When the London Pensions Fund Authority (LPFA) needed a technology partner they could trust to provide support for their virtual desktop environment, they turned to specialist consultancy Krome Technologies to provide the comprehensive support services they required.
Established in 1989 the London Pensions Fund Authority is a stand-alone public body and London’s largest local government pension scheme provider, employing 150 people across their locations in London and Hertfordshire. LPFA provides investment strategy, administration, and corporate governance services to over 200 public sector employers, with more than 80,000 members and a portfolio of fund assets in excess of £4.6 billion.
Having already invested in a Citrix VDI-in-a-box solution via their incumbent solution provider, LPFA discovered that they needed the assistance of a support partner that could provide in-depth troubleshooting services and advice, combined with specialist expertise in the configuration of Citrix virtual networks.
The decision was made to look for a partner with the skills required to assist in maintaining the existing virtual infrastructure, and provide additional configuration services that would support LPFA’s expanding operation. LPFA shortlisted three companies that stood out amongst the competition, inviting them to LPFA’s Head Office in London to present to the team, and demonstrate their experience with Citrix solutions. Of the three organisations they contacted, Krome stood out, thanks to a broad vendor portfolio, inclusive range of services and established technical expertise.
At the request of LPFA, Krome reviewed the configuration of their Citrix virtual environment, making a series of recommendations to help improve overall performance; by addressing capacity issues and bringing the system up to date. This included rebuilding the hypervisor, updating firmware and implementing a more effective load balancing policy that utilised two active servers and established one server as a redundant failover solution, ensuring the LPFA Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) operated more effectively and included a robust Disaster Recovery (DR) solution; maximising efficiencies and limiting the potential for service interruptions.
Having successfully worked with the team at LPFA to rebuild their existing Citrix VDI-in-a-box solution, LPFA then called on the technical expertise of Krome’s consultants to support other projects including the replication of their Dell EqualLogic SAN to a temporary DR environment, safeguarding against any issues that could potentially be caused during a planned power outage at LPFA’s Head Office in Tower Hill. Having previously experienced unexpected issues with their Dell SAN during a scheduled power outage, they wanted to ensure that the appropriate measures were in place to protect their data during the second planned outage.
“The service provided by Krome far exceeded my expectations. Having initially engaged with Krome to provide us with support for our existing Citrix VDI-in-a-box solution; based on their experience with Citrix solutions, as well as their accreditations with other key vendors’ products that we were already utilising on the LPFA estate, we saw an opportunity to engage their technical expertise in other areas of our environment.”
Krome arranged for temporary equipment to be shipped to them directly from Dell; including three demo units of varying capacities that would provide a stable solution, replicating from one SAN to another, to preserve their data and get the systems back up and running on an interim solution, in the event of the power down.
Krome also worked collaboratively with LPFA to analyse the current systems, highlighting anything that could potentially cause future issues during planned or unplanned power outages. This included conducting a health check of the LPFA VMware and SAN environment, addressing existing pain points as well as conducting preventative maintenance, and making a series of recommendations that included the purchase of an additional Dell EqualLogic SAN, to support LPFA’s rapidly growing environment.
“Krome’s technical expertise is in the areas where we need it most to support LPFA’s existing infrastructure, and our ambitious plans for growth. We are using Krome’s services more and more because, quite simply we trust them, and as our support partner, that’s incredibly important to us. ICT Manager, LPFA.