How companies are benefitting from Huawei all-flash storage solutions

Why data and storage is the driving force for any enterprise

Data has become an important factor in keeping an organization agile and competitive. However, traditional ways of storing data, to meet both technical and compliance needs, are failing. Two examples of how organizations have been able to modernise their storage environment demonstrate just how much of a competitive advantage investment in this area can offer.

The core of intelligent management; the scheduling, mining, and analysis of data, help applications deliver personalised experience and companies implement precision control over the design, production and logistics process to reduce management costs.

Companies from a variety of industries, across Europe and Asia, choose to go with the Huawei OceanStor Dorado All-Flash Storage Series, to help them make storage the driving force for their enterprise.

Huawei flash storage

In 2017, the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership (LowCVP) announced the 2017 Low Carbon Champions Awards. BYD UK — the London branch of BYD Auto — won the "Low Carbon Heavy Duty Vehicle of the Year Award" and jointly won the "Grand Prix" — the top award — with Transport for London (TfL) and Go-Ahead London for their partnership in launching London's first two all-electric bus routes. This award specifically noted BYDs contribution in delivering the vehicles, operational capacity, and infrastructure for the London project.

Founded in 1995, BYD in IT-related and automobile business for traditional fuel-powered vehicles and new energy vehicles. BYD Auto experienced a period of rapid business development and proliferation of operational processes. This generated a large amount of concurrent data flows from product sales, spare parts inventory, and after-sales services.

To give an idea of the exactly how much additional data was being generated, the volume of data most manufacturing enterprises' online transaction management systems doubles every two years, and concurrent requests to the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system grow exponentially, leading to high I/O frequencies and long user wait times.

This increased in data must be analyzed by a BI system, combined with the shorter timeframe in which data must be processed and reports generated, imposing stringent requirements on data loading and processing speed, as well as system stability. The BI system is a must-have tool for enterprises' manufacturing planning, sales analysis, market trend forecasts, and other important business decision-making.

BYD Auto's ERP system couldn't handle the required 185,000 Input/Output Operations Per Second (IOPS) and 60,000+ concurrent services during peak hours. The system once took over an hour to query the monthly SAP ERP financial statements. Access performance was so poor, the ERP system could not be used for service development. In one extreme case, a system breakdown even jeopardised production line operation.

Based on these requirements and the analysis results of BYD's live network, Huawei created an OceanStor Dorado all-flash acceleration solution for the auto company. In this solution, HDD-based storage was replaced by all-flash storage to expedite read and write I/O and make the ERP and Business Warehouse (BW) systems more efficient. No changes were made to the live network architecture, databases, hosts, ERP software, or O&M, to avoid possible risks. To keep the system upgrade from affecting services, the Huawei data migration team provided a set of data mirroring workarounds using host volume management software.

Legacy data was also migrated to the OceanStor Dorado All-Flash Storage without affecting ERP services. Upon Huawei's recommendation, BYD Auto retained its development and test systems and sandbox on the legacy storage system to protect the investment.

The success of the ERP system reconstruction project led BYD Auto to choose Huawei's OceanStor Dorado All-Flash Storage again for its next Document Management System (DMS) and Extended Warehouse Management (EWM) system upgrade. OceanStor Dorado's superb performance and robust stability again impressed BYD.

Far away from BYD Auto is Widiba, Widiba is an online banking arm of MPS created in 2014 in Italy, with the aim of providing customers with simple, convenient, and innovative fund management services. It prides itself on delivering high value through the use of an IT platform that can be customized by users to suit their own particular needs and a network of 600 advisors, offering a wide range of telephone-based financial advice services.

In recent years, Widiba has intensified its technological innovation. It uses an interactive model similar to Google search and leverages big data engines to recommend banking services for users based on their behavior algorithms and feedback information. After several rounds of communication and repeated demonstration, Widiba chose Huawei as a partner to build a future-proof IT data management platform.

The platform is powered by Huawei's OceanStor storage systems in new data centers. The OceanStor supports converged active-active (HyperMetro) for SAN and NAS. The high-performance SSD-based all-flash SAN storage bears online transaction records and other critical business systems, and check images are kept on the large-capacity NAS storage.

During the IT enablement process, Widiba made penetrating insights into the trends of big data and the monitoring of user experience. It believes that SSDs will be the most appropriate data storage media to meet the requirement of massive storage capacity and the high performance necessary to ensure satisfactory user experience.

Therefore, Widiba has built a high-performance storage resource pool composed of SSD-based OceanStor systems to meet the performance and efficiency demands of core business systems. The pool helped increase the core service processing efficiency and shortened the average transaction and query response time. The storage system latency was reduced from 3 to 5 ms to less than 1 ms, and improved storage resource utilization, reducing the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) by 30 percent.

To address the challenges of the mobile Internet era, Widiba cooperated with Huawei to design a converged active-active (HyperMetro) SAN and NAS solution. Huawei deployed one set of OceanStor systems in Widiba's Siena Production Center and another one in its Florence Data Center, in an active-active configuration. Storage resource pools at the two sites provide backup for each other, achieving 99.9999 percent data availability. The two linked sites are 100 km away from each other. One storage system of the SSD-powered active-active SAN provides 100,000 IOPS at 1 ms latency, and one storage system at the other site offers 78,000 IOPS at 2.4 ms. This design meets the storage performance requirements of IBM MQ, VMware virtualization, and PostgreSQL databases on the live network.

Migrating services is never easy and requires various types of operating systems. Application software and device models must all be moved over, which creates intense challenges in terms of compatibility.

Adding to the complexity, organisations require zero service interruption because, in the era of 24/7 operation, they can't tolerate any negative impact on customer experience. Both companies chose to go with Huawei for its OceanStor Dorado All-Flash Storage Series, because Huawei was able to deliver a fast and reliable system, that helped them reduce and manage costs.

Contact Huawei to find out more about the OceanStor Dorado All-Flash Storage Series.