Sprout IT case study: Pump Court

The client:

4 Pump Court

Business type

Leading Commercial Barristers Chambers

Challenge

4 Pump Court wanted to replace their traditional, physical server infrastructure as it had reached the end of its useful life. At the same time, there was an opportunity to install a brand new Active Directory along with the latest Operating Systems and application versions. During the research, testing, implementation and go-live stages, the impact on network downtime and resource uptime was of paramount importance.

There were several third party products to consider, during the migration, not least Archived Email and the Diary Management
software (InQuisitaLaw).

The new infrastructure was required to leverage next generation technologies in order to drive productivity, performance and reliability improvements.

The solution

Sprout consultants, with their specialised Legal IT knowledge, implemented Citrix XenServer 5.6 in order to virtualise all 8 servers, onto only two physical servers. A Dell MD3200i SAN with dedicated iSCSI switches and 8 redundant routes from host to SAN, provided the virtualised infrastructure. One of the newer original servers was retained and rebuilt as a physical (traditional) domain controller, as is best practice in a virtualised environment.

A new domain was built, on Windows 2008 Enterprise R2 technology, alongside the existing infrastructure, allowing the two to coexist whilst all the installation and testing was carried out.

A weekend before the go-live, a test rollout was carried out in order to identify any issues ahead of time. During the live migration, the Sprout team worked over a weekend to move all data, email, email archives, Diary data, library database, Blackberry server and intranet to the new, virtualised environment.

Sprout’s backup solution began immediate 15 minute snapshots and in just a few hours, the entire new network was replicated to offsite data centres. Every client PC was migrated, by script, to the new domain and all mobile email devices (Blackberry, iPhone, Nokia and Windows Mobile) were migrated to the new infrastructure.

The results

- Robust virtualised environment, offering the very best in redundancy and future proofing
- A complex project delivered to specification, on time and to budget
- Limited out of hours downtime for the client, and a fully functional network on the next business day
- Lower TCO, lower power and cooling costs, reduced future capital expenditure and a scalable solution capable of rapid future server deployment

“On any view the month-long project was multifaceted, complex and sensitive (in that it involved business critical services). The Sprout team, led by Matt Torrens, planned and implemented the project successfully, with minimal downtime and within budget. There were far fewer teething problems than I expected, and technical issues that did arise in the immediate aftermath of the change were dealt with professionally and effectively.”

Matthew Lavy, Barrister responislbe for IT
 

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