Technical Foundations - Triangle Computer Services

Triangle Technology Foundations

VirtualisationWhat is Virtualisation?

Virtualisation is a technology that enables you to obtain maximum value from your IT hardware and software investments. In the past when you implemented IT systems one computer ran one operating system (e.g.Windows or Linux) and that operating system in turn ran a number of applications. However, computers and the systems they ran might be used for only 20% of the time they were available. Companies often deployed multiple copies of the same application across their machines, increasing licensing and maintenance costs.

Virtualisation helps you address this inefficient use of resources. With Virtualisation you can create ‘virtual’ versions of hardware, operating systems, applications and data storage which can run on a smaller set of resources. For example, you can run multiple versions of Windows or Linux on the same machine, and each of these can run applications in parallel.

Benefits of Virtualisation

  • Consolidation: Consolidate your hardware, reducing purchase, maintenance and energy costs.
  • Utilization: Make more use of your servers, reducing system redundancy and down-time – you can achieve up to 80% greater utilization of every server.
  • Cost Reduction: Reduce your licensing costs and reduce your hardware requirements by a ratio of 10:1 or better.
  • Simplification: Simplify your IT management – less devices and applications to manage, improved management dashboards.
  • Ease of Deployment: you can centrally deploy and manage applications rather than installing at each desktop.
  • Availability: today’s virtualisation solutions make it much easier to guarantee availability of critical business systems when parts of your infrastructure fail.

Virtualisation Solutions

Virtualisation solutions are built around the concept of the “virtual machine” – a ‘software container’ with an operating system and application inside. Many of these can run independently on the same computer at the same time. A management system called a “hypervisor” runs these multiple VMs on the host machine, dynamically allocating computing resources as required.

Virtualisation can be delivered across a number of levels:

  • Server consolidation – aggregating multiple servers into a single resource e.g. reducing 20 servers at 10% capacity to 4 servers at 80% capacity.
  • Desktop virtualisation – virtual machines run on staff computers, providing a full desktop experience with all the applications they require, but with no redundant licenses and full centralised control.
  • Storage consolidation – many data storage servers are only partially utilized in many organizations. Data Virtualisation enables you to consolidate your data storage devices and make them available to multiple clients, increasing utilization.

Triangle’s Virtualisation Team

Triangle Computer Services’ Virtualisation team was setup in 2001. The team are singularly focused on designing and deploying enterprise virtualisation. We have developed exceptional expertise in the successful deployment of virtual infrastructure solutions.

Deploying virtualisation technologies enhances IT reliability, performance, and security while reducing both complexity and cost for our clients. Triangle reaches these goals by enabling a holistic virtualisation encompassing not just servers, but also storage, backup, network, clients and replication / disaster recovery. We partner with industry leaders VMWare and others to deliver highly effective virtualisation solutions.

Virtualisation Technologies from Triangle Computer Services

Virtualisation is a technology that enables you to obtain maximum value from your IT hardware and software investments. With Virtualisation you can create ‘virtual’ versions of hardware, operating systems, applications and data storage which can run on a smaller set of resources. Triangle Computer Services implements a number of Virtualisation Solutions including server consolidation, desktop virtualisation and storage consolidation. We deliver the following partner technologies for Virtualisation:

VMWare Virtualisation Products

VMWare is one of the world’s leading providers of virtualisation technologies. Triangle Computer Services is a “Premier Solution Provider” partner. With VMware virtualisation products you can dramatically increase the performance and cost effectiveness of your IT infrastructure. Using VMWare the hardware resources of a single machine are used by multiple virtual machines which increases utilization and reduces system redundancy. VMWare’s vSphere product range includes Infrastructure Services, for virtualising servers, storage and network resources. vSphere also includes Application Services, a set of components that provide controls for all applications running on VMWare vSphere.

IBM Virtualisation Products

Triangle Computer Services is an IBM “Premier Business Partner”. IBM offers server consolidation and storage consolidation solutions, virtualisation management solutions, data centre automation solutions and optimized cloud delivery solutions. IBM’s PowerVM suite is its flagship virtualization platform for Unix, Linux and IBM clients.

Cisco Virtualisation Products

Triangle is a registered partner of Cisco, the world’s leading provider of network technologies. Cisco provides the Cisco Virtualisation Experience Infrastructure (VXI). Cisco VXI enables you to improve desktop virtualisation service delivery, and the VXI smart solution combines Cisco Data Centre, network and collaboration technologies which lets you simplify deployment and reduce costs.

cloud computingCloud Computing Triangle Computer Services

Triangle Computer Services specialize in combining private and public cloud technologies to provide you with flexible, agile IT services that stretch to meet demand.

Cloud Computing means using computer resources, both hardware and software, that are delivered as services over a network, usually the Internet. Instead of maintaining all of your hardware and software systems in house, you can move to a subscription or ‘utility’ model, where you access resources over the web. Generally you “pay as you go” instead of paying an up-front license fee and the resources are available to you instantly on-demand.

There are three main delivery models, known as “public cloud”, “private cloud” and “hybrid”:

  • Public cloud – in this case, you are accessing software and hardware resources that are maintained by a third party and accessed over the public Internet. Microsoft Office 365, Salesforce and Googlemail are examples of public cloud services.
  • Private cloud – in this case, you are operating your own dedicated hardware and software centres, but your organization accesses these resources via a network. You gain the benefits of cloud computing but retain greater control over corporate resources and data.
  • Hybrid – in this case, organizations use some combination of public and private cloud services.

Benefits of Cloud Computing

  • Elasticity: you can scale up and down your activities easily and smoothly because of the ability to dynamically access third party computing and storage resources when you need them.
  • Reduced costs: with cloud computing you only pay for what you use, so you don’t have to pay fees for unused licenses or for under-utilized hardware systems. And because Cloud systems are typically subscription based the cost becomes an operational expense rather than an up-front capital cost.
  • Agility and Flexibility: with cloud computing new software systems can be made instantly available to all staff in your organization. New services can be rolled out in days, letting you react to competitive pressures and opportunities faster.
  • Access Anywhere: with cloud based services your staff can access their systems and data from any location that has internet access. This makes it much simpler to plan the provision of IT services for multiple offices.
  • Access Any time: because the services are deployed over the Internet your staff can access their systems at any time and from any location – from the airport, at a hotel, while working from home. This increases productivity and reduces downtime.
  • Simpler IT management: because the systems are delivered from the cloud, your service provider takes responsibility for software and hardware maintenance, server upgrades, data security and other services.

Triangle’s Cloud Services

Triangle Computer Services provides a range of cloud computing services and technologies. We provide planning and migration services, and we assist in the implementation of your cloud strategy. In particular, we can help organizations deploy a mixture of private and public cloud technologies, enabling them to ‘break out’ to the public cloud when there are surges in demand for IT resources. This ‘elasticity’ is achieved at a fraction of the cost of traditional IT. Our cloud services include:

  • Cloud Applications
  • Cloud Servers
  • Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS)
  • Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

We partner with Embotics and other leading providers of cloud technology so we can deliver best-of-breed solutions that truly match your needs.

networkingNetworks with Triangle Computer Services

Your IT network is vital to the day-to-day running of your operations, but in many organizations the network has grown organically without formal planning. This results in inefficient networks with bottlenecks, bandwidth problems and security holes.

Triangle Computer Services helps you assess weaknesses in your existing network, identify future requirements and set out a roadmap to implement improvements. We can help implement those improvements too, using technology from industry leading partners like Cisco.

Benefits of Network Planning and Improvement

  • Improved performance: we help you ensure your staff get the response times they require even during periods of heavy demand.
  • Improved security: we identify security vulnerabilities across your network and help you address those gaps through better network configuration and improved operational procedures.
  • Reduced costs: through better utilization you reduce the number of network devices and we simplify management, reducing system administration and support costs.
  • Availability: we help you ensure critical business systems are available when and where they’re needed.

Triangle Computer Services provides a range of networking technologies. We partner with Cisco, Imprivata and other leading providers of network and security solutions so we can deliver best-of-breed solutions that truly match your needs.

securitySecurity with Triangle Computer Services

The more we rely on IT systems the more we need to ensure they are secure. Security breaches can lead to the loss of critical information, disruption of operational systems and damage to your corporate reputation. IT security is also growing more complex. With the increasing mobility of staff, the need to access resources remotely and the growing use of cloud technologies, it is no longer easy to enforce a security perimeter around the organization.

Key IT Security Principles

There are four key principles we help you address when providing IT security services:

  • Confidentiality – you need to ensure that transactions and internal communications are not disclosed to unauthorised individuals or systems inadvertently or intentionally.
  • Integrity – you must ensure that data cannot be tampered with e.g. a message being modified in transit from the sender to the received.
  • Authenticity – you need to validate that documents, data and communications are genuine. You also want to authenticate that both parties to a communication are who they say they are.
  • Availability – for IT systems to be useful their services need to be available when they are needed. Some security attacks (such as ‘denial of service’ attacks) aim to reduce availability in order to cause damage.

IT Security Services From Triangle

Triangle Computer Services provide a range of IT Security services and technologies to help you protect your information systems from unauthorized access, disclosure, modification or destruction. We begin with an IT security audit, where we identify your key information assets, both systems and data, and we help you assess the potential risks to those assets. Next we identify appropriate controls and technologies to address those risks and secure your information. Finally, we help you divide your IT infrastructure into “security zones”, restricting access to zones and interaction between zones, so that if someone succeeds in breaking into one zone, they don’t automatically gain access to your entire IT infrastructure.

During the IT security assessment and planning we focus on 4 levels:

  • Hosts – these are the computers and servers maintained by your organization. The security controls used here include operating system hardening, strict enforcement of ‘least privilege’ for user accounts, host intrusion detection systems etc.
  • Network – in this level we focus on securing the connections between components in your IT infrastructure, using controls such as encrypted pipes, mutual SSL authentication, network intrusion detection systems etc.
  • Applications – at this level we focus on identity and access management for your applications. The security controls here include access control lists, role based access control systems, careful configuration of applications, removal of unnecessary accounts etc.
  • Cloud Security – at this level we look at all of the external cloud based resources in use and the potential security risks they incur. We implement a range of virtualisation security technologies to address these risks.

Security Products from Triangle Computer Services

As organizations adopt virtualized infrastructure the security requirements change. You need network security designed for a virtual environment. Triangle Computer Services partners with VMWare in order to deliver its VMWare vCloud Networking and Security Solution.

VMWare vCloud Networking and Security

VMware® vCloud Networking and Security is VMWare’s software-defined networking and security solution. The system reduces your costs and the complexity of securing your infrastructure with a virtualized networking and security solution. vCloud provides a broad range of services in a single solution, including virtual firewall, VPN, load balancing and VXLAN extended networks. You can scale and move virtual workloads without physical network or security constraints. You can also integrate third party network and security solutions using VMWare’s published APIs.

vCloud Networking and Security consists of the following components : Edge, App, VXLAN, Data Security and vCloud Ecosystem framework, all managed through vCenter and vCloud Director.

Edge

The Edge gateway component provides an effective security services gateway to secure the perimeter of virtual datacenters. The Edge virtual appliance provides a firewall for virtual datacenters as well as integrated services such as Network Address Translastion (NAT), load balancer, VPN and DHCP (dynamic host configuration protocol).

App

App enables you to create logical and elastic trust zones that are protected from network-based threats. You can segment and isolate critical applications within the virtual datacenter using vNIC (virtualized Network Interface Card) level firewalling.

VXLAN

VXLAN technology allows compute resources to be pooled across non-contiguous clusters or pods. You can then segment this pool into logical networks attached to applications. Unlike VLANs, VXLANs virtual networks can span across virtual resources pools and physical boundaries – and as such, are more efficient, scalable, resilient and manageable.

Data Security

Data Security scans virtual workloads for sensitive data – such as credit card information – and reports violations of regulations (such as PCI-DSS), enabling IT organizations to quickly assess the state of compliance with regulations from around the world.

vCloud Ecosystem Framework

vCloud Ecosystem Framework enables partner security technologies to integrate to a virtual and cloud infrastructure. Partners can integrate at the vNIC level, at the virtual network edge or at the policy management level.

Disaster Recovery as a Service with Triangle Computer Services

Organizations back up critical data and systems on a regular basis to ensure they can recover if there is a system failure. Recently, many companies have begun backing up their data to low-cost cloud based centres, where it can be instantly retrieved if needed.

Disaster Recovery as a Service takes this a step further. In addition to offsite, cloud-based backup storage, Disaster Recovery as a Service also provides cloud based computing resources. So instead of restoring data back to your on-premise infrastructure you restore it to cloud-based virtual machines. In some cases near continuous backup is required and for these situations you use “replication”, where data is mirrored to the cloud virtual machines.

Benefits of DRaaS

  • Faster recovery: Use of automated virtual machines minimizes the recovery time after a system failure.
  • Reduced costs: the ‘pay as you go’ model reduces the cost of enterprise-class disaster recovery.
  • Reduced administration: the service provider manages the Disaster Recovery servers and storage devices, reducing management and administration overheads.

Triangle’s DRaaS services

Triangle Computer Services can help you plan and manage your Disaster-Recovery-as-a-Service projects. We help with identifying the appropriate technologies and service providers, planning the disaster recovery implementation and testing its effectiveness.

We partner with VMWare, Cisco, Zerto and other leading providers of disaster recovery and cloud technology so we can deliver best-of-breed solutions that truly match your needs.

Server & Storage Consolidation

Server Consolidation

 The IT infrastructure at most organizations has evolved over a number of years. Some elements are well planned while some other elements are implemented in response to an urgent requirement or ad hoc request. Typically there is a problem with under-utilized resources – in many data centres servers achieve only 10% to 15% utilization.

Triangle Computer Services helps you consolidate your servers using virtualisation technologies from leading vendors such as VMware. You can achieve increases in utilization up to 80% and reduce hardware requirements by a ratio of 1:10 or higher.

Benefits of Server Consolidation

  • Reduced costs: fewer servers means less money spent on purchase, maintenance and operations. Triangle can help you achieve savings of up to €2,500 per server that you virtualize when you combine purchase savings, capital reductions and reduced energy consumption.
  • Reduced administration: by consolidating servers to the same virtual hardware platform you reduce repetitive installation and administration tasks and make the management of those servers much simpler.

Triangle Computer Services can help you plan and manage your server consolidation. We help with identifying the appropriate technologies, planning the implementation and setting up operational procedures. We partner with IBM,  VMWare and other leading providers of virtualisation technology so we can deliver best-of-breed solutions that truly match your needs.

 

Storage Consolidation

Every organization faces increasing demands on its’ IT infrastructure – we expect high availability and fast responses. At the same time most organizations are also dealing with a rapid increase in data storage demands. (The growth in global data is estimated at 40% per year). IT managers have to deal with these greater volumes of data distributed across different platforms and resources. You have to deal with demands on your infrastructure today while carrying out capacity planning for forecast demand in future.

Triangle Computer Services can help you simplify complex storage environments, helping you reduce costs, simplify administration and future-proof your organization for upcoming requirements. We use a data management framework to assess your current data storage provision and map out a new data architecture.

Benefits of Storage Management

  • Consolidation: Consolidate your data storage devices and systems, reducing purchase, maintenance and energy costs.
  • Reduced costs: through better utilization you reduce the number of storage devices and we simplify management, reducing system administration and support costs.
  • Availability: ensure critical business data is always available when and where it’s needed.
  • Disaster Recovery: with today’s modern data virtualisation and data storage solutions it is possible to manage disaster recovery and business continuity much more effectively.
  • Insight: we can provide you with an end-to-end views of application data storage across your organization.
  • Error reduction: reduce errors due to manual data storage resource management.
  • Future proofing: develop better future capacity planning through an accurate view of current storage requirements and trends.

Infrastructure as a Service with Triangle Computer Services

“Infrastructure As A Service” means being able to use physical or virtual machines that are accessed over the Internet and maintained by a third party provider.

Cloud_computing.svg

Benefits of IaaS

  • Elasticity: you can scale up and down your use of resources easily and smoothly because of the ability to dynamically access third party computing resources when you need them.
  • Reduced costs: you only pay for what you use, so you don’t have to pay for under-utilized hardware systems. And because Cloud systems are typically subscription based the cost becomes an operational expense rather than an up-front capital cost
  • Agility and Flexibility: with IaaS new systems can be made instantly available to your organization

Triangle’s IaaS services

Triangle Computer Services can help you plan and manage your Infrastructure-as-a-Service projects. We help with :

  • Systems monitoring
  • System administration
  • Capacity management
  • Patch management

We partner with leading providers of cloud technology so we can deliver best-of-breed solutions that truly match your needs.