Hopkinton, Mass. - September 18, 2007 -
EMC Corporation (NYSE:EMC), the world leader in information infrastructure solutions, today announced that StoreFinancial, an international prepaid card processor specializing in multi-merchant shopping centers, has dramatically improved transaction performance and cost-efficiency for its Microsoft SQL Server environment by implementing flexible, high-performance EMC CLARiiON® CX3 storage services. As a result, StoreFinancial has optimized their ability to handle large surges in transaction volume, while at the same time enhancing their industry leading service levels and supporting their rapid growth.
Jim Poteet, StoreFinancial’s Director of Technology, said, “In the prepaid card processing business, service is everything so the responsiveness of our information systems is critical. According to industry regulations, we have only a few seconds to process a card transaction. But during the peak holiday season when we’re hit with very high volumes of cardholder redemptions, even a few seconds is too long.”
Nearing the capacity limits of its existing server-based storage environment, StoreFinancial engaged EMC Global Services to design a solution that would meet its projected performance needs, as well as support multiple application requirements. Based on these criteria, EMC Global Services recommended the EMC CLARiiON UltraScale Series, which combines split-second responsiveness with flexible support for both Fibre Channel and iSCSI on a single, cost-effective system. EMC Global Services’ SQL Server experts also configured the CLARiiON system to help StoreFinancial gain optimal performance from its Microsoft SQL Server database.
“To improve our SQL database performance and handle the tremendous growth we continue to experience, we brought in EMC Global Services to architect and optimize a new information infrastructure built on EMC CLARiiON storage,” said Poteet. “With our new EMC solution, response time has improved 70 percent. The built-in redundancy and high availability features of the CLARiiON combined with clustering our SQL Server architecture ensure that our systems availability continues to exceed industry standards. This keeps our customers very happy and gives us a real competitive advantage.”
“EMC was the only company that truly understood our performance needs. And ultimately, it was their expertise that made the solution a complete success. For example, we estimated that 3,000 I/O operations per second from SQL Server was required to meet our performance goals. With the assistance of the EMC services team, our configuration was optimized to achieve over 7,000 I/O operations per second. They really helped us get a lot more out of the system to handle ever-growing transaction volume.”
The flexibility of the CLARiiON also saved the company money by enabling StoreFinancial to tier its storage across different applications, embracing information lifecycle management (ILM).
“Our SQL Server database requires the fastest performance possible, so we used Fibre Channel technology for this critical application,” said Poteet. “But we also log transactions with an audit system, which has lower performance requirements that could be met with more cost-effective iSCSI technology. Because the CLARiiON CX3 is essentially ‘ILM in a single box’ by supporting both Fibre Channel and iSCSI, we can connect our various servers directly to the EMC system without the added expense of implementing switches. We’re also able to choose the optimal and most cost-effective storage tier to match our different application requirements. The CLARiiON is a very efficiently designed solution that is providing excellent value for our investment.”
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