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MVNO’s – The Upcoming Giants In The Wireless Industry

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An MVNO typically possesses access to and name recognition in a specific market niche, which enables it to leverage its brand to drive diversified revenues, such as those from a wireless service. And, when looking at trends in the wireless industry toward customization, it becomes clear why MVNO’s are well-positioned to drive wireless growth. In short, MVNO’s are all about customization. Take for example the best-known and one of the largest to date is Virgin Mobile, which launched its youth-targeted prepaid service in July of 2002 and in only two-and-a-half years boasts 3 million users. Virgin enables users to perform most standard data functions through VirginXtras, and even offers some 3G capabilities to Virgin customers.

Demographic targeting is a trend MVNO’s and some recent entries have focused on. Take a staple of the prepaid calling card industry; the Hispanic market. Some 40 million Hispanics live in the United States, and two cellular brands have sprung up to better service this niche. Other major brands are poised to jump into the wireless industry as MVNO’s. ESPN, for example, is set to leverage its content to serve sports fans. ESPN, like its competitor Fox Sports, already offers certain services to users of all major wireless carriers, but the ESPN MVNO will leverage the brand’s strength to sell top-to-bottom cellular service to committed sports fans, by offering scores, live game updates, and select video clips to subscribers. Earthlink is launching a new MVNO service with Korea’s dominant cell provider, SK Telecom. Unique among other offerings, the Earthlink/SK Telecom joint venture is a postpaid high-tech offering seeking to compete against the major providers based on early access to technology not offered by the major U.S. players.

These companies, along with other potentially successful MVNO’s, have more than simple brand recognition—their brands withstood the test of time. As with all modern offerings, convenience should not be overlooked. For example, American Airlines customers could book travel via their phones, use their phones for automated check-ins and to check on flight status, and for mile-for-minutes (or vice versa) rewards. Credit card companies could offer services incorporating pay-via-phone functionality for retail purchases. Movie Theater chains could offer automatic notices of movie schedules with one-click (or button) advanced ticket purchases. The potential here is endless.

Many of the services and benefits listed above can also be achieved via partnership, and it is reasonable to expect that many brands will seek relationships with major wireless providers for customized packages that deliver commissions (or other forms of added revenues from the relationships) without the need to operate their own wireless telephone operations.

There are many benefits a MVNO can provide to a much larger cellular service among which SMS to Email – Bulk SMS Gateway services [http://www.mobility4enterprise.org/] are the significant ones. The MVNO solution provider can customize its product to cater to a very distinct segment of the market. With the mobile revolution sweeping the globe, enterprises are realizing the power of mobility in terms of better customer reach and improved efficiency.

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Blackberry Phones – What is Blackberry RAD

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Blackberry RAD (Rapid Application Deployment) is a method of connecting to a web service and making use of the facilities on offer. If all you want is a user to visit your website then RAD and all of the facilities it offers might not be for you; there are simpler means of achieving this. Think of RAD as the means by which you can interface your Blackberry smart phones’ run time environment (operating system) with back-end web services – thus making the application available to the phone user.

So how does this all work? Well you are going to need an internet based web service for the Blackberry smart phone to communicate with. This will have been created using Web Services for Java (from Sun Micro systems) or Web Services for .NET (from Microsoft). Once you have created the web service, your Blackberry needs a means to communicate with the service and exchange the information to make the application actually work.

This is where the RAD run time environment, called the “BlackBerry® Mobile Data System (BlackBerry® MDS) Run time”, comes into play. This is installed onto the smart phone either locally by the user, OTA (Over The Air) or by an enterprise administrator. Once you have this installed on the Blackberry, you can then run the application developed for the smart phone, called a Blackberry MDS Application to complete the loop and start communicating with your Web Service.

You would have any number of Blackberry MDS Applications, depending on the Web Services you have designed and want to exchange information with. These applications would have been created using either the standalone BlackBerry MDS Studio tool or the BlackBerry Plug-in for Microsoft Visual Studio. Both of these tools offer advanced GUI (Graphical User Interfaces) allowing the swift and efficient design of your application, to give the user the best possible result.

Blackberry RAD (Rapid Application Deployment) gives the developer the best of both worlds – it is simple and therefore quick to learn, yet also powerful to give the means to produce effective applications. Mix in the ability to communicate with both web services developed under Web Services for Java and Web Services for .NET and you have true flexibility.

Blackberry addicts become acquainted with the new concept quickly and enjoy the added versatility provided by using RAD to promote better communication both for commercial and private use, reaching faster and more targeted communication levels and producing better productivity, which turns higher and faster profits with prolific use.

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What Do You Know About Belize?

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Today Norm Goldman, Editor sketchandtravel.comand bookpleasures.com is pleased to have as a guest Joshua Berman,co-author of Moon Handbooks Belize. Joshua is an expert on traveling in Belize, and recently chose this tiny Central American country for his own honeymoon; he has also lived in and written extensively about Nicaragua and Honduras.

Welcome to Sketchandtravel.com and Bookpleasures.com Joshua and thanks for accepting our invitation to be interviewed.

NORM:

Please tell our readers something about yourself and your expertise pertaining to Belize.

Joshua:

I have been living, working, teaching, and traveling in Central America since the U.S. Peace Corps sent me to Nicaragua in 1998. I have been returning to the region ever since to write guidebooks, lead service trips, and visit friends and adopted families. Last year, I was asked by Avalon Travel Publishing to take over Chicki Mallan’s Moon Handbooks Belize, which, when it first appeared 15 years ago, was the first and most acclaimed guidebook to the country. I gladly accepted and proceeded to research and write the sixth edition, which was released in early 2005.

NORM:

Where is Belize?

Joshua:

Belize is tucked into the northeast corner of Central America, bordering Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula to the north, Guatemala’s Petén wilderness to the west, and the Caribbean Ocean to the east. Culturally however, Belize and its hundreds of cayes (islands, pronounced keys ) is more Caribbean than Latin. English is spoken everywhere (along with seven other languages). The diversity is astounding, especially considering there are only 260,000 people in the entire country.

NORM:

Would you consider Belize a good choice for a romantic getaway or wedding and honeymoon destination? Why?

Joshua:

Absolutely. Belize’s tourism board actively markets the country as a lovers’ destination, and there is no shortage of special honeymoon and romantic packages from which to choose:

They can rent their very own waterfall for the day at Hidden Valley Inn.

Couples can get Mood Mud Massages at Maruba Resort Jungle Spa.

They can rappel into a vertical cave shaft together, at the bottom of which they’ll find a flower strewn bed next to a subterranean spring at Ian Anderson’s Caves Branch. The list goes on and on.

Belize’s size (smaller than Massachusetts), easy access (only a two-hour flight from Miami or Houston), and astonishing selection of small, intimate resorts and lodges seal the deal. In order to solidify my endorsement of Belize as a romantic destination, I even took my own bride here on our honeymoon (ah, the work never stops)

NORM:

When is the best time to visit Belize from the point of view of weather, costs, crowds, and the availability of flights from the USA, Canada and Europe and Australia, etc?

Joshua:

Some resorts distinguish holiday season from the normal high season, with even higher prices and lower availability around Christmas, New Year’s, and Easter be sure to make reservations during these periods. High season (re: more tourists and hiked prices) is generally mid-December through April; this is also the dry season during most years, although December, January, and even February can play to host to cool fronts that either blow right through or sit around for days.

Your best bet-be prepared, both with clothing and attitude! A week of stormy weather may ruin a vacation planned solely around snorkelling, but it could also provide the perfect setting for exploring the rainforests or enjoying a hot tub and fireplace in the Mountain Pine Ridge.

June, July, and August technically fall in the rainy season, and travelers during this time are rewarded with significantly discounted prices at most accommodations rain during these months may mean just a quick shower each afternoon, or it may go on for days. August is the big month for European backpackers and travelers, while December and February are dominated by North Americans. Some tourism businesses shut down completely during the months of September and October, the peak of hurricane season.

NORM:

Could you give our readers an idea of the costs involved if travel originates from the USA, Canada and Europe and Australia?

Joshua:

Conventional traveler wisdom calls Belize the cheapest Caribbean vacation spot and one of the most expensive Central American. There are plenty of mid-range and upscale accommodations throughout the country, running from US$25 to hundreds of dollars per night. Exact hotel rates are an elusive thing in Belize; seasonal fluctuations are compounded by various taxes and service charges, sometimes by as much as 25 percent additional. Always make sure the rate you are quoted is actually the same amount you will be asked to pay. And, of course, great deals are abundant in the low season (May through November), when room rates plummet across the board.

For food, budget travelers can get by on less than US$20 per day, but you’re on vacation, right? Entrées run from US$5 to US$25, depending on where you are; at the trendiest restaurants in San Pedro, a fancy dinner can cost up to US$75 per person. A few resorts include meal prices in their nightly rates, which can be a good deal.

Don’t forget to budget an extra US$40-80 per person per day for activities like scuba diving, sailing trips, and guided tours of Belize’s rainforests, ruins, and fascinating cave systems. Experienced, independent travelers can get around for less, but transport can be a hassle.

US$10 per person per night is the bottom line for budget lodging, and it’ll get you anything from a cramped, stuffy concrete box in most towns to a generous wooden cabin at the Trek Stop (in Cayo) and other backpacker hotspots.

NORM:

If you had to choose 5 unequalled venues in Belize for a romantic getaway, honeymoon or wedding destination, what would they be and why?

Joshua:

First of all, remember that selecting a place to stay has a lot to do with where you want to be and what activities you would like to do during your stay: beach or rainforest? Diving or hiking? Reef or ruins? Do you want to get pampered with massages or get sweaty and muddy with your loved one on a jungle trek? Get an idea of what kind of trip you and your honey are looking for, then dive in and book it. Following are only a few of Belize’s upscale romantic accommodations that stick out in my mind for quality and intimacy. For more on Belize’s ample budget options, flip through a copy of my book, Moon Handbooks Belize.

Starting on swanky Ambergris Caye, just inshore from Belize’s famous barrier reef and three miles north of San Pedro village, you will find Capricorn Resort, offering intimate beachfront seclusion in one of three bright and tasteful cabanas. Capricorn’s restaurant is one of the best (considered the best by many) on the island.

Situated on 7,200 acres of private property in the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve, Hidden Valley Inn is a quiet paradise for hikers and birders who will have a blast exploring the resort’s 90-plus miles of walking trails and old logging roads and then cozying up in front of their cottage’s fireplace, listening to the birdsong outside (especially nice during the cool, misty, rainy season). The property encompasses lush broadleaf forest and pine tree habitat. The two diverse ecosystems are divided by a geological fault line, which marks the edge of a towering 1,000-foot escarpment. Numerous watercourses spring from the mountain and then cascade down the steep slopes, often into deep, inviting pools; Hidden Valley’s trail system runs through it all.

On Placencia Peninsula, Kitty’s Place is one of the best and most unpretentious resorts on this long strip of beach resorts call it “low-key luxury,” and check your shoes at the front desk. Be sure to schedule a day trip or overnight on Kitty’s private isle, French Louis Caye, 12 miles offshore with great snorkelling and upscale accommodations.

Two of Belize’s most romantic, beautiful, and expensive options are Francis Ford Coppola’s gorgeous pair of resorts: Turtle Inn and Blancaneaux Lodge, located on the Placencia Peninsula and Mountain Pine Ridge, respectively, and offering a number of collective packages. Both places feature breathtaking architecture and artwork from all over the world, and top-notch service and facilities.

Located about an hour north of Belize City, Maruba Resort Jungle Spa pampers the body and soul, as evidenced by its acclaimed spa treatments and unique focal points spread around the grounds: A tiny, glass-decorated chapel; a palapa-covered stone chess table; two pools that seem to spring from the jungle complete with waterfalls. The rooms are spread out for privacy and are addressed by name Moon, Fertility, and Bondage, to name a few. All boast an eclectic neo-primitive motif carved masks, mosaic tile floors, standing candles, cement fountains, tiled tubs, screened shuttered windows and fresh flowers on the massive feather beds and in the bathrooms.

NORM:

What should people know about celebrating a wedding in Belize from the point of view of requirements, experience of the various hotels, etc.

Joshua:

Belize is gaining quite the reputation as the perfect place to tie the knot. A growing number of resorts cater to weddings of all sizes, some quite creatively (such as ceremonies underwater or atop Maya pyramids). If eloping, you must be in Belize three business days before submitting your marriage application to the Registrar General’s Office (tel. 501/227-7377, not open on weekends or local holidays). You get the paperwork back the following business day for your ceremony. If you have been divorced or widowed, bring a photocopy of the death certificate or divorce decree. The Government of Belize charges US$100 for the license and you’ll need a birth certificate or passport.

NORM:

How far in advance should a couple prepare themselves for their honeymoon, romantic getaway or wedding in Belize?

Joshua:

Honeymoons and getaways are easy and do not need much advance time when booking, except around the holidays and at the more popular resorts. If you are planning a wedding during the high season that will require numerous rooms for guests, book a year in advance if possible. Otherwise, a few months are usually sufficient.

NORM:

What resources are available on the Internet pertaining to weddings and honeymoon vacations in Belize?

Joshua:

Several wedding specialists can facilitate paperwork, ministers, flowers, book hotels, celebrations, etc. including Katie Valk for anywhere in the country, Iraida Gonzales on San Pedro, and Lee Nyhus in Placencia.

NORM:

Is there anything else you wish to tell our readers that we have not covered?

Joshua:

Yes, keep an eye on my WEBSITE for new links and developments regarding romance in Belize and beyond; I have the most popular Belize forums and news posted on my links page. Also, MY PUBLISHER’S SITE will soon feature sample itineraries and other excerpts from my book, to make planning your Belize trip even easier. Lastly, remember the words of Kurt Vonnegut’s prophet, Bokon: Peculiar travel suggestions are dancing lessons from God.

Happy trails, everyone, Joshua

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Digital Photography Course – 6 Top Reasons to Opt For Digital Photography

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Today, more people are getting hooked over Digital photography. Since the birth of digital photography, it has been easier and more convenient for people to capture the best photos they desire. This indeed has become the wave of today and in the near future. But what if you’re still using the old mode of taking photos- the film photography? Well, think again.

For those few people who are still using film photography, here are some good reasons why you should opt for digital photography:

1. Generally, one of the most excellent features of choosing digital photography is that its convenience. Aside from the fact that digital cameras are easy to use since they are user friendly, these cameras are also portable and you can just safely place it in your pocket anywhere you go.

2. With digital camera, you can save your time and effort. Digital cameras provide instant feedback once you take photos. It has a review button to let you view all the photos so you’ll be able to choose the best one. At the same time, it has also a delete button for those photos you don’t like to keep. In short, you can keep on trying until you get the right photo. Now isn’t that great?

3. The next good thing about it is its capacity to have your photos printed immediately. Actually, you can it is much easier if you have a digital printer. You can just simply connect your digital camera to the printer and press the button to print. On the contrary, film cameras takes time before you get your photos developed. You also have to go back to the photo shop to get your pictures.

4. Another great thing you can get from digital photography is the capacity to modify or edit your photos anytime. Since the images are in digital files, it is much easier now to edit them. You can simply open the images in any photo editing software supported by the file. With the photo editing software, you can alter or adjust the color of your photos. You can also crop the photo and design your own photo. All of these in one photo editing package. It’s more than what you can get from film cameras.

5. If you want to put up a small business, then this would be of great help. Let your creativity works. Digital photos cannot just be simple photos. Now, you can turn them into T-shirts, mugs, invitations, greeting cards, calendars and a lot more. This is for the fact that digital photos can be printed anywhere and in anyway. Just make use of the right photo paper, and surely, you can make lots of money from it.

6. Lastly, it has the ability to share the photos you have you’re your love ones and relatives. You can simply give a copy of the precious moments to friends and relatives everywhere. Just attach the soft copy of the photo to your email and send. That easy. But with film camera, you will spend money just on scanning the photos, to be able to send them online. Of course that’s an extra work for a digital photographer.

Apparently, this has really paved way for making photography convenient and easier at the same time achieving high quality photos. It just shows that there’s no other time to opt for it than now.

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Is There a Good Panic Attack Drug?

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A panic attack drug or any type of panic attack medication can be useful, but you need to understand just what they do and how they work. If you are hoping for a drug to stop a panic attack once it starts, you are out of luck. Medications simply do not act that fast.

A typical panic attack comers out of the blue and peaks in around ten minutes. Sometimes there are some symptoms that may persist for quite a while, especially the fear of another attack. So a medication might be helpful in reducing the lingering after effects but once an anxiety panic attack starts, a medication won’t help. The time is too short.

Several classes of panic and anxiety attack medication exist in both prescription and natural herbal supplement forms. Since very few alternative or herbal medicines are ever put through the Federal Drug Administration testing programs, they are classed as dietary or food supplements. Some people find herbal anti-anxiety, calming and nerve tonic supplements work well for them. If you happen to be one of these, count yourself very lucky.

The most commonly prescribed medications fall into two classes. First, the benzodiazepines which are tranquilizers – a common one is aprolazam (better known as Xanax). These act to reduce your day-to-day anxiety levels which hopefully reduces the incidence or severity of any anxiety or panic attack. The problem is that these drugs tend to not only make the world at least a little fuzzy but they are linked to dependence and addiction. As such they make a poor long-term solution. Getting hooked on a drug is probably not the outcome you want.

The most commonly used panic attack drug comes from the anti-depressant class called SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors). Once thought to have relatively few long-term side effects, more experience with this class of drug has revealed sleep disturbances, sexual dysfunction and weight gain as some of the more disturbing longer term side effects. There are also a variety of early onset side effects including agitation, nausea, diarrhea and headaches though these will normally cease in 2 to 3 weeks. And they do not work for everyone either. in that case, doctors will often try one of the benzodiazepines.

As you can see there is no magic take-me pill that will eliminate an anxiety panic disorder. Even with the use of medication, additional forms of treatment are needed. The most successful psychological treatment methods are behavioral and cognitive techniques. Basically these involve learning to modify your behaviors and thoughts to rapidly eliminate an attack or reduce the severity significantly. Since some of the most negative effects of a panic disorder are caused by the sense of fear and helplessness it makes people feel, these kinds of action steps can make a huge difference. Since much of this is a matter of learning, training and practice, thousands have used these type of behavioral and cognitive techniques without the expense involved in paying a psychotherapist week after week and month after month.

In a very real sense, taking action is the best panic attack drug that exists.

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The Top 10 Directory Submission Sites

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Directory submission sites provide a very important link in the process of garnering maximum inflow of focused traffic to a website so that there is greater possibility of getting customers for the products or services of the website. Directory submission ensures that a greater amount of incoming back links are obtained. Since the ranking of a website in a search engine is determined by the quality of the incoming links, it is essential to get quality links so that a better ranking can be obtained. Submitting the website to top-ranking directories and getting a higher ranking will ensure that a larger quantity of good quality links will be available to the website.

How Directory Submission Helps

In order to increase the total volume of quality back links, it is necessary to submit the website with its keyword list to many directory submission sites and search engines. This will help in placing the website in the top listing categories of the major search engines such as Google. Directory submission is submitting a website to different directories such as Yahoo and Google. The submission can be done either manually or mechanically with the help of software, though most search engines prefer the manual process. It is more convenient for the website because it is possible to select from a large number of directory service providers. Web directories have linkages to different sites. The linkages are categorized into different groups and sub-groups, and the sites submitted to them are listed in the appropriate group. The contents of the submitted website are analyzed by the web directory and the listing is done on the basis of the quality of the contents. The top directories give one-way reverse linkages to the sites. The sites can be included only in a few categories. People who browse for a product prefer to search the top submission sites, which is why it is important to find out the top 10 directory submission sites and submit the website to them.

The top 10 directory submission sites are:

1) Google Directory: Powered by ODP and the links are arranged in hierarchical sub-categories. The links and their categories are sorted by using PageRank and they are from Open Directory Project. The URL is directory.Google.com

2) Yahoo! Directory: Provides a directory service, as well as a search engine. It can be searched separately from the rest of search engine results. Its size is comparable to the Open Directory Project, and it was Yahoo!’s first project. The cost of paid submission is $299 USD and it has to be renewed every year. Its URL is ecom.yahoo.com/dir/express/intro/

3) Jayde: One of the oldest business directories and also the largest B2B Search Engine on the Internet. It provides a lightning-fast search and is a human-reviewed directory. It was founded in 1996. Its URL is jayde.com

4) ODP – Open Directory Project: Formerly known as dMOZ, this human-edited web directory is the largest, most comprehensive, and offers free submission. However, the waiting period for acceptance or refusal is long. It is a prestigious directory because once a website is accepted for inclusion; it will automatically be picked up by other important directories and search engines such as AOL, Google, Lycos, Excite, etc. Its URL is dmoz.org

5) JoeAnt: Provides links to only high-quality sites. The websites submitted to the directory are reviewed quickly without any fear that the reviewer might be a competitor because the sites submitted by volunteer editors are registered automatically and without any review. This directory was launched in 2001. Its URL is joeant.com

6) Best of the Web: A prestigious directory where most people want their website or blog to appear. It is necessary to submit the website in the relevant category and to ensure that the site is not under construction. The yearly fee is $99.95, but a one-time fee of $249.95 can also be applicable. This directory is highly recommended because most of the pages get high ranking of 4 or 5, which will improve search engine ranking.

7) Gimpsy: Offers a unique way of categorizing the sites. Instead of categorizing by subject, the sites are listed according to the services offered by them.

8) GoGuides: A human-edited directory that can be searched and is categorized by topics and locations. It also has image-search and updated news features. The contents of this site are recognized by most major websites such as iseDB.com. It is also considered one of the major online directories.

9) Skaffe: An international directory in which top-class sites with quality content and value can find a good listing. This directory is set to become the best directory on the Internet. Its URL is skaffe.com

10) Web Savvy Directory: This human-edited directory edits and reviews all submissions before including them. Only those websites that follow either the ICRA or SafeSurf standards are accepted by this PICS labeled directory. Its indexing is of high quality, and it is family friendly. It also provides child-safe resources. Its URL is websavvy.cc.

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Classification of Servers

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Server is a program which runs on a computer like a service and it fulfills the requirements of other programs which are not installed on the same PC.

Server Computer

This is a computer that is linked with other PC’s or devices and provides necessary network services to the users within an organization or outside users. There are different types of operating systems of hardware which drive or run the server and they are known as server platforms.

There are various types of servers used according to the use. We can discuss on different types of servers as:

Application Servers

An application server is a machine that does the work of connecting two databases or applications. It works like a middleware as a connection medium for two applications. If we take an example then these are the (middleware) products connecting a database system to a web server. Many organizations which are working on and providing various support services like server support, network management, IT management etc. are using different application servers.

Audio-Video Servers

They provide the multimedia features to the websites and allow them to program the streaming content. For transferring data the streaming technique is used and it can be processed steadily and continuously. It is popular today because many users don’t have fast access to download the content quickly. For better streaming the receiver’s side should be able to convert the data into sound and graphics.

Chat Servers

The chat servers allow the users to transfer the data or information within an environment which is similar and offer immediate discussion features. These are working on a real-time technique means immediate response. We can understand it by taking an example of a real-time operating system which responds quickly after getting an input.

FTP Servers

These are one of the Internet features which allow the users to transfer the files securely between the PC’s. The FTP Servers can move one or more than one files providing file security.

Fax Servers

The fax server is software which runs on a server with some fax modems. These are attached with the telephone lines and are capable to transmit the documents as they are to the receivers end. They can receive the information to their own side as well.

Groupware Servers

These servers let the users to interact and work together in a virtual location. They can collaborate together with different locations simultaneously.

IRC Servers

It is also like a chat server. What we chat is depends on the internet relay chat servers, it is like a network allowing the users to chat via different chat servers.

Mail Servers

The mail servers mainly store and move the electronic mails with different networks via LAN, WAN through the Internet.

Proxy Servers & Web Servers

A proxy server works as an intermediary or a computer system which allows other clients to connect with indirect network connections to other network services.

Web server is the hardware and the software which helps and allows the content and information over the internet.

The above information can be useful to those who are studying about servers and also seeking information about managed IT services as well.

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