Projects of our employees

Design of the architecture and implementation of an investment management solution for a market-leading investment company

Situation:

An investment company would like to introduce a new investment management solution with improved functionality.

Task:

Design and commissioning of the IT infrastructure solution with batch and monitoring solution, design and implementation of data transfers as well as development of application interfaces.

Implementation / Solution:

The program is divided into various projects and subprojects by the customer. The management of the IT infrastructure project is transferred to the vendor. The IT infrastructure project includes the design and implementation of the three-tiered IT environment, consisting of test, delivery and production environments. The front-end components are displayed on a Microsoft Windows® platform, the backend components are mapped on a UNIX® platform. The front-end environment includes, in addition to the regular domain and data security components, file transfer and computer services as well as a Citrix® Presentation Server-supported access solution. The accesses to the application are from Europe, America and Asia. In addition, a cross-platform monitoring solution is developed and made available. The backend environment is used for data storage. An Oracle® database solution under AIX® is implemented by a partner of the customer. Since the process processing of the application mainly takes place by means of batch runs, programs for batch control and interfaces are developed and provided for an enterprise scheduling solution. For the in- and output of the application, secure transfer facilities are required, which are realized on the basis of SFTP and IBM Websphere MQ®. In addition, interfaces for Swift® data transfers are developed and installed as well as the market data supply is implemented. After the implementation phase, the infrastructure project is successfully transferred to the plant. The operating manual is handed over to the customer’s outsourcing partner. The operation of the test and development environment as well as the technical 3rd level support are still operated by the supplier.

Internet connection for a leading financial services provider for internal and external service

Situation:

Internal and external service requires secure and highly available access to internal and customer data, from any location.

Task:

For the field service, a fail-safe access to the data must be ensured in two independent data centers. Ensure that unauthorized access is excluded.

Implementation / Solution:

This was a project with various hardware manufacturers. Due to the high availability requirement and disaster recovery planning, the Internet portal is being built in two independent data centers. This ensures access to the data stock even in the event of complete destruction of a data center. For data access via the Internet, A redundant multi-level firewall is installed by two different hardware manufacturers. The portal itself is implemented via fail-safe IBM® servers with WebSphere® and NetCache® servers from Network Appliance®. In addition, the portal is divided into different VLANs and the access is secured via SSL certificate servers. A NAS-Filer system from Network Appliance® is used for data storage. This system is particularly suitable for the data matching of the two data centers, which is ensured by Mirorring. Sun® servers are used for virus scanning, mailgateway and management servers. The employees in the connected company network get access to the portal via the multi-layered DMZs. The project will be handed over successfully to the customer after several months. Monitoring is provided by an external service provider.

Hardware and software evaluation for a leading insurance group

Situation:

Purchase of new hardware for internal and external service (desktop PCs and notebooks) with automated software installation for Microsoft® operating system and various application servers. The hardware and software is to be updated throughout Germany.

Task:

A standardized solution is to be found to enable a group-specific software distribution with the help of an automated installation (unattended installation).

Implementation / Solution:

At the beginning of the project, the individual software or hardware requirements are divided into subprojects. The largest share is attributable to software distribution. For the automated operating system installation, start-up media are created for the different groups. Thus, PCs, servers and notebooks can be installed automatically by means of a few, targeted specifications. No so-called cloning is performed. The setup routines and scripts are stored highly available on different master servers. The necessary application software packages are assigned to the respective installation groups so that each installation group conforms to a uniform installation standard. To this extent, the software packages (eg Microsoft® Office, Adobe® Reader) are developed as MSI packages with corresponding MST files. If necessary, self-developed tools are used in scripts or common basic programming languages and are packaged as a package. Documentation and version management are an integral part of the project. The project will be handed over successfully to the customer after several months.

Cluster solution for a company of the automotive industry

Situation:

For extensive applications and databases, a fail-safe hardware and software solution is sought.

Task:

The corresponding operating environment must be designed. The hardware and software implementation must be carried out in close customer contact with corresponding instructions.

Implementation / Solution:

IBM® server systems with hardware RAID and EMC® hard disk systems are used. Our employees implement the complete hardware and prepare the installations systematically, paying particular attention to the redundant fiber channel connection for the EMC® board subsystem. The disk system itself was also redundantly installed and configured according to the MSCS Guidelines. A Microsoft® Cluster (MSCS) with Microsoft® SQL Server is implemented as a software solution. Our staff installs and configures Microsoft® Clustering software and SQL Server software. The pilot phase was completed after a successful test, taken from the customer and taken over to production.

Conception and implementation of a Windows domain with messaging solution for communication service providers

Situation:

A start-up company needs an IT infrastructure that optimally supports the company’s purpose in an economically viable manner.

Task:

Create a Microsoft® Windows domain with appropriate backoffice and messaging capabilities. The appropriate hardware and software environment is to be designed and implemented.

Implementation / Solution:

An IT infrastructure adapted to the small business is developed and the corresponding hardware and software implemented. Two Compaq® ProLiant® Servers with tape backup capability and 14 workstations are selected as hardware. As a network component, a router of Cisco® and switches from 3Com® are provided. The servers are installed as global and secondary domain controllers. The role as backup server is also transferred to the first domain controller, the role as backoffice and messaging server are transferred to the second domain controller. The workstations are provided with the corresponding client components for the mail and database servers. The overall concept includes a data backup and security solution for clients and servers. Prior to commissioning the solution, training units are held for the customer’s IT manager. After successful transfer, the solution provider is available as 2nd level support.

Migration of backoffice products from Starwriter to Microsoft Word for a leading financial services provider

Situation:

A large financial services provider would like to use Microsoft® operating system and backoffice products for its field service staff.

Task:

The existing legacy documents in StarWorker® format under OS / 2® must be converted to Microsoft Word® format. The existing macros and document templates as well as the address data management of the existing MS Office® product are also to be migrated to the new operating system environment under Windows®. Ultimately, the software solution is to be integrated on the 3,500 new notebooks of the field service staff.

Implementation / Solution:

Different approaches to conversion are evaluated and evaluated. The best results are achieved with a client application that converts the files in a background process via a third-party product to MS Word®. The conversion routine is provided via a graphical user interface, converting the files batch-controlled and placing them in a specific directory on the notebooks.

The existing macros are ported to the new Visual Basic® format. The current administration of the address data is carried out in an address database developed in Cobol® which, in addition to the private data of the sales staff, also allows the selection of customer data. For this reason, a distinction is made between public and private data sets of the sales staff under MS Access®. Public records can be viewed, modified, or deleted by any sales representative. On the other hand, the own data records have a label, so that they can only be viewed and edited by the respective sales employee. In this way, the sensitive records of the individual sales representatives are protected since the notebooks can be used by several users. The migrated solutions Document templates, macros and address data management are used with Word®’s standard-line feature, thus enabling highly productive document creation. The integration of the solution on the individual notebooks / PCs is carried out by the customer himself. This includes the transfer of the old documents as well as the installation of the new applications.

Standardization of the printing and reproduction environment for a large insurance company

Situation:

A large insurance company finds that the printing and copying environment is very hetrogenic and wants to standardize the environment.

Task:

Analysis of the printing and reproduction environment and conception of a re-design with proof of the savings potential.

Implementation / Solution:

At the beginning of the project the actual state is examined. The printing and reproduction environment is subjected to a quantitative, a qualitative as well as a spatial analysis. The number of existing printers, copiers and multifunction devices as well as consumable materials with corresponding consumption are recorded. The functionality of the existing devices is described in a matrix and assigned to the company-wide premises. A target state with different output stages is defined and the information of the existing print and reproduction environment is compared with the solution variants. By means of this procedure, it is possible to determine the respective savings potential of the solution variants. It can be seen that, with a moderate reorganization of the printing and reproduction environment, the highest savings potential can be realized. In the preferred variant, the savings in the acquisition and consumption costs of the printing and reproducing solution are not consumed by the longer travel times of the employees.

Backup solution for the branches of a market-leading bank group

Situation:

Continued data growth in the branches of a banking group will require a new backup solution with appropriate hardware.

Task:

Cross-country migration of the new data protection hardware with update of the backup solution and verification of the successful initial backup.

Implementation / Solution:

At the beginning of the project a project organization with representatives of the customer, the suppliers and the subcontractors is established. The individual countries and regions are allocated to different IT service providers due to the volume of the service to be provided. The project is being implemented in Italy, Spain and Germany, with Germany being again divided into the regions North, South and East. The overall coordination of the regions and dates is with the project manager of the supplier, whereby the deadlines come from the customer. Due to the increased data volume, it is necessary to convert the data backup solution of the branches from single drives to tape libraries (DDS3). The data backup solution is also migrated to TSM® (ADSM) as a result of the replacement of the backup infrastructure. The responsible technicians are prepared for the task by means of training measures and receive work instructions with integrative quality checks. The successful initial insurance between customers and suppliers is agreed as acceptance criteria. The respective initial insurances are reported and accepted daily to the project office. The project period covers four months and 3200 individual drives are replaced by tape libraries.

FTP clusters for market-leading asset advice

Situation:

The sales representatives of an asset advisory need online access to business data.

Task:

Design and implementation of a high-availability access to data and data transmission via an FTP server. Access should only be allowed to specific IP addresses.

Implementation / Solution:

Two IBM® servers with DAS hard disk systems and hardware RAID are configured and implemented. As a software solution, a Microsoft® Internet Information Server is used as this software solution can be used to implement an IP address restriction in cluster mode. High availability is ensured by means of the cluster software Legato® Co-Standby Server. With this hardware / software solution, the virtual IP address range of a cluster node can be transferred from a physical server to the second cluster partner.

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