Our IT philosophy is to be proactive rather than reactive.

In our years of experience, we have learned how to identify problems as they develop and prevent them from becoming disasters.

This is done through our incredibly simple IT Maintenance & Support plan.

Pay Monthly

$60/month

Per desktop machine

On-site analysis

Remote hardware monitoring

One hour of telephone / remote support per machine, per month

Monthly activity report

Many additional extras

Enquire now »

Pay Annually

$50/month

Per desktop machine

On-site analysis

Remote hardware monitoring

One hour of telephone / remote support per machine, per month

Monthly activity report

Many additional extras

Enquire now »

Pay Quarterly

$55/month

Per desktop machine

On-site analysis

Remote hardware monitoring

One hour of telephone / remote support per machine, per month

Monthly activity report

Many additional extras

Enquire now »

Discounts available for more machines

"Why don't I just call out an IT guy when something breaks?" - You, just now.

Sometimes people don't realise the actual cost of a hardware failure. Here are some real-world examples with traditional reactionary IT support compared to our proactive IT support.

Scenario IT guy Core Digital IT plan
Your Payroll staff member's computer turns on but nothing displays on the screen.

You call the IT guy. He comes the next day to diagnose the problem. After some troubleshooting steps, they determine your Hard Disk Drive (HDD) has failed.

Your next steps are:

  • Replace the HDD - the IT guy must determine the type of HDD to ensure compatibility with your existing system.
  • Recover your files / system - your files are no doubt of great importance to your business. The files will need to be recovered from a corrupt hard drive. There are no guarantees that your files will be recovered.
All the while you are on the clock racking up an IT guy's bill at an average of $110 per hour (and even more for emergency call-outs). Factor in the replacement hardware cost. At this stage you would be looking at anywhere from 3 days or more to get that machine back up and running.

We contact you to let you know there is an issue with your HDD before it fails and what the best action to take is.

Your next steps are:

  • Let us replace the HDD - We will come to your location and pick up the machine out of office hours and rebuild your system on a new error-free disk, then deliver it back to your office.
  • No need to recover your files - because we resolved the issue before it occurred.
At this stage you have had no down-time on that machine.

One of your machines keeps crashing with a Blue Screen.

You call the IT guy. He comes the next day to diagnose the problem. After some troubleshooting steps, they determine your computer's memory (RAM) is faulty.

Your next steps are:

  • Determine the RAM type - the IT guy must first determine the capacity & type of RAM that is compatible with your machine.
  • Replace the RAM - the IT guy must then replace the RAM.
This can be a costly process - crashes and blue screens are not exclusively caused by defective RAM. There can be software issues, software memory leaks, driver conflicts, ... ad infinitum.

We contact you and let you know that we have detected errors with the RAM in the machine.

Your next steps are:

  • Let us replace the RAM - we already know how much RAM and the type that is compatible with your machine. We will come and install the RAM at a time convenient for you to minimise downtime.
Because we are able to identify memory errors as they occur, we can prevent unexpected system shutdowns.

The internet drops out on what appears to be only one machine.

You have called your ISP and they have told you that your connection is fine. You call out an IT guy and he arrives at exactly the time there is a connection issue - he determines that the internet is dropping out.

Your next steps are:

  • Resolve the issue with your ISP - this can be a long and tedious process that you must undertake as the account holder.

We contact you to see if you are aware that you are having connectivity issues with one of your machines.

Your next steps are:

  • Let us remedy the issue - we will be able to determine whether the issue lies with the ISP or on the machine itself before we even get in touch with you. We can then advise the best course of action.
Internet connectivity issues can be caused by many sources. Our active monitoring will be able to determine if the entire connection is down or if it is an individual machine. We will also be able to detect driver conflicts or software errors (where applicable).

A real situation that occurred in May 2013

A client had a Microsoft Exchange 2010 server running on Windows Server 2008 R2. This is a corporate email server that handles all of the companies email. Backups are run on this server on a daily basis.

Unknown to anyone in January 2013, the server had developed a disk error. The server still functions fine - nobody notices any issues whatsoever.

Fast forward to the end of May 2013. The server restarts unexpectedly and does not come back online. No log on options - nothing. We started to investigate the issue.
There were no BIOS issues, nor were there any peripheral conflicts. This left the only logical conclusion; disk error. We opened her up and we found that the system had two disks installed and a RAID controller connected to both disks.

We took out the disks and booted from them individually so we could identify the corrupt disk and remove it, plug in a new disk and let the RAID controller rebuild the array. In theory this should take no more than a day to complete once the issue has been accurately identified.

Enter the second disk. It had not been modified since 2009. There was no data on it whatsoever. The RAID array had not been set up at all. Ever (mainly due to the array only supporting two levels of array, both of which require at least four disks). So our situation had just gotten infinitely worse. Our plan of action is to now acquire the correct type of disk, create the RAID array correctly and restore from our latest backup that should have been run the previous night. Worst case scenario, the client was looking at two days downtime. Also it is worth noting that during this time, we set up an alternate email service with their mail provider so users could access their mail.

So with the backup disk located and the RAID array rebuilt (4x disks running a RAID 1+0 array), it was time to perform the system recovery. Start the system recovery process, a list of the most recent backups were presented to us. The last successful backup that was taken was January 15th - right when the first disk error started occurring. The data could not be backed up because the backup software could not access the data in the corrupt sectors. Again our situation made far worse by one simple error on the disk.

Losing 5 months worth of emails is a pretty big deal for any business and is not acceptable for the size of the client's company. So, the plan had changed again - recover system to January 15th, restore mail service and finally, try to extract user mailboxes from the corrupt disk.

Thankfully we successfully recovered the system to a stable state and the email service could resume. Unfortunately there was still the missing five months of emails. Unfortunately our recovery software was not able to recover all data in each of the users mailboxes. We were, however, able to manually extract most of the missing emails with less than 1% unrecoverable. We then injected these mails back in to the users mailboxes and the server was up and running once again.

This whole process from disaster to recovery took about 10 days. Recovering 300GB of emails (data recovery in general) is a very time consuming process.

How this could have gone differently

Had our client been on our plan, we would have been able to identify the following occurrences:

  • Disk errors - we would have been able to catch this problem before it became a real issue.
  • Backup failure - coupled with disk errors, this is practically a guarantee that you are going to suffer a disaster if the issue is not addressed.
Once these errors had been reported to us (automatically), we would have been able to advise a best course of action and perform maintenance over a weekend with no impact on the running of the business.

Talk to us about how we can manage your machines. Get in touch »