IMServ software WAN

IMServ Builds Software Defined WAN for Data Protection

IMServ software WANFaced with a static infrastructure, IMServ’s technical team was finding it difficult to cope with the exponential growth of current and historic data it was starting to manage. Covering more than 400 servers and around 250 users, IMServ manages highly time critical secure customer data and relies heavily on high network performance, stability, and availability.

One of the UK’s largest energy data management providers, IMServ found its data usage beginning to exceed its 50 megabit-per-second (Mbps) network bandwidth allowance, resulting in escalating costs. IMServ was subsequently under growing pressure to optimize its existing IT infrastructure in a way that would improve data delivery, increase flexibility and reduce expenditure.

“Our priority is protecting our customer’s data, which means sending it from the live site to the disaster recovery center as fast, secure, and efficiently as possible,”
– Morgan Rogers, head of IT technical at IMServ.

IMServ first considered upgrading to a larger wide area network (WAN) link, however the location of the DR site along with the large upfront payment needed became a problem. Subsequently, IMServ turned to leading IT solutions reseller, Future Generations Solutions (FGGL), who recommended maximizing the existing WAN efficiency between both sites.

Having considered other known WAN optimization providers, IMServ chose to deploy Silver Peak’s software-defined WAN optimization for the high performance, simple deployment and flexible pricing model. IMServ is using Silver Peak to transfer the growing volumes of data between its data center in Milton Keynes and its disaster recovery (DR) site 50 miles away. By deploying Silver Peak’s virtual data acceleration appliances, IMServ has been able to improve its DR strategy without the upfront investment of a costly bandwidth upgrade.

“Before deploying Silver Peak, we were approaching a barrier with our data replication, and as an IT manager I wanted as little disruption to our services as possible,” said Morgan Rogers, head of IT technical at IMServ. “Upgrading bandwidth was not a preferred option, so we decided that if we couldn’t make the pipe fatter, then we would make the data move faster. As well as Silver Peak’s WAN optimization software fitting unobtrusively on top of our existing infrastructure, we were able to integrate it with our data replication products, and natively with our chosen SAN infrastructure, and install it in less than 20 minutes. However, what really made it stand out was the subscription pricing model, which made the whole process a lot more financially feasible.”

Since deploying Silver Peak’s WAN optimization software, IMServ has transformed its DR strategy. Outages and planned maintenance work can be easily managed without any downtime, and the company has seen data availability increase, particularly with some of the migrations on-the-fly elements of virtualization.

“When we initially installed the trial version of Silver Peak’s software, it made such a difference that we just couldn’t turn it off,” continued Rogers. “Right from the start, it made our 50 Mbps lease line run as if it was in excess of a 200 Mbps line, giving us little incentive to go elsewhere.”

“It was like a puppy dog – once we had it, we didn’t want to give it back.”

“As IMServ’s business expanded, like a lot of companies in their position, they wanted to be sure that they were prepared for the volumes of data that came with it and the growth of data traversing the network,” said Damon Dance, sales consultant at FGGL.  “As such, they required a solution that would prevent them from falling victim to bandwidth, latency and packet loss issues that often plague IT managers. Silver Peak came out top and provided the perfect solution due to its ease of deployment and flexible pricing model.”

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