Bagels & Bytes Meeting Notes – March 2014

A group of smiling Bagels & Bytes attendees standing under the colorful oversized Crane (water bird) in the Children's Museum lobby.

Bagels & Bytes attendees posing under the large Crane in the lobby of the Children’s Museum.

Thank you to all for attending Bagels & Bytes this month at the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh!  George and Mercy were, once again, our gracious hosts.

In April and May, we are at the Frick Art & Historical Center in the East End. By that time, we should see some spring blooming and enjoy the lovely grounds there!

Here are the meeting notes for this month.

Technology Staffing

Windows 8

  • User experience – good, once you get past the new “top layer” it is stable and functional.
  • Vista scared a lot of people/vendors, so people still shy of upgrading.
  • The desktop environment is similar to 7, except for the touchscreen features and “charms” menu.
  • There are known compatibility issues with Terminal Server.
  • Reminder that Windows XP support expires next month.
    • Johna shared an informative email re: XP she recently received from NET Xperts:
      • Click on the link to see if your PC is running Windows XP.  http://www.amirunningxp.com/
      • For anyone who is not a computer techie, the announcement by Microsoft about discontinuing support for Windows XP may not mean much. However, from a HIPAA perspective, this is very important information because Section 164.308(a)(5)(ii)(B) of the HIPAA Security Rules includes an ‘addressable’ requirement of Protection from Malicious Software where covered entities need to implement “procedures for guarding against, detecting, and reporting malicious software”.
      • Officially, after April 8, 2014, technical assistance for Windows XP will no longer be available. This means that there will be no more automatic updates protecting your PC and even though your computer will still work, the problem is that without these updates, it becomes more vulnerable to security risks and viruses.
      • Even if you have encryption and anti-virus software on your Windows XP computer, it won’t help because the problem is related to the flaws in the operating system itself. Encryption protects communication to and from the computer, but not the computer itself. Anti-virus can help protect a computer, but that depends on what security flaws might be found in XP after Microsoft no longer supports it.
      • Here’s what happens from the ‘hacker’ perspective. Microsoft releases an update (patch) for a supported operating system. Hackers review those patches and see if that same vulnerability exists in the old operating systems that are no longer supported. If so, then your old, faithful, reliable XP computer becomes a prime target no matter what encryption or anti-virus you have installed on it. If you have a security breach on that XP computer, you have not implemented appropriate safeguards to meet the HIPAA requirements.” ~ NET Xperts

Google Apps vs. Office 365

  • Between the two programs, file conversion and sharing can be an issue.
  • Moving to these clouds-based productivity apps requires a degree of change management, regardless of which you choose.
  • Office 365 changing name of cloud storage from SkyDrive to OneDrive. Business subscriptions start at $5/month per user.  Here’s the announcement from Microsoft.
  • Outlook 2013 – no more Public Folders, everything is a Mailbox now.
  • Mail merge feature in Google Docs has improved somewhat over time.

Responsive Web Design

Local IT Providers That Serve Nonprofits

Backups

  • Cloud vs. local backups (see extensive notes from our last meeting).
  • How to pay for?  An in-house backup device can be labeled a capital expenditure and depreciated while cloud-based solutions fall under operating expenditures.
  • General consensus wishing that funders and management understood that the world is slowly moving to the cloud and we’ll need to re-think how we fund our IT.

Book Mention

Virtualization

  • There was a request for a “101” document.  Here’s a video instead.

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