West Berkshire Council switches on data centre refresh

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West Berkshire Council has completed an 18-month £200,000 upgrade of its main data centre with help from Redcentric.

The Council, which covers half of Berkshire, runs two data centres supporting the day-to-day operations of 1,800 council staff as well as delivering online services to 155,000 residents.

Its data centre refresh focused on uprating power, cooling and building management capabilities to reduce its PUE from 1.99 to 1.43, as well as upgrading its switching provision. This allowed the Council to preempt any performance issues as the demands on bandwidth inevitably increase over time.

Redcentric's projects team looked at a number of scenarios and equipment vendors before finally recommending a 10 gigabyte top of rack switch-based solution using Brocade. It met the needs for port density within a set footprint, would integrate seamlessly with the existing architecture and offered future upgrade options. Redcentric also leveraged its relationship with Brocade to enable the team to put forward what it deemed to be an optimum solution at the right price point.

Commenting on Redcentric's switching provision, Andy Best, ICT operations manager at West Berkshire Council, said, "We knew that this was giving us exactly what we needed technically, operationally and commercially. We were now free to focus on testing the configuration and evaluating the equipment, prior to the go-live."

Uprated bandwidth has ensured West Berkshire has sufficient capacity going forward to maintain speed and availability. The investment in new switches has helped safeguard the on-going reliability and continuity of service to both council staff and residents. The Brocade deployment has also allowed West Berkshire Council to maintain system and application availability SLAs during this major in-situ data centre upgrade, within tight project budget constraints.

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