Combining Symantec Windows Protection with Microsoft Vista

January 29th, 2007 |
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Fulton County is the most populous county in Georgia, encompassing 11 different cities, including Atlanta. The Information Technology department supports the computing needs for more than 7,000 government employees within 42 departments spread across 225 buildings. The IT department protects hundreds of data center servers, 7,000 desktops, 1,500 laptops, and 750 Blackberry devices with solution that combines Symantec AntiVirus Enterprise Edition, Symantec Ghost Solutions Suite, and Microsoft Vista. The combination provides Fulton County with some very unique business value.

More information at:

Symantec.com

Transcript:

Host: Allen Drummer

Guest: Robert Taylor – Fulton County

Announcer

You are listening to a Symantec Podcast powered by PodTech.

Allen Drummer

Welcome to another Symantec Podcast, this is Allen Drummer, a senior writer at Novaho (ph) Company representing Symantec. We’re about to take look inside another Symantec customer’s business to help you get better results from your own business. Today, we’ll focus on the Fulton County, Georgia Government. This 7,000 employee organization started using the Windows Vista operating system as a TAP user. The IT team protects Vista with Symantec Antivirus Corporate Edition, and simplifies its deployment and management with Symantec Ghost Solutions Suite. Here to give us some of his key learnings and best practices is, Robert Taylor, Chief Information Officer and Director of Information Technology for Fulton County. Thank you for joining us Robert.

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

My pleasure.

Allen Drummer

Robert, will you give us a brief picture of Fulton County and your IT challenges serving it?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

Fulton County, of course is located in Georgia. We have over 400 buildings of which, 225 of them have technology and users inside that we have to provide support. The largest city in Fulton County is the city of Atlanta. We have 7,000 employees supported by a staff of 145 IT professionals.

Allen Drummer

When Windows Vista is fully operational in your county, what advantages might it bring your work force?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

The most important part we see is enhanced security.

Allen Drummer

Well, Robert many people don’t realize that Windows Vista operating system does not include virus protection. If a business is deploying Vista, why should it add Symantec Antivirus Corporate Edition?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

I look at security as not being a single solution; and I go with the premise that a piece of plywood is a lot stronger than just a regular board because of the layer concept. And so I’m building this multi-tiered security plywood for Fulton County. So, the Symantec Antivirus product is just complimentary of the security elements within Vista.

Allen Drummer

What are the overall results you’ve been noticing with Symantec Antivirus?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

My system is heck of a lot more stable; we have had almost no incidences of viruses within our system, nothing coming down.

Allen Drummer

How can you — are there ways to measure the value of Symantec Antivirus to your organization?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

We have been able to measure the impact of not having antivirus in place. Back in 2001, we were impacted tremendously with the Nimda virus, and it resulted us — costing us approximately million dollars, something that we have been able to avoid since that point in time because we have had antivirus in place.

Allen Drummer

Okay, you used Ghost Solution Suite to simplify Systems Management and will soon upgrade to Ghost 2.0. How is Ghost valuable?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

Ghost is primarily utilized as we go in and install new PCs that we — again we copy their data files and things from their old PC, and put it over into the new one.

Allen Drummer

Ghost 2.0, will let you take hardware and software inventory from one central screen across any location, across your whole organization. How would this help you?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

Within Fulton County, we have PCs scattered across 400 buildings, and one of the most challenging jobs we have is making sure that we know what is on those PCs and that we — our licenses are compliant. This enables us to go out and identify where those PCs are and what is running on them.

Allen Drummer

Ghost allows you to multicast to 100’s of machines at once. How might this benefit you?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

Obviously, with patches, the quicker we get it out to the individual desktop, the more quickly we are protected.

Allen Drummer

Ghost 2.0 lets you conduct secure retirement of systems, wiping disk clean to Department of Defence standards. How will this help you?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

At Fulton County, we replace approximately a thousand to 1,500 units on an annual basis. We have been destroying the disk drives; what this enables to do is wipe the disk drives clean, keep the unit working, and sell that unit back to the public, and even we get only $10 per unit for 1,000 units that equals to $10,000 annually, that we are able to save and return back to the citizens of Fulton County.

Allen Drummer

Overall, how would you sum up the value that Symantec has brought Fulton County?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

The value Symantec has brought to the County is immeasurable because of the fact that it provides my 7,000 users stability. IT has become a commodity for them; it’s just like they walk into room and turn on the switch and the lights come on.

Allen Drummer

You’ve received a dozen awards in the past few years including “Top 100 CIO”, by CIO Magazine and “Premier 100 IT Leader” by Computerworld. What do you view as your most important accomplishment?

Robert Taylor – Fulton County

I came to Fulton County in August 2000 inheriting a IT environment based on 1980s technology. We’ve grown over the past 6 years to become a world class organization. However, my budget has been — remained flat. And to have made the transition from where we were to we are now utilizing the same annual budget has been my and my team’s greatest accomplishment, and this has been achieved through partnering with organizations that I can count on such as Symantec and Microsoft.

Allen Drummer

Thank you for joining us Robert. To learn more about Symantec Solutions for the Windows Vista operating system, visit http://www.symantec.com/vista. This wraps up another look at the difference Symantec Solutions make in providing security and availability for total Windows protection.

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