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A Move to Efficiency: Migrating Dozens of Sites to One Operating System

Acquisitions, mergers, different IT leaders over the years…take these factors over time and a company’s information technology environment can start to run amok with multiple platforms. For a West Coast environmental engineering firm with three different operating systems in its environment, it was time to get everyone on the same page.

That’s when the IT infrastructure director contacted MicroAge’s Daniel Archer and Martha Banister. They needed help migrating more than 40 of their domestic sites currently running different operating systems to Microsoft Windows Server and Active Directory.

“In general, it’s always better to be on one platform,” Daniel says. “Having a standardized platform reduces the cost to maintain multiple software platforms and increases efficiency within the business.”

MicroAge delivered preconfigured HP servers where needed and worked with the client to develop a VMware ESXi and Microsoft Windows Server 2008R2 golden image for fast and repeatable deployment to be used at each site.

“When you’re imaging 40-plus sites with VMware and Windows, you want to start with one image, then test it before you roll it out to all of the different sites,” Daniel explains. “A lot of development time went into creating and testing the image.”

The image was tested at one pilot site to start and then three more pilot sites before the rollout. Full deployment took six more weeks with up to eight sites in the queue per week.

For each on-site migration, servers and workstations (between five and 140 per site, depending on the site’s size) had to be cut over in a weekend.

“We coordinated technicians to be onsite starting Friday evening for set-up,” Daniel says. “Most of the data migration and cut over work was done over the weekend, and the technicians were onsite again Monday morning to ensure a smooth rollout. This whole rollout was completed as business continued. We were very conscientious not to disrupt business.”

MicroAge’s national technician network made it possible to deliver personal service without adding travel costs. “And what could be done remotely — we did remotely,” Daniel adds. “These are just a couple of ways we were able to meet our goal for both time and budget.”

For the client, the change was smooth and transparent. Weekly meetings kept the IT staff apprised of project progress. Daniel and Martha were able to remain flexible while working with the business unit, even working around people’s schedules on Mother’s Day.

“With the help of MicroAge’s project management and planning we accomplished our project goals while staying on time and on budget,” comments the IT Infrastructure Director.

Having a unified Windows Server platform powered by VMware will allow this engineering company to reach its growth goals and serve its clients better.

If you’re ready to streamline your IT operations, Daniel Archer and Martha Banister can help. Reach them directly at daniel.archer@microage.com or 480-366-2125; and martha.banister@microage.com or 480-366-2127.

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Daniel Archer
10 Years Experience
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Martha Banister
17 Years Experience
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