Nashville Electric Service Flips the Switch to EMC VNX Unified Storage
360,000-Customer Electric Utility Replaces 100 Terabytes of NetApp with EMC VNX; Increases Simplicity, Efficiency, Scalability and Performance in VMware vSphere Environment
HOPKINTON, Mass. - EMC Corporation (NYSE:EMC) today announced that Nashville Electric Service (NES), one of the nation’s 12 largest public electric utilities and an energy distributor to 360,000 customers in Tennessee, selected EMC’s VNX® unified storage over NetApp and Hitachi. NES selected EMC VNX to dramatically improve the performance, efficiency and scalability of its 90% virtualized information infrastructure— replacing 100 terabytes of NetApp storage.
* Powerful and scalable storage capacity— NES has virtually unlimited capacity to handle increasing storage demand for their GIS mapping applications and upcoming smart grid infrastructure
* Increased efficiency—backups that used to take four hours now take just one
* Increased performance—NES saw improved performance when they moved their test and development environments to the VNX solution and the same or better improvements after migrating their production systems to the VNX solution
* Ease of installation and migration—installation and migration exceeded expectations in terms of speed and simplicity.
“With 20-percent annual storage growth over several years, we were constantly running out of capacity using NetApp storage and our users were complaining about slow system response. We evaluated EMC unified storage, NetApp and Hitachi based on their technical capabilities, system performance, ease of expandability and manageability, cost and service agreements,” said Vic Hatridge, Vice President and Chief Information Officer at NES. “EMC was the clear winner across the board. Once we moved our test and development environments to the VNX, we were so pleased with the improved performance that we escalated our production moves and are now seeing 65 % to 80 % faster production system backups and equal improvements to our end-users response times.”
“We add about 10 terabytes of data every twelve months. Before we were worried about having to put a lot of new projects on hold due to overwhelming storage demand,” added Ricky Davis, Infrastructure Manager with CIBER, Inc. at NES. “Now, with the VNX, those worries are gone and we’ll be able to scale our storage capacity very easily as new applications and requirements are needed.”
“When it comes to ease of implementation, VNX exceeded our expectations. It took just two days to migrate our test and development environment, which is pretty remarkable,” said Hatridge. “We moved NES’s VMware VDMK files from NetApp over to EMC while the test and development applications were live without issue.”
“We had our production environment scheduled to be moved over a three month period; however, since the migration of our test and development was so successful we altered our migrations and to date we are 90 percent complete with the entire migration. Our plans are to complete the move to the EMC VNX by the end of June,” said Davis.
“Our users have seen some pretty remarkable improvements. We used to receive daily calls from key users reporting performance issues and system failures with many of our primary applications and since migrating their data and servers to the VNX, they are now able to get their jobs done and without incident. It’s a real pleasure seeing them happy. All of the systems that we’ve migrated to this VNX solution have seen incredible performance gains and a level of stability that we’ve not seen in some time now due to issues with our previous NetApp solution,” Davis said.
NES’s new 370-terabyte EMC unified storage infrastructure is comprised of two EMC VNX systems, each configured with 600-gigabyte SAS drives and 2-terabyte nearline SAS (NL SAS) drives. One VNX is located at the primary data center and a second VNX is at NES’s disaster recovery site approximately 20 miles away. NES runs its production applications on the SAS drives, including its outage management system, GIS, Oracle-based enterprise resource planning, PeopleSoft human resources, Microsoft SQL Server-based call management, Microsoft Exchange email and Microsoft SharePoint collaboration solution. The NL SAS drives will store archived data including email, Microsoft Word documents and other infrequently accessed information.
Approximately 90-percent of the production environment is virtualized using VMware® vSphere®, with 200 virtual servers running on 16 VMware physical servers. NES uses EMC Unisphere®, which provides a simple and intuitive interface to provision, monitor and manage storage for the utility’s virtualized and physical servers. For disaster recovery, the EMC RecoverPoint® solution will provide continuous remote replication (CRR) between the two VNX systems in separate data centers located 20 miles apart.
EMC Corporation is a global leader in enabling businesses and service providers to transform their operations and deliver IT as a service. Fundamental to this transformation is cloud computing. Through innovative products and services, EMC accelerates the journey to cloud computing, helping IT departments to store, manage, protect and analyze their most valuable asset — information — in a more agile, trusted and cost-efficient way. Additional information about EMC can be found at www.EMC.com.
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