Office servers for small business

Installation of complete small-business office server systems, study, set up and implementation of associated on-site or off-site backup systems and strategies, client long-term support.

Office servers for small business

Installation, configuration, management and support of Linux based servers for different needs for small and medium offices.

Multipurpose office servers

Zentyal and ClearOS are two multipurpose office servers suites that can replace MS Windows server in a network with Windows clients.
Both the products are also available in an open source edition and offer a wide range of features :

  • Directory and domain server
  • Mail server and groupware
  • Firewall, content filtering and IDS (Intrusion Detection System)
  • DNS, DHCP, VPN server

File servers

An efficient and controlled files storage and sharing with access control can be implemented with a NAS (Network Attached Storage)

Synology is the manufacturer of wide range of NAS devices based on Debian Linux operating system that adapts at every type of needs from small offices to large enterprises.
Every device has support for RAID protection and for several backup solutions both local and remote or cloud based.
The features of Synology can be extended with many software packages to offer also other services, like an OpenVPN server.

OpenMediaVault is an open source NAS solution that can be installed on a Debian Linux operating system and custom hardware.
This can be a :

For large organizations and enterprise enviroments FreeNAS is the most advanced NAS solution.

A very interesting alternative to the classic file sharing trough a persistent network connection between client and server is the creation of a private cloud on the local area network.
In this scenario each client has a local copy of the files stored on the local attached disk and the files are keep in sync with the central server repository.
The advantes of this solution are :

  • multiple copies of the files are available inside the local area network, in this way in case of server crash a backup copy is always available
  • the clients can work also if the server is down for maintenance
  • the network traffic is minimal : only when a change occurs it is necessary to resync the clients
  • it works well also on slow networks
  • accessing a file locally is faster than accessing it through the network

Synology Drive offers this feature out of the box and provides also synchronization clients for Windows, Linux and Mac.
A very powerful open source alternative is Seafile that permits to create a personal private cloud with permissions control, file versioning and snapshot.
Seafile can be installed on a Debian Linux server or also on a RaspberryPi.

Backup servers

A backup server is a central repository inside or outside a local area network that receives the copy of important files from clients and server computer.
This means it must have a large amount of storage space and a series of features to guarantee the data consistency and reliability.

Synology provides a complete range of features to act as backup server and it supports also the redundacy to another device.

Other open source solutions are Borg Backup (for Linux and Mac) and Duplicati (for Linux, Windows and Mac). They can be installed on a Debian Linux server and
receive from the other connected computer the backups.

A more simple solution, for Linux and Mac computers,  can be implemented using classical open source tools like rsync and rsnapshot and an ssh server.

To maximize the reliability of the backup solution, it should be fully automatic and require user intervention only in case of failure or problems, and multiple backup locations should be present : local, remote and on the cloud.
A remote backup location could be for example another office branch reached through a VPN or a remote server in another place, physically separated from the computer to backup.
In addition multiple versions of the backup should be stored to allow the restore of previous copies of the data if necessary.

Moreover the integration of the backup solution with a storage cloud service like BlackBlaze should be considered and implemented.

Mail servers

For medium and large organizations self hosted mail servers are very useful. They permit to make a centralized backup of the messages, preserve the privacy and to reduce the operating costs associated with the mail service.
Zentyal and ClearOS can be used to run a self hosted mail server.
A more complete collaboration suite is Zimbra, available also in an open source edition.

Web application servers

In these years many very useful web applications has been developed that cover every need. Having the applications installed on its own server, permits to a company to protect its privacy, owns its own data and to reduce the costs of hosting. Here is a selection of the best open source project management web applications available at the moment OpenProject, MYCollab, Odoo, Wekan.
For team communication Mattermost is a new realtime collaboration platform.
Gitea is a self hosted cross platform solution alternative to GitHub, that permits to your software developers team to collaborate keeping your code source private.

And if you need a custom crafted web application don't hesitate to contact us !

Database servers

Installation and configuration of open source database servers MariaDB(MySQL) e PostgreSQL.
Both the database servers implement the replication and synchronization between multiple servers to offer the high availability in critical conditions.
Web based management interfaces like phpMyAdmin and phpPgAdmin allow to manage the database servers remotely only with a browser.