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Storage Migration – Major Credit Card Company

Overview

Virtual Tech Gurus (VTG) helped a major credit card company refresh its data storage and migrate to new technologies. VTG developed a phased approach that enabled a fast seamless migration against an extremely tight deadline with no allowance for downtime.

By using ZENfra™, our proprietary migration tool, we managed and monitored the complex change management process significantly faster than traditional methods. This approach reduced change management administrative work from 7 hours to 30 minutes and eliminated the risk of human error. According to the client, “We used other larger firms for the migration in the past, but VTG brings great value with their technical expertise, automation and ZENfra™ tool to create seamless migration at higher speed.”

Background

The credit card company stores confidential customer and financial data in a complex environment running on a number of different operating systems, including AIX, HPUX, Solaris, Windows, Linux, VMware, Clusters and Oracle ASM.

Storage and its associated operations must comply with stringent industry regulations to protect data and customers’ privacy. Any data breaches or other forms of non-compliance can result in large fines, damaging legal action and loss of customer confidence.

To maintain compliance, change management was an extremely complex, time-consuming process. Each change required a change ticket and servers generally required five or six changes per unit. The schedule for the migration was extremely tight. A last minute request to migrate left no lead times for approvals, and operational demands meant that no downtime was allowed during the migration.

Challenges

The migration had to simplify and reduce the time needed for change management. It had to reduce the risk of human error and ensure all changes were carried out consistently in line with compliance requirements.

We had to complete the migration in a restricted timescale with no downtime or disruption to business processes.

Approach

VTG took a phased approach to the project, carrying out detailed discovery and prechecks before automating the change management process and completing migration.

The process included the following stages:

  • Discovery
  • Precheck
  • Change management
  • Migration automation
  • Cleanup and postcheck
  • Project management and reporting

Discovery

To finalize the list of servers, we discovered all the devices in the environment using logfiles and our proprietary tool ZENfra™. By automating the collection of data from log files, ZENfra™ eliminates the complexity of data capture and reduces the risk of human error. ZENfra™’s automated processes enable us to constantly update the discovery data to keep up with last-minute changes from business users.

Precheck

ZENfra™ validates migration requirements and compliance with best practices using the data collected from the servers. If there were any issues, we corrected them before starting the migration to eliminate the risk of migration failures. With our automated process, we validated this periodically to keep up with changes.

Change Management

To maintain compliance, the credit card company’s change management process requires complete details of every aspect of the migration. We had to create custom documents for each of the five or six changes required for every server migration.

ZENfra™’s automated process enabled us to reduce the time needed for change management documentation and administration from 7 hours to 30mins. It also reduced the risk of human error and expedited the approval process.

Migration Automation

Based on our comprehensive planning and precheck, we recommended best practice and remediated any outstanding issues as part of the migration. Once the changes were approved, we automated the migration process using ZENfra™ and executed the script on the servers based on the ZENfra™ results. This allowed us to migrate multiple servers in a consistent way.

Cleanup/Postcheck

After completing the migration, we collected the new data and validated it against the migration plan. We confirmed migration completion and cleanup electronically to prevent production outages caused by human error.

Project Management and Reporting

With multiple teams working on the project, we recognized that it was important to keep everyone up to date with the changes. ZENfra™ automates resource allocation for the migration, tracks approval processes and reports migration status to the customer. This keeps the technical team, project managers and business managers on the same page.

Outcomes

  • Delivered a successful seamless migration in a tight schedule with no downtime
  • Maintained compliance within the change management process
  • Implemented consistent standards based on industry best practice
  • Reduced discovery and migration time by standardization and automation
  • Reduced change management administration from 7 hours to 30 minutes

Working with VTG

VTG partners with your organization to enhance information technology departments, support roles, and provide integrated solutions. We work as part of your team, solving business needs and becoming a trusted partner. We work closely with you to align business needs with technology. We identify solutions that offer a cost-effective approach by leveraging the technologies you currently have. Our team can move your applications and workloads to the cloud with ease. We help plan and oversee your company’s migration and help your business by reducing downtime and eliminating hardware costs.

For more information

Please contact your account manager or sales@virtualtechgurus.com

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