New LA disaster recovery system ensures 100% uptime for critical department processes

CNT® today announced completion of a cost-effective disaster recovery solution for the City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.

MINNEAPOLIS, Oct. 22, 2001 — CNT® today announced completion of a cost-effective disaster recovery solution for the City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.

Using IBM's TotalStorage Peer-to-Peer Virtual Tape Server (VTS) and CNT's UltraNet Storage Director, L.A. Water and Power now has a system that improves data integrity, increases system efficiency, and decreases employee time spent on maintaining backup tapes.

When the L.A. Department of Water and Power, the largest municipally owned utility in the nation, decided to replace their pre-existing disaster recovery system, they turned to CNT and IBM for a solution that mirrors electronically — instead of physically shipping tapes-disaster recovery data to a remote site. The new data replication system, which is the first production installation of Peer-to-Peer VTS extension, can be linked over unlimited distances for more reliable disaster recovery.

In the event of a disaster, the production processing can now be shifted to the data recovery site in less than an hour, ensuring business continuity for the department.

"This city department functions the same way as any business," said Mark Knittel, group vice president of WW product operations, CNT. "The applications critical to the basic functions of L.A. Water and Power must be constantly available and easily recoverable. Any downtime in their billing department can translate into lost revenues; employees won't work if they aren't paid; customers who can't get a prompt response will take their business elsewhere. This solution is sound business sense for a vital city department."

This one department is responsible for serving 3.8 million people and businesses in a 464-square-mile area.

L.A. Water and Power's mainframe contains application data necessary for the department's payroll services, accounts payable, and customer service. In the event of a natural disaster such as an earthquake, the applications can be easily recovered online. However, prior to their new disaster recovery solution, the employee and customer data that drove those applications was only available through the backup tapes.

This meant that whenever L.A. Water and Power needed to restore data to the system mainframe, thousands of backup tapes were shipped from its remote site. When this system was tested, restoration issues developed due to the shipping time required, and because tapes could be lost during shipping.

The new solution ensures all data on the mainframe is replicated to the remote site in real time using CNT and IBM products to create a bi-directional mirroring environment.

"This is an ideal disaster recovery solution," said Dennis Thun, manager of operations, City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. "A lot of companies conduct disaster recovery testing and all of them experience the same basic recovery problems we had with our tape backup. Previously, it took us many hours of data recovery from tape, prior to even restarting our system, and then 2-3 days to accomplish the DR testing. With our new system, it takes 2 hours to bring the system and online applications up and we have all the tape data accessible immediately. The new disaster recovery solution functions like a well-oiled machine."

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power's decision to implement a disaster recovery solution resulted in numerous business benefits for the company, including less time devoted to maintaining backup tapes and the added assurance that their customer data would be accessible and secure, in any situation, at any time.

About CNT

CNT is the global storage networking specialist and a pioneer in IP storage solutions. Innovative products and services from CNT help IT professionals design and implement cost-effective storage solutions that span diverse servers, storage systems and networks-enabling enterprise-wide data access and protection. For information, visit CNT's web site at or call 763-268-6000.

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