Kent County Council deploys KEMP load balancing to support new virtualised working

Kent County Council (KCC) is supporting its previously announced virtualised application infrastructure using load balancers from KEMP, to ensure high availability, scalability and performance.

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Kent County Council (KCC) is supporting its previously announced virtualised application infrastructure using load balancers from KEMP, to ensure high availability, scalability and performance.

The move from a traditional desktop and application infrastructure to a virtual Windows application infrastructure for some 6,500 users is central to the council’s drive for greater efficiency and flexibility for its data services, and to meet the growing demand for more applications, while reducing costs and office space.

As the KCC IT team architected the overall project, it was clear that load balancing was going to be an important part of the application delivery infrastructure.

Working with its IT solutions partner Phoenix Software, the council looked at the options and selected KEMP Technologies to fill the load balancing requirement.

Glen Larkin, lead technical architect at KCC, said: “KEMP offered an intuitive, cost-effective solution that provided all the functionality and scalability we needed, and most importantly, delivered this natively on the Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS), which was the platform we chose to host the VMware virtualised infrastructure.”

KCC has two datacentres, one in Maidstone and the other in a shared facility with neighbouring Medway Council. Each datacentre now has two Cisco UCS chassis with dual high availability KEMP GEO multi-site load balancers.

The KEMP LoadMaster operating system software (LMOS) for UCS is fully Cisco IVT (interoperability validation testing) certified, and is said to be the only application delivery control (ADC) operating system optimised for bare metal installation within the UCS fabric, without requiring a hypervisor.

KCC has rolled out the new virtual environment to some 150 users and the complete migration is due to be completed by April next year. “The deployment has been going very smoothly", said Larkin. “Our new virtual, well-balanced environment will provide a flexible and scalable platform for the council’s future needs, and means that we no longer have to support thousands of desktop PCs, which allows us to use our time and resources to greater effect.”

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