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Case Study Business Continuity: Reduce Downtime

Grupo Antolin chooses DataCore for the virtualisation of its storage systems

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Grupo Antolin, Spain’s leading global automotive interior design and manufacturing multinational, has chosen DataCore Software’s hyperconverged storage virtualisation solution to modernise and innovate it’s global infrastructure. In partnership with CISTEC Technology, the company explains the process followed for migration to a storage virtualisation environment of over 800 terabytes of data, distributed in 36 offices (with two nodes each) of Grupo Antolin.

THE CHALLENGE

Antolin’s aim is to simplify its global infrastructures, which are centrally managed from the Burgos plant, among other things.

THE SOLUTION

CISTEC Technology, as Grupo Antolin’s trusted partner of choice, proposed a fully redundant, hyper-converged solution, using two DELL PowerEdge R730xd servers and DataCore’s Sansymphony®. DataCore’s storage virtualisation software can be used to create a Virtual SAN with the internal server drives and with visibility for both systems.

THE RESULTS

5x INCREASED PERFORMANCE
100% REDUCTION OF INACTIVE STORAGE DATA
50% COST REDUCTION

Technological Background of Grupo Antolin

Grupo Antolin is one of the leading global automotive interior manufacturers and the global leader in headliner substrates. It offers high added value products to outfit automobile interiors, overheads & Trunk Trim, Doors & Hard Trim, Lighting and Cockpits & Consoles. With a long industrial tradition and proven track record in a huge portfolio of technologies, Grupo Antolin is recognised as a benchmark brand in the automotive sector.

In addition, it handles the full component cycle, from component conception and design, through development and validation, to parts industrialisation and sequenced delivery. It has a global presence in 25 countries and turnover in 2017 was €5,037M. As regards its storage virtualisation requirements, the company aimed to simplify its infrastructures and improve and optimise administration, using an innovative solution that could meet its data availability and storage management requirements.

Objectives of Cistec during implementation

Grupo Antolin Objectives of Cistec during implementationThe following objectives were established after CISTEC Technology (partner of DataCore in the implementation of the solution) analysed the storage needs of Grupo Antolin, taking into account the design process, manufacturing systems, sector and requirements of Grupo Antolin.

Grupo Antolin’s operations require the manufacturing plants to be as close as possible to its clients in the automotive sector. When a car manufacturer sets up a factory in a country, Grupo Antolin sets up its own factory near its client, since it manufactures internal car accessories and these need to be readily supplied to the car manufacturing factories.

Each plant (160 across the world) has a small-scale storage infrastructure, comprising servers, a disk drive storage enclosure and virtual machines. Grupo Antolin aimed to simplify and modernise its global infrastructures, which are centrally managed from the Burgos plant.

Other technical requirements

  • Creating a robust environment that caters to the needs of a corporate service system, used to orchestrate all of the company’s processes (manufacturing, logistics, procurement and sales), allowing the company to operate 7 days a week and guaranteeing no service interruptions.
  • Adjusting the technology platform acquisition costs, lengthening and guaranteeing the useful life of the investment in the long-term.
  • Implementing a system that will simplify the management processes and their subsequent operation by the Systems Department.
  • Adapting the implementation periods to the activity commissioning deadlines, which required the establishment of very short implementation of the solution.

CISTEC needed to create a high-performance environment that guaranteed business continuity and which had an cost-effective investment and tight commissioning deadlines. Therefore, it needed to provide Grupo Antolin with a high-availability solution at the server and storage level to guarantee business continuity.

DataCore has allowed us to simplify the infrastructure and the administration of our storage systems, as well as to eliminate the need for disk drive storage enclosures. In addition, we have increased the performance of our infrastructures in plants, something essential for Grupo Antolin. Without a doubt, DataCore has helped us reach three critical milestones: simplification of the infrastructure, central administration and increased performance.

Juan Izquierdo García Business Development Manager of CISTEC Technology

Benefits: scalability, in terms of capacity, performance and functionality

With DataCore Sofware’s SANsymphony solution, CISTEC Technology not only met all of Grupo Antolin’s requirements associated with availability, data replication and cost-effective investment, but also achieved much higher performance, scalability and global storage management levels than traditional disk drive storage enclosures.

The operating principle of DataCore’s software platform is very simple but also brings many benefits: RAM memory is much faster than hard drives and even flash drives. Therefore, with DataCore, the client runs the applications from the memory, whenever possible. DataCore uses a x86-64 CPU and a node memory as powerful and cost-effective cache mega-units.

Other benefits of DataCore was the implementation of the “Auto Tiering” function, so the information that is not used intensively is stored automatically in low performance/cost drives, while information that is used intensively is transferred to high-performance drives, optimising the available resources and guaranteeing the return on investment, since it uses almost 100% of the drive capacity, without the need to purchase all components required in virtual volumes.

Technical specifications (server, desktop and application environment)

The solutions used for the virtualisation of Grupo Antolin's storage systems were determined according to the storage needs of each plant and divided into two groups:

4TB HEADQUARTERS

  • Server: 2 DELL PowerEdge R730xd servers with dual-core processor, 128GB RAM, 4TB storage capacity with SAS drives at 15K RPM and SSD drives. Virtualisation with VMware and DataCore storage virtualisation.
  • Application environment: Corporate services: Domain controller, file server, printer server and Backup server.

8TB HEADQUARTERS

  • Server: 2 DELL PowerEdge R730xd servers with dual-core processor, 192GB RAM, 8TB storage capacity with SAS drives at 15K RPM and SSD drives. Virtualisation with VMware and DataCore storage virtualisation.
  • Application environment: Corporate services: Domain controller, file server, printer server and Backup server.

DataCore has helped us simplify and further standardise our plant infrastructures, while increasing the performance and availability levels.

Eneko Ferrero Martín Head of the IT Infrastructure at Grupo Antolin

DataCore provides us with a differentiating value that strays from traditional technologies and requires a much simpler implementation process. The response has been excellent and our relationship as a partner and implementation company is very positive.

Juan Izquierdo García Business Development Manager of CISTEC Technology.

About Grupo Antolin

Grupo Antolin is one of the leading global automotive interior manufacturers and has four Business Units: Overheads & Trunk Trim, Doors & Hard Trim, Lighting and Cockpits & Consoles. The company works as the provider of major car manufacturers and its products are used in the ten best selling cars worldwide. The company has 151 factories in 25 countries, close to 28,000 employees and its turnover in 2017 was €5,037M.

For further information: www.grupoantolin.com

About CISTEC Technology

We are an engineering firm that specialises in technology and innovation. We help raise the awareness of companies about the importance of digital transformation and update their technology infrastructure on a regular basis, improving their internal processes. We were established on 5 April 2013 and currently have a team of 85 people in three offices: Navarra, Basque Country and Madrid.

Our differentiation is based on how we use technology to offer solutions to our clients. We apply technology that focuses on people to improve processes. We offer tailored solutions, based on the present and designed to guarantee business continuity.

For further information: www.cistec.es