Zahler IT has been working with Foto Care for over ten years. Being that they're a photograher's pro-shop was primarily a Mac focused client and prided themselves on supporing the platfom they sold. Certain constituents within the organization were PC based. Starting initially with maintaining their workstations in their rental and bookkeeping departments, there was little server infrastructure aside from a Novell server that was running an application designed specifically for equipment rental.
At the point that the rental application was to be upgraded, the platform for the server changed from Novell to Windows Server. This is when we started to take further responsiblilty of their server infrastructure. The system consisted of an application server running the client application in a Terminal Server session and a seperate server running Oracle. The next major update of the equipment rental system came, which gave us the opportunity to virtualize their servers. Rather than order two different servers, we ordered two that were identical. VMware ESXi was installed on the "bare metal" both ayatems and then created virtual servers for both the applicationa and database servers on both physical servers. Under normal configuation, one instance of each of the required server is running on their own physical server. This configuation now provides the ablity to quickly start up eith a database or application on the other physical server should there be a hardware failure taking down one of the physical servers.
Just recently the time came to retire two other servers within the organization. The decision was made to order one more server, identically configured to those being used by rental. On that new hardware three virtual server are configured, one to replace the retiring POS server and the other two will handle file server and domain controller duties. The later two are currently being served on a single server.
The new configuration allowed the client to:
Reduce their physical server count
Better utilize their hardware budget by reducing server count and associated cost of ownership
Retire multiple aging servers in a single upgrade cycle
Provide better resiliency in the event of hardware failure