SUNNYVALE, Calif. -- As the city of Maricopa, Arizona experienced significant population growth, the local fire district faced several challenges with the addition of new fire stations and numerous personnel to expand their fire services. One of these challenges was their explosive data growth. To help address their data management needs, the Maricopa Fire District turned to StoreVault, a NetApp (NASDAQ:NTAP - News) division, to improve the availability, reliability, and scalability of their storage infrastructure.
For the Maricopa Fire District, instantaneous information retrieval can be a matter of life and death. For this reason, the IT team automated functions such as fire ground command, pre-fire planning, building inspection records, and personnel records. However, new challenges surfaced when staffing grew 500% and file sharing needs and application requirements increased from 250GB to 600 GB, or 140%, in 12 months.
The Maricopa Fire District realized that their current infrastructure had significant limitations. Capacity expansion was very difficult, because storage was direct attached. Adding local storage to existing servers meant approximately 2 hours of downtime, and it also took up to 10 minutes to access data. In addition, backup and disaster recovery were serious problems and restores were slow--individual files took up to 60 minutes and server recovery a whole day. In a profession requiring 5-minute response times, this was unworkable.
"We needed a device that was expandable, reliable, served at least 250 users, and could replicate data across the network on a local government budget," said Ben Graff, IT and communications director of the Maricopa Fire District. "We also wanted file-serving support and block-level application support for our blade servers. We were disappointed with the overpriced solutions on the market and the added costs for replication software."
Network Appliance Inc.