Would BCSO have anticipated that the same technology it invested in a decade ago to solve a tactical video-storage challenge would grow into an enterprise-wide platform? “One would think not,” Lisk says. “The old school method and ideology was: We’ve got video storage, that’s over on the left side. We’ve got data and network storage, that’s over on the right side. Two different teams, two different sets of people, and they don’t mix.”
Today BCSO takes more of a strategic approach. “We’ve continually grown using this Pivot3 platform to further our business and strategic goals – and the product has matured and grown to meet those needs.”
Benefits of hyperconvergence
Expanding the Pivot3 platform to other IT workloads has allowed BCSO to streamline IT operations and reduce complexity.
With the hyperconverged infrastructure, BCSO has been able to reduce its server count by 75% while increasing performance. In turn, that yielded a significant reduction in electrical and cooling costs, Lisk says. More efficient shared storage and compute resources have also increased flexibility for the IT team.
“I have a lot of servers -- probably sixty-something servers running video and hyperconverged infrastructure, plus 20 or 25 more coming by the end of the year – and I have one mid-level technician running all of that stuff.” Had BCSO taken a more traditional approach, Lisk estimates he would need another two people to do the same amount of administrative work.
The initial setup costs were less, and ongoing maintenance costs are less, he says. The BCSO also benefits from a simpler disaster recovery process. Looking ahead, BCSO plans to continue rolling out Pivot3’s software across its data center to move it closer to a software-driven model, Lisk says.
BCSO is currently testing Pivot3’s latest Acuity HCI product, which adds policy-based management and automation capabilities to the platform so users can automatically apply resources to high-priority workloads when they’re running multiple applications on a single infrastructure.
For other enterprises that might be considering a move to a hyperconverged infrastructure, Lisk stresses the importance of long-term thinking.
“Do your homework well. Take the extra time to plan, to make sure the decision you make is going to be a wise one that will carry you five to seven years out.”
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