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Pharmaceutical service provider formulates tomorrow’s medications 

NetApp ONTAP protects research and development data in a hybrid cloud. 

hand holding vial
Profi logo


Life Sciences

Country / Region


Finding a future-proof storage formula

Turning molecules into new medications often requires service providers for biopharmaceutical innovation and research like this customer. They formulate the active ingredients. High product quality, on-time delivery, and valid data are essential for their business. And it needs storage that supports every step smoothly—despite increasing data volumes, constant time pressure, and complex requirements.

System integrator PROFI AG and NetApp have reorganized the client’s data infrastructure and set the stage for the future in a hybrid cloud. NetApp® ONTAP® storage in a data fabric brings simplicity, flexibility, and security to a multifaceted business and bolsters its growth and role in the global pharmaceutical supply chain. 

One platform for all data everywhere 

NetApp ONTAP systems were the choice for data storage. They combine file and block data on one platform under one management umbrella—ideal for the customer’s complex environment. More than 20 operating systems, virtualization, databases from MariaDB to Oracle, file services, and computing clusters with high graphics power keep applications, algorithms, and scripts running.

Two NetApp AFF A300 systems replaced the SAN storage at the customer’s headquarters and all Windows file servers. Consolidating storage and data at a remote site was a perfect job for NetApp ONTAP Select. This ONTAP version runs at full functionality as software-defined storage on a standard server.

The customer and PROFI AG jointly implemented the storage and migrated the VMware environment with 175 machines, workloads, and 150TB of data. 10 gigabit connections and 40 gigabit switches amplify the network performance and make sure that the new flash power arrives at the high-speed servers and workplaces of 250 users.

With the ONTAP data management software, we have not only optimized storage management and made it more flexible but also raised data protection to a new level with the possibilities of NetApp Cloud Backup. Thus, the customer is ideally equipped to meet current and future business needs.

Jens Christian Helm, Sales Representative, PROFI AG

Safety first—on premises and in the cloud

Robust hardware and data replication boosted the availability of business-critical file data and applications significantly. But that was only the first step.

Over 30 ONTAP features help to improve data confidentiality, integrity, availability, and security. One ONTAP pillar is NetApp Snapshot™ technology, the core of an ecosystem for high availability and disaster-tolerant data protection.

In the customer’s data center, Snapshot copies protect the VMware environment running in SAN mode on ONTAP storage. Veeam software manages the backups, which are stored locally and get replicated to a FAS2720 system. Also, the file services backup is based on Snapshot copies but is kept on Azure Blob Storage using NetApp Cloud Backup.

Flexibility for today and tomorrow 

Today, the IT team can execute business needs fast and flexibly. Setting up and protecting VMware virtual machines is easier than ever, thanks to tight integration with ONTAP storage. Storage is allocated automatically or on demand. The team can support new projects in a way that best serves their purpose. With data from sample analytics and processes being securely available, the planned laboratory information management system will meet the expectations to improve lab productivity and efficiency with a digital backbone. 

As a trusted advisor, PROFI AG discusses next steps with the customer. On the agenda are containers instead of VMs, more automation, and adjusting data security and archiving. And they are considering a disaster recovery scenario by adding a second data center and splitting up the two AFF systems. In principle, the customer would love to move more workloads to the cloud and explore the use of backup data in the cloud. 

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