The Business Challenge
The IT team at Christof Holding AG is relatively small for a worldwide enterprise —
14 people provide IT services to 1,000 users working at 22 companies on 35 sites.
One of team’s goals is to mastermind new, cost-effective ways of doing business.
When team members decided to overhaul their computing storage systems, they
discovered they could restructure virtual machine (VM) backup and disaster recovery
(DR), saving time and money.
Christof Holding replaced production storage in its two data centres with HP
StoreServ, and it replaced the backup storage repository at a separate site with HP
ProLiant Servers and StorageWorks. At the time, a managed service provider (MSP)
was backing up and recovering Christof Holdings’ on-premise VMs, a process that
cost €3,000 per month and required the IT team to spend approximately 10 hours
troubleshooting backup issues each month. Up to 20% of backups were prone to
failure, making it difficult to meet recovery point objectives (RPOs).
To bring backup in-house, team members had to find a solution that offered much
more than just backup. They needed fast, flexible and reliable recovery of virtualised
applications and data to meet RPOs. They also needed a storage-agnostic solution
with multi-hypervisor support. The two data centres have 136 VMware vSphere
VMs, and the 35 sites have 53 Microsoft Hyper-V VMs. Seventy-five percent of the
IT infrastructure is virtualised, which includes six enterprise resource planning (ERP)
systems, Microsoft SQL Server, Exchange and application servers.
The Veeam Solution
Christof Holding brought backup in-house by deploying Veeam® Backup &
Replication™, and the IT team quickly discovered that Veeam offers far more than
backup—it delivers high availability. Furthermore, Veeam is storage-agnostic and
provides multi-hypervisor support, so it’s ideal in a heterogeneous IT infrastructure like
Christof Holding’s. With Veeam, the company eliminated the MSP’s monthly outtasking
fee of €3,000, saved 10 hours in troubleshooting time each month, easily met RPOs and
discovered high-speed recovery features to reduce recovery time objectives (RTOs).
“Veeam is so intuitive and easy to use that we spend only a few minutes each day
reading the email report that Veeam sends us about recent backup jobs,” said Josef
Kormann, Head of IT Operations at Christof Holding. “We’re a small team, so we
needed an efficient solution like Veeam to make the best use of our time.”
Meeting RPOs is no longer a struggle for team members because Veeam backup
is reliable, with a 0% fail rate at Christof Holding. If team members want to shorten
RPOs and minimize the risk of data loss even further, they can use Veeam to make
backups from HP StoreServ snapshots as often as they want, with little to no impact
on the production environment. They can also shorten RTOs even further by using
Veeam Explorer™ for Storage Snapshots to restore whole VMs, individual files and
granular items directly from HP StoreServ snapshots. High-speed recovery features
are abundant in Veeam.
For example when the SQL Server VM that runs one of the ERP systems failed, team
members recovered the 3TB VM quickly by using Instant VM Recovery® to restart the
failed VM from a regular backup. Kormann said recovery took approximately three
hours. Restoring that same VM before Veeam would have taken up to three days.
“After that recovery, we decided to begin using SureBackup to verify the
recoverability of that VM and other critical VMs every time they are backed up,”
Kormann explained. “We have confidence in Veeam; we trust Veeam. Trust is
something you don’t play around with.”
Saves €3,000 in monthly outtasking fees
When Christof Holding brought backup in-house with Veeam Backup &
Replication, it saved €3,000 in outtasking fees and 10 hours in backup
troubleshooting time each month.
Shortens RPOs to minimize risk of data loss
In addition to saving time and money, bringing backup in-house with Veeam
enabled the IT team to easily meet RPOs. Before Veeam, backup was outtasked
to an MSP, and up to 20% of backups failed, making it difficult to meet RPOs.
Restores critical VMs quickly with high-speed recovery
Christof Holding uses Instant VM Recovery to restore a VM into its production
environment by running it directly from a backup file. Not only does Instant
VM Recovery help improve RTOs, it also minimises disruption and downtime
of production VMs. It’s like having a “temporary spare” for a VM; users remain
productive while the IT team troubleshoots an issue with the failed VM.