IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

ICYMI: Our Channel News Roundup for the Week of November 14th, 2022

Data center gear from Lenovo and Dell, firewall upgrades from Sophos, backup cost cutting tech from MSP360, and an eminently fair solution to an election conundrum are among the many stories we’re at long last bringing to your attention. By James E. Gaskin

Thanksgiving looms closer every day as people scramble to get home. This year, if your plans start or end in the Northeast, it may be a Zoom holiday thanks to record-breaking snowfall. Be careful out there and take these pumpkin-spiced newsbits with you for good luck.

Poly Studio Systems for Zoom RoomsHardware news. Lenovo announced 21 new ThinkSystem and ThinkAgile V3 servers, all powered by 4th Gen AMD EPYC processors. Just right for a wide range of applications, from traditional workloads on the edge to clouds to artificial intelligence.

New Dell PowerEdge servers (XE9680, XE9640, and XE8640) boost high performance computing for AI. Dell APEX High Performance Computing brings you HPC as a Service.

We’re still Zooming, holiday visits or not, and the new Poly Studio Systems for Zoom Rooms (pictured), powered by the HP Mini Conferencing PC, make meetings look and sound better than ever.

The Supermicro H13 JumpStart remote access program is ready to support workload and application tuning on 4th Gen AMD EPYC processors. Prefer 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors? Supermicro also rolled out a bunch of systems for that platform, codenamed Sapphire Rapids, that run faster and jump higher than predecessors.

Need more backup power? Of course. Don’t have much room? Of course, squared. Then take a look at the new Schneider Electric APC Smart-UPS Ultra models with up to 2.5x more power density in a smaller package with half the weight.

SecurityCoachSecurity news. Dell unveiled a slew of security updates, including PowerProtect Data manager software advancements, isolated cyber vaults for Google Cloud, and a Cyber Recovery Guarantee.

Howdy to the latest Sophos Firewall capabilities, which boost performance, add dynamic traffic routing for IPv6, support SD-WAN load balancing, and ease management.

SentinelOne connected Singularity XDR to Ping Identity to provide automated incident response and no-code automation, among other goodies.

Ransomware attacks can go from crippling to inconvenient with the new Rubrik Cyber Recovery, part of the Rubrik Security Cloud, which validates whether cyber recovery plans will work, clones backup snapshots, and conducts forensic investigations during recovery.

How does ransomware get on your network? More times than not, a user mistake. That’s why KnowBe4 announced SecurityCoach, which offers real-time security coaching to reduce exploits.

Users of Microsoft E3 protection tools will want to check out the new Trustifi cost-analysis calculator to improve security strategies.

The IGEL OS now natively supports VMware Horizon Cloud for simplified secure access to Windows 365 Cloud PCs.

Other product news. Need to backup your QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop data? Redstor’s got you covered.

The latest version of MSP360 Backup could reduce storage costs by up to half, thanks to intelligent retention and forever forward incremental backup.

The 5G hype’s slowed, thank you, but the benefits are arriving. Example? The new 5G-optimized SD-WAN from Cradlepoint, which is network slicing ready.

As for TP-Link, they’ve announced their first Wi-Fi 7 full home network solution and Wi-Fi 7 business product line, featuring Deco mesh systems (sample pictured), routers, Omada EAPs, and Aginet products.

Kristin HalesNon-product vendor news. Backblaze ordered new business cards for Dr. Brian Beach as he moves up to CTO. But wait, there’s more! Backblaze also announced a new partner program with opportunities for channel partners, technology partners, MSPs, and affiliates.

The new title for Impartner’s Kristin Hales (pictured) is vice president of people operations.

TD SYNNEX and its community of partners will now provide Google Cloud solutions to the U.S. public sector.

Pax8, for its part, now provides SASE, SIEM, and other solutions from Todyl.

Computer Market Research just launched its Co-op/MDF Program to help distributors manage and track funds from vendors.

Ivanti flipped the switch on its new Partner Portal and Campaign Central for its global partners.

SAP Build is a set of low-code tools that give business users direct, secure access to SAP’s enterprise technology. Coursera signed on to help.

Tech Job Posting Optimizer, a free web-based platform from CompTIA, includes a library of tech job templates to rev up a job search.

This week's stats ticker:

The Q4 2022 SME IT Trends Report, “Managing IT Amidst Rising Security Threats and Global Turbulence for Small to Medium-sized Enterprises,” commissioned by JumpStart, reports that IT pros are worried about pending cuts to cybersecurity budgets. Near half, 44%, say their organizations will cut spending, while only 41% disagree. Three quarters, 75%, concur that cutting the security budget will increase risk, and 78% report some evidence of a recession in their business. Making security more difficult, only 46% of workers are in the office full time, talent acquisition remains a problem, and licensing costs are increasing.

BetterCloud’s annual report, “2023 State of SaaSOps,” found that over 40% of 740 respondents have retired applications that duplicated or overlapped others. Despite that, SaaS apps grew 18% year-over-year. Organizations now use, on average, 130 apps, and 59% find the SaaS burden hard to manage. One reason? 65% say apps weren’t sanctioned by IT, and 57% report teams added SaaS apps to their management load over the last 12 months. The best way to overcome SaaSOps challenges? 86% call automation critical, and 71% have automated at least one help desk process.

The OpenText Security Solutions 2022 Global Small-Medium Business (SMB) Ransomware Survey won’t ease your worries about ransomware, because 86% of respondents are concerned or extremely concerned about an attack impacting their organization. 52% worry that heightened geopolitical tensions increase their risk of attack, while 57% believe their cybersecurity budget will shrink thanks to rising inflation rates. Despite these concerns, 67% of the 1,332 respondents still don’t think they’re a ransomware target or aren’t sure.

The Cyber Security Report 2023 from Hornetsecurity reports that 40.5% of all work emails are unwanted. That might be because 39.6% of detected threats are phishing attempts. There’s been a significant increase in HTML smuggling attacks using embedded LNK or ZIP files to deliver malware payloads since Microsoft disabled macro settings in Office 365. 25% of respondents said they were either unsure or assumed that Microsoft 365 was immune to ransomware threats. Not true. Experts studied over 25 billion emails for the report.

Tie BreakerLuck of the draw. In the current, er, contested climate about election integrity, Rogers City, Mich., (population 2,800) can be an inspiration to us all. When the recent vote for a city council seat wound up in a 616-616 tie, candidates Timeen Adair and Brittany VanderWall acted more maturely than many national politicians.

Their solution to the tie? They pulled pieces of paper marked “Elected” or “Not Elected” from a bowl. Adair won, and announced, “The people have spoken and they said, ‘Eh, either one.’”

Photo: Julie Riddle/The Alpena News via AP

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