Storage Portal Case Study

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As the world's leading manufacturer of motion and control technologies/systems, Parker Hannifin Corporation has annual sales in excess of $6 billion. Its Aerospace Group provides hydraulic, fuel, and pneumatic systems and components for virtually every airplane and aircraft engine manufactured in the Western world. The company's Control Systems Division-Commercial, based in Ogden, Utah, designs and produces flight control systems and components for commercial aircraft. Its product line includes primary and secondary flight control actuation equipment, steering equipment, and utility hydraulics.

Parker Hannifin Corporation's Control Systems Division began to experience backup difficulties when the number of servers expanded and the weekly backup volume mushroomed beyond 1.75 terabytes. As a result, IT staff wasted countless hours on manual backup tasks and had to cope with a weekend backup window that had grown well beyond 24 hours. The IT manager reported that over 80 man-hours per month were being spent on IT supervision for backup alone. Much of this time was spent going from server to server to find out why certain backup jobs had failed, to troubleshoot database problems that interfered with backups, and to format many backup tapes.

Parker Hannifin Corporation had been utilizing Computer Associate's small-office backup solution, BrightStor/ARCserve Backup, which had been working satisfactorily on the company's combination of Windows 2000, NT, AIX, and Linux servers. DLT tape was the primary backup medium. On weekdays, the company conducted a combination of incremental and differential backups, with two complete backups being carried out on weekends — one retained on site and another shipped offsite for safekeeping. This approach worked well until the number of servers involved and the amount of data became unmanageable. When the Control Systems Division reached 35 servers and weekly backup volumes grew to 1.75 terabytes, the need for change became apparent.

As noted, more than 80 man-hours per month were required to maintain the company's backup needs. Without any kind of storage automation available, the IT staff was forced to move from server to server to troubleshoot a constant array of backup and database problems. Worse, a complete backup on weekends took well over 24 hours. At this point, the company implemented Islandia, Computer Associates' BrightStor Portal, to provide centralized management of all its storage assets from one console. BrightStor Portal is an enterprise storage automation concept that permits enterprise customers to harness greater business value from massive investments in storage technology. The BrightStor Portal includes many integrated elements, such as BrightStor Enterprise Backup (BrightStor EB), which centralizes backup/restore throughout the enterprise, and BrightStor Storage Resource Management (BrightStor SRM), which ensures that business-critical information is always accessible and which minimizes network downtime in case of disaster.

As a result of this initiative, the Control Systems Division of Parker Hannifin Corporation has added significant power and scalability to its backup process. A complete backup, for example, was reduced from about 30 hours to less than 10 hours. In regard to recovery, the company reports that IT staff can restore applications in 90 minutes or less. Previously, restores were often unsuccessful yet consumed a significant number of man hours. This storage portal approach helped eliminate myriad backup problems, cut backup supervision to less than one hour per month, and reduced backup failures by 95 percent.

A storage portal provides the adaptable command-and-control capabilities necessary to effectively manage complex, heterogeneous storage environments such as storage automation and provisioning. The advantages of a storage portal include:

  • A single point of access is available for all storage management functions, including replication, utilization, backup, restoration, and library management.

  • The portal works with all the hardware that the company already has in place.

  • The open architecture can adapt to and incorporate new technologies developed by storage vendors.

  • The portal allows access to and utilization of the proprietary management features that storage vendors build into their products to get the maximum performance out of each device.

  • The portal works simultaneously with all operating systems a company might be using, including Windows, UNIX, Linux, and mainframes.

  • The portal supports laptops as well as fixed assets.

  • The portal provides enterprise-wide reporting so managers do not need to manually assemble data from a variety of disparate sources.

  • Integration with leading software and hardware products from Network Appliance, StoreAge, CacheWare, LXI, and others allows the storage portal to consolidate storage management tasks, thereby streamlining daily operations and improving management decision-making.

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Server Disk Management in a Windows Enviornment
Server Disk Management in a Windows Enviornment
Year: 2003
Pages: 197 © 2008-2017.
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