ENERGY INDUSTRY LEADER: MICROSOFT® SQL SERVER®

CHALLENGE

A major company in the energy industry was experiencing a large increase in the number of SQL Servers in their Development, Test, QA, and Staging environments. These non-production environments are crucial to the continued growth and health of the company. Between their 2 major facilities they had 32 individual servers. Costs for maintenance, licensing and operations were increasing as the number of physical servers increased. Providing reliable access to high performing systems with the flexibility to alter environments was becoming an increasing challenge. Improving users experience with non-production systems would have a substantial positive impact on productivity.

SOLUTION

XTIVIA was able to work with this client to provide a solution that spanned from creation of an initial requirements document to final implementation and subsequent support. We provided support and mentoring to their current DBA staff, allowing them to comfortably grow into the new systems.

We began by analyzing both the needs and the current performance characteristics of their systems. The needs analysis was done through a series of interviews with users, while the performance characteristics were analyzed with an eye towards making sure each system was a good candidate for virtualization. We helped the company decide on a path towards consolidation based on their needs and performance requirements.

 

Some customers may consolidate by adding SQL instances to a current environment and adding resources to that system. In this case the security requirements and need for flexibility made running SQL Server® under Hyper-V the right choice. For many customers VM-Ware or Xen may have been a good choice and we can help customers with any of those solutions.

After implementation, the next step was to monitor the systems to be sure that the VM’s were performing as anticipated and any problems with environments were caught proactively. For this portion, Virtual-DBA from XTIVIA was the right solution. The Virtual-DBA service provides monitoring and support tailored to virtual environments or stand-alone servers as circumstances require. The monitoring from Virtual-DBA gave this company a stable, pro-actively monitored, high performing system that also allowed flexibility in moving resources.

RESULTS

This energy company lowered its cost of operations with our SQL Server team. We performed a consolidation engagement to audit, plan and implemented this new environment by following up with XTIVIA’s Virtual-DBA service for monitoring and support. They gained improved user experiences, reliability, and performance in their non-production environments. Licensing costs alone may be enough to drive a consolidation effort but careful planning and experience can assure good results and happy users. The result is a Win – Win – Win for corporate, management and users.

KEY COMPONENTS

SERVICES

Server Consolidation

Virtualization

Managed Services (Virtual-DBA)