Frequently Asked Questions (Part 9)

Q) Do I need a server?

A) This is a question that can have a couple answers depending on your situation. Servers are primarily used to provide central storage for small computer networks, and other features like central account management in larger network environments. In a home environment, generally speaking you don’t need a server. In most cases, you can use an existing computer as a server to store your videos, pictures, etc. and share them over the network. It would make sense to use a storage server specifically when maybe all you have are laptops that are taken to work regularly, or if you need more storage than a single computer can provide. In larger environments like a company, we generally recommend making the move to using an Active Directory server or servers when you have around a dozen computers and/or users. If you’re unsure if a server would be a good move for you, just drop us a line and we can chat with you about what you are wanting to do and steer you in the right direction. The call is free 🙂

Q) My friend has a copy of Microsoft Office. Can they share it with me?

A) Generally speaking, software licenses are either for the computer it comes with, or the user that purchases it. The home and student version of Office does give you 3 installation licenses, but it is expected for you to utilize them all in the same household. If paying for software is something you have a hard time with, you might want to consider free alternatives to Microsoft Office such as LibreOffice, Google Docs, or WPS Office. Feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions about your options…

Q) How can I be safe shopping online?

A) Anymore, websites that offer shopping carts tend to outsource their technology to established “e-commerce” payment providers like Stripe or even Amazon. Basically, as long as you see “https://” at the beginning of the website URL that you are shopping at and it is not red (indicating something is wrong with the security of the site), you can be reasonably certain of the safety of the site you are doing business with. While security breaches do happen regardless of how many precautions you take, fortunately it’s generally pretty easy to remediate anything that happens as a result (reverse any fraudulent charges, get a new card issued, etc.)

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