The Mauritius Union Group (MUA), a financial services company based in Mauritius, recently replaced its core IT infrastructure with the Nutanix Enterprise Cloud OS software, enabling the company to incorporate storage, networking and compute in a single infrastructure stack while dramatically improving uptime and reducing TCO.
The company first turned to the potential of hyperconvergence as an alternative to continual investment into siloed and three-tiered legacy systems, as a result of needs to consistently integrate the legacy environments from merges and acquisitions over the last ten years.

“Deploying Nutanix was a simple, out-of-the-box experience, it was just so easy to deploy and now subsequently to manage, as a result of Nutanix Prism. We were up and running in just one day thanks to our technology partner, Secure Services (Mauritius) Ltd,” adds Rishi Sewnundun, head of IS at MUA.

“With Nutanix, it has become easier to set up high availability applications and handle failures seamlessly without any disruptions. We are now able to complete box-to-box synchronous replication of VMs, as opposed to the multiple products we used in the past to achieve the same result.”

The move to a web-scale environment enabled MUA to streamline its highly virtualised environment, as well as alleviate the bandwidth pressures it was feeling on its network. Furthermore, with Nutanix the company has been able to improve performance and reduce management complexity.

“We initially investigated myriad offerings on the market from various vendors after extensive testing of these various technologies, we realised that Nutanix Acropolis hypervisor (AHV) performed exceptionally well in many areas than its peers and was the obvious choice. Migration from XenServer to AHV was also smooth, sometimes with minimal modification to the OVA file,” he says.

The Enterprise Cloud OS software has been built on Cisco UCS, a standard hardware in its offices in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda. Furthermore, the IT team from MUA makes use of the Nutanix Prism dashboard, which has streamlined their view of the infrastructure into a single interface – saving them from the multiple appliance consoles and system dashboards they were reliant on in the past.

“We migrated over 50 VMs in just one week with zero downtime and that included the five IBM Domino mail servers for the entire Group. We also immediately saw notable performance improvements accessing the data centre and log on times for the Citrix XenDesktop environment, which was reduced by 14 seconds per session,” he adds.

Leveraging the Acropolis Filesystem (AFS) allowed Mauritius Union to move user profiles and shared files off of its storage environment, as well as build user specific quotas, something it has wanted to do for many years. The team has also been able to improve its own VM and storage provisioning service delivery thanks to Prism.

“We have also seen a direct impact on our Manex as we have been able to reduce the expensive support needed on the traditional IT infrastructure. Nutanix is without a doubt the best investment we have made so far, not just on the infrastructure components, but on the entire Nutanix software stack. We initially set out to deploy a hyperconverged solution and ended up with a whole lot more than that. In fact, it gave us a fully web-scale solution when everyone is still just talking about starting with hyperconvergence,” ends Sewnundun.

“Many African countries are looking to the cloud as a means to better solve infrastructure problems without the exorbitant costs of hardware. Mauritius Union Group truly are leading the charge by embracing a web-scale / cloud environment that ultimately provides them infinite scalability at a fraction of the cost,” states Paul Ruinaard, Country Manager, Sub-Saharan Africa at Nutanix.