Green is all around us these days, and it’s not just because we’re in the waning days of spring and in the midst of International Green IT Awareness Week , which kicked off June 1, 2011, and runs through June 7.
The marketing term “green” often is used to characterize the movement to live a more environmentally friendly lifestyle. But what exactly does “green” mean when it’s applied to IT?
Bhuvan Unhelkar, a senior consultant for the Cutter Consortium, summarizes the who, what, why and how of green IT in a recent blog post. The May 31 piece, “Practicing Green IT in Four Dimensions,” explains green IT practices in economical, technological, procedural and social terms. Unhelkar also offers CIOs and IT leaders a few basic ideas on how to kick-start green IT initiatives in their own companies in meaningful and immediate ways.
For example, Unhelkar writes, the “technological dimension of green IT practices” should include:
- Sophistication in managing desktops, laptops, and other individual computing devices when not in use. This includes switching them off when not in use, using a blank screen saver, centralized power management, and use of smart operating systems.
- Use of smart metering devices that measure and relay emissions in real time and provide feedback and correction to the equipment.
- Printer use in an efficient way through default draft printing, default page cap per user, double-sided printing, distance printing (i.e., not [having] a printer by the side of the desktop), and recycling of ink cartridges.
Read the full story at the Cutter Consortium .
A Trojan horse application called the MacDefender has been making some Mac users wonder if their operating systems would be compromised by the malware headaches that have long plagued Windows users. But OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard users are in the clear now that Apple has released a security update that detects and removes the malware.
The MacDefender Trojan, which tricks OS X users into downloading and installing it by pretending to be legitimate security software, has been an annoyance, to be sure. But Apple’s swift response to the threat shows that it’s serious about preserving the integrity of its platform as much as possible.
Read the full story at Naked Security .
Most mobile-device owners already can store valuable contact information and data on their cell phones and tablets , if they choose to do so. But that doesn’t mean that corporate IP telephony is resting on its laurels.
The Toshiba Telecom blog outlines the benefits of IP User Mobility , a unique feature of its unified communications solutions that allows workers to take their identity on the company phone system beyond the office. One scenario in particular sums up the power of this technology succinctly:
Suppose you are traveling to a branch office in another city and need to use an extension there for the day. No problem. Just log that phone out, and enter your extension and password. This IP telephone now adapts to your profile — becomes yours as far as the communication system knows, until you log out. You can be as fully productive and accessible as when you are at your desk.
Read the full story on Toshiba’s Telecom blog .
The latest version of Microsoft’s Internet browser, Internet Explorer 9, is gaining traction among Windows 7 users, having reached a 17 percent usage share at the end of May. Since its March launch, the IE9 browser, which boasts support for several CSS 3 and HTML 5 features, has been widely praised for its improvements over IE8.
The uptick in IE9 adoption is good news for Microsoft, which has been encouraging users who held on to IE6 and IE7 to upgrade soon. The company has even established an IE6 countdown site  to demonstrate how serious it is about “moving the world off Internet Explorer 6.”
Read the full story on the Windows Team blog .
Implementing the latest and greatest IT security practices is a wise idea for anybody who uses mobile devices. But the hard truth is that once the device leaves your hands, security goes out the window.
A May 31 post on Absolute Software’s blog addresses a security vulnerability that allowed hackers to extract passwords from such iOS devices as the iPhone and iPad. The catch is that in order for this hack to work, the hackers had to get their hands on the physical device.
As more users get comfortable with mobile computing, it becomes increasingly important to educate them about the merits of data-wipe solutions. That way, if a user loses his mobile device, his personal information doesn’t have to go along with it.
Read the full story on the Absolute Software blog .
Ken Oestreich, senior director of cloud and virtualization marketing for EMC, has had an “aha moment” about servers, storage and networking: It’s all just data.
This realization has changed the way he looks at solving IT problems, he writes in a May 29 blog post. It could shape the way other IT professionals think about the future as well.
From where I sit, the importance of data storage, data management and data portability suddenly becomes paramount. It can reasonably be argued that physical servers are now merely execution platforms for the VM data bits, and that the network is simply becoming flatter and fatter.
So the future data center and cloud model might be thought about as a data management problem. Where and how to locate bits, back-up bits, scale bits, operate on bits. True, this is a data-centric view of the world. But it's also a healthy perspective from which to view the renewed importance of data and its dynamics, versus the other more static components of the data center.
Read the full post on Oestreich’s blog, Fountainhead .
Microsoft’s Client Access Server handles all non-MAPI client communications, such as Outlook Web Access (OWA), Outlook Anywhere (RPC-over-HTTPS), Exchange ActiveSync (mobile devices), POP3/IMAP4 and Exchange Web Services (EWS). Outlook 2007 (and later) clients also connect to the client access server for the Autodiscover and Autoconfiguration features.
If you need a hand installing the Exchange 2007 Client Access Server on Windows Server 2008, follow this tutorial from Exchange Server Pro .
The all-in-one desktop combines many features in a unified, simplified body, and small businesses are starting to take notice.
“The main benefit is that all the hardware is consolidated into one device, which conserves space,” says Rohan Bose, a business computer analyst at AMI–Partners, a New York technology research firm. “This is critical for firms who are space-conscious and looking to save room.”
Learn more about all-in-one’s advantages in this story from BizTech .
Find great content from the bloggers listed here and other IT blogs  by checking out our 50 Must-Read IT Blogs.