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How many here have a VPN in their company?

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Ron Lindeboom
How many here have a VPN in their company?
on Nov 22, 2009 at 3:53:20 pm

I was just reading the thread below about Google's Chrome OS, and it got me to thinking about the way that VPNs (Virtual Private Networks) are bringing power to small- and medium-sized companies that were not long ago the sole and exclusive domain of only the largest and richest companies.

With a VPN, into which you run tools like HP's SkyRoom, remote client interaction on projects to gain ideas or approvals, company meetings across disparate locations, etc., are now possible in full HD (instead of the small underwhelming video in most tools like iChat, Skype, etc.) With VPN as its backbone, SkyRoom also facilitates desktop sharing at a level that most small- to medium-sized businesses never thought was possible.

VPN is a powerful idea that elevates the whole idea of remote interactivity to levels that geeks logging into BBS systems in the late 80s early 90s would not even have imagined.

This is more heady stuff. Truly cool. Or as Mister Wilson would say, Tres Cool.

Best regards,

Ron Lindeboom

Creativity is a type of learning process where the teacher and pupil are located in the same individual.

Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.
- Antoine de Saint Exupéry






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Tim Wilson
Re: How many here have a VPN in their company?
on Nov 22, 2009 at 7:44:52 pm

There's a GREAT thread on this, and how to set up a VPN network for free on OS X in the SAN forum. Here it is.

Zelin started it - as he so often does. Hey Bob, why were you needing VPN?

tw


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Walter Soyka
Re: How many here have a VPN in their company?
on Nov 24, 2009 at 3:54:29 pm

I never really thought about my VPN in the context of the cloud before, but it's a really relevant connection to make. While I love the convenience of the cloud model, and rely on it for email, contacts, and calendar, it's still lackluster for production work.

I travel extensively for business, but it's impractical to carry all the media for all my active projects at all times. Since I installed my VPN about a year and half ago, it's completely changed my capabilities while I'm on the road—it's like having my entire office in my briefcase.

With my laptop and hotel or cafe wifi, or even my cellular aircard, I can connect back to my file server or my workstation in the office from anywhere. I can see my workstation's screen, tweak a set of ultra widescreen motion graphics, re-render and compress them, and pull down the deliverable files. I don't need to carry a monster workstation and terabytes of storage everywhere, and I can accommodate unexpected requests, no matter where I am.

I only wish VPNs were simpler to configure on both sides, so I could establish on-demand bridges from my network to my clients' networks.

Walter Soyka, Principal
Keen Live, Inc.
Presentation, Motion Graphics & Widescreen Design
RenderBreak: A Blog on Innovation in Production



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Brendan Coots
Re: How many here have a VPN in their company?
on Nov 26, 2009 at 5:23:11 am

We use VPN for offsite file access, but not much more than that. I know it has a lot more potential than we are exploiting but there's so many other priorities! I can see it being a pretty major component of future business models though.

Brendan Coots

Splitvision Digital

http://www.splitvisiondigital.com


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Tim Wilson
Re: How many here have a VPN in their company?
on Nov 29, 2009 at 11:07:37 pm

[Brendan Coots] "I can see it being a pretty major component of future business models though."

Okay, I'm curious - what do you have in mind?

thx,
tw




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Dustin Lau
Re: How many here have a VPN in their company?
on Dec 27, 2009 at 8:07:22 pm

there are a couple of applications for VPN which radically increase productivity and most of these can be directly traced to the amount of time you have spent doing any of the following.

Time that you have spent

-Waiting for a file to finish rendering/exporting so you can output/upload/burn to DVD/send to client
-physically going to a client's office to help them perform computer related tasks (installing codecs/showing them how to play the file, etc
-physically waiting for a vendor or tech support to come to your office to perform computer related tasks (troubleshooting non-hardware issues, assessing bugs, etc)
-going back to the office in the wee hours of the night to check that computer related things are prepared for the big presentation in the morning (checking that files are online, render has successfully completed, etc)

Currently VPN is useful for low bandwidth tasks like checking renders, setting dvd burns and uploads.

However, if you use Automator to create complex workflows that otherwise cannot be auto-triggered by events like render completion or successful export, then you can use them in conjunction with VPN and VNC to perform a manual remote trigger event.

As I've shown previously, automator can do amazing things



, with a remote trigger, you would be able to do anynthing, as Robert Downey Jr said as Sherlock Holmes.

http://www.luminoir.com


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Tim Wilson
Re: How many here have a VPN in their company?
on Dec 27, 2009 at 9:27:00 pm

Here's the movie that Dustin meant to embed. :-)







And yes kids, don't forget - Cow videos are embeddable!


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Dustin Lau
Re: How many here have a VPN in their company?
on Dec 28, 2009 at 11:58:35 am

Oops, sorry about that Tim, I always forget I've got a copy on the cow!

http://www.luminoir.com


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Mike Cohen
Re: How many here have a VPN in their company?
on Dec 29, 2009 at 12:25:35 am

While we do not have an official VPN, we have a dozen or so networked apps, mostly custom creations, to manage information. Some live on the internets, others reside on internal servers. But all do one thing - they collect data and provide a quick snapshot without maintaining office documents manually. In other words, we use mySQL databases to manage a lot of the information within our various divisions. All of these apps are accessible via remote login and constitute our proprietary content management system. In many cases, the "content" is data, rather than media. But it's all digital anyway, so who cares if you are managing video files or contact information. "It's the data stupid" to paraphrase a former world leader.

Most of these systems were put into place because we recognized that "there has to be a better way to do XYZ."

"Necessity is the mother of invention" my grandpa Izzy used to say as he reassembled a washing machine or rewired his house (at one point if you rang the doorbell the dishwasher would start - they always had clean dishes! Seriously, he ran the parts department at a GE plant, supplying replacement components for power generators around the world in the 1960's and 70's.)

To paraphrase Izzy, "if you can't find something to do the job, make something yourself - build a better mousetrap."

Mike Cohen


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