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Think back to the fashions of the eighties. Huge hair, acid wash denim, lace gloves … and that was just the blokes. It worked at the time, but you wouldn’t want to wear it to the office today. Times change.
It’s like that in business as well. What worked reliably a few years back might not now.
Resiliency (noun) Able to recover quickly from misfortune; able to return to original form after being bent, compressed, or stretched out of shape.
Australian businesses have more reason than many of our overseas counterparts to be preoccupied with disaster recovery. After all, we do get more than our share of floods, bushfires and cyclones. In spite of being the country where hailstones are the size of tennis balls and forty degree days are merely described as ‘a bit warm’, most of the biggest risk factors are in fact human-related.
Here at Computer Merchants we’ve evolved substantially over time and we continue to expand the range of solutions we offer.
Listed below are the capabilities we have around IBM System z:
You might have heard the words IT transformation bandied around a bit recently, but what is it all about? IT transformation means different things to different people, so it is little wonder that it can be hard to get to grips with the concept. At Computer Merchants, we’re in the fortunate position of seeing the world in terms of outcomes, rather than a vested interest in one technology or another. This means we can remove the filter and help our customers to clarity.
Over the years, considering the importance of Enterprise Computing, Computer Merchants has been keeping close attention on providing total solutions from systems and servers, storage, point of sales devices to networking devices. These devices are used to process, store and calculate a large amount of data...
New Specials - Lenovo 6411/2B2: Lenovo Storage S2200 LFF Chassis Dual SAS Controller, Lenovo 6x Storage 3.5” 2TB 7.2K, Lenovo 4x External Mini SAS HD 8644 2m Cable...
By consolidating storage through virtualisation, administrators can rapidly reduce the clutter of disparate or stranded systems and simplify the storage infrastructure. When data storage infrastructure is unified with a single management interface, IT can take advantage of higher-level features to enhance efficiency. Unified storage enables organisations to deliver a shared stored services model for multiple applications across the SAN for increased storage utilisation, flexible scalability, improved performance and data availability.
IBM’s V6R1 operating system has been one of the longest available OS versions for the System i in its history, being made generally available on March 21 in 2008. Just getting to V6R1 was not an easy task. It was often referred to as the biggest upgrade in OS400 history since the leap from CISC to RISC.
We have all dealt with the emotions of getting hardware fixed that has broken down. The headache that comes with calling vendors to log a support case and spending hours and hours chasing it up and waiting for the engineer to call back to advise the spare part is days away.
With the rise and rise of Analytics for both large and small enterprises, the question about how to maximise its implementation and also make effective use of business intelligence systems is often asked but not answered.
All good businesses collect information, whether on their profitability, productivity or performance. And great businesses go further, analysing what they’ve collected in real-time.
As most organisations grow ever more reliant on digital services it is becoming increasingly important to protect the IT infrastructure used to deliver these services. One key area of risk is around the physical integrity of IT infrastructure. Power interruptions, cooling failures, damage caused by dust or vibration and theft of equipment result in extended outages with a high level of impact on the business.
For a variety of reasons there are always some of you needing to move premises or move your IT equipment from one location to another. It could be a change of head office due to a lease expiry, a re-purposing of the building or maybe you’ve outgrown your current premises. Or perhaps you’re facing a significant investment to refurbish your computer room facility and it makes sense to move your equipment to an offsite data centre instead.
Data is the life blood that flows through societies now. Everything has a digital presence and has the capability to be monitored and analysed. At Veeam, we see the tip of the digital iceberg in terms of the difference data makes to every body’s health. Signs of that iceberg are already well above the waterline. Wearable technology and the Internet of Things (IoT) have the power to revolutionise how we think of our well-being. As we embrace wearable technology, the availability of that data has become more important now than ever.
Whether it is to meet reporting requirements, or a part of a social responsibility program, more businesses than ever are keen to reduce their environmental footprint. The IT department has a big role to play – and the good news is, going green doesn’t have to be a costly exercise.
There is a lot written about successful IT projects, about the amazing feats of implementation and problem-free roll outs, but it is often the time before you even place a purchase order that decides how well you will achieve your goals.
Keeping the datacentre running smoothly is a tricky enough balance at the best of times. As some exciting new applications emerge, the demands on infrastructure increase. Under that extra pressure...
When you embark on an IT project, no matter how large or how small, you are likely to encounter a number of people along the way. Of course, not all technology partners work the same way, but here are a few people you may meet...
One of the things that really pleases us at Computer Merchants is when our customers return to us, time and again – and they recommend us to their peers. That is when we know we are getting it right. Conversely, though, it is perhaps even more important to us to know when we can do something better. It is listening carefully that helps us to continually improve our customers’ experiences.
As the cloud trend has now become mainstream, we are seeing many businesses grapple with which style of cloud is right for them. Whether you’re moving to cloud as part of a financial strategy, or for very rapid scaling, or a myriad of other reasons, there are some significant considerations that will give you a smoother ride.
It’s that time of year again. With the federal budget handed down, and Australians urged to ‘have a go’, the thoughts of business managers are turned to their own budgets. So what...
Chances are, if you’re running a data centre, yours is one of the fastest paced jobs in your entire organisation. Still, you wouldn’t be in IT if you didn’t cope well with change,...
24/7/365 network uptime - Today, protecting your business network is more critical than ever. APC by Schneider Electric Smart-UPS On-Line uninterruptible power supplies eliminate costly downtime by providing reliable, network-grade power over a wide range of utility conditions. They keep employees connected to business-critical applications whether they are in house, at a co-location facility, or in the cloud.
Is your current backup and recovery solution today too slow, too expensive or too risky? Between missed backup windows and expensive solutions that take way too much employee time to manage, many of your peers are realising that their current backup and recovery strategies can’t keep pace.
Data Centre Relocation Services
Just because your data is moving, it doesn't mean your business has to come to a standstill. Computer Merchants are experts in reducing the risk and effort of relocating equipment into a data centre. Our team of project management and engineering staff have helped countless businesses...
Everyone needs a place to store their backup’s offsite and recover quickly in the event of a disaster. But not everyone has a second site or the resources to implement an effective disaster recovery plan. Get your backups off site without the cost and complexity of managing an offsite infrastructure. Veeam® Cloud Connect...
An organisation looking to upgrade its backup / retrieval / disaster recovery solution needs to consider the new technology from three angles: IT perspective, user perspective and Chief Finance...
A new paper from IDC highlights the Lenovo X6 and VMware solution to enable the last mile in client’s virtualisation journey. A few interesting quoted excerpts from the IDC paper:
Trends in x86 Servers: "Most enterprise customers are moving toward more general-purpose and often pre-integrated solutions based on blade and rack designs, such as the X6 platform. Systems in this category tend to incorporate in-rack network and onboard storage. Pre-integration makes these systems...
I’m Matt Codrington, Managing Director at Lenovo Australia and New Zealand. Having spent more than 15 years in the IT industry, it is always interesting to see how technology makers respond to the consumers’ changing needs. This commitment to change is a key reason I’m glad to be a part of Lenovo, one of the most innovative and adaptable technology companies in the world.
Business continuity is vital to business success; in today's interconnected world, virtually every aspect of a company's operations is vulnerable to disruption. Some continuity issues could...
We are seeing a trend at the moment of businesses looking to reduce the number of IT providers they deal with. Busy schedules and tight budgets are some of the drivers behind this agenda for those responsible for IT procurement. Having a select number of trusted sources simplifies vendor management and builds confidence of having a positive...
New Specials - Lenovo 5463/C2M: Lenovo x3550 M5 Rack Server, Lenovo Xeon 6C E5-2620v3 85W 2.4GHz/1866MHz/15MB, Lenovo 2x 16GB (1x16GB – 2Rx4 – 1.2V) PC4-17000 15 2133MHz LP RDIMM, Lenovo 2x 300GB 10K 6Gbps SAS 2.5” G3hs HDD, Lenovo 1x Ultraslim 9.5mm SATA Multi-burner...
Sydney's technology movers and shakers came out in force last month to join us at the impressive Ferrari showroom. It was a pleasure to host the group and to welcome both our loyal long-term clients and new faces. If you were able to make it, thank you for putting aside the time.
The secret to a successful business is no secret at all - it’s innovation. Across the globe, businesses are discovering that it takes more than just well-oiled Infrastructure to keep operations running smoothly. It’s those same businesses that are driving innovation...
Here at Computer Merchants we’ve evolved substantially over time and we continue to expand the range of solutions we offer. Computer Merchants began in 1979 as a broker of used IBM mid-range, mainframe and storage equipment. Enterprise computing has always been at the core of what we do. Used equipment remains part of our business and differentiates us from many of our competitors.
Do you know the status of your IBM software licenses in 2015?
Are you compliant or risk exposed if an audit were to occur?
Are your licenses utilised for value or imposing unnecessary cost to your bottom line?
Hyper-convergence: “A revolutionary and disruptive technology, which challenges traditional datacentre thinking. Hyper-convergence solves legacy datacentre complexities by de-duplicating, compressing and optimising all data at inception, globally, once and forever.
Managed through a single vCentre console it delivers enterprise class capability on X86 infrastructure to achieve 3X TCO savings in virtualised environments."
New Specials - Lenovo 7914/C3M: Lenovo x3550 M4 Server, Lenovo Xeon 6C E5-2620v2 80W 2.1GHz/1600MHz/15MB, Lenovo 3x 8GB (1x8GB – 1Rx4 – 1.35V) PC3L-12800 Cl11 ECC DDR31600MHz LP RDIMM, Lenovo 2x 300GB 10K 6Gbps SAS 2.5” SFF G2hs HDD, Lenovo 1x Ultraslim Enhanced SATA Multi-burner = $3,400 + GST...
Palo Alto Networks has revolutionised the firewall industry by producing the very first true ‘next generation’ firewall technology back in 2007. Founder, Nir Zuk, was instrumental in the development of the stateful inspection classification engine during the mid-90’s, and then later founded the world’s first IPS company. He also held the position of CTO for one of the world’s largest firewall companies, and has extensive heritage in this field of technology and that has attracted world class individuals with a strong ability to innovate and disrupt in the Network Security global market.
Durable, Antimicrobial and cleaned easily
Imagine equipping your healthcare organisation with the mobility needed to work more efficiently and enhance the patient experience. Make real-time decisions at your patients’ bedsides. Keep patient data confidential. And access the information you need from wherever you are. The HP ElitePad 1000 Healthcare Tablet supplies mobility and capability in a thin, light mobile solution designed specifically for clinical settings.
The Cisco Meraki product line includes wireless, switching, security, unified threat management and mobile device management, all centrally managed over the web. Built from the ground up for cloud management, Cisco's hardware, software, and cloud services are completely integrated, providing you with a visibly unique and intuitive networking experience.
ISO shipping containers offer a strong, secure and environmentally sound solution for housing a datacentre that can be easily transported globally and deployed in virtually any environment and application.
Schneider Electric’s containerised prefabricated modules are available as all-in-one units providing a self-contained, fully functional data centre as well as standalone power, cooling and IT modules that can be combined and customised upon request for large-scale deployments.
Faster than a speeding bullet, mobile devices have infiltrated IT’s fortress of technology procurement solitude. Unlike most villains to IT, this is one with a noble pursuit. Users aren’t trying to overthrow IT’s sovereignty as part of some nefarious scheme; they are merely trying to get more work done with the technology they are most comfortable with. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) offers untold potential for organisations, and IT can serve this new nirvana of productivity assuming they bring the right super powers to the battle.
Brisbane's technology movers and shakers came out in force last month to join us at the impressive Ferrari pop-up showroom. It was a pleasure to host the group and to welcome both our loyal long-term clients and new faces. Thank you for putting aside the time to be there.
One of the most frustrating reasons IT departments cite for major cost blowouts is not a matter of technology but of logistics. Having datacentre space paid for, infrastructure delivered and consultant time booked, it is discovered that one small but essential component has been overlooked or is missing in transit.
At the end of June 2014 Cisco was recognised by technology insight and research analyst, Gartner, as a leader in their Magic Quadrant for Wired and Wireless LAN Access Infrastructure. This is the third year in a row that Cisco has been recognised.
Today the challenge for small businesses and remote and branch offices is to manage growing data requirements with minimal cost and maintenance. Consistent performance delivery is expected;
Computer Merchants are a leading IBM Business Partner and together we can tailor a multi-vendor maintenance support solution for your business. Be it Hardware or Software, IBM is a leading maintenance provider in Australia over many platforms.
Since IBM has now sold off its System x division to Lenovo, it has left more room to focus on the POWER and Mainframe brand of servers. IBM can target the Intel X86 Market with their Scale out Power Systems and continue to build market share over Oracle Sparc and HP Unix Systems.
Where are you going to place the rack? To make the best decision for both today’s needs and future growth, the following tips can help ensure you choose the right solution for your environment.
A dedicated IT room? Or a mixed-use space, like a conference room?
When it comes to Unified Threat Management (UTM), there is no single vendor who can offer the best of every single security product. This is why Watchguard has chosen to partner with all the best of breed security products and bundle them within one device.
There are some buzz words floating around lately, like ‘Big Data’ and ‘Analytics’, and some 63% of organisations say that these concepts help to create a competitive advantage.
However, do you know what they actually mean or could do? All good businesses collect information, whether on their profitability, productivity or performance. Great businesses go further; they analyse what they’ve collected in real-time.
Summer and the festive season are here again, with warm days, sunny beaches, cold ales and Santa. At Computer Merchants we know that our customers don't necessarily shut down, and things can be quite hectic during this period! So that our team can get away and have a break we will be closed on the Public Holidays with a skeleton staff over the weeks of Christmas and New Year’s.
Essentially managed services let you offload IT operations to a service provider like Computer Merchants, allowing you to focus your efforts on those things that will increase your revenue and improve your core business profitability.
If you are still running V5R3 on your IBM iSeries (and we know there’s some of you out there!), please be aware that extended support is not available from IBM. Some of you may be in the position where you still need your iSeries server for a while longer but for whatever reason, you’re not in a position to upgrade your OS beyond V5R3. If you find yourself in this position but would still like support for your OS… we can help.
For almost as long as we can remember (and we’ve been doing IT for, well, a long time), IT managers have been told their organisation can reach the holy grail of competitive advantage, if only...
It’s the scariest night of the year, and this Halloween, people around the world are dressing up as fearful creatures: witches, ghosts, zombies and vampires. For IT managers, though, there are...
A customer recently came to us with a need to provide secure remote access for their staff and contract vendors. They were looking for a solution that was highly secure and easy to manage. It also needed to be robust and simple to implement.
There are a number of reasons that drive technology refreshes. We’ve summarised some of the key ones as follows… Out-of-support technology As organisations continue to use dated technology, they often land in situations where
Unless you have a magic wand (in which case, we’d like to know where you bought it), chances are that knowing what technology your business needs is only part of the battle. With a mass of competing requests, finding the large up-front funding for infrastructure can be as big a challenge as planning its installation. Of course, there are some
Virtualisation is a tried and true, mature technology used in almost all server environments today, giving substantial benefits in terms of increasing server utilisation, improving workload flexibility, and saving money –on rack space, power, cooling, and the server equipment itself. However, a virtualised datacentre is only as strong as its weakest link. While the computing components of the infrastructure are now easily optimised for virtualisation, it simply cannot be leveraged well if the network infrastructure is stuck in a legacy model of operation.
New Veeam Availability Suite v8 - In today’s interconnected and global business environment, customers, partners, suppliers and employees expect access to information and applications at any time and from any device, with no tolerance for downtime or data loss. IT organisations must therefore make data and applications available to all stakeholders every minute of every day.
Recently a long standing valued customer of approached us seeking assistance with addressing the requirements of a security audit. Specifically this client was looking to be able to provide a report to their board regarding their network security and potential vulnerabilities. The customer’s immediate need was to identify and address any potential external vulnerabilities of their organisation.
Powered by enterprise-class LenovoEMC technology, these compact desktop and rack mounted ultra-fast, server-class storage solutions are built for advanced data protection and cloud convenient content sharing.
By increasing performance and connectivity, integrated compression acceleration, and additional scalability IBM has further extended the Storwize V7000 range. Compared with the first generation of IBM Storwize V7000 models, the new generation is much more powerful and scalable.
Since Computer Merchants was established in 1979 (the year of the Walkman and VisiCalc, the first computer spreadsheet), our experts have come to grips with the ever-accelerating rate of change in our customers’ data centres. While we may be very glad that today’s storage devices don’t occupy entire rooms and our smartphones weigh less than a brick, there are a few things that remain reassuringly constant.
One of the enticing benefits of a cloud solution is that it is usually a pay as you go offering. For businesses this means no upfront capital expenditure and a known fixed expense that they can easily budget for. The downside is that to enjoy these financial benefits businesses must be prepared to remove their data from within their own premises and put it in the care of a third party, the cloud provider.
It doesn’t seem long since environmental issues were very much a niche affair, with individuals involved perceived to be, shall we say, eccentric. We like to think the reality is a little different: Computer Merchants has been promoting some very environmentally sound practices for decades – no tree hugging required.
You’ve probably heard that IBM® and Lenovo have entered into a definitive agreement where Lenovo plans to acquire the IBM System x® server business. Both IBM and Lenovo are dedicated to a larger vision for x86 systems.
If you are not familiar with Microsoft Licensing then this can be quite confusing. There are a number of options available, but how do you work out what the best option is for your business. This can be narrowed down by asking some simple questions to work out which is the better fit for you.
Unless you’ve been living in a cave, you’ve probably heard the words software defined data centre (SDDC) bandied around by technology vendors recently. Judging by discussions we’ve had, this trend is set to build momentum thanks to some seriously attractive outcomes for those seeking more bang for their IT buck. And after all, who isn’t?
A customer we have been working closely with over the last few years realised they had some challenges that needed to be addressed and asked Computer Merchants for help. Apart from ageing servers, they also had software
Are you struggling to create a compelling business case to upgrade server infrastructure? Many of us have servers and blades aged three years or more. Existing three year warranties are expiring but the cost of ongoing maintenance and support
At the end of April, IBM formally announced its new processor architecture, Power8. Along with this announcement a range of ‘scale out’ or ‘S-Class’ servers system were also released to market. These new
Sometimes life’s successes are all about being in the right place at the right time. Fortunately this is not one of them. IBM’s BusinessConnect and SolutionsConnect events in Sydney offered all you need to know about cloud, storage, consolidation, optimisation… and a bit more besides. If you missed it, fear not: the Frequently Asked (Cloud)
April 7th 2014 will mark the 50th anniversary of the release of the IBM Mainframe Computer. When IBM unveiled the System/360 line of Mainframe computers, it was one of the most transformational products
This is the question Aussie business owners should be asking when thinking about their next IT purchase Interest rates in Australia are at a historical low and are looking to stay that way for the next 12 months as the RBA continues to exert downward pressure on the AUD against all other currencies. (RBA Cash
Mobility Growth Over the last 5 years Mobile technology has transformed the way we work, shop and socialize. This trend is only growing. In fact, it has been said that Mobile is now the first point of contact between both individuals and organizations. Mobile users on average check their devices 30 times per hour and...
The problem One of our long term customers (of 20+ years) came to us with a requirement to replace their IBM BladeCenter and IBM storage which was hosted at a third party data centre. They also had aging branch servers and were running Microsoft Windows 2003 licensing and a small amount of virtualisation with ESXi.
Did you know that not having the latest firmware is one of the most common causes of calls needing to be logged with IBM! 60% of all service calls are closed by RTS (Remote Technical Services) remotely and a large portion of these are resolved quickly by firmware updates. Avoid experiencing these “problems” by ensuring
Disposing of obsolete IT assets can be a real challenge for many organisations. Every time you upgrade IT equipment, you want to minimise cost, maximise value recovery and ensure that disposal methods comply with relevant environmental
Cisco have recently released a new series in the 3xxx range; the Catalyst 3650. These switches, like the 3560’s are enterprise-class, stackable and also provide the foundation for wired and wireless convergence on a single platform.
CIOs and IT managers are being challenged to increase the business value of their company's existing investment in IT. One of the most effective ways to assist in addressing these challenges is to optimise the IT hardware refresh policy. A well-designed IT hardware refresh policy delivers a wide range of operational and financial benefits.
Paving The Way One of the most notable advances in technology is seen by everybody around the world every day, yet given it can be sourced so cheap and easily, one rarely stops to think about the...
On October the 3rd IBM announced the 7+ generation of its POWER processors. Like previously the rollout was not across the entire existing Power 7 range but only at the top end, minus the Power 795 which IBM say that customers have not asked for more power on. For most of us, who run the systems with not so much grunt, IBM has said that they will continue the new processor rollout across the range in 2013.
IBM Power Systems are usually running mission critical applications. While IBM Power Systems are a very reliable platform it pays to have preventative measures in place and system monitoring is one such measure. When you do the sums on the cost of an outage to your business on a per hour basis you will find that system monitoring can very quickly pay for itself.
We understand that most businesses want end-to-end IT solutions that solve a business need. A complete solution may include new hardware, installation and set-up, migration, software loads, systems development and much more. Computer Merchants services team can provide this complete solution; there is rarely a job too specialised or a location too remote where we cannot help you.
One of our more ‘experienced’ managers was regaling us with a time when AS400 servers were a million dollars each and required a wall removed from the customer’s computer room just to deliver them. These days the stories are a little more believable with IBM Power boxes filling only 4U of rack space and as you can see below, available for a much more palatable price.
The first step is to determine the severity of your issue:
Severity 1 – Critical business impact, or system down. This condition requires an immediate solution.
Severity 2 – Significant business impact, this indicates the program or machine is usable but is severely limited.
Severity 3 – Some business impact, this indicates the program or machine is usable with less significant features.
Severity 4 – Minimal business impact.
Computer Merchants are in the unique position in that we can supply equipment in Australia, New Zealand as well as the Pacific Islands.
If you are based in Australia and need our services or equipment for your New Zealand or Pacific Islands business operation or you are based in New Zealand or Pacific Islands and need equipment for Australia, we can help.
After the recent natural disasters which swept the country, the spotlight has been put back on Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Planning. With organisations taking a closer look at business continuity, what does a solid, successful plan look like?
First, we must clarify the difference between “business continuity” and “disaster recovery” as the terms are often used interchangeably. There are distinct differences between the two. Business continuity focuses on keeping everyday operations running with minimal interruptions, while disaster recovery focuses on measures to restore operations after an interruption occurs.
Are you concerned about the high cost of acquiring the IT you need, and whether you can even afford it?
Effective IT is key to achieving business objectives. But you have to provide effective IT — efficient, reliable and flexible — in ways that maximise your existing investments and work within the tight limitations of your budget. How do you reach that goal?