Building a Stronger Workforce in Philadelphia. Real People. Real Career Help. Philadelphia Works, Inc. develops and manages workforce solutions that respond to business needs and increase economic opportunity for all Philadelphians. i2m helps support these function with cloud services powered by AWS. Prior to their cloud migration, they faced the following challenges:
- Creating a Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR) plan.
- Philadelphia Works wished to consolidate shared technology functions and services between sites.
- File storage and sharing services into the centralized environment which all sites could access.
- Microsoft Systems Center Control Manager (SCCM) to be managed centrally with local distribution points at each site.
- Critical business functions that will be shared between the 9 sites.
- Restructure monitoring systems and nodes at each site.
- Consolidating expensive local physical storage space and servers at each site.
- Required frequent maintenance and onsite visits to replace failing hardware.
Recognizing that AWS and i2m would be an ideal fit for Philadelphia Works, i2m implemented a plan to maximize the benefits of both, including the following changes to Philadelphia Works & PA CareerLink’s IT infrastructure:
- Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR) features for PWI’s new cloud environment.
- CloudBerry for File Backup and Restore and Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR) operations.
- Automated AMI and Snapshot Scheduling and Maintenance Solution using Elastic CloudGate and AWS Lambda.
- Migrated part of their existing on-site infrastructure to a cloud-based architecture for each site. Specifically, SCCM and Symantec Anti-Virus Management Systems using AWS Server
- Migration Service which simplified and expedited the migration of these critical components.
- File Systems and Domain Controllers span multiple availability zones which ensures high availability and redundancy for these critical components.
- We made use of Amazon Windows FSx for Windows File Server which help save cost over EBS volumes for File Sharing and took advantage of its automated snapshot features.
- Storage and Systems Governance and Cost Optimization Platform using CloudHealth by VMware
- Cloud based Alerting/Monitoring Solution for storage and critical systems.
i2m added additional Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR), Primary Storage and Backup and Restore capabilities for PWI’s new cloud environment
- We implemented our managed i2mcloud Enterprise Backup solution which uses Amazon S3 or Amazon S3 Glacier as its cloud-based storage to establish Backup, Restore and Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR) capabilities.
- This solution also took advantage of end-end encryption for data at rest and in transit. We have multiple recovery points in a day to cover any loss during business hours.
- Automated AMI and Snapshot Scheduling and Maintenance Solution using Elastic CloudGate and AWS Lambda
- We also took advantage of Amazon S3 Glacier for long term-archiving and retention of outdated documents and data replacing legacy tape backups. This solution also took advantage of end-end encryption for data at rest and in transit.
The following AWS technology was used:
- Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3)
- Amazon S3 Glacier
- Amazon Elastic Block Store (EBS)
- AWS Server Migration Service
- Amazon Windows FSx for Windows File Server
- AWS CloudFormation
- Amazon EC2
- Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)
- AWS Lambda
- AWS Identity & Access Management (IAM)
- AWS Config
- AWS CloudTrail
- Amazon CloudWatch
The following i2m technology was implemented:
- Backup and Restore operations using Cloudberry Enterprise Backup
- Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR) Implementation
- Direct archive into Amazon S3 and Glacier for long term retention of documents using Cloudberry Enterprise Backup
- Elastic CloudGate – AMI and Snapshot Scheduling and Maintenance Solution • Centralized File Storage, Collaboration and Management
- CloudHealth by VMware – Storage and Systems Governance and Cost Optimization Platform
- Nagios Check_MK – Monitoring and Alerting System
i2m Solution Benefits
When Philadelphia Works & PA CareerLink’s migrated to the cloud, it gave them increased stability, availability, redundancy and performance gains for their critical business applications. i2m migrated and consolidated all the PA CareerLink Sites to a new AWS Hybrid Environment that supports a shared primary storage, an established BCDR plan, backup and restore operations in addition to other critical business functions that will be shared between the 9 sites in the most optimal HA and fault tolerant configuration required by their business. Minimizing the local hardware presence/environment with only sub-system distribution nodes at each site.
Creation of a centralized file storage, collaboration and management platform using Amazon FSx for Windows File Server that is shared between the 9 Philadelphia Works & PA CareerLink’s sites. This greatly improved accessibility to the data from each site as well as enhanced their collaboration capabilities which made it easier to share documents between users and sites.
By utilizing Amazons Server Migration Service, we were able to simplify the migration process of SCCM and the Anti-Virus system without any downtime. We were able to reduce wasted space on physical disks by rightsizing EBS volumes to be more economical.
New Servers in the cloud environment took advantage of our i2mcloud Enterprise Backup solution using Amazon S3 and Amazon S3 Glacier for a cost-effective way to meet their file backup, restore and archiving requirements.
We had a tight deadline to meet and we planned to finish the project in 2 week or less for the production environment on AWS. We were able to get project completed by the proposed deadline without any downtime for users or clients. We received great feedback about the performance of the new cloud environment. The PA CareerLink IT Business Continuity Plan was designed to reduce the risk to an acceptable level by ensuring the timely and orderly restoration of critical IT and telecommunications systems this was facilitated with the use of AWS and it’s feature rich storage services. Philadelphia Works & PA CareerLink’s required an AWS partner to create an environment ensured infrastructure was setup optimally, security policies were adequate, best practices followed and to provide management services across their AWS and Hybrid Environment.
- Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) – 200% reduction in TCO over the course of 3 years compared to on-premise/co-located DR solution
30% reduction in TCO over 3 years compared to other cloud providers.
- Disaster Recovery RTO – 3 hour RTO compared to 1-4 weeks on-premise.
- Disaster Recover RPO – 24 hour RPO for Files and Servers.
- Disaster Recovery Durability Benefits – 99.999999999% Durability attained by using Amazon S3 and Amazon S3 Glacier. Previously Magnetic Disks were used which have a much lower durability rating.
Backed with the Amazon S3 Service Level Agreement
Designed to provide 99.999999999% durability and 99.99% availability of objects over a given year
Designed to sustain the concurrent loss of data in two facilities
- Performance Gains – Improved management capabilities compared to managing their environment on-premise.
- Time Managing the Solution – Decreased in time spent managing and maintaining the previous IT Environment Infrastructure went from ~80 hours/month to ~20 hour/month by using AWS.
- System Uptime and Availability – ~%99.999 over 6 month period, Increased from ~98% previously