Travel Agency Leader Barcelo Viajes Entrusts Red Hat with the Virtualization of I.T. Environment

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February 27, 2013

Barceló Viajes implemented Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization to consolidate datacentres that support its critical business platform and enhanced its systems management.

Customer: Barcelo Viajes

“Red Hat offers us a solid, stable, and reliable platform, as well as a clear vision of its roadmap and cutting-edge positioning. Using Red Hat technology, we can plan for the future and give our clients more effective care, now and in the years to come." Gabriel Ramis, Barcelo Viajes

Industry: Other
Geography: EMEA
Country: Spain


Business Challenge:

The Barceló Viajes’ virtualization project arose from the need to streamline the start-up process and also hoped to implement a business continuity plan (BCP) that involved setting up a new data-processing centre (DPC) in Madrid in parallel with the one the company has in Palma de Mallorca.

Migration Path:

New deployment

Software:

Red Hat® Enterprise Virtualization, Red Hat Enterprise Linux®

Benefits:

Barceló Viajes extended its deployment of Red Hat® Enterprise Linux® to the new DPC to standardise its systems and implemented Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization in both data-processing centres to provide support for all of its operational and corporate business applications.

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Background:

Barceló Viajes’ virtualization project arose from the need to streamline the start-up process and they hoped to implement a business continuity plan (BCP) that involved setting up a new data-processing centre (DPC) in Madrid in parallel with the one the company has in Palma de Mallorca.

Business Challenge:

Barceló Viajes is the travel division of the multinational, Spain-based tourism operation Grupo Barceló. It currently has 365 offices and agencies spread across 22 countries and is marketed under the Barceló Viajes, Amex Barceló Viajes, and Vacaciones Barceló brands. It is one of the leading companies in the travel agency sector and has a network of more than 300 branches in Spain and Portugal. In addition, it has a web platform(www.barceloviajes.com) where travellers can find the best selection of proposals, promotions, and travel options. Last year, more than 1.5 million travellers used the company’s various services for their trips and holidays.

The Barceló Viajes’ virtualization project arose from the need to streamline the start-up process. It also hoped to implement a business continuity plan (BCP) that involved setting up a new data-processing centre (DPC) in Madrid in parallel with the one the company has in Palma de Mallorca.

Barceló Viajes extended its deployment of Red Hat® Enterprise Linux® to the new DPC to standardise its systems. It implemented Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization in both data-processing centres to provide support for all of its operational and corporate business applications, including customer relationship management (CRM) solutions, databases, email management, own-project management applications, monitoring, and public websites.

Scalability and optimal performance from servers, thanks to enterprise open source

Barceló Viajes not only needed a solution to create a BPC, but also needed to plan for on-going growth in the range of services it provides. Barceló Viajes’s systems required continuous expansion of its pool of servers—and it needed to be able to manage and employ complex human and hardware resources. By using Red Hat to virtualize its platform, Barceló Viajes was able to enhance the scalability of its infrastructure using available resources.

Red Hat worked with Barceló Viajes to reduce the number of machines in its server pool by 86%. The implementation also helped to achieve a 70 to 75% reduction in power consumption, when compared to the previous infrastructure. Subsequent savings in operating costs, maintenance, and space helped Barceló Viajes grow on the service side and made it possible for both horizontal and vertical growth.

Solution:

Easy-to-handle virtualization management and administration systems

Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager provided Barceló Viajes with simpler and more efficient ways to manage technology platforms. New virtual servers are ready to come into service in a matter of minutes, responding more swiftly to any surge in demand for IT services.

Additionally, thanks to Red Hat Enterprise Linux (with the hypervisor included) and the Red Hat virtualization management layer, Barceló Viajes has achieved improved performance and greater security along with simpler management and administration functions.

Benefits:

Enterprise open source is a safe bet

For Barceló Viajes, the decision to virtualize its platform by implementing Red Hat solutions represents a current commitment to the future.

“Red Hat offers us a solid, stable, and reliable platform, as well as a clear vision of its roadmap and cutting-edge positioning,” said Gabriel Ramis, head of infrastructure and communications at Barceló Viajes. “Using Red Hat technology, we can plan for the future and give our clients more effective care, now and in the years to come.”

The high reliability, stability, and scalability at a lower overall ownership cost—together with the advantages of working with technology based on open source but with all the guarantees of a company like Red Hat­­—led the business group to come down firmly in favour of enterprise open source technologies for the virtualization of its I.T. environment. Red Hat’s large ecosystem of partners embraces independent software vendors (ISVs) that offer solutions in complementary areas, such as back-up and recovery copies, work-flow automation, and capacity planning. This ecosystem was key to the selection process.

Equally important was the technological roadmap provided by Red Hat, and the way that Red Hat customers can collaborate to influence the solutions they use. Barceló Viajes also preferred the controlled and predictable costs of the Red Hat subscription model.

The final piece of the puzzle was the invaluable help from Red Hat consultants during implementation. Red Hat Consulting provided in-depth knowledge of the solution and knew how to automate and optimise datacentre processing and continuous project monitoring to ensure success.

“We couldn’t allow even minimal downtime for our platforms,” said Gabriel Ramis, head of infrastructure and communications at Barceló Viajes. “Having previously carried out several projects successfully with Red Hat, we were confident that the implementation would be incident-free. Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization provides a highly reliable base for our most critical applications, with the capacity to withstand high workloads. It integrates completely with our other operating applications. KVM-basedvirtualization from Red Hat allows us access to a range of features such as live migration, high availability, system scheduler, and power saver, which—when taken together with the financial aspect and enhanced performance—provide a perfect match for Barceló Viajes’s requirements. We are convinced that Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization will continue to provide top-of-the-range market capabilities. Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization has promising prospects for the future, something we regard as highly compelling.”

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