IT, Digital & Culture
A long term customer came to me asking to update their monitoring infrastructure they had been using nagios and nconf, but they knew they needed to modernise. I checked out the market place and settled on openITcockpit, it has compatibility with nrpe, so they didn't need to update all their servers agents, it just dropped in as a replacement and then they rolled out the native agent over time (which works in push and pull). A really lovely product to work with!
An MSP client of mine came to me asking if I could resource a hardware upgrade of a proxmox cluster as well as provide a health check and some general recommendations. The 3 node cluster was nearly 15 years old. We did this job onsite, we replaced the 3 nodes by adding the new ones and removing the old. The Ceph storage also got a health check. A good couple of days onsite and some future upgrade work planned, the onsite IT team were awesome and it was a pleasure to do the job!
Something different! A local business have been in touch about building and engaging with their community. Not to drive sales, but to build a better support network and community. I am currently finding my feet on mastodon and I hope this project takes off!
Another migration project, I really enjoy working on these! A local business got in touch with their current hosting bill for their website and database, they needed to upgrade and cut costs. I went through their needs and worked out that a hosted proxmox server in the UK would save them money and increase resilience. Over a weekend I p2v'd their infrastructure. They ran some tests and were impressed with the improvements. A month later we did the migration again and they went live on the Monday. They saved money and had a fully backed-up infrastructure for the first time!
The first time I had been asked to complete a single page full site, it gave me a chance to look at some of the possibilities within Elementor that I hadn't had a chance to look at before. I was pleased with how the site turned out and suspect there will be a lot more to do with it!
A client came to me asking to do an upgrade on their hyper-v platform. We spent some time discussing the project and we decided now was the time to migrate off hyper-v (it looks like Windows 2022 will no longer have the free hypervisor edition). Over a weekend I moved over 1Tb of data and converted the gen-2 VMs to Proxmox and QCOW2 disks. A fun one for sure
A local organisation of approximately 100 users was running all their infrastructure onsite. Their mail server was in desperate need of an upgrade. Working with them and looking at a number of on premise and cloud based solutions, we settled on Office 365 with E1 licenses to start. We successfully migrated all mailboxes in one weekend. Using custom powershell scripts we migrated from Zimbra to Exchange online with all permissions intact!
Following on from the clinic website I completed earlier in the year, the owner of the clinic has asked me to revamp their personal therapy website. The project is set to go live over the Christmas break. A copy of the old site was migrated on to WordPres so she could start making edits from day one.
A family wanted to be able to share and backup their photos from their phones without having to trust the data to one of the big companies. They had low storage requirements but ownership was key. Using a virtual private server, this project was an interesting change!
A client wanted the ability to be able to post pictures to a model forum he used and they had recently turned off the ability to upload the pictures directly. Using two opensource projects I made a site that allowed him to upload pictures and manage them using a separate admin area. It is password protected so no one else can upload images or videos.
Working with the client and another local business we built a custom WordPress site for that included shopping cart, custom image upload and order tracking and payment. This site was built in WordPress and uses the Elementor Pro page builder so the client can manage it themselves!
A local business came to me to help with a migration to a new Windows based dedicated server. Working with the client we decided that rather than a single server solution we would build a full hyper-v virtual infrastructure. This solution ended up costing the client less than their single dedicated server.
Working with a local client, I was employed to help them get the most out of their new software investment. I spent a number of days onsite learning how things are currently done. I went back into the business the following month with a number of culture and process suggestions. Working with the client we helped the staff move to a new more flexible and efficient way of working.
Building a clients virtualisation platform is scary, building one to support your own business is even scarier! Working with partners like OVH, we build our own dedicated platform remotely. Using the latest version of VMWare ESXi we built a full virtual infrastructure including Windows, Linux and BSD servers. This platform is then replicated to another European datacenter on the OVH network.
Working with the client we chose the proxmox virtualisation platform. This allows them to deploy both containers and virtual machines within the same console. We then went on to build the platform itself including firewall and 2FA for the management interface.
A local business wanted to be able to manage and design their own website. Working with them we were able to template a design that they could take on and manage, using WordPress and Elementor templates. Using their existing booking system we managed to create a custom integration.
Another local business website, this time to showcase some new holiday lets in the Norfolk countryside. A website to showcase the properties and their history. Booking the cottages is handled by a third party who don't currently offer an API, but the site design allows the flexibility for when they do.
Working with a number of clients to build their own "Dropbox" style file and sync service. I have setup a number of NextCloud servers using OVH's dedicated ARM servers. These projects have used two of these servers to give a warm standby solution. Using custom scripts to keep content up to date.
Following a recommendation to migrate their email to Office 365, a local business got in touch and asked me to come in and show them all the components of Office 365 and if there were any existing processes they could move to their new investment. Working with them we identified a number of savings, when we had finished the customer was saving money by migrating! We used a number of components including OneDrive, SharePoint, Skype and teams, all this from their one monthly payment.