John Sands Australia cuts data replication time from 14 hours to three

Time reduced by using data acceleration software

Corporate data replication was taking up to 14 hours to complete at greeting card company John Sands Australia until data acceleration software was implemented.

Technical services and project management officer Alfredo Chang-Jimenez said it had set a recovery point objective (RPO) of four hours for data replication but couldn’t come close to meeting this target.

“At best, we were able to replicate it in nine hours over a weekend when the data didn’t change much. During the week it took about 14 hours so it looked to be a difficult and expensive task for us to come even close to the required RPO.”

He added that the company was relying solely on backup tapes to recover files.

To solve this problem, it decided to implement Velocity Replication Acceleration (VRX) software developed by Silver Peak in October 2011.

The IT department allocated half of a 20 megabits per second (Mbps) network link between the company’s Melbourne headquarters and its Sydney office for data replication. The other half was allocated for day-to-day traffic, including file transfers, email, voice over IP (VoIP) and enterprise resource planning (ERP).

According to Chang-Jimenez, it was able to meet the four-hour RPO for data replication within a week.

It now takes approximately three hours to replicate 65GB of data. The company has 8.3TB of data stored on its network.

According to Silver Peak, the virtual acceleration open architecture uses real-time deduplication to minimise the volumes of data being moved.

“Data load on the network has been reduced by at least 80 per cent, with peak transfer rates of 100 Mbps not uncommon,” said Chang-Jimenez.

“The key advantage for operating expenditure and capital expenditure lies in being able to achieve RPO otherwise our disaster recovery strategy would have required rethinking.”

Turning to other IT projects, he said it recently deployed a Citrix Xen virtual desktop system to provide the flexibility of working from anywhere on any device without compromising security.

“We also implemented MobileIron’s mobile device management platform to support bring your own devices [BYOD].”

Follow Hamish Barwick on Twitter: @HamishBarwick

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