More and more of our customers are electing to be hosted in the PubWorks Microsoft Azure cloud because:
- They enjoy a higher, more responsive level of service since we can easily and instantly access their system and data.
- IT staff is freed from having to support the PubWorks application and database.
- They can access PW from any PC or laptop that runs MS Windows.
If you are considering this move yourself, here are some common questions with answers that we hope help you with your decision.
What will PubWorks Cloud do for me?
With PubWorks Cloud, you’ll be able to:
-Access all PubWorks desktop functions from anywhere
-Secure, safe database storage with Microsoft Azure
-No internal IT support is needed
-Respond to Citizens with Instant and Accurate Information
-Access over 600 Ready-To-Run Reports
Does moving to the cloud change the client experience? If so, is there training for the changes?
Not materially. The desktop icon is a little different and the method by which a device connects to the PubWorks database is via RDP, but the look and feel of the application are unchanged.
What is the process to move to the cloud and what amount of downtime can be expected?
You provide us with a SQL BAK, we restore that to our Azure SQL Server, and we set up PubWorks RDP desktop icons replacing current PubWorks desktop Icons. Downtime might be the time it takes to replace old icons with new ones. Total migration time is on the order of a couple of hours.
If we were to leave PubWorks in the future, how would we get our data from you to be loaded into the next system?
If you were to decide to discontinue using PubWorks, we’d provide the latest SQL Server BAK (in a ZIP file) and send a link by which you could download that file from our cloud servers.
How do you respond to cybersecurity incidents?
We have implemented measures to prevent such incidents and we are prepared for recovery. Our critical servers are secured by only allowing connections from known IP addresses. On the recovery side, we have a multi-tiered nightly backup process that goes so far as to store files off-site. To date, we’ve never experienced a cybersecurity incident
How are backups handled?
Backups are preformed daily, and the last five business days of backups are kept on the cloud server. Monthly backups are taken on the first of every month for the last four months and saved in Dropbox. Weekly/Monthly backups are stored in an offsite location with a redundant copy in a protected fire-resistant safe. Per our customer agreements, backups are kept for the last three months, but at present, we have every backup taken since November 2016.
Are there any additional licensing requirements or costs associated with PubWorks Cloud?
For GIS MapViewer (desktop) installations, the ESRI licensing requirement would change from an ArcEngine license for each workstation using the PubWorksGIS MapViewer to an ESRI ConcurrentArcEngine license equal only to the number of users accessing the MapViewer at the same time. For example, one license would allow an unlimited number of users to access GIS MapViewer, but one at a time. The cost of this license, at present, is $1,250 per concurrent user.