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Liquid Web Official Blog

Storm Block Storage Provides Increased Performance & Value
Filed under: Products  September 16, 2014

Liquid Web Storm Block StorageAfter hearing our customers express a desire for a reliable and redundant block storage solution, we set out to engineer a solution versatile enough for any project. What emerged was SBS (Storm Block Storage): cost-effective storage volumes that are completely separate from your hosting environment and can be unlocked in just a few clicks. With the freedom to scale all the way up to 15 TB, Storm Block Storage is capable of rocketing any project into the realm of high performance and added redundancy.

Benefits of Storm Block Storage:

  • Grow up to 15 TB in Seconds
  • Create & Destroy Storage as Needed
  • Attach & Detach Storage Volumes from Servers
  • Choose the Exact Size You Require
  • Highly Available & Redundant Storage
  • Create Storage Volumes up to 15 TB
  • Connect to One or More Servers
  • Instantly Provision Storage
  • Persistent Data Availability
  • Independent Storage for Custom Scalability
  • Off-server Backup Capability
  • Segregated Environments for Development
  • No Bandwidth or IOPs Charges for SBS

Taking cues from our customers’ successes and failures with previously launched block storage products, we engineered SBS across a distributed platform. This provides a superior user experience when utilizing nearly any block storage application by allowing for consistent I/O throughput. In addition to improved performance, SBS users will also save time and resources by not having to RAID together volumes to achieve peak functionality. Additionally, SBS delivers unrivaled peace of mind in the event of failure as your storage volume can be attached to a new server immediately without having to wait for recovery or data to copy to the new server.

Storm Block Storage can be employed to…

…serve as independent storage for custom scalability.
…provide an additional backup option for projects where you cannot afford to lose data.
…segregate environments for development.
…provide a litany of additional benefits unique to how you choose to use it.

How will you use Storm Block Storage? Let us know!

KB Weekly Wrap-Up 9-12-14
Filed under: How To,Knowledge Base  September 12, 2014

Knowledge Base Weekly Wrap-Up 9-12-14SSL Certificates, phpMyAdmin and PostgreSQL are just a few of the many, many topics we discuss in our Knowledge Base. In case you haven’t checked in recently, you can see a few of our recent posts here in our weekly wrap-up:

Don’t see what you need to know? Check out the rest of our articles on the Knowledge Base, or contact our Heroic Support® team and we’ll help.

Ten Ways Databases Run Your Life
Filed under: Industry Insights,News,Products  September 10, 2014

You might not realize it, but databases are everywhere. Whether or not you know very much about them, or even care to, their effect on our daily lives is extensive. From weather applications to the movies you watch online, databases are responsible for many of the services we utilize daily. To help illustrate some of the ways in which databases enhance your day-to-day life, we have collected a few of the more prominent examples below. If you have other examples, feel free to share them in the comments section below.

  1. Online Television Streaming

    Any online streaming service, such as Hulu or Netflix, uses databases to generate a list of TV shows and movies to watch, track an individual’s show preferences, and provide a list of recommended viewing. The power required to analyze such an enormous amount of data is done through highly-specialized database management technology, such as Cassandra. In fact, Hulu has recently been relying heavily Cassandra.

  2. Social Gaming

    Gaming done across social networks is extremely data intensive. Gathering individual player information from around the globe and serving it to players on demand requires a high availability database software. One example is the popular Game of Thrones Ascent, a free role playing game launched by Disruptor Beam and based on the hit HBO series, Game of Thrones. Their Percona Server-based database solution helps eliminates data bottlenecks during high-usage periods.

  3. Personal Cloud Storage

    If you save photos or documents to your smartphone or tablet, it’s likely your data is stored in “the cloud,” a large, central storage environment with a small portion dedicated just to you. Syncing this data across your devices requires powerful databases able to call up your data at a moment’s notice, wherever you are.

  4. Sports

    Fan participation in national sports doesn’t just utilize the power of the database, it depends upon it. From fantasy football leagues to March Madness brackets, they all depend on huge databases full of player statistics, game performances, injury reports, and more, all calculating the odds of a win on a weekly basis.

  5. Finances

    From the stock market to your local bank, databases are abundant across the financial world. Tracking the vast amount of information behind the world’s daily transactions, not to mention the financial models that analyze that data to predict future activity, requires extremely powerful databases.

  6. Government Organizations

    Government organizations around the world are constantly collecting data for research, defense, legislation, and humanitarianism purposes, to name a few. This data is collected, stored and analyzed using powerful and far-reaching database services.

  7. Social Media

    Every social media platform stores reams of user information in databases used to recommend friends, businesses, products, and topics to the end user. This cross-referencing of data is immensely complex and uses highly reliable and capable database software, including for example, MySQL which is used in Facebook data centers.

  8. ECommerce

    Any online organization that sells its products or services uses databases to organize their products, pricing information, user purchase history and then recommend other potential products to customers. This data is stored in highly secure databases, protected by the standards set through PCI Compliance.

  9. Healthcare

    Doctor’s offices and healthcare organizations, among others, store extensive amounts of patient data for easy accessibility. The databases behind this collection of information are not only large and complex, but are also secure and protected by HIPAA Compliance standards. Healthcare.gov relies on a NoSQL database to manage their health insurance information. Cassandra is one such example of a NoSQL database software.

  10. Weather

    Predicting the weather across the globe is incredibly complex and depends on a myriad of factors, all gathered, stored and analyzed within databases, ready to deliver today’s weather to your local TV station or smartphone app. The Weather Company, for example, takes in over 20 terabytes of data per day. The company has used a number of databases to support this data, including MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server, Cassandra, and more.

As is made even more apparent by the list above, databases are as unavoidable in daily life as they are necessary. Of course, there are many types of software that run and support the numerous databases in our lives. Liquid Web offers a number of these database services, allowing us to take your needs into account and provide you with a custom hosting plan that meets your requirements. If you need help deciding which database solution is best for you, let us know – we’d be happy to help.

KB Weekly Wrap Up 9-5-14
Filed under: How To,Knowledge Base,News  September 5, 2014

Liquid Web Knowledge Base Weekly Wrap Up 9-5-14
Our Knowledge Base is constantly being updated with new and helpful how-to articles. If you have a question about your hosting environment, than the Knowledge Base is the perfect place to go for the answer. In case you missed any of our recent posts, you can check them out here in our weekly wrap-up:

Don’t see what you need to know? Check out the rest of our articles on the Knowledge Base, or contact our Heroic Support® team and we’ll help.

Should You Consider HIPAA Compliance?
Filed under: Industry Insights,News,Products  September 3, 2014

HIPAA Compliance at Liquid Web
Protecting private patient information is crucial, especially in this day and age of online storage and transactions. As the media reports more and more healthcare-related security breaches, it may be time for you to find out if you need to be HIPAA Compliant. Designed to protect patients, HIPAA is required for many businesses that deal with private health data. While there is much more to HIPAA than the data center where your data is stored, Liquid Web can be an important part of your overall compliance with HIPAA standards. At Liquid Web, we provide the utmost in security with our compliant network solutions, physical and data security measures, highly available infrastructure, and 24/7/365 onsite HIPAA trained staff. In combination with our recommended HIPAA Compliant hosting plans, we can help you achieve the compliance you need.

So how do you know if you should become HIPAA Compliant? We’ve gathered some helpful information that might set you on the right track.

What is HIPAA anyway?

HIPAA, or Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act, is a strict set of regulations created in order to keep critical health information secure and confidential. This is especially important as many organizations that deal with patient health information store that data digitally. Recent large healthcare security breaches have only cemented the importance of HIPAA Compliance for your business and customers.

What kind of data is protected by HIPAA standards?

Any private medical data needs to remain confidential and secure, including but not limited to health records, patient charts, health insurance claim information, lab results, x-rays, and surgery documentation. HIPAA calls this data “ePHI,” or electronic protected health information.

What kind of businesses are required to comply with HIPAA?

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) have defined the businesses required to comply with HIPAA as “Covered Entities,” but only if they transmit any information in an electronic form in connection with a transaction for which HHS has developed a standard. Covered Entities included are as follows:

  • Healthcare Providers – Including doctor’s offices, clinics, psychologists, dentists, chiropractors, nursing homes, and pharmacies.
  • Health Plans – Including health insurance companies, HMOs, company health plans, and government programs like Medicare and Medicaid.
  • Healthcare Clearinghouses - Including businesses that process health information from another entity either from a non-standard form to a standard form, or vice versa.

In addition, HIPAA applies to any business working with a covered entity to carry out its health care activities. Liquid Web could be one such “Business Associate” or “Sub-Contractor Business Associate.” When a covered entity enlists a business associate like Liquid Web for assistance in storing health information, a Business Associate Agreement might be needed to lay out the responsibilities of each party.

For more information on who is required to be HIPAA compliant, please see the HHS HIPAA website.

Why comply with HIPAA Standards?

These HIPAA standards exist to protect your patients’ confidentiality and privacy, ensuring your business has a trustworthy reputation. In addition, those that do not comply with the standards face being shut down and/or heavily fined. HIPAA’s standards are enforced through investigating complaints filed with the HHS and through conducting compliance reviews.

While HIPAA Compliance can be a confusing thing to understand, our trained technicians can help you get on the road to achieving HIPAA Compliance for your business. Our carefully designed HIPAA Compliant hosting plans and our highly secure and compliant Data Centers, security, and networks, take some of the weight off your shoulders. If you think your business needs to be HIPAA compliant, let us know how we can help.

Knowledge Base Weekly Wrap-Up 8-29-14
Filed under: How To,Knowledge Base,News  August 29, 2014

Knowledge Base Weekly Wrap-Up 8-29-14

Have you read the recent articles we’ve published on our Knowledge Base? Our technical writers have been working hard to produce new and helpful content to provide answers for our customer’s hosting questions. In case you missed any of our recent posts, you can check them out here in our weekly wrap-up:

Don’t see what you need to know? Check out the rest of our articles on the Knowledge Base, or contact our Heroic Support® team and we’ll help.

KB Weekly Wrap Up 8-1-14
Filed under: How To,Knowledge Base,News  August 1, 2014

Knowledge Base Weekly Wrap Up 8-1-14

We’re producing new, helpful content each week on our Knowledge Base – have you checked out the latest posts? The Knowledge Base exists to help our customers find the answers they need to their technical questions. In case you missed any of this week’s posts, you can check them out here in our weekly wrap up:

Don’t see what you need to know? Check out the rest of our articles on the Knowledge Base, or contact our Heroic Support® team and we’ll help.

New Substation Provides More Power to our Data Center
Filed under: News  July 30, 2014

New Substation Under ConstructionSubstation Construction Continues Throughout SummerNew Substation Nears Completion
The skyline to the east of our Data Center 3 has been slowly changing over this summer. Our local power utility, the Lansing Board of Water and Light, has been building a new substation just off our property. This new substation, while not built specifically for Liquid Web, nonetheless provides many benefits to us and our customers. With a substation a mere few yards from our third and largest data center, we can minimize power outages that might occur and increase our capacity for additional servers as we grow.

The new substation connects to our data center via a line that will come online late in the Fall of 2014. While our data centers already have circuits running from other substations in the area, this new substation will increase our fuse amperage and allow us to support many more servers – and more customers.

In addition to the increase in power, having a substation so close to our property provides fewer opportunities for outages. Not only is the power line underground and encased in concrete, protecting it from the elements and other potential negative influences, but its proximity is also encouraging. Statistics show that the majority of power outages happen on the line between the substation and the final destination, a data center for example. The power line only stretches little more than the length of a football field in total from this substation and our data center.

We’ve been excited to watch this substation come together as the summer progresses and are eager to utilize the power we will receive when it comes online late this Fall. More power routed to our data centers means we will have more capacity for servers, room for more growth, and more opportunities to provide our customers with Heroic Support®.

If you’d like to learn more about how we plan our power systems to boost our customer’s hosting environments, let us know.

KB Weekly Wrap Up 7-25-14
Filed under: How To,Knowledge Base  July 25, 2014

Have you checked out our Knowledge Base this week? If you’re looking for technical articles or helpful how-to’s relating to the web hosting industry, that’s the place to go. In case you missed any of this week’s posts, you can check them out here in our weekly wrap up:
Knowledge Base Weekly Wrap Up 7-25-14

Don’t see what you need to know? Check out the rest of our articles on the Knowledge Base, or contact our Heroic Support® team and we’ll help.

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KB Weekly Wrap Up
Filed under: How To,Knowledge Base  July 21, 2014

Do you monitor our Knowledge Base? It’s a great place to check for technical articles and helpful how-to’s relating to the web hosting industry. In case you missed any of last week’s posts, you can check them out here in our weekly wrap up:

Our Knowledge Base is chock full of articles like these – and more! – to help you with any questions you might have. Don’t see what you need to know? Contact our Heroic Support® team and we’ll help.

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