The Business Challenge
The ČVUT provides its employees, students and to an extent, the general public, its IT Computing and Information Centre services. Information systems, from authentication and mail servers, to repositories and special applications, contain 70 TB of data that is necessary – with the aim to keep up with the need for constant availability – to back up efficiently and, if necessary, to recover quickly with the least possible loss of data. Critical applications include the KOS Study System, support for science and research V3S, and complete support for internal administration.
The heart of the Czech Technical University in Prague’s information architecture is the data centre with 10 physical nodes and 222 virtual machines. The university’s networks transmit 7,850 TB of data annually and there are 560 user roles registered in the school’s information system, with around 5,000 new user accounts being created each year.
“The functionality and availability of many of our systems is a prerequisite for the work of the university staff, for meeting research goals and, of course, in order to properly conduct educational processes. In order to meet these expectations, we need to have top-quality backup technologies with the certainty of timely recovery”, explains Marek Kalika, Director of the Computing and Information Centre.
The Veeam Solution
The Czech Technical University in Prague, based on its own experience with previous systems, had sufficient background and knowledge to select a new solution that would effectively cover all the needs associated with backup and that would use the university’s information architecture. The main selection criteria included the support of full and partial backup and recovery of virtual machines, compatibility with Hitachi and IBM storage, efficient management and ease of use. Five products were judged in the tender, and the set requirements were best met by Veeam’s technologies.
The Czech Technical University in Prague chose Veeam and three months later the new solution was fully deployed, fine-tuned and fully functional. With Veeam® Availability Suite™ and Veeam agents to assist with physical machine backup, more than 20,000 students and 5,000 university employees can fully rely on the systems to be permanently available and fully ready to support their educational, research and scientific activities.
The successful implementation of the new solution also involved a Veeam certified partner, AutoCont, who, besides providing implementation and consulting services, trained the Computing and Information Centre’s staff.
“Professional support is really important to us, because we can only rely on the fact that we can jointly solve even the most difficult problems”, explains Marek Kalika.
The whole implementation project was completed by ČVUT’s IT experts in just 14 days, utilizing the implementation, consulting and training services of a Veeam certified partner.
Veeam meets ČVUT´s requirements, not only in terms of offered functionality and compatibility with existing features, but also through easy implementation and substantial simplification of backup management. An important role, though not quite crucial, has been the cost issue. Compared with competing products, the university saved, according to a qualified estimate, about 60 percent of their investment funds and reduced their operating costs associated with accessibility by half.
In total, Veeam’s products manage backup for three hypervisors (one Microsoft Hyper-V cluster with more than 80 application servers and two VMware vSphere clusters with more than 150 Linux virtual servers) and over 70 TB of data.
“So far, we have not encountered fatal problems that would require the restoration of all or a substantial part of our information architecture. All of the hitherto interventions concerned the recovery of local user data and have always been done quickly and efficiently. But I’m absolutely sure that the same result would be achieved even in the case of larger events – and having such confidence is simply great”, concluded Marek Kalika.
- A comprehensive solution that supports all of the university’s IT needs, while reducing operating costs by 50% versus the competition
Compared to its previous backup provider, the new Veeam Availability Suite solution is significantly more flexible, reducing the total investment and operating costs by half.
- Ensure availability of key systems
Thanks to Veeam, ČVUT can help its employees and students guarantee that the used systems will be virtually always available and that they will also be able to handle the requirements for individual user data recovery.
- Significant simplification of administration
Deploying Veeam’s technologies has made it possible to make backup processes substantially streamlined and simplify the management of the entire environment, including easy upgrade to new versions. The time saved allows backup to further refine and test individual scenarios in detail.
- 50% reductions in Recovery Point Objectives (RPO) and Recovery Time
The entire environment is designed to back up data in a total volume of over 70 TB and keep the backups according to the needs of the selected agenda type. Thanks to Veeam, it has also been possible to dramatically reduce RTOs and RPOs from days to hours, and sometimes, even minutes.