Dunwoody Airline Services provides expert cargo services for the airline industry and freight community with handling facilities at major airports throughout the UK and Ireland.
The business operates one HP exchange server and three Bull servers, which specifically host operational applications. The business has 130 desktop users and IT Manager, Carl Williams, oversees the IT infrastructure, employing Probrand for extended support of the server environment.
The Challenge - Save data if a critical server disaster occurred
Dunwoody Airline Services maintains a six year old server estate. Whilst this remains relatively stable, Carl Williams acknowledged that the business could be open to loss of data if a critical server disaster occurred. He acknowledged that business continuity planning needed to be tightened and an extra layer of protection put in place. Dunwoody liaised with Probrand to find an appropriate solution.
Cloud Disaster Recovery, from Probrand, offers a simple approach to high-end DR compliance that safe guards business without the high end cost.
This managed service gets businesses back to business fast by taking a snapshot of critical server structures and data. This mirror image is stored on Probrand's emote storage vault in Birmingham with added failover provided by a satellite location in Manchester.
If a server, office or department becomes un-useable through fire, flood or snow then business operations can continue remotely with users connecting to a replica environment exclusively hosted by Probrand.
Dunwoody has a system of multiple data back-ups in place, which account for the different shift patterns of various departments. Back-up for the databases is auto-scripted for 8pm every evening once the accounts department has finished, with tape back-ups running at midnight. This system worked well for Dunwoody until a very rare failure occurred in between back ups.
Dunwoody's Carl Williams explains: “A pair of mirror drives crashed in our server estate - two hard drives that run alongside each other performing the same data saving tasks. The two drives are there so that if one fails the other can continue and nothing is lost allowing staff to carry on with no drop in service.
Probrand's Cloud Disaster Recovery provided a resilient approach that alleviated downtime, costly database rebuilds, loss of operations and loss of business.
Carl Williams said: "Cloud DR has reduced our downtime by 85% compared to our old tape based continuity plan, minimising impact on daily operations.
"It backs up our systems incrementally; meaning that it updates our server and data image whenever things change, get added or are updated. So, it enabled us to restore our servers right up to the point before the failure.
"This managed service is a non-profit expense, but more critically, it is a profit protecting expense.
"Probrand's Cloud DR service has saved us thousands of pounds. It provides business continuity with fixed costs, which has helped us control our overheads and access credible DR. Without it, this recent failure would have impacted negatively on the business."