These licenses can be either retail, OEM, or volume licenses (the kind you get when you buy more than one licenses at a time, normally at a discount, from the vendor but you do not get media, only a license granting the number of licenses).  If you are unsure about your licenses status, we will be more than happy to help you determine what you own and what you may need to purchase.  terabyte.net® will not service or support customers using unlicensed software. 

4. Use a hardware-based firewall/NAT device between their private LAN and the public Internet.  High-quality NAT devices, like Cisco's RV082 which includes Stateful Packet Inspection capabilities, can be purchased for <US$300 while higher end products, such as Cisco's ASA-5500 business-class firewalls, start at ~US$800.  terabyte.net® will not service or support customers who do not use a hardware-based firewall/NAT device.

Please note that no firewall is perfect.  Open ports may expose one or more systems to external risks.  Furthermore, if a defect is found in the firewall's software that may also expose one or more systems to external risks.  terabyte.net® is not responsible for breaches, either internal or external, even if you are using a firewall at or above the recommended protection level.

5. Use a industry recognized anti-virus software to scan both disk based files and e-mail to scan for and prevent virus and worm infections.  An example of such protection would be Symantec Anti Virus Corporate Edition.  Customers should note that anti-virus software packages require frequent updating to keep virus definitions should at no time be more than one (1) day old and that yearly subscriptions will be required to keep the virus definitions up to date.  terabyte.net® will not service or support customers who do not use industry recognized anti-virus software.

Please note that no antivirus product is perfect.  There is always a delay between detection and protection.  Customers are urged to use good judgment when opening e-mail attachments no matter the source and are urged to only download and install products from known, trusted sources.  terabyte.net® is not responsible for virus/worm infections even if the customer is using a recommended antivirus product with current definitions.

6. Provide us an encrypted remote access option to their systems.  Our preferred method is via Terminal Services to a Windows 2003 or 2008 Server or an XP Pro, Vista, or Windows 7 Business/Ultimate desktop (Terabyte does not support "Home" versions of Windows in a business environment).  We can also use an encrypted Symantec pcAnywhere or VNC using a VPN connection (VNC by default is not encrypted so the VPN connection will provide that protection level).  The ability to remotely access a customer's network greatly enhances our ability to support you in a quick and timely manner 24/7.

7. Have a patch/update management procedure in place.  terabyte.net® will be happy to manage your patches for you on a monthly or as-needed basis.  The vast majority of system breaches in the past have been to systems that have not been properly maintained to the latest security levels.  There are several patch management systems out there as well as Microsoft's own Automatic Updates.  We will be happy to work out a procedure with you that will keep you as safe as the current patches out there. 

8. Use anti-spyware / anti-adware products to protect from such malware.  Some products like SpyBot, Spywareblaster, and Windows Defender are available for free, while others like Malwarebytes require fees to use in a business.  We recommend that scans be done at least weekly.

In addition to those requirements, we strongly recommend that our customers make “disaster recovery” plans in the event of a catastrophic disaster. Disaster recovery plans should include plans to restore data onto backup systems in another location in the event that your primary location is rendered unusable by disaster. Furthermore, disaster recovery plans should include plans to obtain replacements for damaged or destroyed systems at your site when that site is still usable but equipment was damaged. Remember, water from something as simple a leaking roof or broken pipe can destroy computer systems. Look at it this way, if you do not have plans in place to obtain replacement equipment, how will that hurt your company?

Even though you may have insurance from an insurance company, they cannot cover the costs of losing customers and revenue if your systems are down for an extended period of time. It only makes sense to protect your investment. Rigid power protection and daily data backups routines are the only ways to help insure you can be back up and running in the shortest period of time if disaster strikes.
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Year 2000 Compliance

Finally, even though we are well past 1 January 2000, everyone must remember that just because a system was brought up to date and was y2k-compliant on 1 January 2000, that does not mean one cannot install a non-y2k compliant program after that date.  We will all have to be diligent in our continued efforts to ensure our systems remain y2k-complaint.  Many software products written before 1995, and even some after 1995, are not 2000-ready. This means that they are unable to handle the date requirements of the year 2000. This means that if you enter 00 as a date, some software programs understand this to be 1900, not 2000. Software must be modified or upgraded to accept 4-digit dates and users must be educated to use 4-digit dates. Remember, applications must be designed to be 2000-ready and your programmers must design them as such. Since the only thing stopping programmers from writing non-2000 ready software today is you, make sure they are writing 2000-ready software. While we will help our customers with this testing and identifying potential y2k problems, we are not responsible for identifying, considering, or correcting any Year 2000 deficiency or issues in any of your systems, or systems with which you interface, or software delivered by us.
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We hope this helps. It is always hard to define every service terabyte.net
® provides its customers. We are a small company specializing in one particular market. Our goal is to make sure our customers are happy. If they are not, we are out of business. If we can be of any assistance or you would like to discuss your computer needs with us, please do not hesitate to contact us.


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