Fidessa improves application management with F5 Networks

Trading technology provider Fidessa is using F5 Networks application delivery controllers to provide load-balancing for its support services applications.

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Trading technology provider Fidessa is using F5 Networks' BIG-IP application delivery controllers to provide load-balancing for its "business-critical" support service applications.

Fidessa's business involves providing software and services to high profile trader and brokerage firms, with its global trading network, managed by Colt, handling more than $10 trillion (£6.5 trillion) worth of order flow and transactions each year.

In order to ensure that any service problems around this network are resolved quickly, Fidessa's trader clients rely on the 24/7 availability of its support desk system, which is run by 200 staff located across Europe, North America and Asia Pacific.

Following a recent decision to upgrade its legacy support desk application with the Remedy system from BMC Software, Fidessa also decided to install load-balancing technology from F5. The aim of the project was to improve the reliability of the support service by enabling the BMC application to be delivered from two different data centres in the case of unplanned downtime.

With help from distributor Avnet, Fidessa deployed four F5 BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager (LTM) 3900 units and two BIG-IP Global Traffic Manager (GTM) 1600 units, in its data centres located in Woking and London.

The F5 BIG-IP devices are used to balance the global application traffic across more than 30 web and application servers, helping to optimise the performance of the system.

For the service provider, this means that in the event of a disaster at one data centre, the application load will automatically fall over to the alternative facility, going some way to ensure no downtime occurs.

Following the launch of the Remedy system, the F5 BIG-IP devices were able to handle over 2 petabytes of traffic, Fidessa said, with a large amount of unused capacity remaining to allow for any peaks in traffic.

“Events like the hurricane in New York serve to remind us disasters can occur and can be devastating,” said David Awcock, global head of IT at Fidessa. “Our use of F5 products will help us to improve our resilience to such catastrophes and ensure that our global systems are available 24/7, whatever the circumstances.”

Looking forward, Awcock added that Fidessa also plans to use F5 application delivery controller technology to support more applications across its operations, including its Microsoft Exchange 2010 environment.

“We are continually striving to improve the performance of our IT infrastructure and increase our chances of recovery in the event of disaster. We believe that F5 will be able to help us make other critical business systems more efficient and resilient in the future.”

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