The University of Maryland Department of Transportation Services Uses StorTrends to Manage Data from College Park, MD Campus Parking Permit and Enforcement System
Wednesday: August 15, 2012
- The University of Maryland Department of Transportation Services (DOTS) manages all College Park, MD campus parking spaces, parking permits, and the bus fleet of the University’s Shuttle-UM transit service
- DOTS IT stakeholders replaced their legacy Storage Area Network (SAN) with the StorTrends 3400i Dual Controller iSCSI SAN in 2011
- StorTrends selected for ease-of-use, compatibility with VMware, and overall value
NORCROSS, GEORGIA / COLLEGE PARK, MD - Serving 37,000 students, 13,000 faculty and staff, and thousands of annual visitors, the University of Maryland Dept. of Transportation Services (DOTS) is responsible for every single parking space on the College Park, MD campus and the vehicle fleet of the Shuttle-UM transit service.
DOTS has been recognized as one of the first university transportation departments in the country to implement a fully virtual system for permit registration and parking enforcement. DOTS enforcement vehicles armed with video cameras patrol parking lots on the hour, sending pictures of license plates in real time to a system that cross-references them against a database of registered permits. If the plate doesn’t have valid permit, a ticket is issued on the spot!
The DOTS IT department relies on 20 VMware ESX virtual servers to manage the permit registration system, multiple Microsoft SQL databases, the DOTS website, and several shared directories and drives. Prior to the adoption of the StorTrends solution, DOTS utilized a SAN solution from one of the market leaders in the storage industry to support that infrastructure.
While the system performed adequately, it proved extremely costly to maintain over time. It also had a rather complex GUI that required extensive hands-on management. When the maintenance contract came due in 2011, DOTS IT – led by Sr. IT Coordinator and Systems Administrator Tim Robinson – decided to look at alternatives. After an extensive review, they ultimately made the decision to implement the StorTrends 3400i Dual Controller iSCSI SAN from Norcross, GA-based American Megatrends, Inc. (AMI).
The decision, according to Mr. Robinson, came down to three factors: ease of management, a rich feature set, and price. Tim noted that "StorTrends had literally every single feature I was looking for: auto tiering, data dedupe and archiving, innovative data replication and WAN Optimization, a certified VMware plug-in – everything. When I saw the GUI and how easy it was to use, I knew I had to take a further look."
When Tim got the statement of work from an approved StorTrends Reseller, the deal was sealed. "When I got the final bid, I was blown away. I got all the functionality I wanted and a much better GUI for literally half the cost of similar solutions from other vendors. In our budget-conscious era, this was an extremely welcome surprise."
The StorTrends 3400i array now serves as DOTS primary storage solution, managing approximately 4 TBs of data. LUNs from the legacy array have been successfully migrated over to StorTrends, IO performance is solid, and the VMware plugin works seamlessly. Beyond solid system performance and a significant cost savings, Tim is extremely pleased with approach and customer-centric attitude of the AMI team.
"The people at AMI are down-to-earth, humble and true storage technology experts. I never felt like they were selling to me. They are just flat out good people. That may sound trivial, but it matters to me."
For more information on DOTS experience with StorTrends, interested parties are encouraged to view a recently recorded webinar featuring DOTS representative Tim Robinson and Sr. StorTrends Solution Engineers. The recording can be found on StorTrends TV at www.youtube.com/user/StorTrendsTV.
About University of Maryland DOTS
The University of Maryland Department of Transportation Services (DOTS) serves the community at the College Park, MD campus by managing and maintaining campus parking spots, the parking permit registration system, and the vehicle fleet of the Shuttle-UM transit service. Recognized for its innovation and use of technology, DOTS was named the 2012 “Organization of the Year” by the International Parking Institute. For more information on DOTS and its mission, please visit www.transportation.umd.edu.
Thousands of StorTrends SAN and NAS storage appliances are installed worldwide and trusted by companies and institutions in industries such as Education, Energy, Finance, State & Local Government, Healthcare, Manufacturing, Marketing, Retail, Research, Technology and many more. StorTrends meets the challenges and demands of today’s business environments by offering Unified Storage, Simplified Management, Business Continuity, Disaster Recovery, Storage Efficiency and Virtualization. The StorTrends product line incorporates enterprise features at a cost that is much less than traditional storage vendors making StorTrends a superb value as your next storage appliance. For more information, please visit www.stortrends.com.
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