Intertrust Services gains fast, intelligent and secure storage with IBM XIV

Published on 11-Jan-2010

Validated on 02 Apr 2012

"The benefits of the XIV solution far exceeded our expectations, delivering exceptional performance while significantly simplifying storage planning and management." - Richard McDermott, IT Director, Intertrust Services

Customer:
Intertrust Services Limited

Industry:
Banking

Deployment country:
Guernsey

Solution:
IT/infrastructure, Business Resiliency, Optimizing IT, Optimizing IT, System Storage Proven

IBM Business Partner:
Recarta IT

Overview

Guernsey-based Intertrust Services Limited offers trust, corporate and fund administration as well as taxation services. Intertrust Services was established in June 2009 to manage the fiduciary business services arm of Fortis Guernsey, following the parent company’s formal separation of its banking and fiduciary operations. The company, one of the first to be awarded a fiduciary licence by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission, employs over 100 people.

Business need:
As a newly established financial services organisation, Intertrust Services needed to implement a new data storage solution under tough time constraints. With only a small IT team, it was vital to choose a system that would be easy to administer and manage but also provide resilient, intelligent storage and backup capabilities.

Solution:
Recarta IT, an IBM Business Partner, worked with Intertrust to install an IBM XIV Storage System with three IBM x3850 enterprise servers at the company’s production and disaster recovery sites. IBM Tivoli Storage Manager software was implemented to back up data to two IBM System Storage TS3500 Tape Libraries.

Benefits:
Virtualisation and thin provisioning enabled a 50 percent reduction in utilised capacity, generating massive savings and freeing up capacity for growth. Rapid migration of data meant the installation was completed on time and within budget; it delivers on the organisation’s daily operational business needs, while also ensuring the IT team is able to manage the system easily. The XIV system offers integrated snapshot capability, providing Intertrust with a point-in-time backup strategy.

Case Study

Guernsey-based Intertrust Services Limited offers trust, corporate and fund administration as well as taxation services. Intertrust Services was established in June 2009 to manage the fiduciary business services arm of Fortis Guernsey, following the parent company’s formal separation of its banking and fiduciary operations. The company, one of the first to be awarded a fiduciary licence by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission, employs over 100 people.

With a launch date of August 2009, the company had a very tight time scale to choose and implement an IT infrastructure. The system needed to comply with strict international regulations around the secure management and dissemination of sensitive financial data.

The recent de-merger meant Intertrust had limited internal IT resources, so the new system needed to be easy to use from an administrative and management perspective.

“We wanted to implement a new storage and backup solution which would not require us to hire dedicated storage experts – but we definitely did not want to compromise on performance or security,” explains Richard McDermott, IT Director at Intertrust Services. “With limited resources onsite, we needed help to develop a clear strategy to ensure the coherent management of storage and backups on an ongoing basis.”

Developing a strategy
Intertrust approached several IT suppliers, and it was Recarta IT, an IBM Business Partner, which most impressed with its proposal. Intertrust chose Recarta IT for its proven track record in the banking sector and as an existing trusted technology partner to its parent group.

“We have been working with Recarta over a number of years and have been consistently impressed with their service, speed of response and knowledge of new systems. They take the pain away of managing complex maintenance agreements, technology updates and make the whole process so much easier,” comments Richard McDermott.

Recarta worked with the IT team at Intertrust to fully understand the company’s requirements and provided on-site demonstrations of the recommended solutions to enable the company to make the best possible decision.

Intertrust deployed an IBM XIV Storage System at its production site, with all data synchronised to a duplicate IBM XIV Storage System at its disaster recovery site. Data from the XIV systems is backed up to an IBM System Storage TS3500 Tape Library at each site using IBM Tivoli Storage Manager software. This provides a second layer of backup, adding to the resiliency of the solution.

Choosing IBM XIV Storage System
The IBM XIV Storage System is a revolutionary, high-end disk storage system that has been designed to eliminate the complexity of administration and management of tiered storage. The XIV system is based on a grid of standard, off-the-shelf hardware components connected in any-to-any topology by means of massively paralleled Gigabit Ethernet, and contained within a single chassis. Its ground-breaking architecture delivers tier-one performance levels while providing up to 79TB of storage capacity at a tier-two price point.

Data is automatically spread across the available disks, and all disks are mirrored to provide full redundancy. If an individual disk fails, the XIV system automatically rebuilds the mirror with a functioning disk – providing rapid autonomic self-healing, with no need for manual input from the IT team. A 1TB disk can be fully rebuilt in around 30 minutes, significantly reducing the risk of data loss and business disruption. Intertrust would also be able to take advantage of the XIV storage system’s built-in snapshot capability, providing the company with a ‘point-in-time’ backup strategy.

“The benefits of the XIV solution far exceeded our expectations, delivering exceptional performance while significantly simplifying storage planning and management,” says Richard McDermott. “We were excited at the prospect of adopting leading-edge technology without the headache of learning completely new skill-sets. The self-healing and snapshot properties made us confident that we would be able to offer our customers consistent service with no interruptions.”

Rapid, painless implementation
With the company established in June 2009 and an official launch date of August that year, Intertrust challenged Recarta to meet an ambitious deadline. Choosing IBM XIV Storage system enabled easy, fast data migration with minimal disruption.

“One of the reasons XIV is an intelligent storage system is that it migrates the applications first and then copies the data across the network in the background – so it minimises the amount of time that the system is actually offline,” explains Richard McDermott. “The 50 percent reduction in utilised capacity and lack of additional licensing costs through the mirrored infrastructure meant we also had an impressively low total cost of ownership to look forward to. It seemed almost too good to be true at such a reasonable price.”

Enjoying the benefits
Intertrust can be confident that its customers’ sensitive financial data is highly secure with XIV, as it provides an audit trail of all user activities and commands executed. Role-based management ensures only authorised personnel have access to confidential information.

“Our customers need to be 100 percent certain they can rely on us for discreet and faultless handling of their accounts. XIV allows us to guarantee this and explain the practical steps we have undertaken on their behalf to verify security,” says Richard McDermott.

The ability to create thinly-provisioned storage pools on the fly has added flexibility and dramatically reduced the overall space required to store Intertrust’s data. With thin-provisioning, Intertrust can allocate a pool of storage to a particular server, but allow the XIV solution to “lend” the storage to other servers if the pool is not completely used. This makes capacity planning incredibly simple, as Intertrust can set an upper limit on a particular server without actually using the capacity until it is required. It also enables Intertrust to make the most of its investment in disk capacity – because greater spare capacity translates into greater performance for XIV.

Richard McDermott concludes: “Recarta and IBM have provided a solution that not only meets our needs for the present, but also those of the future. The IBM XIV solution has empowered Intertrust to offer clients the best service with unbeatable performance and security.”

Products and services used

IBM products and services that were used in this case study.

Hardware:
Storage: TS3500 Tape Library, Storage: XIV, System x: System x3850

Software:
Tivoli Storage Manager

Legal Information

PO Box 41 North Harbour Portsmouth Hampshire PO6 3AU The IBM home page can be found at ibm.com IBM, the IBM logo, ibm.com, and XIV are trademarks of International Business Machines Corporation, registered in many jurisdictions worldwide. A current list of other IBM trademarks is available on the Web at “Copyright and trademark information” at http://www.ibm.com/legal/copytrade.shtml. Other company, product or service names may be trademarks, or service marks of others. Microsoft is a trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the United States, other countries, or both. IBM and Recarta IT are separate companies and each is responsible for its own products. Neither IBM nor Recarta IT makes any warranties, express or implied, concerning the other’s products. References in this publication to IBM products, programs or services do not imply that IBM intends to make these available in all countries in which IBM operates. Any reference to an IBM product, program or service is not intended to imply that only IBM’s product, program or service may be used. Any functionally equivalent product, program or service may be used instead. All customer examples cited represent how some customers have used IBM products and the results they may have achieved. Actual environmental costs and performance characteristics will vary depending on individual customer configurations and conditions. IBM hardware products are manufactured from new parts, or new and used parts. In some cases, the hardware product may not be new and may have been previously installed. Regardless, IBM warranty terms apply. This publication is for general guidance only. Photographs may show design models. © Copyright IBM Corp. 2010. All rights reserved.