Ziptech January 2015 Newsletter v 1 1 2
Inside this January 2015 issue...
Ziptech Christmas Party Pics............Page
Our Staff Interview.....................Page
Rad’s Tech Tips and Mini’s News.........Page
Cloud App & Business Book of the Month..Page
Automated Sales and Marketing...........Page
Ziptech Supplier Focus..................Page
Welcome to 2015!
To celebrate the end of another great year Ziptech took to the seas for the annual Ziptech
Christmas Boat Party. A great night was had by all, here are some pics we took during our voyage:
Kunwar Singh joined Ziptech in November
2014 as a service support engineer. We
asked him a few questions about his
career and life outside work.
Hi Kunwar! Where did you used to work
before you joined Ziptech?
I used to work in hotels and had an
opportunity to work for quite a few
reputed chains like Crown Plaza, Hilton,
Thistle and Holiday Inns. I always
loved technology and enjoyed working in
customer service environment, and that’s
where I made a change and moved in to
IT. Prior to moving to Ziptech I worked
for an IT support company in Surrey.
Thank you so much Kunwar, and best of
luck to you and your wife for the New
Year, and your new arrival! We look
forward to seeing a picture of the new
baby in due course...
In the last staff trip of
Ziptech team went bowling. In a closely
fought match, Johnson Ma (second from
left in the picture below) managed to
score the highest. No one has yet owned
up to being last…
What are the most common queries are
issues that you hear from Ziptech
I think the most common ones are not
having access to their emails and slow
What do you like to do outside work?
I like working out in the gym, going for
a run, mediation and spending time with
What’s your favourite type of music?
I love lounge music with tranquil theme,
it makes me feel really peaceful.
What are you doing over the holidays?
I am going to be a daddy this Christmas,
so excited about that, will be spending
time with my wife and little baby.
What is your favourite food?
My favourite food: the food I am eating
at the time, as long as it is spicy and
Where are you planning to go on holiday
I would love to go to Christmas market
in Germany, or to see northern lights in
Iceland but hopefully next year.
Santa brings quad
bikes and puppies!
Sally Urwin, who works on marketing and
admin tasks for Ziptech, had a
fantastic Christmas this year. She
lives on an isolated farm up in
Northumberland and Santa brought a new
quad bike to go round her sheep flock
(with preheated handlebars), plus a
Pomeranian puppy called Teddy. Teddy
has so far proved useless in herding
sheep, but does have his eye on their
Tell us something that you’re good at
I am good at cooking ,gardening and
little bit of DIY.
Where’s your favourite place in the
Iceland and Agra city of Taj Mahal,
that’s my home town.
Teddy the Pomeranian pup
and Sally’s brand new
Ziptech’s Technology feature of the month
Each month we feature practical cost effective technology you can use to make your business run more
efficiently and with less hassle...
What is a Virtual Machine?
Virtual machine (VM) technology is probably the
most important piece of computer technology
you’ve never heard of!
Virtual technology makes one computer act like
Imagine having one bigger physical “server box”
in your server room rather than lots of smaller
server boxes. It’s virtual technology that
allows you to run all these smaller servers on a
single bigger server box.
For the moment think of a server operating
system as just another computer program, albeit
a rather special one. Think of
it that way and you can see how
you could run lots of server
operating systems (or
applications) on one big physical
However as we know, a server
operating system is a very
special type of computer program.
It runs applications and manages
their complex interactions with
the server hardware, network, users, etc.
Because the operating system handles all this
“plumbing” then applications such as your
accounts and word processing don’t need to worry
about that type of thing.
However it needs some special technology to
allow multiple operating systems to run on a
single physical server box and fool each
operating system into thinking that it has its
own dedicated hardware. This technology is
known as virtual technology.
The operating system managing the big physical
server is known as the “host” and the extra
operating systems running on it are known as
So why would you want to use virtual machines?
Basically it saves you a lot of money and it’s
one of the underlying technologies that makes
the Cloud viable.
Imagine you had 5 physical servers neatly
stacked up in your server room. Now imagine
each one has 100 units of computing power – a
total of 500 units of computing power in your
server room. Remember that number.
At any one point in time each server will
probably only be running at about 10 units out
of its capacity of 100, because this is all the
applications need when they are trundling along
as normal. Just occasionally, for just a few
minutes, it will be called upon to do a bit more
work – say 70 units and then quickly back down
to its normal 10.
So why buy a servers with 100 units of computing
power when they only use 10 units most of the
time and just occasionally 70?
that peak capacity of 70 otherwise the server
will grind to a halt and crash. Plus you need
some spare capacity for growth in your business
and the extra demand that software upgrades are
likely to put on the server during its lifetime
– a 30 unit margin of safety.
The chances are that all 5 servers would never
be running at 70 units at the one time.
Averaged across all servers the maximum capacity
used at any one time might be around 150 units
out of the total capacity of 500 units. In
other words, at any point in time, only 30% of
the total capacity is used.
You don’t need me to tell you
how incredibly wasteful that
is. Virtual technology solves
the problem by replacing 5
small boxes with 1 big server
box running all the servers as
virtual servers so that there
is better capacity utilisation
and load balancing. The bigger
server does not need a capacity
of 500. 200-250 will almost
certainly be sufficient with a large margin of
Obviously that would save you a lot of money on
hardware, hardware maintenance and electricity.
On the other hand you spend more on the virtual
server technology and associated service.
There are 2 main providers of virtual technology
solutions – Microsoft, with a product called
Hyper-V and VMware, with a product called
But there are other benefits as well:
It allows you to run older operating systems
– sometimes new hardware will not run older
operating systems and applications, but they
can be run effectively as a virtual server.
It allows you to recover from a disaster
faster – provided the backup is done
correctly recovering a virtual server is much
faster than needing to rebuild from scratch.
Virtual machine technology makes the cloud
Without virtual technology the number of servers
required to run the Cloud would be massive. In
fact we would need so many servers that the
cloud just wouldn’t be viable.
That’s not how the cloud works. It runs on
virtual server technology, so we all share the
physical hardware running our cloud services.
Virtual server technology reduces the amount of
hardware (and electricity) used by the cloud by
perhaps 90%. Without virtual server technology
the cloud would be about 10 times more
expensive. In other words without virtual
server technology the cloud would not exist!
The problem is you need to be able to deal with
RAD’S TECH TIPS
Radwan Khader, Operations Director at Ziptech shares his latest tech tips and tricks.
How do you open a .dat file on your PC?
So you just received an email with an attachment but the extension on the file
is .DAT. What exactly is a .DAT file and how do you open it?
Many different programs use the .dat file extension. When you see a file on your
computer with this extension, all it really means is that the file contains some
type of computer data. There is really no way to tell what type of data the file
contains unless you open it. The problem is, unless you know where the file
originated from, the data contained within the .dat file will be hard to read. The
DAT file format is, in fact, one of the most common file formats in existence. It is
very often used to save attachments that have been sent from an Outlook email
One of the first things to do is to save the
file onto your computer. After that, change the
file extension to whatever you think it should
be. So for example, if you know it should be a
picture, change the extension to .jpeg. If you
know it’s a Word file, change it to .doc. You
can try opening it as a Media file within your
Windows Media Player. You can also try opening
it with the Notepad program to see if there are
any clues within the text to see what type of
file it should be.
An example of a .dat file
WARNING! Be VERY careful opening any attachments that come from an unknown source.
If you are at all unsure about this, please contact us at Ziptech and we will check
the files out for you first.
Mini the Ziptech dog gives you her pick of the recent news stories you may have missed.
What is replacing the
Google ReCaptcha test?
Gangnam Style music video
Facebook says “sorry” for
it’s Year in Review feature.
The annoying ReCaptcha test
is being replaced with a
simple box to tick next to
the words "I am not a
robot". Many computers are
now too good at deciphering
the text or numbers
presented by the ReCaptcha
test. The tick box is a
better way to eradicate
spamming of websites as
spam robots find it very
hard to replicate the
movement of a human hand
directing a mouse.
The surreal music video
for South Korean singer
Psy's Gangnam Style
exceeded YouTube's view
limit, prompting the site
to upgrade its counter.
YouTube said the video its most watched ever has been viewed more than
Facebook has apologised over
its Year in Review feature
after some users complained
about the images chosen to
sum up their 2014.The photo
album, includes photo
uploads and wall posts that
received the most "Likes"
over the past 12 months.
It has now changed the
maximum view limit to
or more than nine
Facebook say it is looking
at ways to improve the app
to prevent similar incidents
from happening again.
Each month we feature a great new FREE or low cost Cloud Application that you can start using
OwnerListens is a mobile application that allows business owners
to collect and respond to customer feedback in real-time.
If you own a customer facing business that faces the challenge of
clients leaving poor feedback on public forums like TripAdvisor
or Yelp, without giving you a chance to rectify your customer
service mistakes or put your side of the story, then OwnerListens
may be the best app of 2015.
If you’re a customer, and have a compliment or complaint for a
local business, you can use the app to send it directly to the
owner, and deliver your feedback. You remain anonymous, can be completely honest, and
the response from the business owner comes right back to your phone. There is now no
reason to post messages to public forums or sign up to the company website to just
The app pre-loads businesses nearby for quick access and allows you to find businesses
farther away by clicking the search icon. Left swipe on any place and select the "i"
icon to have access to each place's hours, phone number, website, directions and a map
view of their location. You can even check in to the location, or set a reminder to
leave feedback later.
For owners/managers, OwnerListens provides the opportunity to immediately address
problems as well as privately collect candid feedback in real-time. Effectively,
OwnerListens provides business owners with an opportunity to turn a negative review
into positive one. Whether on site or on the go, owners can receive and respond to
feedback via text and email no matter whether they are on site or not.
The app is free to customers, but businesses who wish to sign up to the service need to
pay a monthly fee. Go to ownerlistens.com
FEATURED BUSINESS BOOK OF THE MONTH
Built to Last, Successful Habits of Visionary Companies by James Collins
one of its top
They examined the companies
from their very beginnings to
the present day - as startups, as midsize companies,
and as large corporations.
authors then investigated
exceptional companies and
This book is filled with
many specific and detailed
examples of great
management. The examples are
also organised into a
framework of practical
concepts that can be applied
at all levels to other
the authors refute some
of the most well known
including the fact that
“great companies start
with a brilliant idea”.
No, actually most great
and visionary companies
started without any
This book took six years of
research to complete, and
the depth of information and
attention to detail shines
through. It is extremely
easy to pick out the reasons
for a company that fails to
become a success, and a
company that becomes truly
I would recommend this
book to anyone engaged in
developing and running a
business at any level. If
you want to design, build
and run a lasting
organisation this book
has some ideas and
insights worth exploring.
One of the best sections of
the book is the part where
Review by Sally Urwin, PA
at Ziptech Services.
STRICTLY ENTREPRENUERS ONLY
Each month we will feature a tested, proven, universally applicable online marketing technique you
can apply to increase your business now
SME Marketing Predictions for 2015
I’m fascinated by small business marketing - as small businesses have the opportunity to
be a lot more flexible and fast moving compared to the large corporate organisations.
When SMEs decide to adopt new strategies, the positive differences made to their
business can often be really dramatic.
I’ve been searching through the experts’ predictions for marketing trends for the next
year and I’ve brought you the definitive list of the new ideas and tools that small
businesses will be using in 2015.
The new buzz word is “transparency”. Due to the rise in social
media, customers can now ask difficult questions directly to
the businesses whose products and services they use. Customers
now have power and influence - just look at the damage that
poor reviews on Amazon or Trip Advisor can do to a business.
Some try to fight this, and concentrate their advertising on
creating “fictional” stories. Instead of this, embrace the
“transparency” trend and release all your accurate and real
time case studies onto the internet, post your testimonials,
your customer responses, and the time when you turned a
negative complaint into something positive. You will be
perceived as honest and above board, and as we all know,
consumers prefer to buy from someone they think they know and trust.
Another buzz word - “personalisation”. The world is far more
connected due to technology, but marketing is becoming more
localised, and is now more about the individual. Companies will
begin to decentralise and start giving at least the illusion of
individual customer service and support to each separate person.
Instead of releasing just one type of product or support, allow
the possibility of customisation to each consumer’s needs or
wants. Be flexible!
More funding opportunities - Dragon’s Den stalwart and investor James Caan has predicted
that in 2015, we will see the “new, savvier entrepreneur who looks to take financial
investment into their own hands”. Crowdfunding platforms have exploded with the likes
of Seedrs and social lending platform, Kickstarter, which act as the first point of call
for startup investment. Funding opportunities have diversified and small business owners
are making the most of these different opportunities, including the more traditional
paths of government support for small businesses.
New social media platforms, and new ways to buy. I know, I know, I can
hear you groaning from here. Just when you thought you had Twitter,
LinkedIn and Facebook sorted out! Social media will continue to have a
massive influence over consumer buying habits. Look out for the new
“buy” buttons on Twitter and Facebook, plus the growth of lesser known
social media platforms - YikYak.com is a new starter and is primarily
used by teenagers and students.
The continued growth of “Content Marketing”. This is a way to express
your business identity and is a must for all small businesses. Take your time to add
your opinion to trending topics, create insights and give out advice. It really does
For comments and your own small business marketing predictions, email Jim Simpson on
ZIPTECH CLIENT FOCUS
Check out how other great businesses just like yours are using smart technology to grow their business.
Aziz Corporation – January 9th
Services Ltd – January 8th
Shepperton Marina – January 6th
Ziptech Support Packages
Choose one of our IT Support
Packages to suit your business:
Ziptech Fully Managed
Total cover for all your business IT.
Website of the Month
January has rolled round, and with it,
the usual New Year resolutions of more
exercise and less chocolate. So here is
the best diet and fitness website we’ve
found. It’s completely free, and
incredibly easy to use - it has a huge
database of thousands of calorie counted
foods, plus hugely helpful forums, a
personalised exercise and food diary and
plenty of help and support. Good luck!
We really appreciate working with
great clients like you and we are
always looking for more. So we’ll
give you a FREE gift certificate for
Gordon Ramsay’s restaurants worth
£400 for each of your referrals who
go on to become a client!
Visit the above link to find out more
about the Ziptech referral program.
Ideal if you want the convenience of a
dedicated IT department without the hassle of
recruiting new staff. With a FullyManaged
support contract from Ziptech you get instant
access to our friendly team of IT professionals
who are always ready to help.
Key Benefits of Ziptech FullyManaged
Emergency phone line for out hours support
Mobile phone and tablets included at no
Discounted rates on your cloud servers
Priced per workstation IT support
10% discount on all projects work
Anti Spam from priced per mailbox
High level problems solved fast.
Ideal if you have in-house IT expertise already
and want to outsource server and network
support. Ziptech Core has the power to free
your IT team of the complex and time
consuming tasks allowing them to respond to
your daily IT problems even faster.
Key Benefits of Ziptech Core
Cloud and physical server ready
Broadband troubleshooting included
Network printers included
Company routers, switches, and access
Ad hoc support of any workstation available
Have a question? Contact your account
manager Carl Ridgeway on 01932 233 537
A 1-Stop-Source for ALL your IT Services
Contact me direct on 01932 233 537 to find out more about Ziptech Services
Carl Ridgeway: Account Manager
Business IT Support
Installations & Upgrades
Our clients love using the RedZed and now we’ve
made it even easier with our new simple package
Whatever you need for your next IT project,
Ziptech have the expertise and resources to
advise and complete a wide range of
Ziptech Fully Managed
Ideal if you want the convenience of a dedicated IT
department without the hassle of recruiting new staff.
With a FullyManaged support contract from Ziptech
you get instant access to our friendly team of IT
professionals who are always ready to help.
Ideal if you have in-house IT expertise already and
want outsource server and network support. Ziptech
Core has the power to free your IT team of the
complex and time consuming tasks allowing them to
respond to your daily IT problems even faster.
Backup done right
Cloud powered backup solutions for your business
based on UK data centers and the latest software
Keep your critical databases and applications safe on
a ZipSafe enabled workstation
Offsite cloud backup for your servers, Exchange,
databases, and important applications. The answer to
your disaster recovery problems.
All the benefits of ZipSafe Server plus a dedicated box
keeping a a local copy of your data close to hand in
case of emergency.
Hardware & software procurement
Pay-per-click training and management
Microsoft Office 365 Installations
Business IT consultancy
Office moves and expansions
Server hardware upgrades
Virtual hosted cloud servers
File sharing for Business
If you like Dropbox but have noticed it lacks
the power to work for your business then
you’ll love ZipSync:
Buy only what you need - Pay per user
Space for your large files - Terabyte
storage available now.
Thames Valley / Surrey Office
New Broad Street House,
New Broad Street
London, EC2M 1NH
0845 123 3942
Felix Lane, Shepperton
Middlesex, TW17 8NS
0845 123 3942