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Virtual data center for Europapier

Uninterruptible IT Services for more than 1,000 employees – Timewarp’s concept for a virtual data center with disaster recovery is convincing.
High availability and redundancy with virtual resources from two TIER III+ data centers in Austria formed the basis for this. Now, the IT department of Europapier can provide a high-performance, highly available and uninterrupted solution – without additional investment costs or additional staff.

Austrian paper wholesaler with locations in Central and Eastern Europe

Europapier is an Austrian flagship company that has been active in paper wholesaling for more than 40 years. The company gradually expanded its market position, especially in Eastern Europe, and is now one of the leading paper wholesalers with around 1,000 employees in 13 countries.
Europapier offers paper and packaging solutions, serving a market of nearly 500 million people from Central Europe to Siberia.

The challenge:
Uninterruptible IT services for 1,000 employees

The IT department of Europapier Austria GmbH provides services for around 1,000 employees in Europe. Accordingly, the networking of locations and the reliable provision of virtual desktops is a key success factor. “Every hour of service interruption costs us a lot of money because no access to the SAP is possible and therefore nothing can be sold or delivered,” says Alfred Grunner, IT manager at Europapier.

Timewarp therefore created a concept for a virtual data center, which provides for the outsourcing of the IT infrastructure in two physical data centers. The basic requirement was a TIER III+ standard at the data centers, which should preferably be in Austria. The connections of the field offices should terminate star-shaped in the two data centers.

The solution:
Outsourcing the IT landscape, shared operational responsibility

What sets Timewarp apart from other vendors is its vast experience and expertise in bringing together the customer’s existing infrastructure with Timewarp Cloud virtual resources, taking into account security requirements. For Europapier, the security and disaster recovery concept was crucial, as was the migration experience.
“The infrastructure we have built for Europapier so that in case of failure, a data center can take over the entire load,” says Rainer Schneemayer, CEO of Timewarp and developer of the project. And further: “In the event of a disaster on one site, the services in the second data center will be available again within a very short time.”

The network and security systems are operated by Timewarp, as are the servers and the central storage. Europapier takes care of the operating systems and the backup from the hypervisor.

All 24/7 (24×7) systems are monitored by the Timewarp support team. In case of a Prio 1 incident it will start within 30 minutes with the troubleshooting.

Experience and excellent hardware for worry-free IT

Both RZ sites use high-performance servers, each connected to an all-flash storage system, providing a total of 53 TB of fast storage. The data stores are accessed via a storage area network, which provides the connection between server and storage systems in a fully redundant manner.
The systems will be integrated into Timewarp’s central monitoring system, which will also give Europapier relevant alerts.

The systems are interconnected via VLANs deployed at both RZ sites. This ensures a flexible allocation of resources, since sufficient bandwidth is also made available.
As a result, servers can either be started up at any time in both data centers or be moved during operation for maintenance purposes.

The existing security systems of Europapier (firewall, IPS, web and mail filter) were taken over and are now operated by Timewarp. On a central router Timewarp all VPN connections are terminated and routed to the right networks. To ensure high availability and reliable access to the SAP system, redundant routers are used at all sites.

Secure Migration

Safe and fast migration is one of Timewarp’s core competencies. Thanks to numerous successful customer projects, the Austrian cloud service provider has developed a standardized procedure that takes place during ongoing operation and only marginally affects it.

Für die Europapier Migration wurden temporär Verbindungen geschalten, um die großen Datenmengen im laufenden Betrieb ohne gravierende Stillstandszeiten zu transferieren. Die Migration der Services wurde innerhalb von 8 Wochen abgeschlossen.
„Timewarp hat aufgrund einer guten und detaillierten Planung die Basis für eine saubere Migration gelegt. Das Projekte konnte damit zeitgerecht und innerhalb der geplanten Kosten umgesetzt werden. Die neue Plattform bietet unseren Benutzern wesentlich mehr Geschwindigkeit, wodurch die Zufriedenheit deutlich erhöht wurde“, sagt Alfred Grunner.

Temporarily connections were made for the Europapier migration in order to transfer the large amounts of data during operation without serious downtimes. The migration of services was completed within 8 weeks.
“Timewarp has laid the foundation for a clean migration based on good and detailed planning. The project could thus be implemented on time and within the planned costs. The new platform offers our users much more speed, which has significantly increased their satisfaction, “says Alfred Grunner.

The most important success factors at a glance:

  • Construction of a virtual data center over two locations (TIER III+)
  • Redundant systems for high availability of 99.9%
  • High quality hardware with all-flash storage
  • High performance network connection and VPN
  • Uninterrupted migration
  • Takeover of parts of operation and readiness (24×7)
  • No investment costs, no additional staff costs

Read more about virtual data centers:
https://timewarp.at/solutions/virtual-data-center/

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Veronika Pambalk

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