China Development Industrial Bank is Taiwan’s largest direct investment institution and relies on its IT systems to manage its operations.
“As an industrial bank, our main business income is from long-term investments and financial commodities trading,” said bank vice president Ailan Zhang. “Any interruption to the availability of our IT systems is potentially very serious. For this reason, we wanted to implement a flexible backup solution that would be widely applicable to the existing systems [and] make it quick and easy to protect our systems against disaster.”
The bank’s previous backup processes varied from system to system. It could take more than a day and considerable manual work to restore some of them. In many cases the bank had to maintain two servers for each system – one to run the production workload and the other purely for standby disaster recovery.
China Development Industrial Bank wanted a better-performing and more cost-efficient solution.
The bank began investigating its options for creating a single, standardized backup and recovery process for its core Windows servers.
“One of the major selection criteria was VMware integration,” said the bank’s senior manager, Fengde Lin. “We have VMware virtualized servers and traditional dedicated servers, so it was important that the new solution should be able to work with both physical and virtual environments. We tested products from several vendors and compared to these other products; PlateSpin Protect was the best option for our environment. We also felt that it offered excellent price and performance, stability and ease of use.”
The bank bought 36 PlateSpin Protect licenses and was able to quickly go live with the solution. “We use PlateSpin Protect to create scheduled virtual replicas of our business critical production systems,” said Zhang. “The replication takes place while the servers are still in active operation. PlateSpin Protect is able to complete the system protection work without affecting normal business operations. If a production server fails, we can simply switch to the replica and bring the system back online within about fifteen minutes.”
“PlateSpin Protect minimizes the impact of backup processes on the rest of the IT landscape, which improves overall performance,” said Lin. “Moreover, because the process is completely automated, it reduces workload for our IT teams and avoids the risk of human error.”
Zhang said of the bank’s results with PlateSpin Protect, “Instead of a complex process where each system has its own backup tools and lengthy recovery process, we now have a single, simple method for protecting our systems and data. If one of our production servers develops a problem, we can restore it with just a few mouse clicks – easily within our corporate recovery time objective of 20 minutes.”
Because PlateSpin Protect creates hardware independent virtual replicas of the production servers, the bank no longer maintains specific dedicated servers for each system at the disaster recovery site. It needs only one physical server for every 15 replicas – dramatically reducing hardware costs.
“The software is easy to use and will save a lot of time – not only in the event of a disaster, but also in terms of day-to-day administration,” said Lin. “Although previously it was possible to convert physical servers into virtual servers, each conversion required a complete replication. By contrast, PlateSpin Protect makes it simple.”