Holy Trinity School
RS3412RPxs serves as high performance & reliable storage target in VMware deployment
The Holy Trinity School
Synology RackStation RS3412RPxs
“The throughput provided by the Synology NAS is easily comparable to that of an entry level SAN at a greatly reduced cost,” - Christopher Hughes, The Holy Trinity Secondary
Holy Trinity School is a Secondary School with around 150 staff and over 1,300 pupils in Crawley, West Sussex. The school’s network consists of around 14 physical servers, some of which run virtualized servers that supply data to over 400 workstations and approximately 150 laptops.
The Holy Trinity School is looking for a way to improve data availability for students and staff when their servers undergo maintenance or experience system failures in the environment. Part of the reasons for this is that the increasing number of students and curriculum changes over the years result in an overload to the school’s computer labs - logging into school computers is becoming slower as time progresses. Also, the school is hoping to run their virtual servers on fewer physical hardware so they can reduce the overall electricity costs.
The school needs to find a storage solution that can offer better performance to withstand the large amount of people accessing the servers everyday, as well as a seamless integration with their own virtualization solution. So Christopher Hughes, the Network Manager of the school, turns to Synology and its RS3412RPxs to take on the task.
Hughes starts off by populating the RS3412RPxs with ten 2TB hard drives and RAID 10 configuration, which would give him a total of 10TB that he needs to store the school’s data. “The drives setup in RAID 10 will provide increased throughput to the servers and in turn reduce logon times of the clients at high load times of the day,” says Hughes.
With the infrastructure set up and good to go, Hughes’ next task is to make sure that the RS3412RPxs is able to fit in seamlessly with their existing virtualization deployment, and that’s exactly what the Synology NAS server does. “Using the Synology NAS, we can now fully utilize Hyper-V and VMware servers to run machines in a cluster environment, and to live migrate machines across various physical servers in the event of maintenance requirements,” says Hughes. In his initial testing, Hughes finds that the responsiveness between their virtual servers and the NAS is excellent in running the drives entirely virtualized over iSCSI connections.
With the drives on the NAS and the CPU and RAM residing on the server, Hughes finds that the performance is every bit as good as when attached to physical disks on the server. “The throughput provided by the NAS is easily comparable to that of an entry level SAN at a greatly reduced cost,” says Hughes.
One last feature that stands out from Synology’s solution is its web interface for managing everything on the NAS. Hughes shares that the web interface allows him to easily create volumes and LUNs. Sharing folders is also extremely effortless given a good level of AD integration. “Using a mix of these features we have seen significant improvement in the flexibility of our hardware infrastructure,” concludes Hughes about his new upgrade of solution.