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The Costs Associated with Windows 7 And Server 2008 End of Life

Posted by Gulf South Technology Solutions on Sep 12, 2019 11:04:00 AM

As the January 14, 2020 end of life date nears for Windows 7 and Server 2008/2008 R2, there are many things to consider before you start upgrading to Windows 10. Cost is a major factor, which is why it’s important to assess your network and plan your upgrade now instead of waiting until the end of the year. Assessing now allows you to spread out those expenses over several months.  Here's what to consider when assessing the cost of upgrade:

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Topics: Windows 10, windows 7, windows support, Windows Server 2008

Top 5 Things to Consider Before Upgrading from Server 2008/R2

Posted by Gulf South Technology Solutions on Sep 12, 2019 9:22:00 AM

Along with Windows 7 operating system, Server 2008 and Server 2008 R2 will reach end of support with Microsoft on January 14, 2020. Servers are a big investment – typically $10,000+ with an average lifespan of 5-6 years. Ensure you’re making the right decision by thinking about these things first. 

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Topics: Windows 10, windows support, Windows Server 2008

4 Reasons to Upgrade to Windows 10 NOW

Posted by Gulf South Technology Solutions on Aug 28, 2019 11:00:00 AM

Windows 7, Server 2008 and 2008 R2 will reach end of support on January 14, 2020. However, you should not wait until the last minute to upgrade your device to Windows 10. You’re not saving time, money, or headaches by waiting. Instead, you’re missing out on the great features and increased security that Windows 10 has to offer. It’s also worth noting that the Windows 10 OS has been around since 2015 – it is tried and true, and ready for you!

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Topics: Windows 10, windows 7, windows support

IT BEGINS: Microsoft Warns of Exploit Affecting Windows 7 Users

Posted by Kelsie Moak on Aug 13, 2019 12:27:37 PM


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Topics: windows 7, windows support

3 Options for Upgrading Windows 7 Devices

Posted by James Moak on Aug 8, 2019 7:59:00 AM


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Topics: windows 7

What End of Support Means, From a Microsoft Partner

Posted by Gulf South Technology Solutions on Jul 31, 2019 10:33:08 AM

Every Microsoft product has a lifecycle. XP expired in April of 2014, Vista expired in April of 2017, and soon Windows 7 will be coming to an end.

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Topics: Windows 10, windows 7, windows support

Run A Background Check On Yourself

Posted by Gulf South Technology Solutions on Mar 11, 2019 2:26:31 PM

With the relative ease of finding information about anyone via the internet, search engines and social media, sleuthing around is now par for the course. But it goes deeper than that. Every institution that you plan on dealing with wants to glean your history, whether you want it or not.

Applying for a job? Planning on renting an apartment? Trying to get insurance? It's more than likely that the companies, institutions and even individuals you've come in contact with will all run a background check on you.

 Simply put, information and privacy go both ways and it's all in the name of security -- you want to know more about them, and vice-versa, they want to know more about you. And mind you, these reports are comprehensive and they may include your income level, loans, debts, criminal records and other sensitive data.

This is why it's important that you run a background check on yourself and see what data these institutions, prospective employers and various companies can request about you.

It's recommended that you occasionally check your records and always make sure they're accurate and complete. Why? Well, these background checks can drastically affect various aspects of your life.

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5 Ways To Use Your Echo Dot

Posted by Gulf South Technology Solutions on Mar 4, 2019 3:17:09 PM

Amazon’s Echo Dot is quickly becoming a household staple, and for good reason. It’s the personal assistant, smart home accessory and voice-activated speaker that’s tough to pass up.

If you’ve recently purchased one of these nifty gadgets, or have had one but haven’t maxed out it’s full potential, you may be wondering how to make the most of your purchase. 

Bonus: Amazon's Alexa can now remind you to turn off the lights and feed the dog. Is this a great breakthrough or just plain creepy? In this episode of Consumer Tech Update, Kim looks at a new feature of the Amazon Alexa that can learn your behavior and then predict what you're going to do next.

The artificial intelligence function built into the device, Alexa, does so much more than play songs from your phone’s playlist. The Echo Dot can make life simpler. All it takes is a few quick words and viola! Before you know it, you’ve re-ordered you shampoo on Amazon and put together a shopping list for tomorrow’s grocery store trip.

So, you’ve made the leap. You’re the proud owner of an Echo Dot. Now that you’re ready to get all you can of your device, there’s a few things you should know.

1. You can give it a different name

When you want to ask your Echo Dot to do something, the default setting requires you to call it "Alexa." Just say it’s name and it will wake up and start listening to your request.

But what if there’s already a human or pet named Alexa living in the household? Fortunately, there are a few other options. In the settings on the Alexa app, you can change the device’s "wake word" from Alexa to "Amazon," "Echo" or "Computer."

2. It can tell your kids a personalized bedtime story

You may have heard that the Echo Dot can tell kids bedtime stories. With a simple request, Alexa will tell a short, five minute story to help your little ones drift off to sleep.

What you may not know is that the story can be personalized to include their name. Just include it in your request by saying something like "Alexa, tell a bedtime story to Jacob." Alexa will then incorporate the name "Jacob" into whatever story she tells.

3. You can use it to collaborate with your household

For those living in a home where more than one family member has an Amazon account, creating separate profiles for your Echo Dot can allow everyone to enjoy the device with their own preferences. It’s easy to set up in the Alexa app under Alexa Account > Alexa Household Profile.

Using multiple profiles allows for shared content and collaboration on to-do lists, calendars and shopping lists. If you want Alexa to change preferences when you are talking to it versus, say, your teenage child with wildly different taste in music, you can set up voice profiles, allowing Alexa to recognize your voice when you make a request.

4. It can turn your home into a smart home

As smart home products become more mainstream, it’s easier than ever to turn your home into a smart home using your Echo Dot. When you purchase compatible smart home devices, you can use Alexa to turn on and off lights or electronic devices.

Some new smart home appliances allow you to do even more like preheat your oven, check if your laundry is done drying, or ask your refrigerator what to make for dinner.

5. It can help you communicate throughout the house

If you’re lucky enough to own more than one Amazon Echo device, you can turn your home into a full-blown communication hub.

Make a call from one device to the other or send messages to your family member in the other room. You can even ask Alexa to "Make an announcement" and it will share the message across all connected devices. When it’s time for dinner, you can let the entire family know without leaving the kitchen or yelling up the staircase.

The Echo Dot has revolutionized the way we operate in our homes. The device provides entertainment, utility and hands free operation of a growing number of appliances and other devices. No matter how you use your Amazon Echo Dot, there’s sure to be a feature that makes your life easier.

Technology Sales

"5 Clever Ways To Use An Echo Dot." The Kim Komando Show. N. p., 2019. Web. 4 Mar. 2019.

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7 Hidden iPhone Features

Posted by Gulf South Technology Solutions on Feb 27, 2019 12:48:25 PM

Open sesame! It sure would be nice if you could just shout a simple passphrase at your phone and unlock all its secrets. It might not be quite that simple, but we’ve got some cool iPhone features to show you that you may not know about.

There’s a lot going on in Apple’s mobile operating system, and it’s hard to know about every little trick. Sometimes they’re not obvious. Sometimes they’re overlooked. 

Check out these seven cool hidden features that will make your iPhone experience even better. They’re all present in iOS 12, but you may also find them in earlier operating systems. It’s a good idea to update to the latest version of iOS 12 if your phone is compatible. A lot of these features also work for iPads, so feel free to experiment with your tablet as well!

1. Scroll back to the top

You’re in Safari and you’re way, way down a web page, but now you want to get back to the top. You don’t have to wear your fingertip out scrolling back up. Just double-tap in the bar at the top of the page, without double tapping the URL.

This tip works for other apps as well; just try a single or double tap at the top to get back to where you started. You may have to play around a little bit to find the sweet spot.

2. Use the hidden touchpad

There’s a secret touchpad hiding out in your keyboard. Depending on your phone or tablet, there are a couple of ways to access it. On many newer iPhones, you just need to press down on any key and you will see the keyboard become blank. Now, you can move your finger around and the cursor will move with you.

On some iPhones and iPads, you will need to hold down on the space bar to access this mode. It’s a great way to move around in a document, or just simply place your cursor somewhere specific in an email, text or note.

3. Put a thesaurus at your fingertips

Do you write a lot on your iPhone or iPad? You’ll never be at a loss for the right word again when you enable Apple’s thesaurus option.

Open Settings, tap on General and then Dictionary. Tap on British English Oxford Thesaurus of English. To try this out, head into Notes and type the word “cat.” Double-tap on the word and choose Look Up. Now you will see a list of synonyms along with the usual dictionary definitions.

4. Delete the last digit in Calculator

You don’t have to start over if you accidentally tap in the wrong number in Apple’s iPhone Calculator app. Just swipe left on the Calculator display to delete the last digit. And don’t forget that you can access more advanced mathematical functions just by turning your phone to landscape orientation.

Sorry, iPad users, you’re out of luck. Apple doesn’t include the Calculator app with its tablet, so you might want to download one from the App Store

5. Customize the Control Center

Your Control Center probably looks pretty standard with basic controls for Wi-Fi, Airplane mode and other features at your fingertips. But you can get even more out of it by customizing what’s included.

Head into Settings, tap on Control Center and then Customize Controls. Here, you can remove options or add more, like Screen Recording or Voice Memos. This puts you in control of your Control Center.

6. Block ads in games

This little trick works for some game apps: You can block the game from serving up ads from the web by putting your iPhone into Airplane mode. Keep in mind that if you like a game and want to support the developer, then look for a paid upgrade option that removes ads. If you’re trying out a game or find the ads are too intrusive, then give this Airplane mode trick a shot.

7. Customize vibrations

You can go all Beach Boys on your iPhone and create some good vibrations that you customize yourself. Head into Settings and tap on Sounds. Tap on Vibration and then Create New Vibration. On this screen, tap to create your new pattern and then hit Stop. You can play it back to see if it’s what you want. Save it and name it to use it as a new vibration option for your iPhone.

Have fun trying out these hidden iOS features. The touchpad will feel like a game-changer, but even the little tricks will make your time on your iPhone easier and more convenient for you.

Technology Sales

"7 Shortcuts And Secret Features In Your Iphone." The Kim Komando Show. N. p., 2019. Web. 27 Feb. 2019.

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7 Hidden Android Features

Posted by Gulf South Technology Solutions on Feb 25, 2019 10:58:00 AM

There’s a secret world inside your Android phone, a whole host of hidden features that you may not know about or that you may have overlooked. These can make your mobile experience more convenient, faster and more fun.

We’ve uncovered some cool Android tricks that will help you translate your writing, type numbers more quickly and even improve your mobile gaming experience. 

Android versions can vary quite a bit on different smartphones and tablets. The latest operating system is Android Pie (Android 9), but not every gadget can run it. That means you may have to hunt around to find these features, or that some of them might not be available on your particular device.

1. Go split-screen

You can fit two open applications onto your display at one time when you use split-screen mode. The traditional Android way of doing this involves opening an app and then holding down on the square button until the screen splits. You will see your open app on one side and be able to choose from recently used apps on the other. Tap on the one you want to use in split-screen mode. To unsplit, hold down on the square button (which is now split to indicate the new mode) and you will go back to just seeing your original app.

For Android Pie phones with gesture navigation, the process is a little different. Swipe up on the home button to see your Overview. Tap on the icon at the top of the first app you want to use in split-screen mode. This opens a small menu. Tap on "Split screen." Now pick out your second app in the lower part of the screen.

2. Translate text with Gboard

Chances are good you’re using Google’s default Gboard keyboard. This capable keyboard puts translations right at your fingertips. Here’s one handy way to use this feature: With the keyboard open, tap on the G symbol (if the top menu isn’t already visible). This opens up an array of options. Tap on the one that has a small G that looks like it’s folded over a symbol. This opens up a text box you can type into. Use the drop-down menu to choose the languages. Google will automatically translate what you type.

3. Pin an app to the screen

Let’s say your friend wants to borrow your phone to look something up online. You can hand it to them with Chrome open and pinned to the screen. The app will stay pinned until you unlock it. It’s an easy way to keep someone else from exploring what’s on your phone.

To enable screen pinning, go to Settings, tap on Security & Location and tap on "Screen pinning," which you may find listed under Advanced settings. Make sure it’s toggled on along with the option to ask for your PIN, pattern or password.

To try this out, go to Chrome. If you’re using Pie, swipe up from the middle of the screen, tap the app icon and tap the pin-shaped icon. You will get a confirmation that the app is pinned. To unpin, touch and hold the angular Back button and the pill-shaped Home button and enter your PIN.

For earlier Android systems, tap the square icon at the bottom and swipe up until you see the pin icon. Tap on the pin. To unpin, touch and hold the triangular Back button and the square overview button and enter your PIN to unlock.

4. Open Chrome tabs fast

There’s more than one way to open all your open Chrome tabs in Android. The obvious route is to tap on the square with the number of open tabs inside it. The lesser-known way is to simply swipe down from the address bar. You’ll see all your tabs and can open a new one or close open ones. This may not really save you much time, but it’s nifty to access your tabs with a swipe rather than a tap.

5. Access app shortcuts

There’s more to the icons on your home screen than just pretty pictures. Try long-pressing on an app icon and you may see a helpful shortcut menu appear. When available, these shortcuts usually lead to common tasks you would want to do with that app. For example, long-pressing on the Google Maps icon gives me an option to open up navigation to my home. The Contacts app gives me an option to go directly to adding a new contact.

6. Type numbers quickly

To save screen space, Gboard doesn’t display a full number row like you would get with a physical keyboard. But look closely and you will see small numbers on the top row of letters. Touch and hold down on one of these letters and the number option will appear above it. Just slide your fingertip up to type the number.

7. Block ads in gaming apps

You’re trying out a new game and you feel like you’re battling the advertising just as much as the villains. For some apps, you can quash those ads by putting your phone into Airplane mode. This works by blocking the app’s ability to serve up online ads. Airplane mode can be a little inconvenient, so also check into upgrading to an ad-free version of the game if you enjoy playing it and want to support the developer.

These clever and cool tricks and features will make you feel like an Android insider. Try them out and enjoy how they enhance your mobile experience.

Technology Sales

"7 Hidden Android Features You Should Use." The Kim Komando Show. N. p., 2019. Web. 25 Feb. 2019.

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