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Waterstons Teams with DataCore to Provide a Cloud-based Hosting Service
DataCore Software, a leading provider of storage virtualization software, today announced that Waterstons, a Gold Accredited Partner, has selected DataCore storage virtualization software to provide the infrastructure to power their cloud-based computing service.

Waterstons provides cloud hosting services from a purpose-built Tier 3 data center in the North of England, monitored and managed around-the-clock from their regional operations center in Durham. Andrew Kershaw, Technical Director at Waterstons, explained, "Waterstons has provided specialist hosting and co-location services for a number of years. Recently we've seen demand for these services take off and we needed to invest in a scalable and resilient platform to meet demand for growth. The DataCore solution meets our goals for resilience, flexibility, performance and scalability and supports our goal of providing a high-quality and cost-effective service to clients."

Through this service Waterstons are offering a comprehensive range of options: customers can take a single, virtual machine from Waterstons for only a month, or an entire network of servers - interconnected with one or more private, virtual networks - residing on a highly available infrastructure. Waterstons offers flexible and resilient Internet connectivity options for hosted infrastructure and offers hosting and co-location of physical hardware. Flexibility is paramount - many customers use a combination of offerings, and Waterstons specializes in providing a tailored service to meet customer needs.

 

Underpinning the service is a pair of DataCore SANsymphony servers on Dell hardware, operating in a synchronously mirrored configuration and thereby avoiding a single point of failure scenario. Waterstons has made a considerable investment in eliminating single points of failure in the infrastructure, which is seen as critical to providing a high-quality service suitable for running hosted line of business applications. Waterstons is currently commissioning a second identical infrastructure in a geographically remote data center in order to provide replicated disaster recovery (DR).

Kershaw went on to explain, "Through our cloud-based service, we are able to offer new and innovative ways of supporting clients and solving their business and technology problems. We can respond to demands extremely quickly and on a very flexible basis, which often is simply not the case with traditional infrastructure."

One such customer utilizing the service is St Ives, the UK's leading, independent print and display group. Waterstons will provide a highly available and instantly scalable platform to run St Ives' critical business-to-business system (known as "DNA") on a three-year managed services and hosting contract.
The challenging infrastructure requirements include high availability (HA), business continuity and the flexibility to scale the environment quickly in response to demand. Waterstons has met these requirements by implementing a shared hosting platform, using VMware cloud infrastructure hosting solutions coupled with DataCore storage virtualization technology. In an extra phase to follow, the complete platform will be duplicated to a secondary data center 120 miles away, with asynchronous replication used to keep the two systems in sync.

Mudasar Din, St Ives Group IT Director, said, "I have worked closely with Waterstons for over five years and their hands-on, proactive approach has helped cement our valuable strategic partnership. Waterstons was selected for this contract not only because of the open nature of our relationship, but also because of the access we have to their technical staff and consultants. St Ives aims to continually improve the capability of its value-added online solutions. The support of industry-leading partners such as Waterstons is key in St Ives' overall strategy to provide integrated production and service solutions."

Keith Joseph, Regional Director at DataCore, commented, "DataCore's SANsymphony in a dual configuration offers all the HA and resilience that Waterstons' high-end cloud hosting service requires. Through SANsymphony's built-in thin-provisioning software, Waterstons' clients can access storage 'on-the-fly' from the VMware server farm. It's established. It's secure. It's flexible. And it brings distinct business benefits. It is cloud computing at its best."

Published Monday, June 28, 2010 6:10 AM by David Marshall
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