EFutures helps Global Vinyl to set up SAP on AWS

Using cloud services can be overwhelming at times especially when your organization has no prior experience utilizing cloud services for any business application deployment beforehand. This article elaborates on how a managed cloud service provider like EFutures Private Limited can ease the transition of business application hosting from on premise to cloud, along with the correct technology to achieve the level of performance and availability without breaking the budget.

Global Vinyl, the company background and the challenge

Global Vinyl Private Limited, incorporated in 2001 and better known as GVL, is the pioneer of synthetic leather manufacturing in Sri Lanka. GVL opened their state-of-the-art production facilities in 2003 to produce a range of Vinyl flooring, sheeting and synthetic leather. These cover a broad range of industries such as footwear manufacturing, bag manufacturing, upholstery, domestic flooring, and vehicle upholstery. GVL is well equipped with the most modern manufacturing facilities, designed specially to deliver quality products which meets the customer requirement according to the specification.

Requirement elaboration done by EFutures

The overall requirement was to setup SAP Business One on a cloud. However, the customer was held back due to the grey areas like the security, cost and maintenance. Previously they had tried few local and international cloud providers but had discontinued due to the ambiguous implications with certain aspects of the proposed setup. EFutures did pricing calculations in accordance with AWS recommended sizing for SAP HANA and came back with a manageable cost to performance tradeoff which was appealing to the customer.

The initial tests were done on a cloud environment setup done within one day as requested and once the setup was tested successfully, for the application configuration, the same was deployed as a production stack.

Solution given by EFutures

With more than 5000 active AWS customers running SAP on AWS today, AWS pioneered running SAP HANA in-memory databases in the cloud earlier than any other cloud provider. It is recognized as an industry leader for SAP global infrastructure and innovation by ISG, AWS offers a broad choice of amazon ec2 instance types powered intel Xeon scalable processors and certified by SAP these instances use high performance storage with Amazon elastic block store to persist SAP HANA data.

Enterprises continue to deploy more and more mission critical business applications in the cloud with SAP HANA in order to make faster business decisions. The answer is Amazon high memory instances. These instances come in 5 memory size options with up to 24 terabytes of memory, are purpose built to run large in-memory databases in the cloud and are certified by SAP to run production deployments of SAP HANA. The eighteen terabytes and twenty-four tera byte instance sizes are based on second generation intel Xeon scalable cascade lake processors.

With ec2 high memory instances customers can run their large SAP HANA database in the same Amazon virtual private cloud as the rest of their enterprise applications enabling lower latency, operational simplicity, and more predictable performance. Amazon ec2 high memory instances also allow their customers to scale their SAP HANA database deployments to larger instances as needed while seamlessly integrating with other AWS services.

SSD backed amazon EBS volumes improve time to results with high performance options and reduced costs. With elastic volumes capability enabling dynamic storage modification with no disruption to your SAP HANA workload with amazon ec2 high memory instances AWS continues to push the limits of what’s possible for supporting SAP enterprise workloads in the cloud.

Traditionally enterprises kept their largest SAP HANA workloads on premises or at a colocation facility due to lack of choices in the cloud for large memory platforms. In these cases, the extra networking required to connect their large SAP HANA environment to other business applications running in the cloud increased cost, operational complexity, application latency and variability. Customers making a shift to the cloud want to be able to run their large SAP HANA databases in the cloud and ultra-closed to their business applications. Amazon EC2 Reserved Instances (RI) provide a significant discount (up to 72%) compared to On-Demand pricing and provide a capacity reservation when used in a specific Availability Zone.

Deploying SAP HANA on AWS cloud gives you more performance for the cost. Increased flexibility and scalability where we can scale up or scale down the server within few minutes as per required saving cost and improving performance. High availability is built in to the setup where we guarantee application uptime using underlaying AWS services which cater for such requirements. Another benefit is the improved security compared to other cloud vendors and managed hosting providers.

Impact and outcomes by the solution to Global Vinyl

The servers were created on separate virtual network segments called VPCs. High availability was built into the system where accidental disruptions are resolved real time by various actions including but not limited to clearing up disk space, restarting of services etc. Server data disks are encrypted to prevent data leaks using AWS based encryption service.

The servers have default security measures tightened on order to prevent any security issues down the line. On top of the servers comes the network security. This aspect is achieved by use of fine-tuned access rules ensuring only the required connections from selected locations and IP addresses to the production systems.

AWS has several levels of network isolation and securing mechanisms like network access lists, security groups, web application firewall, AWS Shield, AWS Trusted Advisor and AWS Guard Duty. Some network security measures are active mechanisms while some are passive mechanisms of securing the network and the traffic flowing through to the cloud environment.

The advantage of having a managed cloud services partner like EFutures is that clients are able to achieve the right level of security without hindering the application usability while doing so. This is possible because of the experience we have in doing similar setups for many managed cloud customers over the years.

VPN connections are setup for the factories and users working outside the head office, so that they would have a safe encrypted connection to the production server hosted cloud. Business continuity is handled via internal high availability configured within AWS, among its availability zones. Singapore region is used as it is closer to Sri Lanka where the production system will be used. Backups are handled via AWS services so that there is minimal data loss in case of a data corruption. Backups are restored on a periodical basis on a test setup to make sure that the backups are operational.

24×7 support teams to monitor the systems for any issues so that they can rectify or automate the issue resolution. All the above are additional services provided by EFutures team as a part of their managed service offering.

Using cloud services can be overwhelming at times especially when you have not utilized the cloud for any production deployment beforehand. But the benefits are huge specially when considering the added flexibility, scalability and cost efficiency given that only an operational expense is for the resource usage by the hour. EFutures can help you realize the actual benefits of cloud computing while negating the drawbacks learnt through our experience. We have the technical skills in hand to help you achieve maximum cost efficiency while achieving your targeted performance.

offering. Using cloud services can be overwhelming at times especially when you have not utilized the cloud for any production deployment beforehand. But the benefits are huge specially when considering the added flexibility, scalability and cost efficiency given that only an operational expense is for the resource usage by the hour. EFutures can help you realize the actual benefits of cloud computing while negating the drawbacks learnt through our experience. We have the technical skills in hand to help you achieve maximum cost efficiency while achieving your targeted performance.