NSW Trade & Investment kicks off new cloud journey

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NSW Trade & Investment kicks off new cloud journey

IT pioneers take on infrastructure-as-a-service.

NSW’s Department of Trade and Investment has embarked on a new project to transition test and development and disaster recovery to an infrastructure-as-a-service platform, after successfully moving its core ERP systems and email to the cloud.

The Department of Trade and Investment, Regional Infrastructure and Services (DTIRIS) was formed in April 2011 from a mish mash of diverse functions and bodies, all of which brought their own systems and IT architectures to the new organisation.

The subsequent need to consolidate numerous independent finance, payroll and HR systems across the agency was the catalyst behind the move to SAP's Business ByDesign, hosted in Germany.

Similarly, the latest move to infrastructure-as-a-service has been triggered by a portfolio-wide data centre rationalisation.

DTIRIS has already consolidated infrastructure based in “many disparate computer rooms across the state” down to two of its own facilities in Orange and Maitland.

Eventually, according to tender document released today, DTIRIS will look to have all non-cloud hosted data and applications located in one of two NSW government anchored data centres run by Metronode in Unanderra and Silverwater, under what it has called its interim “hybrid cloud model”.

“This means a mix of rented capacity in cloud-based Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) providers and the remaining infrastructure hosted in the NSW Government data centres,” the organisation noted in its tender documents.

In the longer term, however, “the department will move ICT infrastructure to IaaS delivery and move away from managing and owning its own”.

As the first step in this direction, Trade and Investment is calling on bids for an externally hosted universal disaster recovery solution and test and dev platform.

The department “aims to reduce its reliance on managing its own infrastructure and take advantage of pay per hours of use that IaaS offerings provide".

“This will allow systems to be powered down or suspended when not required, reducing the cost of... spare capacity.”

It is seeking a solution that can have services back up and running within 24 hours of a disaster, with no more than 24 hours worth of data unable to be replicated. It also expects that some “higher criticality” systems will be replicated on a near real-time basis.

Calendaring, e-mail and instant messaging within DTIRIS has already been moved to Google Apps, so will not be within the scope for recovery.

The tender documents state that it would be “highly desirable” to have the IaaS solution hosted within the NSW government’s private marketplace inside the Metronode data centres, but not mandatory.

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