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Ecco: Comfortable HA implementation

on . Posted in Customer Stories

ECCO store
Customer Case   |    Ecco Shoes   |   Denmark

Moving away from your trusted high availability solution is not always an easy desicion. But when you are busy keeping your business up and running 24/7, 365 a week, all aspects of a real HA solution are taken in effect.

Serious IT managers look further than a GUI... How about the technical support... And how about the 'hidden' costs a HA solution brings to the table?

iSeries manager from Ecco Mrs Annette T. Mikkelsen takes the opportunity to tell us about her experience with Quick-EDD/HA from QSL Nortern Europe and tells us why Ecco chose for Quick-EDD/HA as the preferred high availability solution.

For a long time now ECCO has been using a High Availability solution, you have to manage it but who did take the decision?
Annette T. Mikkelsen (ATM):
Years ago, the management decided to ensure the continuity of services. We invested due to a management decision.

Recently, ECCO changed its HA solution and decided to work with Quick-EDD/HA, what are the main technical reasons which motivated this replacement?
ATM: It’s a sum of things:
- We did not manage to get our 2 systems in “sync” and nothing in the former product we used alerted us about this situation. Every day, I had to run a Query on each  system and I did an automated process which saved/restored the differences between the source machine to the target.
- Because of a big batch job running each evening, we had a latency of 10 hours, every morning.
- Another issue was that we were “lost” with the messages and at the end, we could not react because we didn’t know if the messages were effective or not.

Step by step, we lost confidence and we could not imagine performing any switch test or even a virtual switch test which made no sense in our situation.

Is there any other reason?
ATM: Besides, we had to make a hardware upgrade without changing the IBM Tier (P50 for ECCO), it was just to add some power to our system to handle a new Java application. But even with all the problems we were facing, the vendor wanted to charge for this simple upgrade. We simply could not accept that. Also, the support was not local and we just had to call the headquarters of the vendor, which was really a problem with the difference of the time zone. And probably the most important was  hat we had to use 60Gb memory on the target system to run this application, and to add 20Gb to catch up every morning... it’s a huge hidden cost of more than € 100,000 or $140,000.

And then you changed to Quick-EDD, how did you take the decision?
ATM: It was a hurried decision to take and I didn’t have time to test the product, so I first called another Quick-EDD client who is using the same ERP application as ECCO, and this client is very positive. Then I called my preferred business-partner and they were able to install and support Quick-EDD locally. Finally, I felt very confident that we could install the new product. So we decided to replace the solution last summer, only 3 days before I left for my holidays.

What can you say now? Did you fix your major problems by using Quick-EDD?
ATM: This question is very simple to answer, Quick-EDD needs very low resources and we don’t need the 60Gb on the target anymore. The daily maintenance is very very easy! I still run my Query’s to check the differences between the 2 systems but we have no difference anymore except 1 or 2 objects sometimes... but the time to start my saved/restored process, these objects have been repaired by the product itself. The latency in the morning is nearly 1 second.

Is it comfortable for you and ECCO to have the Quick-EDD/HA solution?
ATM: Yes it is, I am now pretty sure of the restart process on the recovery!

Would you advise another company to purchase Quick-EDD?
ATM: Yes of course!

Often, the competition is using the argument: “Quick-EDD is not an HA solution”, what is your reaction to that?
ATM: Sorry, but I really cannot see any argument to say it’s not an HA solution.

About Ecco:

Founded in 1963  2x IBM iSeries P50
More than 20.000 employees  ERP: SAP
More than 17.000 selling points in 90 countries        iSeries manager: Mrs A.T. Mikkelsen

More about Ecco: Visit the Ecco website             |           Download this customer case as PDF pdf icon

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