Moving to a cloud-based solution for business can feel daunting. It raises a host of questions, such as:
- Is my data safe?
- Is it a massive upheaval?
- We don’t want to feel ‘out of control’
However, the pros can heavily outweigh the cons (have a read of our last blog), but what does this actually look like for a real business?
Check out our project below, which was completed for one of our fabulous customers. From behind-the-scenes planning to the onsite implementation, check out how seamless the transfer was and how our client is happier than ever with their IT infrastructure!
Southern Solutions have supported a friendly, community-focused solicitor in the New Forest for almost two years. They rely heavily on their IT infrastructure to provide a seamless workflow for their staff.
For years, they have been using a historic, onsite Remote Desktop Server (RDS) solution. This allowed the staff to control a central server with access to shared data resources and software. It also allowed them to work remotely, this is critical in the current climate and something they wanted to carry through to the new solution.
Whilst this solution was still functioning for the users. There were a host of issues:
- The system was becoming lethargic
- Applications were slow to load
- The entire business was affected when there was an issue with the server
- Physical upgrades could not be done due to hardware limitations
- The server was 7 years old and on a much older operating system
- More power was required to host the suite of applications required
- Software providers were finding it difficult to resolve issues due to multiple databases
These issues, along with the requirement for more power, meant a more scalable and modern solution was required with the growing interest in a cloud-based solution in mind.
The Southern Solutions team decided that the new Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop solution was a prime fit for the business.
Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) is a completely cloud-based virtual desktop infrastructure. In simple terms, it is a way for every member of staff within the business to access all the IT resources such as applications, shared data, mail, and dictations from anywhere in the world.
The solution is completely cloud-based, meaning the only physical infrastructure required is the machine used to connect to the system. It uses the most modern and best security practices to ensure a locked-down, peace-of-mind experience. The virtual servers are completely scalable, meaning that as the business grows and adds more users, IT can be seamlessly upgraded and grow alongside. The servers utilise high-speed SSD drives to ensure general use is lightning fast, and logging into the system takes a matter of seconds.
The implementation of AVD also meant that instead of all users connecting to one physical server, they would be load balanced between four equally powerful machines with room to grow. This greatly reduces the risk of downtime when an error arises, and users can be swiftly migrated to another system in the event of an issue.
Before configuring the cloud network, southern Solutions collaborated with a multitude of software providers on behalf of the business to ensure a seamless transition. Once all parties had agreed on a day to move the software, data, and users, the work could begin.
Before the move, Southern Solution technicians created the cloud network consisting of 4x virtual servers, a virtual firewall protecting staff from malicious attacks and dangerous websites, a virtual database server for the multitude of required software, and premium SSD storage to hold the vital data used on a day-to-day basis by users.
The solution being cloud-based meant that most of the work could be completed with no disruption to the staff at all, and we could provide a ‘light-switch’ transfer for the users.
On the weekend of the transfer, 2 Southern Solutions technicians ran a final migration of the data and successfully configured all user machines to connect to the new AVD system. The system was thoroughly tested with all the required software and data sets to ensure when users arrived on Monday morning, they could instantly access and begin working with the new infrastructure.
A Southern Solutions technician was onsite first-thing Monday morning to help staff navigate the new system and provide bespoke training.
Our client has now been using the new AVD system for several months, and the benefits for all staff have been apparent.
• Performance has increased immensely
• Loading times for applications are far quicker
• The system is more secure
• Users can seamlessly connect from anywhere In the world
• Software providers can apply updates with ease
• Users have access to a full Windows 11 desktop packed with new features
Our clients can now move forward in doing what they do best, knowing their IT infrastructure is secure and in safe hands.
Don’t let a bad IT infrastructure hold you back. For advice on IT support or cybersecurity for your business, speak to one of our experts today at 02382 022 099.