Storage analysis leads to big wins

AIT recently sized and delivered a new storage solution to a client who were experiencing major performance issues and were about to enter their peak production period. To say that the improvement was transformative would be understating the situation.

Twelve months ago the client experienced significant performance issues that they were keen to avoid this year. We performed a detailed end-to-end analysis of the environment and their performance requirements and determined that while the compute layer had plenty of headroom, something drastic needed to be done with the storage. The environment runs a group of SAP DB and App LPARs/VMs on a pair of three year old IBM p750 servers with plenty of POWER7 CPUs and heaps of RAM. All of the SAP systems ran on top of a DS3524 which, although the production systems were given the best config possible with RAID10 SAS arrays, etc, it was not up to the job in its current config. As part of the analysis we determined that although the storage controllers were not being pushed, the spinning disks could not keep up with the high transactional demands put upon them.

We sized two options, firstly replace the existing storage array with a new one, or upgrade the existing one with SSDs and a cache upgrade. We worked with their hardware vendor to confirm the best config and price and assisted in the expenditure justification for the board. The upgrade was the chosen option.

The result? Daily performance complaints from the user base has dropped to to zero. SAP transports that would normal take 20-30 seconds to process now occur instantaneously. The client is now fully into their peak period with the confidence that their IT systems are now an enabler for the business, not an impediment.

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