Case Studies

Vickery Holman.

Computer Systems Infrastructure Virtualisation

Vickery Holman wanted to address the technical constraints of their existing computer systems infrastructure and chose Nexus to propose a solution to deploy new network infrastructure and a data storage and virtualisation platform to provide a high performance, scalable and flexible architecture to cater for current operations and future growth.

Dating from 1848, Vickery Holman has established itself as one of the most respected property consultancies in the South West, with offices in Exeter, Plymouth and Truro. Each office in these key administrative centres, offers a full range of skills providing the complete commercial property service throughout the four western counties.

Vickery Holman wanted to address the technical constraints of their existing computer systems infrastructure and chose Nexus to propose a solution to deploy new network infrastructure and a data storage and virtualisation platform to provide a high performance, scalable and flexible architecture to cater for current operations and future growth.

The organisation had a legacy server environment comprising of four Microsoft Windows Servers running on hardware nearing end of life at its head office located in Plymouth. The hardware was hosted in a VMware ESXi 4.1 standalone environment homed on a Dell PowerEdge 2900 pedestal based server utilising locally attached SATA storage only.

The IT team at Vickery Holman wanted to implement a new high performance and highly availability virtualisation solution and looked to Nexus as their strategic IT support and maintenance partner to provide IT consultancy and analysis, project management and installation and configuration services.

Following a number of review meetings with the Vickery Holman IT team to address the technical constraints of the existing infrastructure, senior Nexus systems engineers proposed a solution to deploy new network switches, and upgrade their data storage and virtualisation platform to provide greater performance and enhanced business continuity capabilities. The new platform was design around VMware vSphere 5 Essentials Plus virtualisation software and Nexus engineers fully planned the migration of their existing physical and virtual server infrastructure to the new platform.

In addition, Vickery Holman utilised this opportunity to upgrade their existing server based operating systems to Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 and this procedure was integrated into the relevant phases of the project plan.

The project was managed and delivered on time and key deliverables include:

  • Supply and integration of two Avaya 4500 series switches to provide layer-3, wire speed performance to both the new environment and the existing client/server infrastructure.
  • Deployment of two Dell PowerEdge R610 rack mount servers and a single Dell EqualLogic PS4100E Storage Area Network (SAN)
  • Integration of two APC 2200VA Uninterruptable Power Supplies to facilitate a power redundant system for the new infrastructure.

The project was delivered over a fifteen day implementation period in order to successfully complete the migration and perform sufficient hardware, software and end user testing.

The new computer systems infrastructure and virtualisation environment installed by Nexus has met all of the criteria from the original project brief and consultation meetings with Vickery Holman. Following the successful completion of the project the Vickery Holman IT team now have a VMware vSphere 5 infrastructure that provides them with centralised administration and enterprise class high availability features.

The new environment has provided the organisation with many important technical and operational benefits including: 

  • Performance Enhancements - The deployment of the latest generation Dell EqualLogic PS4100 series SAN and Dell PowerEdge R610 series servers in combination with Avaya 4500 series gigabit layer-3 switches, Vickery Holman has eradicated performance bottlenecks that were previously affecting daily operations.
  • Capacity - Vickery Holman now have the infrastructure capacity to sustain significant processor, memory and data storage utilisation in order to facilitate organisational growth.
  • Flexibility - This project added significant business continuity capabilities for the organisation. The virtualisation platform can survive a major hardware failure and continue to run uninterrupted.

Client: Vickery Holman
Industry: Professional Services
Year: 2013

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