VMware, the global leader in software for industry-standard virtualized desktops and servers, today announced that IXIS Capital Markets (IXIS), a New York-based financial services firm, has implemented VMware Infrastructure to achieve high availability for mission-critical trading applications that allows financial operations to occur without disruption during peak trading hours.
With more than 450 front, middle and back office users depending on highly available systems to ensure financial operations are completed successfully at any time, the ability for the IXIS IT team to eliminate downtime while performing necessary system maintenance is a top priority.
"When I first heard about what VMware's virtualization products could do, it sounded too good to be true. Then I saw VMware Infrastructure at work, I was amazed, especially by VMware VMotion technology and the potential impact it could have on our business," said Mornay Van Der Walt, vice president and system architect at IXIS. "For example, we completed a patch upgrade in the middle of a weekday while our brokers were trading. We performed the upgrade with zero downtime, which assured seamless operations all around - try doing that in a physical world! This high level of service is simply not possible without VMware Infrastructure. VMware Infrastructure helps us maintain our high standard of an 'always on' environment and stay up to speed in the fast-paced financial services industry."
IXIS has been running VMware Infrastructure in production for two years and has achieved other tangible benefits through server consolidation. Despite increasing demands on computing resources, the increased CPU utilization enabled by VMware Infrastructure allowed the company to avoid expanding its crowded data center while construction of a new state-of-the-art facility in New Jersey was underway. Overall, Van Der Walt expects to save more than $1 million in hardware expenditures over the next two years.
IXIS has also been able to dramatically simplify and automate data center operations. Because provisioning and monitoring virtual infrastructure is so simple, Van Der Walt's team has been able to increase the server-to- administrator ratio from 37:1 to 60:1. This allows IXIS IT administrators to focus on strategic projects and saves money when new virtual servers need to be provisioned - a worst-case scenario now costs about $300 per server in IT labor compared to $6,800 per physical server before implementing VMware Infrastructure.
As IXIS rolls out VMware Infrastructure 3, the third generation of the infrastructure virtualization software suite, IXIS plans to deploy VMware High Availability (HA). VMware HA is designed to eliminate single points of hardware failure by automatically relocating and restarting virtual machines. VMware HA is designed to provide uniform high availability across the entire virtualized IT environment without the cost and complexity of failover solutions tied to either operating systems or specific applications.
"Improving application availability has quickly become a leading reason for thousands of businesses to adopt virtualization throughout their IT infrastructure," said Raghu Raghuram, vice president of product and solutions marketing at VMware. "IXIS Capital Markets's use of VMware Infrastructure to dramatically improve application availability underscores how infrastructure virtualization can transform the service levels that IT organizations can provide to their businesses."