Three Reasons to Upgrade Your School Security Cameras









From an elementary school laying the basic foundation of lifelong development to a university where the next generation of leaders is preparing to make their impact on the world, the primary focus of every educational campus is to provide an environment for learning.

To create that environment, there are a number of basic needs that must be met first, including safety. To focus on learning and teaching, the students, instructors, and staff who enter the environment every day need to know their safety is a priority. Over the years, that’s led to a number of technological advancements in schools, including the use of school security cameras.

As is the case with all technology, security camera technology has come a long way since its first inception. Today, many campuses are still using legacy equipment that isn’t living up to the standard of what’s possible. As a result, physical servers are being bogged down, bandwidth is depleted, and there’s too much intervention required from an already overtaxed IT team. These are just a few of the signs your video surveillance system is due for an upgrade.

In this blog, we’re going to explore why many educational institutions are taking advantage of new technology in school security cameras from our technology partner Verkada to ensure safer environments for learners, instructors, and other staff.

Reason #1: Simpler to Set Up and Use

If you remember the installation of your current video security system, the headaches and time required to get it into place might be your primary objection to replacing it. With the Verkada system, you no longer need network or digital video recorders. As a cloud-based solution, Verkada school security cameras are brought online instantly with a single ethernet cable. There are no technical configurations or downloads required.

Better yet, the Verkada system eliminates the IT team’s role as middleman. Footage is directly accessible by the school administrators who need it, without IT intervention. If an incident needs to be reviewed by a principal, they have searchable access to the footage at their fingertips. Authorized users can quickly access and share footage with other authorized users on any device. As a result, both academic and IT staff are spending less time on security management and more time focused on student success and well-being.

Reason #2: Infinite Scalability in Your School Security Cameras

Verkada’s school security systems are designed to grow as your needs change. Their cloud-based nature eliminates the need for dedicated physical server space. That means if your district or campus builds a new building, security surveillance can be added to the system without compromising performance elsewhere. If there’s a need for cameras that wasn’t previously identified or accounted for, adding a camera to the system is as simple as finding an open ethernet port.

Whether you’re deploying 10 cameras or 300, you will have reliable access to high-quality video surveillance without an excessive investment of cost or time.

Reason #3: Eliminate Manual Updates and Minimize Vulnerability

Security is a game of evolving standards. Today’s best practices could be exposed as vulnerabilities tomorrow. So “set it and forget it” doesn’t really work. With traditional CCTV security systems, there are always firmware and software updates that someone must stay on top of and install to ensure the security system is living up to the latest changes and standards.

Verkada’s school security systems do away with manual updates and open ports that create vulnerability. The Verkada school security solution deploys the highest encryption standards and security enhancements automatically and at no added cost, ensuring you are always up-to-date with the latest in security regulations and policy.

Applied Technologies is Creating Safer Schools

The Applied Technologies team knows that reliable, scalable, and accessible video surveillance is essential to providing an effective environment for learning. That’s why we partner with Verkada to implement cloud-based video security solutions to schools in the communities we serve.

If you’re ready to explore your options, or even have questions about the technology and capabilities available, lean on our team as your go-to resource. Contact us today at 314-274-8000 or to take the first steps to a more secure campus with school security cameras from Verkada.

Scaling Infrastructure in the Cloud: Scale Up or Scale Out?








One of the most attractive benefits of cloud computing for companies is the ability to scale their IT infrastructure. Scaling, in the context of the cloud, refers to a company’s ability to adapt its IT resources to meet changing demand. The cloud allows companies to scale data storage, networking, and processing power using their existing infrastructure, with minimal disruption and downtime.


In this blog, we are going to examine two common methods for cloud scaling: scale up and scale out. We’ll explore indicators of a need for scalable solutions, the difference between the two options, and important considerations you need to keep in mind when making the decision.

Signs it’s Time to Scale

If you’re currently operating in a on-premise server or cloud environment, there are a number of scenarios that can drive your need to scale your network’s capabilities:

  • Performance: The first and most obvious symptom of a cloud infrastructure in need of expansion IT resources is performance. If your website is hosted on an overtaxed server for instance, load times can be negatively affected. Studies have shown that 46% of users don’t revisit websites that perform poorly and just a 1-second delay in load time can reduce customer satisfaction by 16%.
  • Maintenance Requirement: Perhaps your server is performing great, but your network requires some sort of maintenance work. If you only have one server, maintenance equals costly outages. Scaling additional resources can dedicate one node to do the maintenance while another handles the workload.
  • Seasonal Fluctuations: If you operate in a market that sees significant seasonal changes in demand, scaling can help you temporarily add resources to meet it and remove them when they’re no longer needed.
  • Development need: If your company is undertaking a significant development project with a dedicated team of programmers and developers, spinning up additional cloud resources to dedicate infrastructure capacity to that team can help to ensure the rest of the business resources don’t take a hit.
Scaling Up vs. Scaling Out

The cloud provides companies with the ability to be nimble from an IT infrastructure perspective. As resource needs change, you can quickly adapt. But there’s more than one way to do it.

Scaling up refers to adding additional resources, like memory, hard drives, and CPUs to your existing physical server. Scaling out, on the other hand, refers to adding additional servers to the system to spread the workload across more machines, increasing capacity and performance.

Scaling up is often the solution of choice for meeting seasonal demand. It is also an ideal solution for organizations with a relatively small dataset, who don’t expect that data to grow exponentially in the next three to five years. It involves fewer resources and is typically the less expensive route to take.

If you are managing data for a larger organization with 30 terabytes or more of backup data or are expecting significant growth in the years to come, scaling out is the better option.

Depending on the resources available in your organization, you may or may not be able to dedicate someone to manually monitor usage and make scaling decisions in real time. Autoscaling allows your cloud environment to anticipate surges in business activity or unexpected traffic and take action automatically. Autoscaling is more typical in large enterprises, where the cloud is harder to manage because there are more resources housed in it. Smaller companies with less dramatic fluctuations in demand are usually able to manage scaling manually.

Risks and Challenges of Scaling Without the Cloud

As available technological capabilities grow, the volume of resources needed to support them grows as well. It’s important to consider the business impact of not having enough resources available when you need them. If you’re currently managing everything with on-premise servers, you’re likely already seeing some of the limitations. With a cloud-based infrastructure, upgrades that used to take two to three months to complete can be done in a few clicks of a mouse.

The decision of how to scale for the unique needs of your company is an important one. You must take into consideration what you need from an application perspective and the strengths and weaknesses of various cloud providers to avoid overpaying for resources you don’t or won’t need. Business priorities change over time and sometimes seemingly unrelated decisions can affect your needs. It’s important that you continuously monitor shifts in demand for cloud resources, and adapt accordingly to ensure you’re getting the maximum ROI from your investment.

Which Scaling Direction is Right for You?

Applied Technologies works with clients to evaluate the performance of their  data storage and compute infrastructure, understand challenges and issues they are facing, and present options tailored to overcoming them. We then partner with companies like NetApp, Cisco, VMware, Unitrends, and Veeam to develop a solution to help clients scale their infrastructure from where they are with their cloud capabilities to where they want to be. If you’re ready to explore a more scalable IT infrastructure, contact Applied Technologies to get the conversation started.