ch04_v8_notes - Essentials of Business Information Systems,...

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Essentials of Business Information Systems, 8E Chapter 4 IT Infrastructure: Hardware and Software 4.1 IT Infrastructure: Computer Hardware Because information is becoming such a valuable resource of the digital firm, the infrastructure used to care for the resource takes on added importance. Let’s examine all of the components that comprise an IT infrastructure of today and tomorrow, and how best to manage them. Infrastructure Components When you mention the phrase “information technology infrastructure,” most people immediately think of just hardware and software. However, there is more to it than just those two. Five components must work in concert together to give the firm a competitive advantage. Hardware: input, processing, output, storage, and delivery Software: system software, application software , and enterprise integration Data management software: organize and deliver data Networking and telecommunications technology: data, voice, audio, and video Technology services: run and manage infrastructure and train users Over the years, it’s become quite common to install different systems throughout various parts of a company’s infrastructure. Throwing out all the old hardware and software in legacy systems and starting from scratch may seem the easiest way to solve the problem. It’s just not practical or cost-effective. Systems integration is the art and science of tying old systems into newer ones to form a cohesive unit. Piecing together these information systems into seamless whole can be a daunting task. But it’s necessary for sharing information among all departments and managers in a company. Types of Computers Classifying computers depends largely on the computing capacity of the processor and the peripheral devices. Managers should determine what tasks the system will be used for, how many users will likely access it at any one time, and how much data will be processed and stored. The categories are: Personal computer: includes desktops, laptops, personal digital assistants, and even cell phones. 1
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Workstation: has more computing capacity in its CPU than a typical personal computer. Scientists, engineers, and those working with large graphics files are the main users. Server: used primarily in networks. Some servers contain communication software while others contain the application software and data users need to process transactions. Midrange computer: has less power and capacity than a mainframe and is generally used in smaller networks that don’t require the power and speed of mainframes. It is sometimes used as a server . Mainframe: has the necessary power and speed to process thousands and millions of transactions from the Internet and networks and has the storage capacity needed for all the data captured and processed by larger information systems. Supercomputers:
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This note was uploaded on 11/27/2010 for the course IS 3300 taught by Professor Pettey during the Spring '08 term at Troy.

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ch04_v8_notes - Essentials of Business Information Systems,...

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