Friday, September 28, 2012

SOP Friday: Patch Management Philosophy and Procedures

Whether you practice break/fix or managed services, it is a best practice to keep client computers as well maintained as possible. And while I prefer automated, perpetual maintenance, that's not practical for everyone. Let's look at three aspect of patch management:
1) Philosophy
2) Manual
3) Automated


Patch Management Philosophy


I know some people think "philosophy" seems out of place in the world of technology. But we all have some philosophies that guide us. For example, when do you sell a new operating system? It used to be common wisdom that you don't install a new version of Windows until Service Pack 1 is released. That hasn't been true for a long time. For almost ten years now, Microsoft has had massive public beta programs that put their O.S. in the hands of millions of users for many months before the release date. So the release version is very stable.

Service packs are another story. Here, too, Microsoft has improved dramatically. But there's still good reason to wait. First, SPs are 98% just a collection of previously released fixes. So a well-patched machine will have the critical elements. As a result, modern SPs provide a certain level of consistency and stability, but their deployment is not critical.

For non-Microsoft service packs and patches, we're more leery  Because we don't see them as often or as consistently, we don't know how reliable or safe they are. As a result, we are very careful with installs and very watchful when we perform them.

If you support a specific application, you may know it's quirks and patterns. If so, you may have a philosophy for that application. If not, then fall back to the more generic (careful) philosophy for lesser-know application updates.

One final example has emerged in recent years: The Zero Day Attack. These are viruses or attacks that become widely known on the same day. There is no time (zero days) to prepare for the attack. Sounds like there's nothing you can do? Not true. As long as you talk about WHAT you will do when the day comes, you can have some level of preparedness.

In this case the SOP involves having pre-defined lines of command and communication. When a zero day attack happens, who will decide how your company responds? How will you communicate with the team? How will you communicate with the clients?


As I said, we all have these philosophies. And every technician you hire has a set of philosophies as well. But each company needs to operate on one philosophy. If you're the owner, or service manager, then YOUR philosophy is the one that matters. You need to write it out and educate the rest of the team.

When major service packs or patches come out, you need to orchestrate a plan for installing them. This probably means creating one service request for each client server or one SR for each client. You might schedule these for the same time as the monthly maintenance, or maybe assign the whole lot to one or two technicians.

The key to success is that you 1) Have a philosophy, and 2) Propagate it to your staff. This is best accomplished by writing out your philosophies and putting them in your SOP document/folder. After that, you need to have a training, talk this out with your staff, and agree on how you'll proceed.


Manual Patch Management


If you do not have an RMM (remote monitoring and management) system such as Continuum, LabTech, Level Platforms, or PacketTrap RMM, then you will be installing these updates "by hand." Alternatively, one of your philosophies may be to enable automatic updates from Microsoft. But you still need to apply updates to Office applications. Many non-critical updates won't be applied by automatic updates. And, of course, you need to apply updates to all those non-Microsoft products as well.

If you don't have an RMM system, you will have to create a schedule for updates.

One possible policy is to apply updates whenever you find yourself logged into a client computer. That's not bad, but if you do this, make sure you keep a list of all updates for that client on the c:\!tech directory of their server, or in your own PSA system. That way, you can make sure that you do a thorough job each time.

The problem with this approach is that you might not touch every machine.

Therefore, you should have a policy to check updates on all machines on a regular basis. For servers, this is part of the regular monthly maintenance. Whether performed remotely or on site, all updates will be applied at least once a month. For desktops, you will need to create a service request to update all machines. I recommend one service request per client (not one per machine). You will need to have a document for keeping track of which machines have been completed.

You should go through this process at least once a year. Ideally, you will do it once per quarter. You can see why an RMM tool can save you a LOT of time. These "sweeps" can be extremely time consuming if you manage a lot of machines. If you have an RMM tool, you can apply updates weekly or monthly with almost zero additional effort.


Automated Patch Management


Automated patch management is a life saver for managed service providers. If you have a thousand desktops and 100 servers, patching them adequately would be a full time job. The more you can automate the better.

The key with automated patch management is to decide how much you want to be involved. You can simply pass things through (e.g., If Microsoft released it, install it.). Or you can test each patch for yourself. Here's the process we follow:

1. Patch is released by Microsoft (Tuesday)
2. One business day later we look to see whether the patch has been recalled
3. We deploy the patch to our internal servers/workstations
4. Three-five business days later (assuming no problems), we deploy to client servers/workstations

If your RMM company has a patch approval feature, you could simply set up groups so that patches are deployed once they have been white listed. In this way, you simply rely on your RMM vendor to do the vetting for you.


Blacklisting Patches


For a variety of reason, you might choose to blacklist some patches so they do not get installed. Sometimes this is applied throughout all your clients (for example, if there's a Microsoft patch that just causes problems). More commonly, you might have a specific customer's Line of Business (LOB) application that is incompatible with a specific patch or service pack.

Patches have three possible statuses: Pending Approval, Approved, and Denied.

When patches are denied, you need to be very certain that they do not get applied. That means you need to have strict policies in-house to make sure that everyone respects the "denied" status.

Interestingly enough, the "update" that is most likely to cause problems with client LOBs and web-based applications is Internet Explorer. How many times have we seen something break because a newer version of IE is installed? While I don't recommend avoiding all IE updates, please treat them with respect and be careful.


A Few Final Notes

Desktops can always be fixed, and don't normally affect the entire company. Servers are much more critical. Servers should always be backed up before patches are applied. Whether manual or automatic, stop the process until you have a good backup. I know things almost never go wrong with "simple" patches, but they sometimes DO go wrong. You need a way back without wasting a lot of (down)time.

As a general rule, the RMM company's patch approval process is probably good enough to rely on. But you know your clients and their computers better than anyone. You need to decide on a patch management level that makes sense and is comfortable for you.

You need to articulate that philosophy and make sure your staff understands it.

Your Comments Welcome.

- - - - -

About this Series

SOP Friday - or Standard Operating System Friday - is a series dedicated to helping small computer consulting firms develop the right processes and procedures to create a successful and profitable consulting business.

Find out more about the series, and view the complete "table of contents" for SOP Friday at http://www.smallbizthoughts.com/events/SOPFriday.html.

- - - - -

Next week's topic: Organizing Your Company Files and Folders

:-)

Thursday, September 27, 2012

1100 Blog Posts!

Wow.

My last post - about the big SMB Preday Seminar hosted by PacketTrap - was my 1100th post on this blog.

I've been blogging since February of 2006. So that's 5 years and seven months.

67 months means about 16 posts per month!

That's an average of one post every two days.

I don't know if any of it is any good, but it's fun!

And this post is 1101.

Thanks for your readership!

- karlp

:-)

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More Info

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This seminar is part of the SMB Nation Preday Events. SMB Nation's Fall Conference is October 12-14 at the Rio in Las Vegas. (We also have special pricing for SMB Nation at SMBPreday.com) This event is not associated with SMB Nation itself, but we have worked with Harry for eight years to put on some kind of preday event.

This year's topic is extremely timely and important: What do next! The clock is ticking on SBS and you need both a business plan and a technical process for moving from SBS to the Next Big Thing. 25% of this seminar will be on business model considerations for moving to stand-alone servers, cloud services, and hybrid combinations. 75% cover the technical click-by-click of moving to other services.

And OF COURSE we'll show you how to do this with Zero Downtime. More details are at www.smbpreday.com. This is a $399 seminar - and we think you save WAY more than that with the first client you migrate off SBS.

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We are extremely pleased to have PacketTrap as a platinum sponsor for this event. AND they are sponsoring a monster party afterward for our attendees!



:-)
 

Friday, September 21, 2012

SOP Friday: Client Personnel Changes - Employee Departure Checklist

Last time we talked about what to do when a Client Hires a New Employee. This article will address the other side of that issue: When a Client's Employee Leaves.

Obviously, employees leave for lots of reasons. They take new jobs, get married, move for family reasons, get fired, get promoted to another office, etc. So departures need to be handled differently. In addition, companies have different security needs and SOPs (standard operating procedures) that affect employee departures.

As with so many changes, we have to be careful about how we remove users from the network. While it is unlikely that a user will return, it's certainly possible. At a minimum, their data need to be protected. That means their Outlook data, locally stored files, personalized database data, and so forth. Even after the user's logon has been disabled and deleted, some of their data will remain and you need to be able to find it.

Reading through this procedure, you'll notice that the keyword here is "deliberate." That means you're going to go slow, be careful, and don't make anything irreversible until it needs to be.


Procedure for Users Exit from a Company


Step One. Request to Disable or Delete a User From The Network

When a Client has an employee or contractor leave the company, there is a standard list of steps to be taken.  The nature of the user exit must be determined in case there are additional actions to be taken. If there are security concerns, a more immediate response is required in disabling the account.

Of course all actions must be within a service request. So you must create a service request in your PSA as soon as you receive a request from the client.

- Communicate with the client contact to determine the best action based on their situation and needs.

- If there is any reason to believe the employee or contractor exit is hasty and un-amicable take all necessary action to protect the client and their system first.

- Determine Nature of user Exit.

- If necessary, disable the users account right away and change the password.

- Compose and send an email to the client contact using the template "Request to disable or delete a user from the network - Initial Request" from the email templates directory. Make sure a copy of this gets into the service request.

Step Two: Disabling or Deleting a User From The Network

Note:  After the user is deleted from the network, do not run the Exchange mailbox cleanup agent until a full backup has gone off site for the month.

Once you have received the reply with all the required information, proceed as follows:

- Change the departing user's domain account password. In general, it's a good practice to change the password or disable the account and leave it that way for 30 days. The final step will be to wait 30 days and then delete the account.

- If necessary, change passwords for other existing accounts that user may have access to. This includes financial programs, databases, line of business applications, etc.

- Document the password changes.

- Reassign the user's SMTP addresses in Exchange as outlined in the client contacts email.

- Reassign the user's SMTP addresses in the email spam filter as outlined in the client contacts email.

- Delete the user's Email spam filter account.

- Log onto the user's workstation as the departing user.

- Export all of the user's email to a single archive file named "User_Name>'s archived email YYYYMMDD.pst".
 - - Note: Do not use encrypt the file or use a password. You'll be storing it on a secure network drive.

- Move (not copy) the .pst file to the clients "\Archived Email" directory.

- Assign user access to the.pst as outlined in the client contacts email.  (Default is to assign Everyone)

- Move (not copy) the users data from My Documents, Desktop and anywhere else it may be located on the workstation to the server "\Archived Users Data\'s archived data" directory.

- Move (not copy) the users data from their Users personal folder on the network to the server "\Archived Users Data\'s archived data" directory. Do not move My Music, My Pictures or My Videos unless explicitly requested by the client.

- The directory structure would look like this:
-  Company Data\ Archived Users Data\Tom's archived data\My Documents
-  Company Data\ Archived Users Data\Tom's archived data\Desktop
-  Company Data\ Archived Users Data\Tom's archived data\Users folder

- Assign user access to these directories and files as outlined in the client contacts email.  (Default is to assign Everyone)

- Removed the user contact from the PSA system.

- Compose and send an email to the client contact using the template "Request to disable or delete a user from the network - Request Completed" from the email templates directory.

- Change the service request status to "Schedule" and schedule it for 30 days in the future. The final action in the service request should be:
 - - Remove the user from the domain and be certain the checkbox is checked to "Remove user's home folder".


Implementation Notes


The first thing you need to do is to create your version of this checklist. In many cases, you'll want to personalize this for every client. Just as with New PC checklists and many other tasks, having client-specific checklists (and folders) will make you much more efficient.
After you create your checklist, you need to write up your version of this process. You might not use email and a ticketing system as we do. So make sure the process flow works for you.

Finally, you'll need to train your technicians and then remind them that you have this process when it's needed. Clients don't lose people very often, so you might not use this procedure very often. It's important to remember you have it! Not only that, but you will need to be extremely careful in your documentation because no one in your company will get a chance to use this all the time. That means it needs to be written well enough for a first-timer to follow.

The templates mentioned in this procedure are below.

Your Comments Welcome.

- - - - -

Email Template: Request to disable or delete a user from the network

Hello ,

This email is to request information regarding the Service Request to disable or delete a user from the network. This information is required to proceed.

Our normal procedure is as follows:

1) Disable the user account so no one can log in as that user.

2) Redirect their internet email to someone else in the company if need be.

3) Export all of their email to a single archive file in a public directory on the server.

4) Move all the company data the user may have had on their workstation to public directories on the server.

5) Delete the user from the network.

We need the following to proceed:

1) What is the users full name?

2) What is the name of the computer they have been using?

3) If the user's internet email is still to be accepted, to which user should we point it?

4) When we export all of their current and old email to a single archive file, who will need access to it? Note: Typically we do not restrict access to the archive file.

5) Where should we move any company data we find in the user’s personal folders or on their workstation? Note: Typically we put it into the most public file area on the server so it can be sorted and assimilated.

6) Is there any reason this user should not be completely deleted from the system?

Thank you.



- - - - -

Template: Request to disable or delete a user from the network - Completed

Hello ,

We have completed your Service Request to disable or delete a user from the network.

The user has been deleted.

The user's internet email has been redirected to .

The users email has been exported to a single archive file called ’s archived email YYYYMMDD.pst in the \Archived Email directory.

The following users have access to the file:  Everyone

Remember, only one user can have the file open at any given time.

The user's data has been moved from their personal folder on the server and their workstation to the \Archived Users Data\’s archived data directory.

The following users have access to these files:  Everyone

If there is anything else we can do for you please give us a call.

Thank you.



- - - - -

 
About this Series

SOP Friday - or Standard Operating System Friday - is a series dedicated to helping small computer consulting firms develop the right processes and procedures to create a successful and profitable consulting business.

Find out more about the series, and view the complete "table of contents" for SOP Friday at http://www.smallbizthoughts.com/events/SOPFriday.html.

- - - - -

Next week's topic: Patch Management Philosophy and Procedures

:-)

Check Out the #1 ranked Managed Services book at Amazon:

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by Karl W. Palachuk

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Friday, September 14, 2012

SOP Friday: Client Personnel Changes - New User Checklist

You have a process for bringing a new employee onboard (well, you should anyway). So what about when your clients hire new employees? They will be added to the network and to managed services. As with everything else, your life will be easier if you have a standard process for this. 
 

Before the Hire

 This is a bit of a minor point, but it's one of those little things that can be very irritating: The client should give you as much advance notice as possible before they hire a new employee. The worst case scenario is when you get a call at 8:01 AM on a Monday to tell you that the new hire is showing up at 9:00 AM for training. Can you please set up a new workstation for her?
 
 Oh wait. The worst case scenario is that she needs a new PC as well.
 
 In most cases, the hiring process will include defining the job, advertising the job, gathering resumes, weeding through resumes, one or two interviews, and a job offer. There are few "emergency" job hires. So clients need to engage you well before the new hire shows up. Luckily, managed services makes this easy. See the New Hire Flowchart. Basically, then can create a service ticket at any time. It can sit there for weeks if needed, as long as the due date is set correctly.
 
 
 
 

New User Checklist

The actual New User Checklist has three sections. As you can see, there's a lot less if you have the User's name before you start. But you need to adjust as needed. In many cases, you need to set up the PC in advance and add the user at the last minute.
 
 The three sections are:
1) Client / User Information
2) Set up the Computer (hardware and software)
3) User-Specific Setups
 
 
Section One: Client / User Information
 
Technician (work performed by):
 
Date:
 
Client Info:
- Company
- Address
- Contact
- Phone
 
New User Name:
 
New User's Logon:
 and Password:
 
New User's Machine / Workstation Name:
 
Local Administrator password:
 
 
 
Section Two: Set up the Computer
(Note: This section will be replaced by your "New PC Checklist." I'm just giving an abbreviated example here.
 
 1. Set time and Region within Windows
 
 2. If machine is not part of the domain, add machine to domain
 
3. Log on as domain administrator and add domain users to local administrators group
 
4. Map drives required by this user (if not handles by logon script). Install cloud drive if needed.
 
5. If things need to be copied locally, create C:\!Tech directory
 
6. Install Adobe Acrobat Reader latest version
 
7. Install printers to be used by this user
 
8. Install Anti-Virus and updates. Schedule scans.
 
9. Install Microsoft Office products
 
10. Apply all Windows Updates
 
 
 
Section Three: User-Specific Setups
(Perform these tasks while logged on as the new user)
 
1. Set up Outlook to point to client's Exchange Server
 
2. Connect user to shared calendars and resources within Outlook
 
3. Set up Company Contacts as an Outlook address book
 
4. Verify that drives are mapped (this is controlled by logon script, not locally)
 
5. Set up Line of Business application shortcut and all other shortcuts normall required by this client
 
6. Verify that you can browse the Internet
 
7. Verify that you can send and receive email from an outside address (preferably a domain on a different Internet Service Provider and on a different hosted spam filter).
 
8. Verify that you can access company data drive(s)
 
9. Verify that you can print to each printer

 

The Human Connection

We love our clients. They love us. That starts on Day One when they learn to use our system properly. When they learn to use our system properly, they get the fastest tech support. When they call and call and never create a service ticket, they get a slower response. Because we want their love, we need to train them to use our service efficiently.

So - you guessed it - training the new employee about our system is just as important as showing them how to log on to their computer. We give them a link to our Client Service Portal. We walk them through entering a service request. And we give them a human connection along with their new job and their new computer.
 
 

Implementation

Implementing this process is pretty easy. It assumes you have a New PC Checklist for each client. THIS process will also be customized for each client. You may even enter IP addresses for printers and other devices that don't change often.
 
Unlike most processes, the first part of this one requires you to engage your client and ask them to give you notice as soon as possible. You can show them your flowchart, like the one above. Describe enough of the process that they get the message that planning makes everything easier. (Don't describe so much detail that they fall asleep and smack their head on the desk.)
 
You might create a folder on your company's shared drive of SharePoint site to hold all the client New User Checklists along with the New PC Checklists. You really should customize these for each client.
 
Don't forget documentation. That means that the info from Section One and all other relevant information go into your PSA system and into the client's on-site documentation.
 
After every new user setup, the last item on the checklist should be to update the checklist! That way, it is always as useful as possible. When you added that new network scanner, you should have documented it - but you probably didn't update the New PC Checklist or New User Checklist. This will be apparent when you go through the checklist, so just make sure it's updated for next time.
 
This kind of policy requires that everyone on the team

1) Be aware of the policy

2) Practice the policy

3) Correct one another's errors

4) Support one another with reminders

Your Comments Welcome.

- - - - -

About this Series

SOP Friday - or Standard Operating System Friday - is a series dedicated to helping small computer consulting firms develop the right processes and procedures to create a successful and profitable consulting business.

Find out more about the series, and view the complete "table of contents" for SOP Friday at http://www.smallbizthoughts.com/events/SOPFriday.html.

- - - - -

Next week's topic: Client Personnel Changes- Employee Departure Checklist

:-)

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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Attend the Premier Conference for Small Business IT Consultants: SMB Nation 2012


No matter how long you've been in IT Consulting, the rules have changed - and you need to get tuned up to new products, new processes, and new opportunities. Microsoft is making huge changes. But so are lots of other companies and cloud providers.

We all need to constantly "sharpen our saw" and keep up with changes in our profession. But that need has become much more critical with the elimination of Small Business Server and the introduction of a wide array of new products and services.

The premier conference for IT Consultants who focus on Small Business is SMB Nation - Now celebrating their 10th year!

SMB Nation's annual Fall conference is in Las Vegas this year and has a stellar line-up of speakers. My brother and I are putting on our 8th annual "preday" event, focusing entirely on how to move off of SBS and onto other technologies.

Now you can buy special tickets to the full SMB Nation Conference at a huge savings. The early bird price is $799. The last day for early bird pricing is Friday, September 14th.

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Please join us in Las Vegas and kick-start your revitalized career at SMB Nation 2012.

:-)

Friday, September 07, 2012

SOP Friday: Final Friday Training


Once you begin to have employees, there are several things you need to add to your "To Do" list. One is constant training. New technology comes out all the time. Technicians need to improve continually. A second thing you add to your routine is the creation of culture.

Company culture is the perfect example of why planning and goal-setting are important. If you don't "create" a culture, it will create itself. You don't have to have some big master scheme. But you should have some intentions about what you want. The more you try to create a culture, the more successful you'll be.

Final Friday Training is a great way to address both of these needs. You might do something for Tuesday Lunch or Thursday Breakfast. We do Final Friday Training as a way to build the team and keep them trained at the same time. Here's how it works:

1) We pick a topic for technical training

2) We all gather for lunch in the office

3) Most of lunchtime is just standard talking, B.S., and enjoying ourselves

4) After lunch we spend 1-2 hours on the training. Normally it is conducted by the most technical staff member. But sometimes it's run by a lower level tech with specialized knowledge. This includes training on a new PSA system, a new backup system, a new operating system, etc.

5) After the training we normally break up and disperse slowly. Because we hold our training on Friday afternoon, someone needs to check the service board. A few tickets may need to be finished up before the weekend.

But overall, the day ends very leisurely and low stress. You may even choose to let some folks leave early.

Don't be unclear about this point: This is a technical training. You need to really use this time to improve the technical abilities of your team. Help them improve themselves. Continually improve. Always moving up.

The team building piece will take care of itself. You're just using the technical training to give them an opportunity to get to know each other better.

Practical Considerations

Here's how we actually execute our Final Friday:

- There is an auto generated Service Request that will show up the third week of every month. This gives plenty of time for everyone to see it on their schedule and be ready for it.

- All technicians are assigned to the service request and scheduled for the last half of the day from 1pm to 5 pm.

- There is a document in the shared storage area (SharePoint, cloud drive, mapped drive, etc.) called "Final Friday Training Topics.docx" that lists all suggested and completed subjects for the Final Friday training.

- All technicians are expected to attend and encouraged to take a turn in presenting training.

Final Friday Training Topics
Obviously you will create your own list,  adding training specific to your company and your offerings.

- DNS/IP/DHCP/etc

- Intelligent Disaster Recovery

- Exchange / Active Dir Tools

- PIX configuration and setting

- SMTP TSR and the Deep Six

- Troubleshooting SMTP

- IIS settings on SBS including SMTP, DNS and DHCP changes 

- RDP and Shadowing session

- Veritas Accounts

- Anti-Virus setup and maintenance

- RMM Monitoring

- Outlook profiles (Exch & Pop)

- Hosted Spam Filter

- Patch Scripting

- FireFox FireWall

- Office “preferred” settings

- Windows Desktop preferred settings

- Clean corrupt files out of older Exchange files so Back Up exec does not report “Bad items”

- Thin Client lockdown

- Veritas Configuration

- The power of a reboot 

- Example SR's for how we do repeat work:
 -- Use actual (resolved) service requests as examples of solving specific problems

- Handy things to know and master
 -- RDP to console
 -- RDP session sharing
 -- Client data folders
 -- RMM logs on local machine
 -- Setting up RMM agents

Implementation

We started this practice when there were just three of us. It's easy to set the calendar, but it can be hard to get out of the trenches and actually do what you know is in your company's best interest.

This is a higher-level activity and should be treated as such. That means it is more important than low-level tasks and tickets; more important than medium tasks and ticket. If you have true emergencies, of course they need to be handled. But don't start making excuses.

I know this four hours can seem unproductive when there's a backlog of work. But you're only doing this twelve times a year. And whether you choose First Friday or Final Friday, there's bound to be a holiday or two that interfere. Be flexible, but not too flexible. Build that habit!


- - - - -
About this Series

SOP Friday - or Standard Operating System Friday - is a series dedicated to helping small computer consulting firms develop the right processes and procedures to create a successful and profitable consulting business.

Find out more about the series, and view the complete "table of contents" for SOP Friday at http://www.smallbizthoughts.com/events/SOPFriday.html.

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Next week's topic: Client Personnel Changes: New User Checklist

:-)

Two Great Managed Services Resources: 

by Karl W. Palachuk - Still the best Quick-Start Guide to Managed Services! 
Now only $39.95 at SMB Books! 

and 

by Karl W. Palachuk - Check Out the #1 ranked Managed Services book at Amazon! 
Buy it as a printed book or ebook!
 

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Prayers and Positive Vibes for Kristen Brelsford


Harry Brelsford is perhaps the best known person in the SMB IT space. Many of us have been honored to meet his wife Kristen as well. Harry posted the following note on Facebook after an incident on Labor Day:


Monday, Sept. 3rd.

For once I'm surprisingly uncomfortable posting up *but* realize you can offer support/thoughts/vibes/prayers/feelings.

Shortly after our last biking photo was taken earlier today, Kristen was involved in a serious cycling accident after hitting a new speed bump in Fort Ward Park and slipping out. She has been airlifted by helicopter to Harborview and initial early tests indicate a concussion, fractured skull and internal bleeding. 

After more extensive tests are completed, I'll be meeting with the neurosurgeon to develop a plan of action. I just know she'll be fine but it could be a bit of a journey back...thanks in advance for your thoughts as I'm also kinda shaken up over this. I'll keep you posted.




My heart and prayers go out to the Brelsford family as they begin to work through this. Harry's a tough guy and lives his life very publicly. I can tell you it is sometimes difficult to put some things out in the public sphere. But it's also a blessing when the prayers and positive vibes flow in.

Keep them in your thoughts and prayers.

That's what community means.

:-)

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

MSP Mentor Announces MSP 250 This Week

For the fifth year in a row, MSP Mentor has published their list of the 250 most influential people in the MSP space. This year they added a category called "Locked In the NOC" to identify people who actually built the MSP industry by launching companies, building communities, or creating the top MSPs. This is basically their Hall of Fame.

You can view the Locked in the NOC list at: http://www.mspmentor.net/noc.

The big "250" list is being unveiled this week a little at a time. The first 55 are listed for names beginning with A, B, and C. You can see all those folks, and their bio and contact information at http://www.mspmentor.net/250-2/. The rest of the 250 will be rolled out between now and Friday.

Thanks to Joe Panettieri and the good folks at Nine Lives Media for publishing this list over the last five years!

:-)