Success StoryPrinceton Insurance IncreasesFlexibility, Strengthens Competitive Edgewith Private Cloud                     ...
“We’re an insurance company, not a technology company. Working with three industry leaders, NetApp, Cisco, and VMware, is ...
Another way the NetApp appliance and                    virtual machines from the blade server that       A nondisruptive ...
“With NetApp storage and the Cisco UCS, we can provision resources in minutes. We now have the flexibility to respond to bu...
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Princeton Insurance Increases Flexibility, Strengthens Competitive Edge with Private Cloud


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Challenge: Increase business agility by delivering IT as a service and empower small IT team with efficient management tools.

Solution: Created private cloud using NetApp storage and Cisco Unified Computing SystemTM (UCS) with VMware vSphereTM 4.

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Princeton Insurance Increases Flexibility, Strengthens Competitive Edge with Private Cloud

  1. 1. Success StoryPrinceton Insurance IncreasesFlexibility, Strengthens Competitive Edgewith Private Cloud CUSTOMER PROFILE management. Previously, the company Princeton Insurance is the leading medical used two different storage platforms. A professional liability insurer in New Jersey. NetApp FAS3020 system stored digital The company insures approximately images of all policy and claims files. This 16,000 New Jersey policy holders includ- enabled the company to differentiate the ing physicians, other healthcare profes- customer experience because employees sionals, and healthcare facilities. Since could answer customer questions right 1976, Princeton Insurance has processed away instead of calling back after they KEY HIGHLIGHTS more than 54,000 medical malpractice retrieved the paper file.Industry cases. The company attributes its longev- Princeton Insurance used another storageInsurance ity and success to outstanding customer system for major business applications, service, business intelligence from 30The challenge including business intelligence. The years of malpractice claims, and a highlyIncrease business agility by delivering company continues to create new data efficient staff. A team of just 5 IT profes-IT as a service and empower small IT warehouse subsets (cubes), mining them sionals supports the entire infrastructureteam with efficient management tools. for correlations, patterns, and anomalies for a 150-person workforce that serves that factor into everything from newThe solution 16,000 customers. product development to financial-reserveCreated private cloud using NetApp® and Cisco® Unified Computing THE CHALLENGESystem™ (UCS) with VMware® vSphere™ 4. Princeton Insurance has a track record of harnessing information technology forBenefits customer service and operational effi-• Accelerated resource provisioning ciency. “To stay lean and still be effective, from weeks to minutes we have to embrace innovation,” says• Accomplished data-in-place upgrade Darby O’Neill, vice president of Technol-• Prepared for transition to IT as a service ogy for Princeton Insurance.• Protected investment with unified support for FC, FCoE, and iSCSI Information is the lifeblood of the insur- ance industry, and Princeton Insurance depends on its storage platform for key business activities ranging from customer service to product development and risk This solution provided by:
  2. 2. “We’re an insurance company, not a technology company. Working with three industry leaders, NetApp, Cisco, and VMware, is a wise choice for us because they have innovative, flexible, and cost-effective technology.” Darby O’Neill Vice President of IT, Princeton Insurance When the business intelligence platform “We could confidently recommend NetApp the IT team will connect the NetApp reached capacity, the IT team reevaluated storage for the Cisco UCS because Cisco FAS3140A system directly to the Cisco the overall storage strategy. The timing created validated designs for private UCS using FCoE, eliminating the costs of was good, because Princeton Insurance clouds using the Cisco UCS, NetApp, and Fibre Channel switch ports and cabling. had decided to counter “server sprawl” by VMware,” says Martin Klein, enterprise “We cabled the Cisco UCS for data and virtualizing applications and housing them account manager for H.A. Storage storage connectivity just once, and won’t on the Cisco Unified Computing System, Systems. have to do it again no matter how many which combines server, networking, blade servers we add,” says Nicole Gad- storage access, and virtualization in a NetApp technology complements the bois, Director of Network Operations for cohesive system managed as a single Cisco UCS, according to Klein. First, Princeton Insurance. entity. Adopting the Cisco UCS would be NetApp MultiStore® software enables the first step in the company’s transition to Princeton Insurance to logically partition O’Neill adds, “We’re an insurance com- delivering IT as a service. “Our vision was the array to securely house different pany, not a technology company. Working to create a secure private cloud with applications on the shared platform. with three industry leaders, NetApp, Cisco, shared resources that could be quickly Second, multiprotocol NetApp storage and VMware, is a wise choice for us provisioned, increasing business agility supports FCoE, providing the high band- because they have stable, innovative, and while also reducing IT overhead,” says width needed to support VMware ESX on cost-effective technology.” O’Neill. the Cisco UCS. Finally, Princeton Insur- ance could use the NetApp Virtual Storage BUSINESS BENEFITS The company needed a storage platform Console (VSC) plug-in for VMware vCen- Increased flexibility for a competitive that could house multiple applications and ter™, a free download, to minimize the advantage data warehouses, applying different number of management points. Princeton Insurance has amassed 30 years access policies to each. The platform had H.A. Storage Systems configured the of data, providing a wealth of hidden to be easy to manage for the small IT NetApp FAS3140A system with two business intelligence for new-product team. It needed to interoperate with the 450GB disk shelves. One SATA shelf was development and risk management. In the existing Microsoft ® Exchange and Micro- repurposed from the existing NetApp past, adding cubes to the data warehouse soft SQL Server ® application environ- FAS3020 system and remains dedicated for new types of analysis took weeks while ments, VMware ESX, and the legacy to the document imaging application. The the IT team scrambled to procure, config- Brocade Fibre Channel switch infrastruc- application accesses the disk by way of ure, and test servers and storage. “With ture. And it had to support Fibre Channel the 4GB Fibre Channel Cisco MDS 9124 NetApp storage and the Cisco UCS, we over Ethernet (FCoE) to connect directly to switch. The other disk provides storage can provision resources in minutes,” says the converged network adapter in the resources to the applications housed on Gadbois. “Our private cloud gives us the Cisco UCS, providing the high bandwidth the Cisco UCS as well as 25 standalone flexibility to respond to business opportu- to support VMware ESX while eliminating servers. All of the virtual servers boot from nities by quickly building new data ware- the high costs of Fibre Channel switches storage. houses, supporting customer portals, and and cabling. developing data exchanges with insurers The Cisco UCS currently contains 3 blade or insured.” THE SOLUTION servers hosting 35 virtual servers, includ- After evaluating both of its existing storage ing file shares and Web servers. The Cisco As an example of how the NetApp, Cisco, vendors, Princeton Insurance selected the UCS 6100 Fabric Interconnect connects to and VMware solution increases business NetApp FAS3140A system as the con- the NetApp FAS3140A storage array by agility, the IT team was recently asked to verged storage platform for the private way of a Cisco MDS Multilayer Director build a quality-assurance system with an cloud. H.A. Storage Systems, Inc., a 9000 Series. The fabric interconnect also application staging area. “Using NetApp value-added reseller of data storage connects all server blades to a Cisco storage and the Cisco UCS, we were able products and services and a participant in Catalyst 6509 switch over 10-Gigabit to deploy the QA system in a matter of the NetApp Partner Program, provided Ethernet. When the company has finished hours, helping our developers get to work design, deployment, and support services. moving all applications to the Cisco UCS, faster,” says Gadbois.
  3. 3. Another way the NetApp appliance and virtual machines from the blade server that A nondisruptive transition the Cisco UCS provide flexibility is through requires maintenance to another available Migrating from the old storage to the unified support for Fibre Channel, FCoE, server, which takes just minutes. The NetApp FAS3140A took only about 12 and iSCSI. Unified support provides virtual machines continue to access the hours, after business hours. H.A. Storage investment protection because the com- NetApp storage from the new server, with performed a data-in-place upgrade, pany can adapt its private cloud architec- no additional action from IT. moving the existing storage tray into the ture as needs change. new dual-controller system, which features Standardizing on NetApp storage will also a faster Fibre Channel interface to support IT efficiency for cost savings and help the IT team manage a higher volume VMware ESX. To accomplish the cutover, work-life balance of data with existing headcount, because the partner presented duplicate LUNs and Not only does the NetApp and Cisco UCS all NetApp products use a common then used software-based mirroring within combination increase business agility, it interface, the Data ONTAP operating Microsoft Windows ® to create an exact also helps the IT team work more effi- system. “We’re using the same skills for copy. Lastly, H.A. Storage separated the ciently. That’s especially important in a the NetApp FAS3140A that we used for software mirroring to begin using the small company, according to O’Neill: “In a the FAS3020, and we’ll continue to lever- copy on the NetApp system instead of small company, everyone has a lot of age those skills if we deploy new NetApp the copy on the previous storage system. responsibility, and we’re conscious of products in the future,” says Gadbois. “In Users immediately noticed faster applica- avoiding burnout,” she says. “The new a small company, the fewer technologies tion performance. architecture helps because we don’t have we need to manage and the more com- to perform maintenance after normal work monality between them, the better.” hours.” Instead, the team simply moves Fiber Channel NetApp FAS3140 Multipathed Cisco 9124 Cisco 6120 Fabric Interconnect Fiber Channel Cisco 9124 Cisco 6120 Fabric Interconnect Cisco UCS 5108 Blade Server Supporting VMware ESX, Hosting 35 Virtual Servers NetApp MultiStore Fiber ChannelMultipathed NetApp FAS3140 Cisco 6509 VCB Server Fiber Channel Disk Shelves SATA Disk Shelf Figure 1) Princeton Insurance storage infrastructure.
  4. 4. “With NetApp storage and the Cisco UCS, we can provision resources in minutes. We now have the flexibility to respond to business opportunities by quickly building new data warehouses, supporting customer portals, and developing data exchanges with insurers or insured.” Nicole Gadbois Director of Network Operations, Princeton InsuranceIn all, Gadbois regards the private cloud SOLUTION COMPONENTSas a competitive advantage, a way forIT to enable industry-leading customer NetApp products Host OSservice and business intelligence. “Years NetApp FAS3140A Windows 2003 and 2008ago, our company started out with amidrange system and shared storage, later NetApp Data ONTAP ® 7G VMware ESXmigrating to individual servers with direct- NetApp MultiStore Windows XPattached storage,” she says. “The NetApp, NetApp FlexShare ®Cisco, and VMware architecture combines Environmentthe best of our previous approaches to Cisco products Applications: Microsoft Exchange 2003,managing storage to give us the most Cisco Unified Computing System Microsoft SQL Server 2000, 2005, 2008flexibility yet.” with B200 M1 blade servers Database: Microsoft SQL Server 2000, Cisco UCS 6100 Series Fabric 2005, 2008 Interconnects Server platform: Cisco Unified Computing Cisco Nexus 1000V switch System with VMware vSphere 4 Cisco Catalyst 6509 switch Partner Cisco MDS 9124 H.A. Storage Systems, Inc. Protocols FC SAN–FCP, iSCSI, CIFS, NFS, FCoE © 2011 NetApp, Inc. All rights reserved. No portions of this document may be reproduced without prior written consent of NetApp, Inc. Specifications are subject to change without notice. NetApp, the NetApp logo, Go further, faster, Data ONTAP, FlexShare, and MultiStore are trademarks or registered trademarks of NetApp, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries. Cisco is a registered trademark and Unified Computing System is a trademark of Cisco Systems, Inc. VMware is a registered trademark and vSphere and vCenter are trademarks of VMware,For more information visit Inc. Microsoft, SQL Server, and Windows are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. All other brands or products are trademarks registered trademarks of their respective holders and should be treated as such. CSS-6380-1210