Overhauling an ageing network

Overhauling an ageing network

Virtual chassis technology was key to reducing power consumption of one government agency’s network, while still offering crucial scalability and redundancy capabilities.

When an organisation has an ageing network infrastructure with no redundancy and is losing money maintaining old equipment prone to failure, it’s time for an overhaul. That was the scenario facing a government agency of 200 users, who turned to technology consultant and network solution provider, MatrixCNI, to deliver a new network infrastructure. Being part of government, the agency also had to be seen to be adopting energy efficient hardware that was as environmentally friendly as possible.

Network Pain

MatrixCNI managing director, Deni Saupin, and his brother, Jacques, who looks after the company’s government clients, examined the pain points of the agency’s existing network and realised a complete infrastructure overhaul was needed.

“The major problem they had is they have a new application project about to be rolled out to users internally and externally, and that was causing a fair bit of pain because there was no redundancy in their network,” Jacques said. “Even the existing equipment, that they were spending a whole lot of money on maintenance for, was starting to break down more often than it should have.”

With new applications coming onboard, the agency also needed flexibility and scalability within its network without going to great cost.

“It basically entailed redesigning the network, looking at what they were trying to achieve in terms of delivering the application, and designing a robust and redundant network able to deliver those applications properly. They were looking for something more resilient, and one of the other requirements was a green friendly solution, something that took less power,” Deni said.

Juniper's Virtual Chassis Technology

MatrixCNI looked at all its vendor options, costed numerous configurations and examined the results in terms of performance, robustness and energy efficiency. A number of options were taken to the agency. Based on feedback, it recommended a Juniper-based solution.

“We went with the Juniper EX switches, along with the SSG-550 firewalls, so it was a complete end-to-end solution around Juniper using virtual chassis technology,” Jacques said.

That made a lot of sense because all products are based on the Junos code, giving consistency in deployment, he said.

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