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Service Provider Uses Virtualization to Boost DR

While most companies have dabbled in virtualizing their physical servers, third-party logistics software and services provider Transplace went the distance by virtualizing 95 percent of the companys servers, storage, and disaster-recovery systems.

You hear it all the time: Virtualization is great for cost savings among non business-critical systems, but it's just not ready to run applications in production.

Whoever still holds those beliefs hasn't had a conversation with Vincent Biddlecombe, CTO at Transplace, which delivers its logistics software to its customers via software-as-a-service, has 500 employees, and about $2.5 billion in annual sales.

A little more than a year ago, Transplace decided that the time had come to move its data center, which then resided on the tenth floor of its corporate office building in Plano, Texas, to a more secure location. During its examination of data center options, the company considered many possibilities, from outsourcing all of its application hosting, to a complete in-house infrastructure refresh. "It became clear to us that we could continue hosting our own applications more cost effectively than outsourcing," says Biddlecombe.

An important part of those cost calculations was virtualization. "By chance, our decision to move our primary data center to a co-location facility coincided with the time we were due for a server hardware refresh," explains Biddlecombe. "That essentially gave us a clean slate to virtualize from the ground up."

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