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FalconStor Blogs (223)

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“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.” - Winston Churchill
FalconStor has long participated in running an annual food drive during the holiday season and this year is no exception. We’ve teamed up yet again with Island Harvest, the largest hunger relief organization on Long Island, to collect non-perishable food products and personal care items for local families in need. This year, our collection efforts hold even more significance as we donate not only for the holiday season, but for the victims of Hurricane Sandy.

It’s a difficult time of year for those who were severely affected by the hurricane. I can’t even imagine what it would be like having all of my personal possessions destroyed in an instant. Many families have to start all over again after losing their homes, cars, clothing, and other items in the wake of the storm. It’s all the more devastating that victims have to endure this during the holidays, a time that should be reserved for joy and celebration.

Despite the hardships brought on by Sandy, the holiday season brings profound feelings of hope and perseverance. Our community is working hard to rebuild itself and to get back to its usual, everyday happenings. At FalconStor, we’re big believers in giving back to the community that we live and work in. We’re honored to partner with Island Harvest on this food drive and eager to lend our neighbors a hand, helping to bring a little normalcy back into their lives.

What’s really awesome about working with Island Harvest is that the organization takes an incredibly hands-on approach to assisting those in need. After the hurricane, its volunteers jumped into emergency response mode, working around the clock to help Long Island victims. They distributed tens of thousands of meals, water, and nonperishable food items to the hardest hit regions, utilizing distribution sites, shelters, and their own mobile food pantries. In the days following the storm, volunteers even hit the streets, going door to door to deliver essential food and supplies to the needy.

We hope that our contributions will assist our neighbors in need and aid Island Harvest in its quest to end hunger in our community during this exceptionally trying time. I’d like to give big thanks to all of the FalconStor employees who have already participated in the drive. Your donations are much appreciated and go directly to our neighbors in need. And I’d like to mention that employees can continue to give now and throughout the holiday season.

For more information on Island Harvest and how you can help, please visit their website or call (516) 294-8528 or (631) 873-4775.
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I’m proud to announce that the FalconStor® Network Storage Server (NSS) storage virtualization solution, was recently recognized as a silver medal winner in Penton Media’s Windows IT Pro “2012 Editors’ Best Awards” in the Best Hardware: Appliance category. Leveraging the industry expertise of its editors and authors, Windows IT Pro chose to honor FalconStor NSS and other great products that exist in the market today, proudly sharing this information with their Windows IT Pro and SQL Server Pro communities.

Ralph Wynn, FalconStor’s Sr. Product Marketing Manager, had this to say about the win:
IT outages and downtime are unacceptable. Companies need reliable data protection and disaster recovery systems in place that will ensure operations continue normally even in the event of a hardware failure or natural disaster. The FalconStor NSS VS Series Appliance with RecoverTrac technology makes downtime a thing of the past, and the 2012 Editors’ Best Award demonstrates its strategic importance.

FalconStor NSS is a scalable, highly available solution that enables storage virtualization, data migration, and data protection in heterogeneous environments. The solution’s ability to provide rapid automated disaster recovery allows you to restore Any Service, Any Time, Any Place – addressing your most demanding disaster recovery and business continuity needs. It’s no wonder FalconStor NSS is an award-winning product!

For more information on how FalconStor NSS provides complete data protection against disasters, check out one of our recent case studies. This 2-page success story details how one customer uses FalconStor NSS to cost-effectively reduce downtime and recovery time objectives.

Now That’s the Spirit! Featured

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Halloween has been my favorite holiday for as long as I can remember. As a girl who loved playing dress up and all things scary, Halloween was the best day of the year. Not only was I allowed to wear crazy costumes and run around my neighborhood with friends, I was rewarded with free candy!

My love for this day has stayed with me and that is why I’m always psyched for the annual FalconStor Halloween Bash. Employees are invited to bring their little ones to go trick-or-treating throughout the office and then everyone gathers for festive food, beverages, and games. I was looking forward to another great party when Hurricane Sandy hit the week of the scheduled event.

The Halloween party was instantly moved to the back burner as we surveyed the damage to our area in the days following the storm. Luckily, our headquarters in Melville made it through the hurricane untouched and we were even able to offer assistance to the community, as we never lost power. While some employees had property damages resulting from Sandy, we were thankful to find that everyone and their families were safe and unharmed.

Once things started returning to normal, it was important to us to have our Halloween party. Sandy may have taken our electricity, our heat, and our gasoline, but she was not going to take away our celebration. And what a celebration it was!

Children came dressed as princesses, skeletons, racecar drivers, and more. After the kids had their fill of gathering treats, everyone met in the break room to continue the festivities. Rachel, our event planner, decked the room out in full Halloween décor with jack-o-lanterns, tombstones, and spider webs, oh my! She also brought in frighteningly delicious food, including spider cupcakes, graveyard brownies, and rice crispy treats shaped as pumpkins. The kids loved them, often going up for seconds and thirds if their parents let them. Last but not least, a scary Halloween playlist added some mood music for the intense foosball game the little ones were playing.

To see all of the Halloween fun, check out FalconStor’s Flickr page filled with spooky pics.
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I am a huge fan of the human spirit. Specifically, I am repeatedly impressed by the kindness and generosity of our neighbors. In the aftermath of hurricane Sandy, all our employees and friends are working together to recover from a devastating storm.  We are all measuring our inconveniences in degrees. The luckiest have power, hot water, and heat. The worst off have lost their homes. Most of us are somewhere in between.

As I write this entry, there is an extension cord reaching across my driveway from my neighbor’s generator. My brother is driving up from Florida in his truck full of generators and cans of fuel. There are numerous friends, colleagues, and business partners sitting in the FalconStor training room using our network connections and power.

In times like these, you learn to appreciate the joy of a single 100-watt bulb and its amazing ability to illuminate an entire kitchen. You are reminded what a luxury it is to have hot and cold running water 24/7. Mostly I think we are reminded of how easily our daily lives can be interrupted. While New Yorkers have an unbelievable spirit and generosity that is difficult to match, it is important to remember how much easier it is to brave the storm if we are prepared.

Hurricane Sandy hit us with 50- to 90-mile-an-hour winds. I cannot imagine what we would be going through if she had been a Category 3 hurricane.  We are currently told that we should have our power back in 10 to 15 days. What if it were a month or more? I think it is time that we all spent a little bit more of our free cycles thinking about preparing for times like these.

With two hurricanes in two years, Long Island may have a lot more to deal with in the near future. My father always said, “Prepare for the worst and hope for the best” – to FalconStor, as a data protection company, this should be second nature. We strive to anticipate such possible interruptions and be prepared for them. I can only say that we would all be well served if we conducted this planning not only in our business lives but in our daily lives well.

I am thankful that our employees and their families are all safe. I am thankful that we are fortunate enough to be able to provide assistance to our community and neighbors. Disaster preparation has made this all possible. I hope we can all use Hurricane Sandy as a teaching moment so that we can be better prepared for such events in the future.
 

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Our thoughts and well wishes go out to our neighbors, family, friends, and everyone affected by Hurricane Sandy. Unfortunately, the effects of the storm have been devastating and far reaching in our community. The majority of Long Island is without power, major flooding has plagued some towns, and public transportation is largely suspended. Not to mention the number of downed trees that have destroyed property and made driving difficult or impossible.

FalconStor was lucky. Aside from a few fallen trees in the parking lots, our headquarters came through the hurricane unscathed and even has power. In difficult times, it’s important to come together and lend each other a hand. That’s why we’re reaching out to our local Long Island business colleagues who are in search of space to work in.

If you are located in the Long Island area and can safely get to our Melville Headquarters, we have fully functioning workstations for you to use. Space will be given on a first call, first serve basis – so please call Joanne Ferrara at 1.631.773.5813 to reserve a spot. We have desk space, phones, internet, fax machines, and more for your use. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

For FalconStor customers and partners, we’re also here to help with any IT difficulties related to business continuity or disaster recovery. Please contact our Support Team at support.falconstor.com.

Please stay safe out there, and let us know if you need assistance. We’re happy to help!

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