Jérôme Chapelle, Franprix’s Infrastructure Manager, oversees Windows Linux storage systems, virtualization and backup perimeters at Franprix. Leading a deliberately small IT team, Chapelle was looking for an efficient and easy-toadminister backup solution to replace the old one, which had become obsolete and outdated in the face of Franprix’s changing infrastructure.
“Our backup strategy revolves around protecting our business-critical applications, but the strategy also covers our entire production systems,” said Chapelle. “What we expect from our backup solution is to be able to restore data as quickly as possible so as not to impact our business.”
As a local food retailer, Franprix is always pursuing continuity and quality of service with the help of its IT tools.
“During the proof of concept we conducted to select our new solution, Veeam proved to be the perfect fit for us as a backup and recovery tool. Our requirements, which can be summed up as simplicity, robustness, efficiency and performance were met with Veeam. We were particularly impressed by its ease-of-use, which allowed us to design our tasks and execute them in a very simple manner. This could have been a major challenge for a small team like ours.”
Regarding performance, Chapelle also added: “With our previous solution, we were wasting a lot of time with restarting jobs at the expense of other, highervalue tasks. We wanted a more modern solution to reduce time-consuming daily backup operations for the good of our teams. Veeam makes backup more efficient and simplifies data recovery.”
To support Franprix’s almost entirely virtualized infrastructure, with a total data store of 250 TB and 650 virtual machines (VMs), Jérôme Chapelle was looking for a solution that was up to the challenge.
“We chose Veeam for its performance and ease of use, but also for its ability to back up physical servers,” Chapelle said. “Veeam’s replication functionality made the task of migrating several terabytes of data from our previous virtual infrastructure to the new one quick and easy.”
Franprix chose to deploy Veeam® Backup & Replication™ within its infrastructure to back up all the applications hosted in its data center, as well as the data that resides in its warehouses.
“Our infrastructure is built on a simple, traditional model,” Chapelle said. “We use all the tools built into Veeam® Backup & Replication™ to secure all of our data platforms; we use Veeam ONE™ for reporting and Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager to drive our backup jobs.”
Veeam’s performance enabled Franprix to save time and reduce cost when it comes to daily backup operations, putting an end to the constant backup and operations rework imposed by the previous solution.
“Thanks to the reporting and monitoring tools built into Veeam® Backup & Replication™, everything is running smoothly, and we only assume a monitoring role,” said Chapelle. “This saves us time on a daily basis, which we can reinvest in other higher-value tasks and helps us reduce costs,” said Chapelle.
Taking cyber threats into account is another integral part of Fanprix’s IT strategy.
“We are fully aware that we are not immune to a ransomware attack, or other forms of malware,” Chapelle said. “We use SureBackup to monitor the integrity of our data on a regular basis. With this tool, we are sure that our backups are consistent, and we are much more confident when it comes to cyber risks.”
Chapelle has also gotten into the habit of performing random checks with SureBackup, a strategy that is complemented by the reports produced by Veeam ONE. This way, Chapelle has insight into the integrity and durability of these backups, which allows Chapelle and his team to enjoy greater peace of mind.
Among the collateral benefits of Veeam, integrating with Pure Storage solutions has also been a real asset for Franprix.
“A year ago, we changed our storage system and selected Pure Storage’s arrays because they integrated perfectly with our Veeam backup solution, thanks to API mechanisms,” Chapelle said. “This configuration allowed us to shape the way we back up our data, and we could take advantage of both flash and instant recovery to back up our storage arrays, native applications and VMs.”
Franprix uses Veeam’s Instant VM Recovery® functionality to restart its services almost instantly after an interruption.
“This critical task now only takes seconds when it used to take tens of minutes,” said Chapelle. “Instant VM Recovery, coupled with Pure Storage snapshots, provides us with a high level of efficiency in restoring our business applications on a daily basis and ensures a quick restart of production. It was critical that our backup solution integrated with other industry-leading vendors like Pure Storage, and this merely confirms Veeam’s leadership in the market.”
For Chapelle, the health crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic put Veeam’s effectivenesss to the test for Franprix.
“Not surprisingly, lockdowns forced us to adapt our way of working while ensuring that our data was still backed up and restored in a secure manner,” Chapelle said. “Despite our initial misgivings, we were able to easily manage the infrastructure remotely and ensure backup continuity. The reasons why we initially selected Veeam have proven to be highly relevant in the face of this health crisis, which confirmed we made the right choice.”
Franprix is now turning to the cloud as a new step in its IT strategy.
“In terms of technology, we’re just getting started,” said Chapelle. “Our e-commerce application, Commerce Mobile Franprix, which relies on Red Hat and Microsoft solutions, is hosted in the cloud, along with the collaboration tools we’ve been using since the COVID-19 pandemic started. We are ready to move forward, even though our use of the cloud remains limited, and our infrastructure is still too legacy-oriented.”
Franprix plans to migrate its email systems into the cloud soon, and wants to reinforce its microservice strategy to accelerate its time-to-market as well.
“Microservice technology is becoming essential,” Chapelle said. “Very soon, we will have to ask ourselves how to protect and manage our data in the cloud and how to make sure that we master these tools. We need to know how to back them up and how to guarantee a rapid service recovery.”
With this in mind, Chapelle is counting on the performance and cloud tools offered by Veeam to back up these new environments and take Franprix’s IT strategy further.
The Franprix supermarket chain, part of the Casino group since 2007, consists of 880 local stores, the majority of which are located in large urban areas in France. Franrpix employs 3,250 employees across its storefronts and the three warehouses that supply them. Franprix had an annual revenue of €1.8 million in 2020. The brand has recently modernized and expanded with the development of an e-commerce website and delivery service. Franprix’s also expanded its food service offerings, retail establishments and catering services to allow them to better meet customer expectations in terms of quality and innovation.
To support its business, Franprix requires high performance and total reliability to ensure that stores are continuously supplied and open. They also require support for the e-commerce part of the business to maintain a consistently high level of customer satisfaction. Thus, Franprix was looking for a backup solution that was both efficient and easy-to-use to replace its previous solution from Quest NetVault. Quest NetVault’s solution was too rigid and unsuited to the way the company’s infrastructure had evolved. In today’s cyber environment, Franprix also wanted to be able to regularly check the integrity and protection of its data in an agile manner to give its teams greater peace of mind.