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Opus Energy, a leading independent supplier of gas and electricity to businesses, turned to Softcat when it needed to review its data storage and recovery systems.
Opus Energy faced a growing problem: with vast amounts of historic data to manage and maintain, its existing storage solutions were running out of steam. On top of that, the company had concerns about its ability to recover data in the event of a disaster. Its existing solution was cumbersome and difficult to manage. Opus Energy knew it made economic sense to address both its storage issues and its disaster recovery issues at the same time.
Having investigated its options, Opus Energy decided to implement a fully virtualised environment. The company had worked with Softcat before to streamline its Microsoft licensing and had been impressed with Softcat’s flexibility and in-depth knowledge of licensing policies, and that their recommendations had resulted in cost savings.
Opus Energy wanted a partner that could provide advice and guidance, work alongside its team and, at the end of the deployment, transfer knowledge so that it could manage and maintain the new infrastructure itself.
Softcat had plenty of experience in virtualisation projects that brought high availability and disaster-tolerance to its clients’ infrastructures, so it was able to provide expert advice to Opus Energy. By consolidating Opus Energy’s 50 servers to five HP blade servers, Softcat helped its client to create a faster, more resilient solution that was easier to maintain. The power savings alone mean that the virtualised infrastructure will pay for itself in just a few years.
Softcat’s disaster recovery specialists proposed a solution based around the NetApp SAN which would eliminate single points of failure and allow synchronous replication, ensuring business continuity in the event of a disaster. They implemented Microsoft Hyper-V server virtualisation technology to provide a reliable virtualisation solution that allowed Opus Energy to improve its server utilisation, perform live migration and provide live backup.
Now live, Opus Energy’s new virtualised environment is delivering the benefits and capabilities that the organisation wanted. The virtualised solution has radically transformed its storage, backup and disaster recovery capabilities.
The infrastructure is easy to maintain and we can provision new servers extremely quickly. We can now provide internal services that we simply couldn’t consider previously, delivering immense benefits to the group. We have saved time, money and resources and have been able to strengthen our disaster-avoidance and disaster-recovery plans, and reduce scheduled and unscheduled downtime.
Daniel Maitland, IT director
"“Softcat’s willingness to work alongside our internal IT team, share their knowledge and ensure that we are able to manage and maintain our new virtualised infrastructure, makes them the ideal partner for Opus Energy."