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Tel: 800-573-7846
Email: sales@servint.com
Website: http://www.servint.net
Address: 6861 Elm St., 4th Floor
McLean, VA, 22101, United States of America

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Kickstart Assistance Program
 
For years ServInt has been offering enterprise class managed services to their customers. However, FindMyHost learned recently of a new initiative ServInt has rolled out called KickStart. In essence KickStart makes migrating to ServInt a breeze and is targeted towards non-technical small to medium sized business owners.

I caught up with ServInts’ Christian Dawson, Chief Operations Officer for a Q&A session at HostingCon 2010 in Austin, TX.

Christian, we are very impressed with the Managed Support levels ServInt delivers to customers at a very affordable price. The quality of your products as well as support is good value in our opinion. We’ve seen a lot of companies promise managed support and not be able to deliver. How are you able to deliver this level of support at prices affordable to small business owners?
Our Managed Services Team deserves 100% of the recognition for our stellar reputation in customer support. I wish there was some secret-sauce recipe that defined our success, but it really boils down to our very simple obsession with peerless customer service at all levels. We ensure that we bring people on board who are invigorated by the opportunity to help people, and I think that shows.

We also have a tremendous amount of respect for the hard work that our MST does everyday, and we’ve built a corporate culture that rewards experimentation, out of the box ideas and a willingness to put them into action. Our new Director of Managed Services, Jim Tricarico, is a prime example of that. He started as a Tier 1 Support Technician in the MST six years ago and is now in charge of the most critical division of the company. So, needless to say, ServInt thinks good ideas are priceless, and I think that shows in our support.
 
Your recent launch of the KickStart program is an exclamation point on your managed support. Can you let our readers know exactly what KickStart is?
A lot of people in this industry forget how complex the tech is to somebody unfamiliar with it. Great potential customers are out there who have the potential to do wonderful things on the Internet but need help getting started. Just because someone isn’t familiar with administering a server doesn’t mean they can’t be successful. Do you think Warren Buffet can navigate the command line in Linux?

That’s why we created KickStart. With KickStart, we institutionalized our commitment to helping people run their business regardless of their skill level. When you sign up for ServInt’s free KickStart program, you’ll receive a proactive response from our Managed Services Team that will help you install software, setup your DNS, and we’ll help you migrate your website as well.

There’s a stereotype out there that technological service providers are just jaded organizations with contempt for the less technically inclined. Unfortunately, there are a lot of companies out there that uphold that stereotype. Not ServInt. I joke around the office that we should license The Beatles’ “I Want TO Hold Your Hand” as our theme song. If you need help, we’re there for you and want to give you the tools you need to succeed.
 
That sounds really nice, small business owners will appreciate anything making migrations easier. I see a lot of companies partnering with hosters who specialize in migration alone. With KickStart, will ServInt staff perform actual migrations?
Sure we will. I’ve moved houses enough times to know that moving sucks– but also that a good friend will always help you move. It’s a bit cheesy, but that’s what we’re looking to do for our customers. ServInt’s MST and KickStart teams handle all cPanel to cPanel migrations and we partner with cPanel to migrate any other control panels to cPanel as well.
 
I noticed that ServInt is working very hard on being green friendly. Our readers would love to hear about all the green initiatives implemented and planned in the near future.
First off, I always wince a little when I hear the phrase ‘green tech’ because the greenest tech is always the kind you unplug and keep in the closet. Making active infrastructure environmentally friendly is always an art of compromise, but I am proud to say that we try to practice that art and that we have seen some good success at it.

At ServInt, we take a two-pronged approach to reducing our carbon footprint. First, we’re industry leaders in effective retrofitting. We continually purchase new, more efficient hardware and we rigorously engineer our VPS and SuperVPS products for the maximum server density without affecting performance. These optimizations result in less cooling, less power, and less space which ultimately benefits everyone.

Second, we’ve invested heavily in virtualization technology to further abstract our products from their hardware. We were developing on Virtuozzo before it was even called Virtuozzo, so we have copious amounts of proprietary coding ensuring that we have the best Virtuozzo powered products in the world. By having efficiently coded hosting environments across all of our data centers, we’re able to further increase server density and make migrations and upgrades exceptionally fast for our clients. This also results in a smaller carbon footprint.

We are also committed to responsible recycling of retired server components. People sometimes forget what an impact high-tech has on the environment in a pure waste capacity. We are committed to being responsible stewards in that regard.

Finally, our entire VPS and SuperVPS lines are offset by a heavy investment in reforestation. ServInt, along with esteemed organizations such as IKEA and Coca-Cola, is a corporate sponsor of American Forests. We offset 110% of the carbon emissions of all the products we offer on our website.
 
Can you elaborate on your dedicated server offerings and how you’ve been able to reduce power consumption and improve green?
As I mentioned before, our efforts to reduce our carbon footprint have hinged on frequent hardware upgrades, and consistent software development to take maximum advantage of that hardware.

With our new Solo Series, we decided that we had the opportunity to take the seamless hardware and virtualization integration from our VPS and SuperVPS products and engineer them into our Dedicated Server line. The result is a Virtuozzo-based virtual environment with full access to a machine’s dedicated resources. Because the software and virtualization layer have been optimized for efficient performance, the hardware’s resources, and by extension power, are consumed more efficiently.

Consumers can also benefit from the same convenient automated backup system we provide our VPS and SuperVPS customers as well. And, of course, we provide the same carbon offsets I mentioned before.
 
One of the things that stood out to me during our conversations earlier was that you backup all VPS’s AND Dedicated servers? I know lots of Hosts backup their customer VPS’s, but generally charge for dedicated backup service. Can you explain a bit more about the backups performed for dedicated customers?
We do back up each one of the products we sell on the ServInt website as a matter of policy. Every client should have more than one backup of their files. Your content is often your livelihood, and it should be as protected as can be. Well, if you ought to have multiple backups in multiple locations doesn’t it make things easier if your host makes one? We want our clients to have one less thing to worry about. And we don’t like to nickel-and-dime them so we provide it free of charge.

The backups we provide are periodic, and designed for disaster recovery, though granular file recovery is possible as well. At any given time, our clients have at least one recovery point, and often have up to three. But I can’t stress this enough — we still recommend that users back up to their home machines, or at the very least somewhere off-server, in addition to utilizing our backup services. That’s not saying anything bad about our own backup system – in fact I am confident that it rocks – but I firmly believe that NOBODY should only have one backup of their critical files no matter where they host.
 
Are there any limits on storage for these backups?
Not at all, our automated nightly backups take care of every file on the machine. As long as you have purchased a package with sufficient disk space to house your content, we’ll back it up for you.
 
 




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