Pacific Development Group
Synopsis:Migration to new Physical servers; upgraded windows domain and e-mail messaging software; improved backups with offsite copies.
Founded in 1980, Pacific Development Group and its partners currently own and manage approximately 2.5 million square feet of commercial buildings with approximately 700 tenants with a value in excess of $600 million. These properties are located throughout California and consist primarily of major tenant anchored shopping centers.
Pacific Development Group has been a Synegi customer for many years. The company’s network consists of 20 workstations and 4 servers (A file server, exchange 2003 server, a domain controller that also doubled as an SQL application server and a secondary domain controller that was also the backup server backing up data to tape). In the beginning of 2012, the current server hardware at the time had reached an age where there was no longer any hardware support available to protect the equipment in case of component failure. In addition to aging hardware, more and more employees were using multiple mobile devices (smart phones, tablets) as well as iMac/Macbook computers that would not function with the version of Exchange (version 2003). Space consumption was also becoming an issue for both file and exchange data. Also, the company wanted to move away from tape backup and there was a concern for backups not being available offsite in case of a disaster.
Pacific Development Group asked Synegi for recommendations of new server hardware and operating system software. 4 new HP ML350 G6 servers were installed to perform a one to one migration, as the company preference was to remain on physical servers. A one-to-one migration of data was performed per their respective server roles. During the domain controller migration, Active Directory had to be upgraded to 2008 R2 from 2003. The Active Directory Schema was also extended to support the installation of an Exchange 2010 server in the environment. Exchange mailboxes were migrated from Exchange 2003 to the new Exchange 2010 server with plenty of space for data growth. File server data and SQL data were migrated to their respective new servers, with each server having increased storage space as well. All other networking services (DNS/DHCP/Print) were configured appropriately on the new servers and all of the old servers were decommissioned and removed from the network, per Microsoft best practices. The barracuda backup appliance was then configured to perform daily backups of all the data from the new servers and configured to replicate offsite daily.
The new servers and software has improved overall performance and user experience. Having upgraded Active Directory to the latest version, more group policy features were available to improve the logon experience on the workstations as well as enforce new security features. The upgrade to Exchange 2010 improved user e-mail experience inside as well as outside the office with Outlook Anywhere and support for newer mobile devices. Backups with the new Barracuda backup appliance are have significantly reduced backup windows, due to the deduplication and compression the appliance achieves, as well as replicates data off-site. The servers are fully protected, data can be restored granularly at any time and in the event of a disaster, a bare metal restore of any one of the servers can be performed.
- Older versions of Active Directory and Microsoft Exchange lacked new features.
- Need to upgrade outdated physical HP servers.
- Need additional storage space to accommodate e-mail and data growth.
- Need new backup solution to eliminate the use of tape.
- HP ML350 G6 Servers.
- Windows Server 2008 R2.
- Active Directory 2008 R2
- Exchange 2010 Standard
- Barracuda Backup Appliance BBS 490.
- Migrate to new HP servers.
- Upgrade Active Directory from 2003 to 2008 R2.
- Upgrade Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2010 with Archive mailboxes.
- Faster, efficient, whole-server disk backups that replicate to the cloud.