Myron Steves Readies its IT Infrastructure with VMware Software to Withstand Disaster
PALO ALTO, Calif., April 17, 2012 — VMware, Inc. (NYSE: VMW), the global leader in virtualization and cloud infrastructure, today announced that Myron F. Steves and Company, a Houston-based insurance wholesaler, has deployed virtualization and cloud solutions from VMware to help ensure that the company’s 200 employees can respond to customers when disaster strikes.
“A sizable percentage of small and mid-size businesses (SMBs) place a critical or high priority on virtualization — particularly server virtualization,” said Tim Harmon, principal analyst with Forrester Research, Inc. “Companies, both large and small, are investing aggressively, as they did last year, in ever more efficient backup and recovery capabilities, but the growth is most acute for SMBs because they view their computer systems and data as invaluable assets, realize that users will always be lax when it comes to backing up their data and want to free up their IT resources to focus on growth and their core competencies.” 1
Myron Steves serves more than 3,000 independent insurance agencies and cannot afford the risk of being incapacitated in the event of a disaster. With the virtualized architecture enabled by VMware, Myron Steves reports that it is able to fail over to backup servers within hours instead of days, server failover is now reliable and the company reduced IT costs significantly:
- Eliminated $400,000 in annual costs for third-party disaster recovery service
- Saved $200,000 in yearly payroll costs in the IT department
- Reduced maintenance costs by $150,000 per year
- More than 100 virtual desktops enable employees to work from anywhere
After escaping the third-most expensive hurricane in U.S. history as Hurricane Ike hit in nearby Galveston, Texas, Myron Steves realized quickly how critical implementing a disaster recovery strategy would be to their bottom line. The company needed a simpler and more reliable solution that would enable IT infrastructure to seamlessly failover in the event of a datacenter outage while ensuring the company’s voice-over-IP (VoIP) phones wouldn’t go down with the datacenter.
“The risk was that nobody would be able to communicate with us – if we lose our email, phone and fax systems, our customers’ only option would be cell phone. And what if they don’t know the cell number of the person they need to reach?” said Tim Moudry, associate director of IT for Myron Steves.
After evaluating other solutions from Citrix and Microsoft, Myron Steves chose VMware solutions for cost effectiveness, simplicity and reliability. Using VMware software from its desktops to its servers, Myron Steves virtualized its entire IT infrastructure – including Microsoft Exchange, SQL, SharePoint, Active Directory and the company’s VoIP system and fax software – using VMware vSphere®. Within 90 days the company consolidated 72 servers down to eight and was 99.999 percent virtualized.
Additionally, by leveraging VMware vCenter™ Site Recovery Manager™, Myron Steves automated server replication between its Houston and San Antonio offices, enabling the company to run its entire infrastructure from the San Antonio office in just a few hours compared with 10 days or more using a disaster recovery vendor.
“With VMware vSphere® and vCenter™ Site Recovery Manager™, we know we can switch our business over to our backup datacenter anytime – and be up and running within a few hours. And it costs a fraction of what we paid for the third-party disaster recovery service we used before,” said Moudry.
In addition, Myron Steves has implemented VMware View™ desktops to enable employees to work from home. But since Hurricane Ike, VMware View forms another vital component of Myron Steves’ disaster recovery strategy, providing its employees with access to their Windows desktops, applications and data from anywhere.
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VMware, VMware vCenter, VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager, VMware View and VMware vSphere are registered trademarks and/or trademarks of VMware, Inc. in the United States and/or other jurisdictions. All other marks and names mentioned herein may be trademarks of their respective companies. The use of the word “partner” or “partnership” does not imply a legal partnership relationship between VMware and any other company.
(1) Demand Insights: The SMB Hardware Infrastructure Market, April 20, 2011