Wine and whisky merchant extends investment with a combination of on-premise and cloud-based backup and disaster recovery
recently announced it has renewed a three-year contract with cloud and IT managed services provider Oncore IT
The London-based wine and whisky merchant is using on-premise and cloud-based backup services, along with disaster recovery (DR), and remote server monitoring.
With 18.9 million bottles sold last year, Jeroboams Group caters for retail, trade and private customers through three brands: Laytons
for trade wine sales, Milroy’s of Soho
for whisky and Jeroboams
, which handles retail wine and private client sales. Founded in 1934 and privately owned, the group employs 70 staff and has nine shops in the capital.
Assuring disaster recovery
Julian Harper, Jeroboams Group’s IT manager, said: “Following the 7/7 London bombings, our chairman asked what would happen if we were caught up in an incident. At the time, other than using tape locally, we had no offsite disaster recovery provision or specialist managed service provider looking after our systems, which is why Oncore IT was selected in 2005. They ensure our data is fully protected given it’s what drives our business.”
Under the contract, Oncore IT is providing an Asigra
-based cloud data backup solution, local on-premise disc backup for non-core IT systems, its infrastructure monitoring Proactive Remote Engineering Support Services (PReSS), as well as IT staff holiday cover. An annual DR test is also included as part of the contract.
Jeroboams Group has adopted a centralised approach for core IT systems with its main database, email, web, and file and print servers located at its headquarters in Islington, north London.
The company uses a mix of physical machines for main systems and virtualised servers to run non-core services such as Microsoft SharePoint
and a replication system for its electronic point-of-sale (EPoS) system. The various businesses and shops connect via using secure sockets layer (SSL) virtual private network (VPN) remote access technology. Backup is therefore centralised for the group.
Harper commented: “We’ve renewed our contract with Oncore IT as they do everything we need, we have a good account management relationship and their support desk is proactive in monitoring the status of our backup cycles.”
Security and peace of mind
A specific secure Jeroboams Group ‘vault’ has been created on Oncore IT’s enterprise-class Hitachi Data Systems
(HDS) storage platform. The vault contains the group’s critical data that is encrypted both ‘in flight’ and at rest.
Backups are scheduled nightly and are run by just one Asigra Diagnostic Services (DS) client, which was installed in Jeroboam Group’s environment to collect data from its servers. This simplifies rollout and contrasts with other service that require monitoring agents on each and every system. Data is held in Oncore IT’s London data centre and replicated to its offshore facility in Amsterdam for resilience.
In the eight years the two companies have been working together, a DR event has not been evoked. But Harper explained: “Any small-to-medium sized business needs to back up core systems offsite so that in the event of a disaster, critical business information is protected. It’s a simple insurance policy. You hope you’ll never have to use it, but it doesn’t make commercial sense to skimp and not have it.”
In terms of infrastructure monitoring, Jeroboams is using Oncore IT’s PreSS service. The service allows systems engineers to monitor Jeroboam Group’s servers, networking equipment and internet infrastructure linking their shops to avoid system downtime, maximise system performance and enhance organisational productivity.