Data Center Build Out and Migration

Over a 2 ½ year partnership with a financial services firm, we helped to dramatically improve system reliability and business recovery including faster systems, network access, reduced software license, and real estate costs.

Project Background

IT and the business saw the need to improve the recoverability of business functions within the firm. The firm had a primary Tier 1 data center (~3,000 sq. ft.) and a small data center in a branch office approximately 250 miles away. Not all systems and data could be replicated. Management decided to build a new combined Data Center and Business Continuity “warm” DR site.

The Strategy

A site was selected 42 miles from the primary data center (co-located with corporate headquarters). The site was on a different power grid and met all the qualifications for a Tier 3 data center. In the spirit of making the business more resilient and recoverable, the new (~5000 sq. Ft.) data center became the primary data center and the original data center became a DR data center. IT infrastructure staff were located at this site. The space was also used as a Business Continuity space.

The opportunity of a data center buildout was leveraged to upgrade and rearchitect systems, storage, and networks within the data centers. New hardware was purchased and 1GB WAN connectivity was established between data centers, allowing for real-time replication of data.

Application developers and database administrators were engaged in the application and data migration. These projects were phased based on the installation and movement of hardware.

Proven Results

  • Hardware for the new data center was faster and had more capacity. Combined with a 10x network bandwidth, users received at least 20% performance improvement in application and file sharing performance.
  • All systems were now replicated, dramatically improving the recoverability profile. Clustered, highly available systems combined with real-time data replication eliminated the possibility of data loss during an outage.
  • The data center was architected with planned expansion and has since been expanded to 8,000 square feet. In addition to a location for the primary data center, the site now contains more IT teams and some business teams.

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