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Universities Effectively Manage Skyrocketing Data Growth and Dramatically Reduce Costs with NetApp


University of San Diego Gains Flexibility to Respond to Data Explosion; Art Center College of Design Saves $135,000 on Storage Costs

Sunnyvale, Calif. - While striving to provide academic excellence and support the educational aspirations of students, colleges and universities across the country are increasingly confronted with shrinking budgets, skyrocketing data growth, and challenging IT environments. In order to achieve their aggressive educational goals, many schools, like the University of San Diego (USD) and Art Center College of Design, are transforming their IT infrastructures to gain greater flexibility and efficiency with storage foundations that are built on NetApp.

USD is a rigorous liberal arts school in Southern California. With 7,800 students and a sizable staff, USD previously managed IT needs with four data centers on campus, typically adding storage capacity when necessary. However, with an increase in high-bandwidth education applications and every-day administrative tasks, the amount of university data exploded from 5TB to 90TB over the course of just a couple of years. To effectively manage its growing data needs, USD turned to NetApp to upgrade and consolidate its entire storage infrastructure, helping the school improve operational efficiencies and gain the necessary flexibility to meet its evolving IT needs of the future.

Another California school faced with similar data challenges is Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. Art Center relies on a heavy computing environment, offering data-intensive courses in film, photography, graphic design, and many other art and design programs. Originally reliant on a decentralized storage infrastructure, Art Center found it difficult to manage and protect its growing data. Art Center turned to NetApp to consolidate its storage resources into a single unified platform, allowing the college to more effectively manage its IT environment and save more than $135,000 in additional storage costs.

News Highlights

University of San Diego

- USD, which worked with NetApp reseller RestorWare, built its Microsoft® applications and VMware® environment on a NetApp® foundation to increase IT efficiencies, maximize storage utilization, and reduce power and cooling costs.
- USD is now able to reduce the time required to replicate data volumes and datasets for development from more than 24 hours down to just a couple of minutes, freeing up resources to focus on other strategic projects.
- Improved disaster recovery capabilities enable USD to securely store copies of staff, faculty, and student data for quick recovery and allow USD to maintain governance and compliance with industry regulations.
- USD leverages NetApp storage management software to efficiently manage all storage and protocols with minimal NetApp training. The single management framework provides the team with the flexibility to respond quickly to changing university demands.

Art Center College of Design

- Art Center, which worked with Colorado-based NetApp reseller Advanced Systems Group, leverages NetApp’s unique storage efficiency technologies to dramatically reduce storage costs and requirements. Thin provisioning allows Art Center to utilize just 3.5TB of NetApp storage to manage a total storage allocation of 27.5TB for students and faculty, saving the college more than $90,000 in storage costs. Deduplication technology has saved the school an additional $45,000 by reducing VMware storage requirements by 44%.
- The college used to purge student data at the end of the academic year to reclaim needed storage space. With NetApp’s ability to quickly and easily reprovision storage combined with the increased efficiencies, Art Center is now able to provide 5GB of personal storage to each student for his or her entire time in school and 20GB to faculty members. The improved flexibility enables the college to more effectively respond to and manage the school’s hard-to-predict and expanding storage needs.
- Art Center leverages SnapManager® for Exchange and Single Mailbox Recovery to enhance the college’s e-mail availability. As a result, recovering a mailbox, which used to take as much as 2 hours, now takes just 45 minutes, getting staff and faculty back online faster for improved productivity.

Supporting Quotes

- Christopher Wessells, vice provost and chief intelligence officer, University of San Diego:
“USD is committed to providing our students, faculty, and staff with the best educational resources and learning tools, and our IT infrastructure is fundamental to making this a reality. Moving to a NetApp foundation has provided us with incredible efficiencies to help us reduce costs and get far more out of our storage infrastructure than we did in the past. Additionally, the improved flexibility has enabled us to seamlessly manage our exponential data growth without having to add additional staff, allowing us to optimize resources and apply more focus to organizational innovation.”
- Jason Blackader, UNIX system administrator, Art Center College of Design:
“Art Center provides learning programs to students that require extreme amounts of data that places an incredible strain on our IT environment. As a result we needed a storage infrastructure that could support this growing demand and enable us to deliver the most innovative services to our students. NetApp has given us everything we need in a single platform, helping us dramatically cut costs and more effectively support the educational aspirations of our students.”
- Regina Kunkle, vice president of State and Local Government and Higher Education (SLED), NetApp:
“USD and Art Center are both great examples of how the right IT infrastructure can further a school’s educational objective by reducing costs and effectively managing the massive increase in data and information that is created on a daily basis. NetApp has long partnered with universities and colleges throughout the country to help them navigate these unique challenges, and we are committed to continuing to provide the most innovative solutions to enable them to thrive in the future.”

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