Articles

Creating Agility and Continuity for a Global Product Company

The Challenge: Aging Hardware Limits M&A Activities

Businesses are managing more data and IT systems today than ever before. So, it’s no surprise that during mergers and acquisitions (M&A), getting the technology integration right can be an issue.

Effective technology integration during M&As can give business units more effective systems and streamlined workflows that make employees more productive and efficient. On the other hand, poor integration can lead to inaccurate and redundant systems: putting sensitive data at risk. IT teams often seek expert help with planning and implementation during M&A activities.

A Stromasys customer that produces over 60,000 products used in homes, businesses, schools, hospitals, and other industries, is committed to creating technology and products that advance every company, enhance every home, and improve every life. With M&A activities, mission-critical applications that allow the business to function were at risk of being lost through old and outdated hardware systems. It would be cost-prohibitive to rewrite the applications; therefore, they needed a business partner to help migrate existing Stromasys Charon-PAR and Charon-AXP (MPE and HP-UX, and Tru64, respectively) workloads to Amazon Web Services (AWS) using CloudEndure.

Many of the customer applications running on PA-RISC systems were purchased from other vendors, some still existing and others no longer around. Many included custom scripting for the applications to handle the data file transfer, document creation, and other ancillary tasks.

During M&A transitions, business continues as usual, so avoiding downtime with mission-critical applications in manufacturing environments around the country is essential. The customer’s local PA-RISC application, written primarily in Cobol, needed to be replaced to ensure that operations scheduling and maintenance, product assembly, inventory, warehouse management, and shipping continued with no interruption.

The Solution: Migrating to the Cloud Decreases Costs and Increases Productivity

To upgrade outdated hardware and replace its old, costly data centers, the customer looked to rehost on-premises Charon-PAR (HP-UX and MPE) workloads to AWS using application migration service, or MGN. The customer partnered with Stromasys and its partner, LCI, to provide hands-on assistance for the rehosting using CloudEndure.

With a highly complex, multi-national company with manufacturing sites all over the United States, many of the customer’s systems and data centers were not only costing them precious time with integrations but also costing them significantly each year to maintain. In today’s world of instantaneous information, they needed a solution that allowed them to integrate more quickly and be more efficient and responsive in business operations.

Jeff Stothart, LCI Director of Technical Services

The Result: Choosing the Right Partner Creates a Seamless Transition

LCI assisted with the emulation aspects of the project over six weeks and ensured key milestones were met along with the team at Stromasys, AWS, and the customer:

  • Set up appropriate EC2 instances and storage capacities to accommodate the workload.
  • Install and configure a replication agent on an on-premises Linux server.
  • Verify that all needed software was installed and the server met Stromasys specifications.
  • Initiate CloudEndure for data replication.
  • Begin cutover, which included stopping the emulator on the physical server, bringing down the physical server and getting the fingerprint of the AWS server, coordinating with Stromasys for license generation, and starting up a new emulator.
  • Activate the Charon license on the target server.
  • Log on to the guest OS and modify the networking configuration to accommodate the new AWS network.
  • Reboot the guest OS.
  • Test connectivity to gather the system.
  • Start and test applications with AWS.

Moving to AWS modernized how a manufacturing company used applications and systems and moved the company closer to its goal of closing one aging and costly data center, which will be a significant cost saving. AWS and Stromasys also made M&A activities smoother with a more consolidated, scalable IT infrastructure with no downtime.

We’ve had no issues since the switchover. The customer is seeing many benefits of being on the cloud now.

Jeff Stothart, LCI Director of Technical Services

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LCI_Logo

Partner Profile:

Founded in 1988, LCI is a solutions provider focusing on all aspects of legacy support. The LCI Legacy Support and Migration team has many years of experience providing support for all aspects of your HP-UX, MPE/iX, and SunOS/Solaris hardware, software, and OS environment. We provide flexible levels of support so you can choose a cost-effective option that best fits the needs of your organization as well as your budget.

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