Nottingham Building Society upgrades to Nexsan SAN

Last updated on: January 15, 2019, Author: Editorial Team

Nottingham Building Society has retired an ageing IBM storage array and upgraded to Nexsan storage area network (SAN) hardware to gain flexibility, while boosting capacity by 20 times and making energy savings. The move has allowed the Building Society to free up staff hours that were previously dedicated to troubleshooting storage and host failures, with storage that occupies half the rack space and uses less power.

The existing IBM DS storage with 3.2TB of capacity was used for file share operations, but being nearly six years old, it had reached end-of-life.

Distributed technology platform manager Phillip Crocker said: “It wasn’t the most reliable performer towards the end. We would see VMs [virtual machines] suddenly stall and we wouldn’t know why. We needed shot of it before it blew up. We got it when we were much smaller, but the society had doubled in staff and there wasn’t enough capacity to run what we needed.”

The Building Society evaluated the market with the help of reseller Softcat and looked at Dell EMC and HPE storage hardware, but both of those options were rejected in favour or Nexsan due to costs.

Crocker’s team eventually selected a dual-controller Nexsan  E18P with 21TB of spinning disk serial-attached SCSI drive capacity and 18Gbps Fibre Channel connectivity, due to the key benefit it offered being that the Building Society would gain a huge amount of capacity with jet engine-like reliability.

“It’s quick and reliable, and to fit all this in 2U is pretty damn good,” Crocker went on to say. “The main thing though is peace of mind. We don’t have to be concerned about it like were previously, always worried about the out-of-hours pager going off.


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