Virtual BackOffice delivers on customer demand for fast, flexible cloud services with Lenovo Flex System

Overview
To meet increasing demand for cloud computing from its customer base, Merkl IT relies on Lenovo Flex System to support its Virtual BackOffice managed cloud services. Able to quickly, easily and flexibly configure the Lenovo solution to meet each customer’s individual needs, Merkl IT can deliver high-performance, highly reliable cloud services, and keep ahead of the competition.

Solution components
Hardware
Lenovo Flex System Enterprise Chassis
Lenovo Flex System x240 M5 compute nodes with Intel® Xeon® E5 processor family Lenovo Flex System EN6131 40GbE Switch
Lenovo Flex System EN6132 40GbE Adapter

Software
VMware vSphere
VMware NSX
IBM Spectrum Virtualize

Virtual BackOffice, from Merkl IT, is a leading managed service and infrastructure-asa-service (IaaS) cloud computing offering. Based in Munich, Germany, the company specializes in providing personal, reliable, cost-effective IT services to mid-size companies across Europe. 

Answering the call for cloud computing Traditionally limited to larger enterprises, more and more small and medium-sized companies are now keen to take advantage of data center outsourcing and hybrid cloud services.

Small and medium-sized companies often operate with smaller budgets for their mission-critical business applications. Virtual BackOffice services enable customers to cut IT costs while keeping operations running smoothly.

Julian Merkl, Managing Partner at Merkl IT, begins: “To cope with growing demand for Virtual BackOffice services and to ensure that we can meet customers’ individual requirements, we needed the flexibility to respond rapidly and make sure the highest service levels are always achieved.”

Sky-high performance
Virtual BackOffice services run on Lenovo Flex System to deliver cloud computing services on demand, using VMware virtualization technology.

Julian Merkl elaborates: “We consolidated our infrastructure and Lenovo Flex System is the perfect platform to support our VMware offering. The strong partnership between Lenovo and other leading IT companies and software vendors means that we can provide a wide range of services efficiently. Crucially, the Lenovo Flex System solution is certified for an extensive range of applications. We use VMware vSphere to deliver all of our mission-critical cloud services, and the two technologies work very well together.”

Equipped with the Intel® Xeon® E5 processor family, the Lenovo Flex System x240 M5 compute nodes offer the high levels of performance needed to support Virtual BackOffice services and to handle customers’ diverse workloads. The Lenovo solution also includes a Lenovo Flex System EN6131 40GbE Switch and Lenovo Flex System EN6132 40GbE Adapters, powered by Mellanox ConnectX-3 technology, enabling the company to benefit from more than 100 Gbit/s internal network bandwidth per node for fast interconnects between cloud environments.

“The integrated Mellanox adapters offer extremely high performance within the Lenovo Flex System,” says Julian Merkl. “They are supercomputer-grade components, which really give Virtual BackOffice services a boost.

“Having access to support services in Germany is a real bonus,” he continues. “We keep in regular contact with the Lenovo team and it’s great to know that, should we need help with anything, they’re there for us. We also rely on the guidelines and best practices published by Lenovo to ensure that we always use our infrastructure as efficiently as possible. As a result, in the three years we’ve been running the Lenovo Flex System solution, our customers haven’t experienced any unplanned downtime of their vital IT services caused by hardware issues.”

Unparalleled flexibility
As Virtual BackOffice wins new customers and its existing clients’ businesses grow, the company can add new server and storage nodes to the Lenovo Flex System solution quickly and easily to keep pace with demand. 

Julian Merkl remarks: “The sheer flexibility of the Lenovo Flex System solution means that we can meet customer requirements no matter what. For example, if a customer needs the SAP HANA platform to take advantage of real-time analytics to streamline workflows, we can easily configure and add compute nodes for high-performance, in-memory workloads. We’re very satisfied with how quickly and effortlessly we can expand the Lenovo Flex System solution – this agility means that we can react rapidly to business changes, offering customers the service they need faster.

“The fact that our Virtual BackOffice services, such as Dynamic Datacenter and Business Hosting, are supported by enterprise-grade, best-in-class hardware from Lenovo is a real plus – not just for us, but for our customers. It can be difficult for a local IT service provider like us to compete with global platforms. But with the Lenovo Flex System solution, we can offer extremely high levels of performance, availability and reliability, and be sure of meeting demanding SLAs for our customers’ mission-critical workloads. What’s more, we can give customers an added level of confidence that their systems are supported by a well-known vendor – sharpening our competitive edge.”

Julian Merkl concludes: “With the Lenovo solution we can now provision systems twice as quickly as before, helping us to react faster to customers’ requests and offer them a better service. Basing Virtual BackOffice services on the ultra-adaptable Lenovo Flex System means that even smaller companies reap the rewards of cloud computing.” 

For more information To learn more about Lenovo Data Center Systems solutions, contact your Lenovo Sales Representative or Lenovo Business Partner, or visit: lenovo.com/systems

For more information about Virtual BackOffice services, visit: www.virtualbackoffice.de 


 

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