Cloud Computing is Out of This World: Microsoft and SpaceX Launch Azure Space


Microsoft has teamed up with Elon Musk’s Space X in taking the next giant leap for mankind. This time it’s in cloud computing, in space. The tech giant is collaborating with Space X to launch Azure Space. The cloud computing platform Azure intends to offer mobile cloud computing data centers that can deploy anywhere around the world. 


In order to make this endeavor a success, Microsoft called upon SpaceX’s Starlink internet satellites and extended its agreement with satellite company SES for Azure Space. Microsoft put together a team of respected space industry veterans to work in conjunction with their own product engineers to build cloud capabilities that meet the basic demands of space. By partnering with leaders in the space community, Microsoft seeks to expand the utility of our Azure capabilities with worldwide satellite connectivity, release cloud computing in more settings, and ultimately enable their customers to achieve more.


Learn more about the Secrets of Radiation Hardened IT Equipment in Space by reading our blog post. 

Satellite networking available anywhere, anytime

With the rapid increase in data, the importance of dependable ways to connect has also grown. That being said, Microsoft boasts a global network of over 160,000 miles of subsea, terrestrial, and metro optical fiber, helping billions of people connect all around the world.  However, many users also work in remote, rugged environments, finding it nearly impossible to keep up with the need for access to data at fast speeds. This is what the Azure Space ecosystem will provide. 

Microsoft’s plan with Azure Space to bring comprehensive satellite connectivity solutions to meet the needs of our customers by providing a multi-orbit, multi-band, multi-vendor, cloud-enabled capability. Robust satellite communications, combined with Azure’s delivery of high-powered computing, machine learning, and data analytics creates massive amounts of growth for organizations. Microsoft’s partnership with satellite communication experts allows them to bring these resources to customers faster.

Self-contained datacenters are the future of infrastructures 


Many businesses are reaping the benefits of cloud computing, with products like Azure Stack. In fact, Microsoft has already made huge strides in navigating their datacenters in extreme environments. For example, their Project Natick underwater datacenter that sat at the bottom of the ocean and proved to be extremely successful in lowering energy usage. By developing insights and gathering feedback from their users with the harshest requirements, the Microsoft Azure Modular Datacenter (MDC) is able to take computing to the next level.

To learn more about Project Natick underwater datacenter, check out our blog post: The Underwater Data Center of the Future

Microsoft created Azure Space to support fast and secure cloud computing available in any environment. Customers will have the luxury of having Azure Space on their terms wherever they need it, in a self-contained unit – in space. The satellite data center gives organizations the ability to access a complete datacenter in remote locations, or to enhance existing infrastructure with a transportable solution. No natural disaster on Earth can harm your data center when its floating hundreds of miles above the ground level at all times.

Primed for space with the power of Azure


With the modern rocketry advancements of Space X, human missions and satellite launches have become more frequent. The accessibility and capabilities of these progressions are allowing tech companies like Microsoft develop more reliable, repeatable digital technologies to help the space community launch faster and with more confidence in the success of their missions. 


Of these recent innovations between tech and space, Azure Orbital Emulator is at the top. Both commercial and government funded space exploration groups are building thousands of interlocked satellites which require detailed design and AI-driven procedures, to guarantee prime networking connectivity and coverage while in orbit.


Azure Orbital Emulator is an imitation environment that directs massive satellite simulations with software and hardware. This allows developers to evaluate and train complex AI algorithms and the satellite networking system before ever launching any satellites into orbit. Azure can mimic a complete satellite network including intricate, real-time scene generation. Azure Orbital Emulator is now being used by customers in Microsoft’s Azure Government environment.

The future of space and tech together


The partnership between space and tech helps tackle the some of the toughest technology challenges faced in the cosmos. Users currently struggle with the massive amount of data produced from satellites, bringing cloud services and bandwidth to remote locations, and designing multifaceted space systems. The network of partners brings this data to ground faster, making connections that weren’t possible before. The future of space and tech working together is exciting; using the power of cloud and space technology to help businesses re-imagine solutions to some of the most stimulating problems.


IT upgrade

Microsoft will soon be ending its customer support for Windows Server 2008. What does this mean for you and your organization?

Well, the end of one era always means the beginning to another. This could be the perfect opportunity to ramp up your production, security, and improvements throughout. 

As much as we all tend to preach about the importance of staying up to date with the latest and greatest equipment in the IT industry, its easier said than done.

That fact of the matter is that more than half of all servers in operating existence are five to seven years old, and using archaic software like Microsoft Windows Server 2008.

windows server 2008
Image Courtesy of Microsoft

In recent news from the Microsoft Ignite conference, Microsoft will stop support for Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 effective January 14, 2020.

They also plan to terminate the support service of Microsoft SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2 on July 19, 2019. If your organization is one of the many businesses that still currently uses these systems, you could be directly affected.

The news isn’t all bad though. Microsoft’s end of service could be the inspiration your organization needs in order to implement a full IT renovation, from up-to-date software solutions to the servers that propel them forward.

Need even more motivation for a data center facelift? We’ve put together three reasons to consider, based on challenges that technology experts are facing and the direct benefits they’re receiving from a well-orchestrated server overhaul.

Image Courtesy of Device42


Recent surveys conducted with IT professionals and industry leaders suggests that analytics and AI strategy are among their top priorities in regards to infrastructure investments. 

Even more so, enterprise IP traffic is projected to triple by 2020. With these developments, it’s no surprise there’s a growing strain within IT that warrants an updated data center to sustain it.

Let’s be real here, there’s no such thing as “business as usual” anymore. Not just in IT, but in any industry for that matter. In order to stay competitive in any market, businesses must welcome change, and embrace adaptability to stay ahead. In terms of IT, modernization is critical.

According to 71% of those surveyed, the biggest road block preventing their IT transformation is an aging infrastructure. Businesses that currently operate with legacy systems find it nearly impossible to compete. 

Their archaic data centers just weren’t built to keep up with the modern demands of a digital world.

data center upgrade
Image Courtesy

Modernization of your organization’s infrastructure is the most efficient strategy to stay competitive for the long haul.

A well-orchestrated renovation also brings opportunities to take full advantage of recent server technologies such as effortlessly handling workloads that would otherwise bog down any legacy systems.

For instance, new equipment running Windows Server 2019 optimized for Intel Xeon Scalable processors delivers a 4X performance increase over similar systems that are five years older.


It’s no secret that the number of security breaches and cyber-attacks on businesses continue to grow astronomically, creating an impact of almost $2.1 trillion by 2019.

An older and weaker operating system leaves you vulnerable to an overabundance of business-critical attacks. The last thing any organization needs is a list of compliance failures that could result in the end of valued relationships. 

Ensuring your system is safeguarded against ransomware and protecting customer’s proprietary information to GDPR and HIPAA standards is vital.

Having an updated IT infrastructure allows you to deploy the latest security measures for data protection and encryption.

To name a few, Windows Defender Advanced Threat Detection and Intel Trusted Execution Technology, servers are furnished with a collection of multi-layered security resources.

Modern security can be instilled deep within an organization’s infrastructure and therefore out of reach of hackers. With features such as next-gen firewalls, security with software-defined networking, and identity and access management; newer systems create a much larger obstacles in the way of attacks.


Decrease total operating costs– Organizations that modernize experience up to 69 percent less revenue losses. Maintenance expenses used to maintain aging systems, unplanned downtime, and more abundant power usage all add up.

Simplify your transition to cloud – Studies have shown that by 2020, 90 percent of businesses will have developed a cloud strategy to support mission-critical applications. Updating your IT infrastructure will ensure you don’t get left behind.

Support expanding workloads – Organizations that update their systems have the ability to speed time-to-insight from analytics and AI technologies.
Enjoy the benefits of Windows Server 2019 – the advantages of the server upgrade include improved application platforms, containerization, pervasive encryption, and more


Despite the fact that your current legacy system may still be ultra-reliable, you’ll still want to take a proactive approach to planning a server upgrade before Windows Server 2008 support goes away. 

There is still plenty of time to both plan a serviceable upgrade strategy, and to take the steps necessary to complete it.

No matter which modernized options you wish to explore; whether it be hybrid cloud, hyperconverged infrastructures, virtualized networks, or the full capabilities of Windows Server 2019, DTC Computer Supplies can help.

The Definitive Guide to Choosing the Best Router for Your Needs


How to Choose the Best Router for Your Needs



Remember back in the late 1980s and the 1990s when anyone who wanted to access the internet had to play the waiting game while listening to that awful screeching sound of the modem dialing the ISP? Ah, the nostalgia of good old dial-up! Thankfully, companies like Cisco make it so we no longer have to deal with the slow connection and loading speeds.

dial up internet router


The speeds and capabilities of the internet have grown exponentially since the development of the wireless internet. All of the hardware involved from modems, routers, and processors have managed to outgrow each other year over year. In fact, in April 2015, Linksys (owned by Cisco) announced that they had achieved over 100 million units in router sales. That’s a lot of routers, but how do you know which one is right or you?

When it comes to choosing a Cisco router, there are many tools available to help you make the best decision. The manner in which you go about choosing switches is very comparable.

Go with Your Gut

When you think of Cisco routers, what is the first thing that comes to mind? It might be Cisco’s 2600 and 3600 series lines. For years, these lines of routers served as the ideal model for midsize business’ networks. Even though Cisco discontinued both lines, some organizations still use them today.

Going with your gut is just one way to choose a router for a current network. However, this method does have a major downside. Choosing a discontinued product could mean that your business misses out on a lot of the features in newer models.

Do Some Research

Most of us were forced to do homework for almost 20 years of our lives. So, what’s a little more? When choosing a router for a new network, the same old routers can’t always be counted on. Do your homework and evaluate different criteria and features that are offered in different models. The shortlist below can help you with the right questions.


Try looking at how many packets per second the router can forward. For instance, a Cisco 2610 or 2612 series router can forward an approximate 15,000 packets per second. Cisco 7500 series routers can forward an approximate 2 million packets per second. However, those numbers have a tendency to be altered once features such as firewalls and VoIP are added.


Growth implies the number of interfaces that can be supported by the router. Routers typically have a preset number of interfaces (WAN or LAN). Some routers, like the 3600 series, for instance, have no interfaces. So, take note of the number of interfaces that can be added to the default.


Depending on your current set up, the router you chose might need to support a certain interface or a VoIP feature.


Services refer to the integrated services supported by the router. Today’s routers support features that once needed separate boxes to function. A great example is a 32-port switching module that cancels out the need for an Ethernet switch. Also having a firewall, VPN server, and an IDS/IPS built into the router can cancel the need to have each individual feature as a separate box.


Does the router offer the necessary redundancy for working at a critical point in the network? Some redundancy examples include hot-swappable power supplies or high-availability routing protocols such as HSRP or VRRP.


Cisco routers have a reputation for being very reliable products. Furthermore, Cisco systems usually provide exceptional levels of customer support. When buying the router, many levels of support should be available. Be sure to choose the best level for you and your business.

Ask the Pros

When it comes to choosing a router, Cisco offers a Product Advisor, which virtually makes the router decision for you. As a bonus, you don’t need to be a registered Cisco user to access this amazingly helpful tool.

The Cisco Product Advisor is a simple, time-saving tool that assists in choosing the right Cisco router for your network. It asks the questions and suggests a product based on your answers. So you can sit back, relax, and continue to surf… the internet that is.


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