What is a server? At the most basic level, a server is a technology solution that “serves” files, data, print, fax resources, and more to multiple computers. Advanced server solutions also enable you to manage user accounts and passwords, grant or restrict access to shared resources, automatically back up your data, and access business information remotely.
The word “server” often refers to the specialized computer (or hardware) that the server software runs on. The server is optimized to perform services for other computers or “clients.” Clients can be computers as well as printers, faxes, or other devices that connect to the server. Together, a server and its clients compose a client/server network. A client/server network provides routing systems and centralized access to information and resources, stored data, and more.
How can your business benefit from a server? With a server, you can share files and resources, such as fax machines and printers, in a more secure manner. For example, with a server network, employees can access the Internet or company e-mail at the same time. Servers provide file and print sharing, and data backup and restore capabilities. Networking Basics For Small Businesses At one time, only large companies could afford servers because of their high cost and complexity. Now, new technologies designed specifically for small businesses allow any company to take advantage of the benefits of server computers and client/server networking. So, what can a server do for your business? Using a server to network your computers can help your small business run more smoothly and cost-efficiently, while also boosting productivity. Our free guide, Networking Basics for Small Businesses, can help answer many of your most important server questions. You'll learn what networks and servers are, whether your business is ready for a network, what type of network architecture is best for your needs, and much more.