A large office of a national real estate company was experiencing chronic computer operational and user problems. The primary issues were with lost files, printers that didn't work, shared user workstations that frequently didn't work, agents bringing in their own computers and attaching them to the network, etc. Some of the workstations in the office were frequently unusable because users would change settings, download software and add their own files. In addition, some agents would spend hours working on a Microsoft Publisher brochure for a listing, only to have the file disappear. The office had invested tens of thousands of dollars in high-end color printing equipment, but frequently they were unusable because print drivers were getting deleted or corrupted. In addition, the office had no conditioned power backup or data backup procedures for critical files. Virus attacks frequently rendered the system unusable. The server did not have enough horsepower (memory and processor).
The company had a proposal for over $20,000 to replace several of the workstations, with a new proposed server based on a single processor and minimal memory and a single hard drive. The server was not expandable, and it barely met the minimum needs required by their software. QSE implemented Windows Terminal Server© on a new, dual-processor server with mirrored RAID file storage, secured by a tape backup system and uninterruptible power supply (UPS). All the workstations now have exactly the same configuration, so users cannot alter drivers or install unauthorized software. Virus protection is run from the server to protect all systems. All files are stored centrally on the server, and a tape backup procedure ensures that user data is secure. In addition, the printing issues have been stabilized and the system has successfully withstood multiple power outages and virus attacks without major downtime or data loss. Users have reported increased productivity, and now they are able to spend more productive time in the office researching properties and preparing for closings, and less time on chronic computer problems. The company was able to not only keep all existing workstation and printer hardware, but actually add back two additional machines to their system that were not functioning.