Archive for: AMS | Stromasys

Archiving and Compliance: How Charon Can Help

More than ever, archiving data is essential for businesses. It’s integrated into disaster recovery plans, promotes business continuity, and in many cases is even legally mandated. Archived data protects businesses and the customers those businesses serve.

But what do you do with the archived data? As those records age, so do the machines that house them. Where do you keep the data, and how do you access it?

Like many companies, Racine Water & Wastewater Utilities needed to maintain their legacy system in order to access archived data. They had migrated their primary billing system from an HP 3000 A-400 to a newer system in 2008, but only four years of archived data could be migrated to the new system, and more than 25 years of records remained on the HP 3000 system. By 2014, they knew they needed a solution to continue to access the records stored on the HP 3000.

That’s when they started researching replacement options, and found us. According to Racine Water, CHARON-HPA was a solid product at the right price, and they were impressed with the expertise of the Stromasys engineer who managed the implementation from start to finish.

For companies like Racine Water looking for a way to maintain archive systems, Charon has some obvious benefits:

It’s cost-effective: Charon solutions are lower in cost than a full migration and often even less than the annual maintenance contract for the original hardware.

It’s low-risk: Organizations legally obligated to maintain records can’t risk losing them in a hardware failure situation or in the middle of a migration process. Charon virtualizes the hardware without making any changes to the applications, keeping all data intact.

It’s seamless: There is no rewriting or modification required, and the transition process to implement Charon is a matter of days. End users interact with the system just as they always have, with no retraining required.

By choosing CHARON-HPA, Racine Water & Wastewater Utilities found a solution to their archived data problem at the right price, without jeopardizing their records or overturning their existing processes.

Is your company looking for a solution to access the archived data on legacy systems? Download the full case study here, or contact us here to request more information.

Eliminate the risk of Alpha Server hardware failure

Wheeler Manufacturing, a jewelry manufacturer based in South Dakota, needed to protect their critical production applications running on an AlphaServer. These applications were highly customized, and the system itself had been in use for 15 years. When a disk drive failed and a full day of production was lost—in addition to the drive’s contents—Wheeler knew they needed to find a way to reduce the risk of future downtime. Replacing the broken drive would solve the immediate problem, but Wheeler wanted a more permanent solution.

For businesses like Wheeler Manufacturing, classic systems house time-tested, mission-critical applications that oversee production. These have been running for a very long time, and have been customized and perfected over the years to accommodate the precise specifications of the company’s manufacturing process. When the hardware begins to malfunction or fail, companies must assess their options:

They can search for spare parts and ongoing support, but this can be hard to find as classic systems are reaching End of Life. New parts are no longer readily available, and the workforce of knowledgeable technicians to support and repair these machines is dwindling.

An alternative is to invest in a new system. A new system can of course be customized to the company’s needs, but the process is time-consuming, expensive, runs the risk of losing years or even decades of important data, and requires extensive retraining of employees. For companies that work with tight budgets and can’t afford to shut down production for long periods of time, this isn’t a viable option.

For Wheeler Manufacturing, these options weren’t attractive. Maintaining the original hardware was risky, and an entirely new system would necessitate enormous costs and excessive downtime—not to mention risking loss of data in the conversion process.

Then Pyramid Technology, a Stromasys Partner, mentioned CHARON-AXP from Stromasys. What began as a search for a replacement part ended with the installation of a Stromasys solution at Wheeler Manufacturing. With the help of CHARON-AXP/SMA Plus from Stromasys, Wheeler has succeeded in extending the life of the applications on which their business relies—and have benefitted from a substantial performance improvement.

In the words of Tony Waller, CIO of Wheeler Manufacturing: “All our software works like it always did, only twice as fast.” For Wheeler, Stromasys has proved to be a gateway to business continuity.

Learn more about it and download the case study