FlexPod with NetApp A300
4-node MetroCluster


Customer Profile+-

Svenska Fönster

Svenska Fönster is a Swedish windows manufacturer employing 800 staff. The firm is part of Dovista, one of Europe’s leading manufacturers of façade windows and doors based in seven countries. Svenska Fönster was established in 1997 through a merger of two separate companies that had been founded in 1935 and 1946 respectively. Peter Hägg, IT Manager, proudly claims that Svenska Fönster is “simply the best”. Mattias Forslindh, IT Project Leader, adds: “Our production facility has a strong focus on the environment and is very close to one of the best kinds of wood you can have.” The company’s competitive edge lies in the local sourcing and transport of resources, which not only saves on transport costs but also helps protect the environment. Furthermore, the company is what we know the only windows manufacturer in Sweden that use a waterborne painting system.

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The Challenge+-

Svenska Fönster had run into several challenges with the previous stack that were preventing the firm from increasing their daily window production ratios as part of a strategic focus to tap into new markets and increase market share. The existing SAS-based hard disk storage infrastructure did not offer sufficient performance to accommodate the company’s shorter production cycles.

Apart from data performance, Svenska Fönster was looking to solve another important aspect. The system was laying a substantial amount of pressure on the IT staff, who had to resort to performing maintenance work during low-I/O hours or after working hours since running these activities during normal working hours would simply clog up the system. The performance bottleneck also applied to backups - even if they were initiated overnight would they often impact business operations the next morning.

Lastly, Svenska Fönster was looking for more data redundancy. The previous system would leave only one live server if the other server was taken offline for maintenance.

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The Solution+-

To meet their needs, Svenska Fönster turned to NetApp and NetApp partner Atea to implement a FlexPod with NetApp A300 MetroCluster set-up, consisting of all-flash disks across 4 nodes. NetApp & FlexPod turned out to be the best match in all aspects, and NetApp’s expertise built on many years of storage technology experience made the selection process easy.

Atea is the market leader in IT infrastructure for businesses and public-sector organizations in Europe’s Nordic and Baltic regions.

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Business Benefits+-

With the new MetroCluster set-up in-place, Svenska Fönster now benefits from Non-Disruptive Operations – the system can be maintained during normal working hours, without any impact on the performance or the production environment. Data is now placed geographically redundant across 4 nodes, offering full protection should one of the datacenters be struck by a disaster.

In addition, IT staff no longer need to work overtime, which is a big win in an effort to improve their work/life balance. “We have achieved true non-disruptive operations – system management can now be performed at any time,” Peter confirms. Mattias adds: “By combining NetApp snapshots with Veeam, the time needed to run snapshot mode on VMs was slashed from as much as 5-7 hours to only 5-10 minutes.”

Thanks to NetApp efficiency technologies, Svenska Fönster has realized as much as 50% space savings. Even with relentless data growth, the company is saving 50% overall, which is a huge financial benefit, allowing the firm to save on energy, space and capital expenses.

Because of all-flash, databases’ response times were sped up from 20 ms to as little as 1 ms. Flash makes data flow at a constant speed, which improves reliability and prevents the system from clogging up. Databases can even be moved during working hours without business operations coming to a standstill, which was often the case before.

Mattias concludes: “In our multiparty environment, all components are performing very well—we now have far fewer hardware failures than before and the support we are receiving is great. We know we can trust our stack. Should something unforeseen happen, we can rest assured that support will be there to help.”

Now that Svenska Fönster has implemented a very robust, reliable system, they are looking to embrace the hybrid cloud also, adding hyper-scalers into the mix. In view of GDPR, the company is fully confident it can reliably store sensitive data locally while harnessing the economics of the public cloud for scalability.

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  • Non-Disruptive Operations, no downtime
  • Far less burden on IT staff, improving their work-life balance
  • Higher production ratios, higher revenue
  • Dramatically shortened backup windows
  • Robust integration with Veeam

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