Meggitt specialises in design, manufacture, and sales of electronic and mechanical components that are used particularly in the aerospace industry and defence sector, but also in the energy sector, industry, the automotive industry, and medicine. Meggitt was initially active in the British aerospace industry, and now has over 150 years of experience in engineering components for extreme environments. The company employs some 10,000 people worldwide in more than 50 locations (including Freiburg in Switzerland, part of Meggitt Sensing Systems). Meggitt is listed on the London stock exchange (FTSE 100) and achieved revenues of GBP 1.46 billion in 2011.
The customer’s storage infrastructure consisted of two HP EVA, whose replicators are ensured by Falconstor IPStor and a data server cluster. Their 16 million files were saved on tape with a backup time window of up to 63 hours which took longer than the weekend allotted for the task and thus impacted on production.
The aim was to find an integrated and homogeneous solution with a single vendor for the file server, DR solution and backup. We therefore concentrated on consolidating the storage architecture, replacing the data server cluster, reducing the backup time window, ensuring service continuity in case of failure and simplifying the management solution.
The aim was to replace the storage system, which had come to the end of its life cycle, consolidate replication and backup, while simultaneously reducing the now problematic backup window.
We were particularly impressed by Bechtle’s expertise in addition to their understanding of our issues and searching for a sound solution instead of simply replacing our existing hardware. The solution implemented fully integrates backup, enables central management and provides NetApp features like deduplication.
Roland Rothen, Head of IT, Meggitt Sensing Systems, Fribourg
Renewing Meggitt Sensing Systems’ storage platform in Freiburg relied on a NetApp Stretch MetroCluster solution consisting of two NetApp FAS3240 that combines high availability (via location-overarching RAID 1 mirroring) and easy manageability (capability to switch a controller without interruption). The first FAS3240 controller handles file service via the CIFS protocol while the second controller takes care of hosting of the VMware vSphere data storage under NFS in addition to iSCSI-LUNs for the non-virtualised servers.
To optimise the storage strategy, the NetApp storage solution’s virtual storage console (VSC) features an interface with the VMware vSphere environment, where periodically consistent backups (VSS) can be made of the virtual machines without interfering with performance.
Using SnapVault technology enables a hard disk backup of file service data and virtual machines to a dedicated physical NetApp FAS2040 system. The files can also be very quickly restored—either via a VSC interface made available in the vCenter or via a NetApp OnCommand interface.
The decision to opt for NetApp solutions enabled an especially real consolidation of the storage solution, in which all protocols, CIFs, NFS, and iSCI are all together in a single Ethernet channel. NetApp Stretch Metroclusters ensure business continuity—even when a computer room is completely down—and enables maintenance to be carried out in the daytime and without service interruptions.
Using a FAS3240 as the file server simplifies maintenance interventions and admin considerably and joint use of data deduplication and compression reduces the space required on drives by 51%. By combining Snapshot mechanism, SnapVault technology and NetApp Virtual Console/OnCommand Software Suite the duration of the backup windows can be slashed from 63 hours to between one and two hours while reducing the space required by more than 90%.