Monthly Archives: April 2019

Zyxel Nebula Cloud Network Management System: Equipment

maxresdefaultThe network infrastructure of small companies usually consists of a router, switches, and access points. Of course, it also happens that all of them are collected in a single device – a wireless router, but in this article we will consider a larger version of the local network.

With the growth of the number of devices, the question arises about the convenience of infrastructure management. If they are not related to each other, then the administrator may need to perform some configuration operations individually on each device, which requires more time and can potentially lead to errors. In addition, the requirements for staff qualifications are also increasing. At the same time, the use of “large” network management systems does not fit into the organization’s budget or limits the choice of equipment.

The company Zyxel, a well-known manufacturer of network equipment, presented the Nebula system (its version of solving the problem of centralized management and control) last year. This product is the Cloud service for working with network equipment of the company, which can be used for networks of different scales from one small office to a company with several branches or offices.

First of all, it is worth saying a few words about security issues. Still, when it comes to Cloud products, many users care about the confidentiality of their data. Of course, if the company’s policy does not allow the transfer of any information to the third parties, the Clouds may not be suitable. However, in the modern world, many services are implemented in this way, including e-mail, instant messengers, data exchange systems, and so on, which can significantly reduce their costs and at the same time provide the necessary reliability and performance. So in this case we can talk about administrative restrictions rather than technical ones. In addition, it is no secret that SMB enterprises are completely in a situation where the system administrator is not a full-time employee of the company or these functions are outsourced to a third-party company. Therefore, Cloud implementation can be considered just one of the characteristics of the solution in question and take into account the pros and cons of this approach. As for the question of the dependence of the system on availability of the Internet access in the office, here it can be argued that modern business without the Internet is practically inoperable and providing reliable access to the network does not depend on the network infrastructure management system.

Equipment

Among the equipment supported by the system today are security gateways, switches, and access points. Herewith, the device is hybrid and can be controlled either through Cloud or locally. We will not consider in detail the products used for publication in this article, but we will briefly describe their technical capabilities.

Zyxel NSG100 Cloud Gateway

In total, the lineup of gateways contains four models, differing mainly in overall performance and a set of ports. Of these, NSG100 is the second one in the line and is capable of providing up to 450 Mbps through a firewall and up to 150 Mbps via VPN. An external power supply unit (12 A 2.5 A), rack mount angles, rubber feet, console cable, brief instructions, warranty card are included in the delivery set of the gateway.

Zyxel GS1920-8HPv2 Hybrid Switch

There are usually rarely any special requirements for switches in the SOHO/SMB segment. But the GS1920v2 series is interesting in that it combines Smart capabilities and PoE/PoE+ support, which simplifies the use of network equipment such as access points and IP video cameras. The delivery package consists of brief instructions, a set of fasteners, rubber feet, and a power cable (the power supply unit is built-in).

Zyxel NAP102 Cloud Access Point

After gateways and switches, local access points are prevalent in local networks, without which it is not easy to imagine a modern office. Zyxel offers several product series to solve this problem. Zyxel NAP102 is the youngest in the line of products managed exclusively through Nebula Cloud. The package includes a power supply unit (12 V 1 A), a set of fasteners (frame, two variants of dowels and screws), instructions, a couple of leaflets.

Zyxel NWA1123-AC Pro Hybrid Access Point

In addition to access points with work only through Cloud, there are hybrid products with the NebulaFlex technology in the company’s catalog, in particular Zyxel NWA1123-AC Pro. The device comes complete with a mount, power injector with cable, network cable, and documentation. The case of matte white plastic has a diameter of 20 cm and a height of 3.5 cm. The model is equipped with a hardware antenna configuration switch, which allows to provide optimal modes in the case of mounting both on the ceiling and on the wall.

We hope that you received all necessary details about Zyxel Nebula and its equipment.

Money on Blockchain, or All Finances in One Mobile Application

ReccurrentIn January 2019, a new mobile application was released, with the help of which the user can simultaneously manage all his/her bank accounts. And not only accounts: Recurrent technology allows you to quickly and cheaply transfer money, open a business around the world, and invest.

Open an account without leaving the couch

Recurrent is, first of all, a convenient system for managing bank accounts. Even if you do not have an account, you can open it with this application in minutes. It does not matter where the user is located: the platform unites tens of the largest banks around the world, and you can create an account in any of them.

You do not need to go anywhere to use services, for example, Swiss banks, which are famous for their reliability. It is enough to download and install the application, take a picture of the passport, take a picture of yourself – and the verification process is completed. The banks that have a contract with Recurrent will not require anything else.

Business without borders and barriers

Not only that with Recurrent you will not have to leave the country, you don’t even need to know foreign languages because in the application interface, all information is displayed in the user’s language. A few clicks and that’s all, you can transfer money to a newly-opened account. Moreover, if you want to send rubles from Russia, the built-in converter will easily convert them into euros or Swiss francs at an adequate exchange rate.

In the same way, a company opens abroad, quickly and without the need of personal presence. The application provides the most up-to-date information on the legal and financial aspects of running a business or storing funds in a particular country of the world. This will allow the user to take into account all the nuances in advance: consider tax privileges, calculate the exact return on bank deposits, etc.

Transfer money – fast and almost free

Recurrent has many useful features. But perhaps one of the main advantages of this application, focused on both individual and legal entities, is the ability to quickly transfer any sums of money between banks around the world. Thanks to the use of the blockchain technology, remittances have become instant. In this case, the commission, which does not depend on the volume of the transaction, will be only 50 cents. For comparison, “classic” international banking transactions take from a few days to a week. The minimum commission at the same time is a few percent of the amount sent.

Money can not only be sent to a bank account, but also transferred to any user of the system. This individual is free to choose to leave money in a personal Recurrent account or withdraw it to one of its accounts. And soon it will be even easier to withdraw cash. In the near future there will be debit and credit cards Recurrent. Then the money can be cashed out at any ATM.

Security questions

How safe is it to keep your savings in Recurrent? The basis of the application is a decentralized blockchain network, much more resistant to cracking than the accounts of the above-mentioned Swiss banks. The chain of many separate independent servers ensures that no one can access the account without having a password. Judge for yourself: for 10 years of Bitcoin existence, no transaction has been hacked. At the same time, about 10 thousand hacks of ordinary bank accounts occur every day. So, nothing threatens the means of users and their personal data.

Application development prospects

Recurrent is the first similar system available to a wide range of users. At first, the platform was conceived as a tool for remote management of companies and their accounts. But over time, the project has grown into something more. Now the development team is evolving the investment direction of the project. Soon, new features will appear in Recurrent that will allow the users to trade exchange assets (stocks, etc.). The promising cryptocurrency market will not be ignored either: in the application, you can buy Bitcoins and other financial assets based on the blockchain system.

Two Main Questions about Microsoft Client Access License (CAL): What Is It? and Why Does It Need?

1In organizations, as a rule, one or several servers are used on which Windows Server is installed. There are also some services (SQL server for databases, Exchange server for mail, calendars, etc.) that are used by employees. To make the use of IT infrastructure legal, it is necessary to have licenses for both servers and clients.

What is a client license?

A client license (or CAL – Client Access License) gives the users the legal right to access the Microsoft server software for Windows itself, SQL server, Exchange server. By itself, the license does not give the individuals and devices the right to connect to the server. For this purpose, each user or device must have a client license.

Server manufacturers who distribute a software with servers can supply the client access licenses. At the same time, the CALs purchased with the server provide the same rights as similar ones purchased separately from equipment. But many people do not know that Microsoft no longer delivers the client access licenses with Windows Server licensed through the OEM channel.

Types of client licenses

The client licenses are of two types, and depending on the work organization in the company (whether the employees use several devices or, on the contrary, different people work alternately for some devices), you can significantly optimize costs by choosing the appropriate type.

User CALs

image1Depending on the number of users, you buy the CAL for each employee. It does not matter how many devices are used by the workers for whom you bought the licenses. It makes sense to acquire the CALs by the number of users if your company’s employees need access to the corporate network from several different devices or if you do not know from which particular devices they will access. They are also beneficial in cases where the organization has more devices than users.

Device CALs

image2Depending on the number of devices, you buy the licenses for each device that accesses the server. It does not matter how many users work with a licensed device. The device CALs can reduce costs and simplify administration in companies where several employees can use one device, for example, when working in several shifts.

In a large organization can be multiple servers. It is useful to know that having the CAL for a user (or a device) allows him/her to legally work with any of them.

Do you need CALs if users/devices do not connect directly to the Microsoft server software?

A company may use a specific server product for personnel management, accounting, etc., with its own licensing system. If this product itself accesses the Microsoft’s server software, for example, SQL Server, then this scheme is called multiplexing, and for legal use, you need a CAL (in this example, SQL Server CAL) by the number of real users/devices.