British Airways opts for open source virtual estate to support web growth

The UK’s flagship airline, British Airways, has opted to deploy an open source virtual estate using Red Hat Enterprise solutions to support its expanding web presence.

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The UK’s flagship airline, British Airways, has opted to deploy an open source virtual estate using Red Hat Enterprise solutions to support its expanding web presence.

British Airways said that it gets in excess of 450,000 visitors to BA.com each day, given the shift in airline ticket buying patterns, and needed to expand its IT infrastructure to support future growth.

In addition to the website, Red Hat Virtualisation will support other Linux workloads, such as applications used internally at the company – both for pre-production and production environments.

According to Red Hat, British Airways chose its open source solution because it offered a more cost-effective option and worked well with other elements of its open source IT infrastructure.

The airline has deployed 750 virtual machines on 130 physical hosts, across two data centres.

“We use Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization to create our own cloud so that our developers can use it to build their own virtual machines and hence build and control environments as they wish. We have used Red Hat solutions in various parts of our business for 10 years, and we are pleased to continue our long-standing relationship by deploying Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization,” said Richard Dawson, a UNIX and Linux infrastructure consultant at British Airways.

“As developers need to create and delete environments quickly, a highly scalable solution is critical for us and this advantage then means that we don’t need to over-commit on our IT plans.”

He added: “As an operation that functions 365 days a year with a plane always in the sky, high availability is key for the safety of our operation and ultimately our customers. Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization now enables us to have a single-pane view as to what is going on in the whole environment which we didn’t have before.”

British Airways, along with Barclays, Accenture and a number of other top companies, began a recruitment drive at the end of last year to looking for graduate data analysts. 

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