NetApp & Microsoft enable Victorian Dept of Sustainability & Environment to enhance community safety during bushfires

New multi-agency portal for bushfire information allows incident control centres to directly post information in real time to enhance community awareness & fire fighter safety

Sydney, Australia - 4 November 2009 - NetApp has teamed with Microsoft to help the Victorian Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE) implement a virtualized data storage solution which enables a single, multi-agency portal for bushfire information.

Responsible for managing 7.6 million hectares of public land across the state (which represents approximately one-third of Victoria), the Department of Sustainability and Environment is chartered with reducing the risk of fire, containing outbreaks and managing environmental effects caused by fire.

The consolidated data storage solution allows the State Integrated Emergency Control Centre and Incident Control Centres across the state to directly post mission-critical information to the portal in real time, enhancing situational and community awareness and improving the safety of public and emergency services workers.

The DSE Fire Information Systems Group, in conjunction with NetApp and Microsoft, upgraded the Department's "Fireweb" application. Fireweb was previously running on legacy fibre channel SAN and many physical servers. It is now running on an environment based on the virtualised NetApp Data OnTAP storage operating system and Microsoft Hyper-V software.

Anthony Griffiths, Manager, Fire Information Systems Group, Victorian Department of Environment and Sustainability, said, "To ensure that we can effectively manage the risk of fire, we required our previous, complex system architecture to be simplified and become more highly available. The new system had to support key information services such as real-time telemetry from critical assets like aircraft, and make that information available quickly and efficiently across our multiple application services.

"Implementing the NetApp solution allows us to recover from major system failures in minutes. Past failures have taken at least eight hours to recover our data, and often longer, but now we can restore instantly. We can also support multi tenancy and share critical data to multiple agencies and the public in a secure manner without complex point solutions.

"Using NetApp's SnapMirror and Snapshot features to rapidly mirror data between sites using very low WAN bandwidth, coupled with primary storage de-duplication, provides us with a very low TCO solution that delivers the availability and performance we need while ensuring our ICT is more environmentally sustainable. The storage overhaul also provided a holistic view of the environment and single point of management," Griffiths said.

The Fire Information Systems Group deployed NetApp FAS3140 and FAS2050 systems, with Microsoft Hyper-V and Microsoft SQL Server 2008 to support Fireweb. Efficiency gains have been made by implementing NetApp Deduplication, Thin Provisioning and FlexClone®, while application availability is improved through the use of NetApp Snapshot®, SnapManager for SQL Server®, SnapMirror® and SnapVault®. Multi-tenancy utilises NetApp Multistore® to securely separate information storage resources.

Multiple storage protocols are used, including iSCSI, Fibre Channel and CIFS, which allow the Victorian Department of Sustainability and Environment to achieve high performance for critical systems and keep infrastructure costs contained.

The NetApp implementation has allowed the Fire Information Systems Group to implement cost-effective replication to support disaster recovery with SnapMirror, and if required, to also recover data rapidly from frequent disk-based backups using NetApp Snapshot and SnapVault, eliminating reliance on tape.

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Media Contact:
Laura Skelley
Max Australia
+61 2 9954 3492
laura.skelley@maxaustralia.com.au

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