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case study

City & County Data Center Modernization

Industry
City / County / Government
Company Size
1000
Employees/Users
SOLUTIONS IMPLEMENTED
The Challenge

As with many city, county, and municipal governments, our client’s original primary data center was not purpose-built. In fact, it was located in an office building basement. The facility was adequate for a small municipality. But as the city grew and new digital services were rolled out to citizens, the IT Managers knew that the data center wasn’t properly equipped with the cooling systems, power capability, or interoperability needed. It became harder and harder to keep everything up and running. Eventually the facility was straining under the weight of nearly 200 servers. New systems and new technology were clearly called for – but which direction should they go?

City and County IT leadership pulled together a team of representatives from various departments to identify which systems were mission critical, what specific agency and privacy requirements had to be adhered to, and more. They even tried to forecast into the future to determine potential needs five, ten, and twenty years out. This proved to be a major undertaking.

The results were clear. The group collectively decided that a massive strategic shift was needed: a data center that could quickly accommodate current workloads, offer the ability to expand in size and scope to meet changing constituent needs over time, and provide reliability and performance improvements. Simple, right?

THE SOLUTION

Everyone knew the solution had to include some form of cloud technology in addition to legacy hardware. But as a municipality, concerns were raised on security and operational continuity, especially with the inclusion of Police IMS and Water SCADA systems. These systems are also sensitive from a data governance and compliance perspective and must adhere to Criminal Justice Information System (CJIS) standards required when dealing with criminal history records and law enforcement data.

Lunavi was selected as the service provider of choice for the City and County after demonstrating exceptional value through a strategic, wholistic approach to cloud focusing on application-centric design, cost optimization, security, and operational continuity. By removing CJIS responsibilities from local facilities and transferring them to an off-site secure facility, Lunavi was able to take a huge weight off the IT staff at the City and County. Lunavi obtained independent CJIS auditing within the host data center facility, resulting in a highly secure and well-optimized cloud designed to government specifications. That last one can be hugely important to long-tenured employees who have spent years working with legacy systems. These individuals are highly proficient at their job, but it can be time consuming to train them on new and more complex systems. To address security and performance concerns, Lunavi implemented a private fiber circuit between the municipal sites and Lunavi facilities, allowing them to share sensitive data securely and rapidly without exposing it to the public internet. Once the private fiber circuit was in place, workload migrations began. Forty-four servers and their associated services were prioritized by their overall impact on the organization. Using the agreed-upon priority triage chart and timetable, workloads were migrated to Lunavi’s private cloud and colocated environments in Cheyenne, Wyoming. For rock-solid reliability and protection, the VMware-based cloud environment was supplemented with BaaS (Back Up as a Service) and DRaaS (Disaster Recovery as a Service) replicating to Lunavi facilities out of state.

BEYOND COMPLIANCE, OTHER KEY CONCERNS FOR THE NEW IT ENVIRONMENT INCLUDED:

• Operational continuity

• Dedicated cloud infrastructure

• Storage

• Information security

• Connectivity

• Ease of access and remote management

• Similar to (and compatible with) legacy systems

To address security and performance concerns, Lunavi implemented a private fiber circuit between the municipal sites and Lunavi facilities, allowing them to share sensitive data securely and rapidly without exposing it to the public internet. Once the private fiber circuit was in place, workload migrations began. Forty-four servers and their associated services were prioritized by their overall impact on the organization. Using the agreed-upon priority triage chart and timetable, workloads were migrated to Lunavi’s private cloud and colocated environments in Cheyenne, Wyoming. For rock-solid reliability and protection, the VMware-based cloud environment was supplemented with BaaS (Back Up as a Service) and DRaaS (Disaster Recovery as a Service) replicating to Lunavi facilities out of state.

THE IMPACT

The private cloud solution made the City and County IT organization much more efficient as a wide range of diverse equipment maintenance and cloud management issues simply went away. Because the entire system is CJIS compliant, verification and reporting procedures were transferred to Lunavi, offering peace-of-mind to a host of municipality officials (and their attorneys.) Additional cost savings were realized when the client was able to repurpose the old data center for other needs. By partnering with a hybrid cloud provider like Lunavi, this client achieved measurable results from the project including:

• Stronger risk posture and growth capability after upgrading legacy systems

• Enabled IT staff to work on higher value projects

• Additional flexibility and agility by transitioning from a Capital Expense model to an Operational Expense model

• Enhanced compliance while largely eliminating in-house overhead

• Significantly increased service capabilities for the general public

• Vastly improved data center capabilities, performance, and employee satisfaction

The City and County is now well positioned for flexible IT spending that can easily scale alongside new government initiatives as they implement additional digital capabilities for its staff and citizens.

This type of customized hybrid solution is where Lunavi thrives – if your organization has unique requirements or is unsure how to advance your cloud strategy, we would love to help.

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