Dynamic Infrastructure: Gen-i

Dynamic Infrastructure: Gen-i

Key Benefits for Baycorp:

• Lowered total cost of ownership via consolidated and simplified storage management

• Increased processing speeds by reducing back-up times

• Scalable platform to support anticipated growth and disaster recovery initiative

• Improved storage utilisation and application availability

Technology Used:

• IBM x3850 Server

• IBM DS4700 Disk System virtualised behind the IBM SAN Volume Controllers (SVC)

• IBM DS3400 Disk System with 8TB of SATA drives

• IBM TS3100 LTO4 Tape Library

• CA ArcServe backup

• IBM x3550 Server (Paramatta)

• DS4700 Disk System (Paramatta)

“Gen-i has demonstrated their ability to provide Baycorp with a flexible and scalable server and storage environment to grow as the need arises. Gen-i’s use of IBM’s unique enterprise server and storage virtualisation technology allows Baycorp to leverage the investment they are making at the right time.” - Raymond Skoglund, IBM New Zealand channels manager.

Baycorp, a trans-Tasman collection services provider, was reaching capacity with its SAN infrastructure, and the data warehouse and analytics platform was approaching the end of its lifecycle. In addition, back-ups were taking too long. At the same time, it was anticipating a sustained period of significant growth. But now, thanks to a major upgrade of IBM hardware and tight project management from system integrators Gen-i, Baycorp has a scalable infrastructure that not only gives it much more storage capacity but has a solid foundation for other initiatives, such as enhanced disaster recovery and the archiving of contact centre calls.

“Baycorp needed to replace and upgrade a substantial percentage of their infrastructure,” says Dom Pringle, Business Solution Specialist at Gen-i. “They had a number of disparate SANs and wanted to centralise their storage management across multiple storage devices to provide a tiered storage infrastructure. We suggested that they look at virtualisation and recommended that they employ the IBM SAN Volume Controller. Through a number of workshops we were able to identify the specific areas where there were likely to be bottlenecks and subsequently designed the solution to address these critical areas. We worked closely with value-added distributor Datastor on the design requirements as they had particular expertise in this area.”

The project took about three months for the specification and design phase and three months for implementation and testing. “One of the key benefits of the project,” continues Pringle, “is that Baycorp can add storage capacity – in the form of commodity disks – to the storage pool as the need arises.”

The implementation team from Gen-i and Datstor worked closely with the IT group at Baycorp to define the requirements, specify the solution and assist with implementation. “Gen-i provided a high level of technical expertise and coordinated the various vendor specialists involved in the design and configuration stages of the project,” says Alex Cruden, IT&T manager at Baycorp. “They provided excellent service in all aspects of project activity and greatly contributed to the successful delivery of the new systems.”

Gen-i delivered the project on time and to budget. “The technology, especially the IBM SAN Volume Controller, gives Baycorp the ability to move across storage tiers on the fly with no downtime,” concludes Pringle. “Timely access to the right information is a key requirement for Baycorp and with the new infrastructure, they can deliver critical information to users on demand and on time.”

Highly Commended: Plan-b

Plan-b used IBM xSeries servers and SAN infrastructure to replicate servers for APN, to achieve the objective of a recovery time frame of a few minutes per server.

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