London Borough of Merton Council consolidates storage and cuts back-up times

~ StorageTek and TriSys streamline council's infrastructure~

Woking - November 19, 2003 - Storage Technology Corporation, the storage services and solutions expert, and TriSys, a key StorageTek® channel partner in the UK, today announced the successful restructure of the London Borough of Merton Council's data storage infrastructure.

Six months after the introduction of the installation, benefits are already being seen throughout the council. These include:

- Back-up times cut by 45%
- Server recovery reduced to less than two hours
- System migration between servers easier than expected
- Users understand and acknowledge better and faster provisioning of storage at known incremental cost
- Higher overall availability which reduces overall management time

The restructure follows a storage profiling exercise in 2002, performed by an independent consultancy, which identified that 45% of the 1.3TB directly attached disk was unused. In addition, some of the 70 servers were short of disk, whilst others had too much. Before server consolidation could be implemented the shared storage solution needed to be adapted. StorageTek installed a system using D-series(tm) disk arrays and fibre connected LTO2 tapes in a StorageTek L-SeriesÔ L700 tape library.

"The results of the storage profiling showed that consolidating the number of servers and developing a shared storage solution could make considerable cost and efficiency savings. Many of our servers were in the wrong place and had poor to non-existent back-up procedures. Where backup was taking place it was to an aging tape library which took too long and interfered with the production day because a full backup was taking up to 60 hours to complete," said Richard Warren, Service Delivery Manager at London Borough of Merton Council.

Along with many similar local authorities, the IT department of the Council was faced with the complexity of maintaining and growing multiple computer installations in an increasingly difficult fiscal environment. Computer systems had been procured on a project-by-project, department-by-department basis with no real adherence to standards and economies of scale. This resulted in different types of operating systems and servers, each with their own dedicated disk and tape storage systems.

Ian Homer, Area Sales Manager for TriSys, said, "Often different application suppliers had been unknowingly selected to meet similar operational requirements. The control of spend and the duplication of effort across the council's provision of IT services was starting to be questioned. In addition, the level of service was not meeting the expectations of its internal customers as well as the public. The primary recommendation was to consolidate a large number of servers into a single data centre and use a common storage architecture that could expand as needs dictate."

Tim Arnold, Technical Account Manager, StorageTek UK, said, "By connecting the outlying users to the data centre over modern communication links, users continue to access applications and information sources as though they were local. The design, which is SAN and IP based, also envisages the creation of a second data centre to act as a disaster recovery centre."

"The main reason for choosing StorageTek was on the basis of cost, support capability and long-term viability," said Richard Warren at London Borough of Merton Council. "The coordination between TriSys and StorageTek demonstrated the highest level of performance and quality out of all the solutions proposed. The integration by TriSys went smoothly and we now have the storage capacity, thanks to StorageTek, to deal with the council's activities more efficiently and cost effectively."

Richard added, "The centralisation of the computing hardware and software has not removed the individual departmental capabilities that existed before. Instead it has provided an improved facility that can be shared on an as needed basis at much reduced cost and reduction in management resources. User departments in the Borough including Finance and Accounting, Education, Housing and Legal are now making active, but often unknown, use of the new facility."

Kevin Bailey, Marketing Director, StorageTek UK, said, "The e-government agenda requires that local government services be 100% on-line by 2005. The London Borough of Merton Council is certainly well on track to meet this now that they have started to store data correctly through StorageTek's Information Lifecycle ManagementÔ strategy. StorageTek and Trisys will support the council going forward on this strategy and advise them on the best way forward as they introduce a new Disaster Recovery site and Document Management System in 2004."

Ken Saunders
Kirsty Whitehead
Hill & Knowlton
+44 (0) 207 413 3193
+44 (0) 207 413 3043

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