Solid-State Upgrade Yields Solid Results At Tinker FCU

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OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla.- Not satisfied with the lightning-fast core processing delivered by the credit union's new blade server, Tinker FCU took BladeCenter processing one step further, according to Steve Mooney, VP of information-systems operations.

The result is a "completely revolutionary" configuration of the Symitar Episys core: Tinker paid about $66,000 to replace some slower Serial ATA and fibre channel drives in the blade with six, 400-gigabyte solid-state drives, said Mooney. Episys, provided by Symitar, a division of Jack Henry & Associates, Inc., is the company's most powerful, customizable core processing platform.

Now Tinker's monthly processing takes just three hours, a 50% improvement, Mooney said. Quarterly and yearly processing times have improved 55%, he said. Once the solid-state boxes are fine-tuned, Mooney said he thinks he can get nightly processing down to one hour from the current three hours. "We're trying to be always on-line."

Solid-state is 30 times faster than a conventional drive. That means demanding ongoing processes like Microsoft SQL database transactions and fraud detection don't take so long, he continued. "Solid-state makes up for any poorly-written application that takes tons of storage and memory to run."

What's more, Tinker's new networked storage architecture features FAST, software from EMC CLARiiON that senses which data needs to be processed on the more powerful solid-state drives and moves less demanding jobs or archival data to slower drives, Mooney said. "My engineers can guess which jobs and data should be processed by solid-state and write scripts to make that happen, or I can do it automatically with FAST."

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