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Case studies

IT infrastructure/cost reduction


Lawrence Graham Lawyers – optimisation of the virtual server environment 


Lawrence Graham (LG) is one of the UK’s top 50 internationally focused firms of commercial business lawyers, advising clients and providing practical solutions for services such as raising capital, real estate, risk and regulation. Their head office is in London with further offices located in Dubai and Monaco. The company employs 500 staff and has 85 partners worldwide. The environment is data intensive (with each case involving literally thousands of documents and files) and constant accessibility and robust availability of applications and data is a prerequisite.

LG had already begun the process of server virtualisation but timelines were being missed as staff struggled to transition and provision the virtual servers. In addition the partly virtualised environment was unstable with outages common and downtime an issue. The lack of a concrete DR policy meant that servers, applications and storage were potentially susceptible.

The new IT Director, Jason Petrucci, asked VirtualizeIT to work with LG to help them devise a fresh approach down the virtualisation path. VirtualizeIT mapped out an ideal virtualised system environment design, implementation and support plan to revive the virtualisation of the entire estate. In production the team agreed on an HP 8000 EVA, running 12 blade and 13 VMware ESX3.01 servers with Virtual Centre v2.5 for the monitoring of the 20 virtual machines. For disaster recovery, a HP 4000 EVA was recommended with 6 blade and 6 VMware ESX 3.01 servers across 20 virtual machines.

Currently 80% of the environment is virtualised with LG enjoying lower costs through reducing their investments in hardware. True clustering is now achieved over both live and DR sites and the IT team is pleased with the ease of management virtualisation brings. DR is now guaranteed and new applications can be easily added without down time. The previously volatile Exchange, Filesite and Sharepoint environments have stabilised. LG can now demonstrate lower CO2 omissions and remote access is now secured via Citrix. For the future LG are looking at Virtual Desktop Infrastructure and virtualised SANs and will continue to work VirtualizeIT to enhance optimal implementation and support capabilities.

“With VirtualizeIT we really believe they have understood our business requirements and aligned the technology needs applying their expert services to address them. It really is an ongoing strategic partnership with a trusted independent advisor.” concludes Jason Petrucci, IT Director LG.


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