SMB Nation Blog

Small business IT and technology news for the SMB channel VAR, MSP, and IT professional.

Recent blog posts

gfiGFI Software released today the findings of a study examining business and societal impacts of cyber security issues, which revealed growing concerns of personal risk and potential for physical retaliation.

“Cyber attacks have profound consequences for the business community, whether companies are the target, or the victim of an attack elsewhere. In the last few months alone we’ve seen major corporations targeted in systematic acts of espionage and geopolitical retaliation, as well as hundreds of thousands – potentially millions - of individuals affected by the fallout of data being stolen and misused,” said Sergio Galindo, general manager of GFI Software. “Usernames, passwords, credit card data, health records – malicious use of this data by criminals can quickly create financial hardship and significant stress for affected individuals, while the negative fallout for organizations the data was stolen from can range from loss of reputation to fines, falling sales, civil and criminal legal proceedings and more.”

continuumContinuum recently announced that four of its MSP partners have been named as finalists for the Robin Robins “Better Your Best” competition. This particular competition allows MSPs to vie for the chance to be the spokesperson for Robins’ company: Technology Marketing Toolkit.

“We offer our congratulations to these top MSPs that have enjoyed significant revenue and profit increases over the last year by implementing Robin Robins’ proven marketing strategies,” said Frank Bauer, Sr. Channel Development Manager at Continuum.

veeam logoVeeam Software today announced that the customer adoption of is Veeam Availability Suite v8 has gone above and beyond company expectations. The company reported that 36% of existing users upgraded to v8 within 90 days of the product announcement, and that there have been an average of 1200 downloads of the software per day.


Tadiran-NewLogoTadiran announced today it was awarded 2015 Unified Communications Product of the Year by TMC, a global, integrated media company, for its Unified Communications and Collaboration solution, Aeonix.

"It gives me great pleasure to honor Tadiran Telecom as the 2015 recipient of TMC's Unified Communications Product of the Year Award for their innovative product, Aeonix," said Rich Tehrani, CEO, TMC. "Our judges were very impressed with the ingenuity and excellence displayed by Tadiran Telecom in their groundbreaking work on Aeonix".

Cadence Products Achieve PCI-SIG compliance

Posted by on in News


cadenceCadence Design Systems, Inc. announced today multi-protocol Serializer/Deserializer (SerDes) PHY IP for PCI Express 2.0 and PCIe 3.0 technology for TSMC's 16nm FinFET Plus (16FF+) process have passed PCI-SIG compliance testing.

"PCIe 3.0 and PCIe 2.0 compliance was achieved with first 16FF+ silicon. The early availability of these products enables our customers to tapeout their leading-edge mobile, storage and enterprise designs sooner and with reduced risk," said Osman Javed, product marketing director at Cadence. "These flexible multi-protocol solutions provide customers a unique combination of SoC differentiation and future proofing.

LogicNow Launches MAX Backup v15.0

Posted by on in News

logicnowLogicNow announced today the release of version 15.0 of its MAX Backup hybrid cloud backup and disaster recovery solution, a key part of MAXfocus, its MSP and IT support platform.

“MSPs want to be able to provide more value to their customers. Backup can easily be seen as a business continuity box-ticking exercise – as long as everything is safe if the worst happens, then all is well,” said Chris Groot VP, Sales, MAX Backup & Recovery. “But we and the MSPs we work with know that with disaster recovery, the speed of backup and the speed of recovery is vital. The new features and new direction of MAX Backup v15.0 mean that MSPs can offer disaster recovery services where downtime will be measured in minutes rather than hours, positioning them as the best provider of this mission-critical service to their clients.”

Mavenlink Raises $19M in Growth Capital

Posted by on in News

MavenlinkMavenlink , a global provider of integrated business management software, today announced it garnered $19 million in growth capital, composed of $15 million contributed by shareholders and a $4 million credit facility. The round of funding was led by Carrick Capital Partners and Silicon Valley Bank.

Microsoft’s SMB IT Hot Links! Pt. 1

Posted by on in News

Microsoft LogoGood day, SMB IT Pro Community! Welcome to the first part in a three-part installment of the Microsoft Hot Links for SMBs! Here are the first 5 links to help you realize your business goals and find community information in 2015:

skykickSeattle-based SkyKick, a cloud migration company specializing in Microsoft Office 365, announced today Computer Reseller News, a brand of The Channel Company, named Peter Labes as a 2015 CRN Channel Chief.

Labes, SkyKick’s vice president of development, joined SkyKick in October 2014 and has increased international reach through agreements with distributors, IT solution providers and channel service organizations.

Community Relations

Posted by on in Featured

datto dinner editedIt’s been said the only reason you would ever engage in lead generation is because it’s a last resort. That is, you would grow by referral based on your reputation. When that doesn’t work, you’ll see companies go metric and engage in big data lead generation activities with little regard for business relationships. It’s more than apparent in the SMB IT community.

But there are a few exceptions. Datto is one of them. If you research the company, you can get your speeds and feeds fix and learn about its young wunderkind founder. That’s not what this blog is about. Instead, it’s about Datto going old school, and hosting a series of community gatherings across the US. This past week, I attended thE Datto event at a local restaurant, Duke Chowder House, with the Puget Sound Small Business Server (PSSBS) group. This night did double duty as the group’s monthly meeting as well.

SkySync Joins Internet2Net+ Portfolio

Posted by on in News

skysyncPortal Architects, Inc., creator of SkySync, announced today it joined the Internet2 NET+ portfolio to enable higher education institutions to integrate their on-premises storage platforms with cloud-based storage services.

SkySync’s offering is designed to open up flexible storage options for higher education institutions and increase file, folder, sites and file structure mobility.

D&H Distributing to Host Server Refresh Webinar

Posted by on in News

dandhjpgD&H Distributing will be hosting a webcast titled: "Windows Server 2003 End of Support - Customer Need Becomes VAR Opportunity,” on Thursday, February 26 at 11 am PST. This session will be moderated by Bill Hersh, Solutions Coordinator, and Matt Allison, Intel Server Champ, D&H.

“We have been introducing resellers to this opportunity since early last year, starting with seminar sessions and major technology focus throughout our trade show schedule,” said Jeff Davis, senior vice president of sales at D&H. “Now that we are nearing the actual EOS deadline, companies will be more eager to seek advice on how to deal with their new needs. We want to position VARs in the channel to capture that business, turning them into that trusted advisor who can support SMB end-customers through a transition to more secure, robust and powerful environment. Microsoft’s upgraded server solutions offer a sophisticated and advanced platform, so the upgrade cycle offers a good deal of benefits to all parties in the channel.”

GrapeCity Announces General Availability of Xuni

Posted by on in News

GrapecityDeveloper component provider GrapeCity today announced its Xuni product, a collection of cross-platform UI controls for iOS, Android and Windows Phone, is out of beta and has been released to the web.

"Now that Xuni is generally available for purchase, developers will be able to utilize the product to provide native experiences in Android, iOS and Windows Phone using the same API across all platforms," said Greg Lutz, product manager of Xuni.  As Lutz shared in the company's original beta announcement, "With Xuni and Xamarin.Forms, developers can code once in C# and XAML to create enterprise-level apps for all devices."

All Together Now!

Posted by on in Featured

lenovoBeing part of the analyst and blogger community grants one access to leading thought leaders in our professional community. So I always look forward to a chit-chat with Chris Frey, long-time Lenovo executive. Let’s start there.

Up and Not Out

Chris’ new position is as VP of the North American Commercial business, overseeing a combination of Channel, SMB and Corporate sales that will simplify Lenovo’s relationship with the Channel and better leverage our partners to acquire new customers in the commercial space. Essentially, that is good for us, the SMB Nation community member. Chris is “one of us,” who has responsibilities up the entire segment (up through retail, enterprise), but he thinks SMB first.

snom Announces Appointment of New CEO

Posted by on in News

snom Logosnom technology AG confirmed today appointment of Nadahl Shocair as CEO, following an announcement last week that HeidelbergCapital Private Equity Fund II had become its anchor investor.

“As snom's new CEO, I am proud to lead a great team of professional, talented, motivated and truly inspiring men and women who will continue to add value to our customers, partners, suppliers and shareholders,” Shocair said.

Continuum Creates Partnership with Webroot

Posted by on in News

Continuum, a provider of fully-integrated managed IT services solutions, announced today it will offer Webroot SecureAnywhere Business- Endpoint Protection in its Remote Monitoring and Management platform to its MSP partners through a partnership with Webroot.

“Webroot SecureAnywhere is a smart, fast and very effective choice in antivirus and antimalware protection, using cloud data centers to instantly protect all users from new threats with endpoint security in real-time,” said Dee Zepf, Vice President of Products and Technical Services at Continuum. “Continuum has chosen to bundle Webroot with its RMM product because it saves time and helps partners to operate more efficiently and most importantly, our partners have asked for it.”

Bizzabo Launches First Event Success Platform

Posted by on in News

Bizzabo, a networking platform and event app, announced today the launch of Bizzabo Event Success Platform, its all-in-one management platform designed for event organizers.

“The Bizzabo Event Success Platform is the next step in the natural development of our product – a comprehensive system where event organizers can actually take more ownership of their event branding and overall event experience,” CEO Eran Ben-Shushan said.  “After working closely with thousands of organizers we understood the need for a holistic event software that works. We wanted to free the industry from a reliance on multiple siloed tech solutions that increase an event organizer’s workload, minimize their ability to measure success and limit productivity. By evolving our current product offering we are able to provide a one stop shop for all event technology needs, delivering the same quality we’re known for through a much more enhanced and complete experience from start to success.”

The platform is designed to streamline the planning and execution of events, offering tools to help event organizers measure success and tailor products and campaigns for their event. 

trendmicroTrend Micro recently announced a new research paper that covers two malware threats based in the Middle East, using servers in Germany. The Trend Micro deduced that the two malware threats, Operation Arid Viper and Operation Adtravel, are connected to the same organization, and that these are both part of the cyberattack conflict in the Gaza region.

To begin, the Operation Arid Viper, which was first found in mid-2013, is a sophisticated piece of malware that disguises itself as a video attachment to an email. Once the target opens the file, the malware goes to work in a “smash and grab” to extract files. This particular piece of malware targets high-level Israeli officials.


skykickFeeling like an underpaid superstar in the Office 365 community? The question I receive every day is: “how can I make more money as an MSP with Office 365?” It’s a fair question. The money motion surrounding the Office 365 opportunity is clearly different from the server-side, on-prem old school rock ‘em sock ‘em dance.

Enter SkyKick’s new Office 365 migration offer. Right now, you can think of the Office 365 opportunity life cycle as being in the early stages. So the type of work you can, would and should perform concerns migrations. Arguably in a couple of years, there will be less migration work, as the Office 365 product matures. So that’s why it’s important to understand and capitalize immediately on the SkyKick Office 365 migration offer.

bell techlogixBell Techlogix, an IT managed services and solutions provider, announced today it has joined Microsoft’s Microsoft Surface Affiliate Partner Program.

Its participation in the program will allow Bell Techlogix to resell Surface tablets to public sector and education clients, further expanding their education and public sector service offering portfolio.

sound communicationsYesterday, SMB Nation entered into an agreement for SoundLine Communications to be the exclusive telecom provider for SMB Nation! This is part of our strategy to continuously “get modern” using the latest technologies. In this case, we’re super excited about the HD sound quality offered by Sound Communications. We are also seeing an upgrade in our telecom functionality including the “park” feature that I had, to be honest, forgotten about. So we’re also excited for our links into Office 365.

VocalcomVocalcom today announced ITV, a client using its Omni-channel Customer Service Solution, was awarded “Best Customer Services in Telecom & Media” by United Business Media.

“We selected Vocalcom because they could provide everything we needed in one single package,” said Stephen Morris, ITV head of viewer services.  “We were looking for a ‘one-stop-shop,’ a truly unified communications provider who could supply us with a real omni-channel customer management portal that incorporated everything from voice, email, white mail, SMS and socials networks. Vocalcom provided just that and were instrumental in the seamless transition between customer management systems.”

win10siteA trending topic in the IT Pro community is Windows 10. Whether you fancy other communities, such as Office 365, Windows Server 2003 end-of-support (W2k3 EOS), post-SBS or hybrid, everything circles back to the desktop operating system. Love it or hate it, you can’t leave it.

I interviewed Onuora Amobi, the guy behind the Windows 10 Update site (where you can discover a primer on “What is Windows 10” here). He is a former Microsoft MVP for Windows, and he has been writing about Windows since Vista in 2007. Since that time, he has been following the Windows product development very closely. He has built an audience in excess of 250,000 followers. “It’s a lot of enterprise people on site and receiving the newsletters, lots of executives and tech people. The geography is 55 percent North America and 25 percent Europe with the rest varied.” Amobi shared.

BATS Wireless Announces AATS Upgrade

Posted by on in News

batsBATS Wireless today announced the release of version 3.0 of its Automatic Aiming and Tracking Software.

"We are excited to roll out the newest version of our AATS software," says Phillip Cramer, VP – Sales & Marketing, BATS. "Version 3.0 gives end clients the ability to monitor, alter, maintain and coordinate their BATS systems in a truly user-friendly interface with ease and efficiency, leaving more time to focus on mission-critical tasks."

Columbus and SaaSplaza Create Strategic Partnership

Posted by on in News

saasplazaColumbus and SaaSplaza announced today a partnership to provide Microsoft Dynamics Cloud solutions to their North American clients.

Joe Zarrehparvar, Columbus executive vice president of sales, said Columbus selected SaaSplaza because of its experience with Microsoft Dynamics and its ability to meet client needs.