Railroad Operator

INDUSTRY:

Challenge

A railroad operator serving one of America’s largest metro areas had to upgrade its technology to meet a federal rail-safety mandate. While implementing that upgrade, the rail company decided to strengthen its technology infrastructure and launch a proven disaster recovery program.

Three key issues confronted the rail provider:

  • Positive Train Control (PTC) mandates: The U.S. government has ordered all rail operators to install sophisticated software and hardware to prevent collisions and derailments. All the rail provider’s technology upgrades had to align with the PTC mandates.
  • Disaster recovery expertise: The company didn’t have the personnel to develop a robust disaster recovery program that could keep the company operating if an incident were to strike.
  • Aging, rigid technology: They needed to transform its IT enterprise computing production environment into one with effective scale-out/scale-up flexibility — all the while keeping the trains running on time around the clock.

Solution

The rail company partnered with OnX to build a new virtualized infrastructure for primary IT production that offered a rich suite of business continuity and disaster recovery capabilities.

OnX’s key initiatives included:

  • Cloud migration: OnX developed a managed production environment in a private cloud in one of its data centers and implemented a secondary disaster recovery site in another city over 100 miles away
  • Real-time system surveillance: OnX launched remote monitoring and management of the rail provider’s onsite systems and network devices, with fail-over to the secondary disaster recovery site
  • Smart backups: Policy-driven data backups are securely transmitted to an off-site OnX data/hosting center
  • Critical email: OnX provides managed Office 365 and managed Microsoft Azure
  • Thorough testing: To make sure the disaster recovery plan excels in the event of an incident, OnX performs regular testing to ensure the entire recovery process is documented and end users are able to connect seamlessly

Results

OnX’s decades of experience developing sophisticated enterprise IT environments ensured that the rail company could meet its prime goal — 24×7 uptime with innovative, cutting-edge IT support — while shifting to a totally new IT infrastructure that provides maximum flexibility and scalability.

With primary IT production systems hosted in a dedicated private cloud and a burstable disaster recovery site in a second location, the rail provider can rest assured it has the technology it needs to change with the times while abiding by federal rail-safety mandates.

Partnering with OnX helped the company’s IT staff stay laser-focused on its business priorities while OnX untangled the complexities of a cloud migration and disaster recovery program.

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