NovaScale adopted by local authorities in the German state of Saxony
In the German state of Saxony, many local authorities rely on the advanced triple architecture of Bull NovaScale® servers, Oracle 10g and Intel® Itanium® processors, to meet the ever increasing demands for dataflow. As a result, local people can rely on higher standards of service from their councils.
According to Frank Müller, System Administrator, Torgau Town Council: “Our consolidated Oracle databases deliver more services, faster, smoother and more efficiently to our citizens. The migration, although very complex, was completed without any problems and we are sure that with our new IT system we have invested in an infrastructure that will deliver the best price/performance ratio for our needs.”
Even in idyllic locations such as the towns of Torgau and Eilenburg and the district of Riesa-Großenhain, local authorities are increasingly using the Internet to enable citizens to complete various official forms – such as local residence notifications, passport applications and motor vehicle registration requests – on line. Add to this the fact that the German federal government is insisting that many more official duties are going to be handled at a local level, by local councils. The result of all this is that local authorities need increasingly innovative IT solutions. “From 2007, for example, we also need to transmit citizen relocation information to the federal government electronically”, explained Kay-Uwe Balig, Systems Administrator at the Eilenburg Town Council. “As a result, we face the challenge of delivering new functionality and processes, which will yet again involve a constant and proportionate increase in data processing and storage requirements.”
The most important goals of any IT consolidation project in this kind of environment are to ensure that the new infrastructure is scalable and designed to protect the council’s investment over the long term because, of course, citizens will always expect new Internet-based services to be added to the existing ones. The underlying infrastructure and databases must not only be able to deliver against standard performance requirements, but should also be capable of supporting fluctuations and occasional peaks in demand, as well as distributing workload evenly. “Because we have these very specific requirements, we very soon realized that the Bull server running Oracle was the perfect match,” confirmed Frank Müller, who added: “The combination of the Oracle grid database and the Itanium processors at the heart of the NovaScale servers provides a very flexible and powerful solution. Processes for over 350 users run on the same servers in about a third of the time required previously.”
All three local authorities now run a range of processes on central clusters connected to a high-availability data repository. In the past, each council maintained its own systems and databases. “From an administrative point of view, we already achieved tremendous savings.” reported Kay-Uwe Balig. And that’s even before the extra cost savings on licensing fees, which they have achieved by centralizing the Oracle database, are taken into account. “With the decision to centralize the Oracle databases, the three local authorities have really been able to protect their investment and will not be facing capacity issues in the foreseeable future, thanks to the economically sound investment model based on the Bull NovaScale servers and Oracle 10g Database,” added Thomas Züfle, General Manager at HOST, Bull’s integration partner. The Itanium® processors also meant the councils were free to choose which operating system they would use. “We wanted to focus on Linux rather than Windows, and because of this the NovaScale Servers were definitely the right choice,” confirmed Kay-Uwe Balig.
Eilenburg, Torgau, Riesa Großenhain
… are all located in the Eastern German state of Saxony. Eilenburg has a population of 18,000 and Torgau 19,000. The district of Riesa Großenhain includes the towns of Gröditz, Großenhain, Riesa and Strehla. The restructuring of their IT infrastructure included migrating from various proprietary systems to Bull NovaScale servers featuring the latest Itanium® 2 processors and various blade servers based on Xeon processors. In addition to the new servers, the local authorities also upgraded their Oracle environment to the latest version of Oracle 10g. Apart from the citizen’s portal services, the new IT infrastructure will also support the internal day-to-day work of up to 400 local authority employees.