In the retail industry, the successful IT management of multiple stores in various locations is a critical component to maintaining business continuity. Retailers need to be cost-effective and productive whilst ensuring zero data or revenue loss. For one of the United States’ top retail chains, with 2000 stores across the US and elsewhere, SvSAN was the solution to a series of ongoing challenges.
The organization was experiencing deficiencies that were severely affecting its business:
- The local SANs at the stores would often fail and lose data – averages of 100 outages per year and 6 hours of downtime per outage
- RAID failures and drive replacements would require restore from backups – inefficient and costly
- Needed to simplify its hardware footprint, reduce CAPEX and OPEX, and reduce reliance on costly external IT support services necessary to resolve issues.
Their objectives were to:
- Provide a more efficient and reliable services for shoppers
- Maintain business continuity in over 2000 stores
- Provide high-availability across the entire infrastructure – which demands shared storage, simplicity, ease of management, cost-effective acquisition and management and great performance
- Continue with no on-site IT staff at stores.
After a thorough review, SvSAN was selected by the chain’s IT executives and implemented in every store. SvSAN, a software solution delivered through a virtualized shared storage platform, enables enterprises to eliminate downtime and ensure high-availability of business critical applications at remote sites where disruptions directly equate to a loss in service and revenue.
In the time since deployment, the chain has realized several benefits:
- Simplified hardware – because it’s a softwarly solution that leverages internal server storage, SvSAN enables a two-server and no-SAN environment. As a result, deploying SvSAN simplified each store’s infrastructure and reduced the organization’s overall reliance on hardware.
- True high-availability – with SvSAN, virtual machines are synchronously mirrored to other servers in the environment to ensure seamless operations if one server goes down. As a result, SvSAN eliminated the single point of failure the organization frequently encountered with its legacy SAN solutions while improving application performance and reducing infrastructure complexity and downtime – all with no additional storage hardware requirement. These results also meant that the chain needed less outside technical support, saving the company even more money.
- Centralized IT – as a software solution, SvSAN’s industry-standard management interface allows thousands of SvSANs across distributed sites to be managed, provisioned and maintained remotely from a single-pane-of-glass interface at a central location. This reduces management complexity and removes the requirement for on-site IT expertise.
- Ease of deployment – SvSAN’s automated, scripted deployment process enabled hands-off deployment from central IT across all store locations in just 40 minutes per site, including configuration and set-up. This meant quicker time to value for the business and less reliance on internal and external IT resources.
- Cost savings – with less server and SAN hardware in its infrastructure, money reclaimed from no downtime, less use of external IT support and more, significant cost savings have been realized in a short time frame.