People with epilepsy should be able to lead their lives as fully as possible. That’s the mission of the Swiss Epilepsy Foundation (EPI). It provides nonprofit social, health, and educational services and drives digitization. To make the most of data and knowledge, EPI needed additional storage that was more cost-effective. NetApp® object storage offered everything EPI was looking for. Together with its partner Aptic, EPI laid the foundation for extracting value from its data.
Despite EPI’s satisfaction with NetApp storage, there was a growing challenge: more and more data, especially images, videos, and measurement files from neurophysiology. Permanently keeping all data on premium storage was a risk for capacity and budget. Demand for storage space was already high, and it keeps growing. The foundation plans to make older and new information centrally accessible by digitizing paper and image archives and consolidating data on various media online.
In addition, EPI wants to draw value from data. One project involves converting unstructured data into structured data. Every month, several thousand documents arrive at EPI through various channels— for example, by email attachment or on paper. Intelligent document processing will place them correctly in the appropriate dossier, in as automated a manner as possible. And extracted document content will flow into the associated business processes in a structured form.
Choosing StorageGRID and FabricPool was a strategic decision for ease of use, scalability, and lower costs. Anything else would have meant more risk and effort.
Emanuel Furler, Head of ICT, Swiss Epilepsy Foundation
By following tiering rules, FabricPool relocates unused “cold” data on NetApp flash storage to cost-effective object storage—in this case, NetApp StorageGRID® storage. FabricPool is file- and block-based and recognizes which files or blocks are in use and how often they’re accessed. The showstopper: Everything happens internally and transparently. If cold data is needed again, FabricPool automatically brings it back to the performance tier.
The centralized, professionally managed solution prevents data loss and misuse while maintaining data readability. In addition, EPI uses the encryption built into StorageGRID for all objects and network transfers between nodes in the grid. Having more free space on the flash storage means that EPI doesn’t have to invest in expansion yet. It has also increased data protection. EPI can now keep NetApp Snapshot™ copies for quick restores for 12 weeks instead of 2.
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