Chase Manhattan Bank is installing a sophisticated data backup system to support a new global trading facility that is to begin operating early next year at its New York City headquarters.

The bank will use a SR2AA Raid disk array from New York-based Conley Corp. to support more than 100 file and application servers, said Bill Schimoler, vice president of trading technology at Chase. Neither party would disclose the cost of the system.

Raid -- which stands for redundant array of inexpensive disks -- is a method of backing up computer data, by which data are mirrored to two sets of disks. This data backup is automatic and continuous so that if one disk fails, data can be recovered from the other.

The system goes a step further by allowing two separate servers to access the same disk array, so that if one server fails, the other can continue to operate.

The system acts as a safety net to ensure continuous operation of trading activity, said Mr. Schimoler. "We chose Conley because it offers us the ability to prevent the failure of a critical application in spite of a disk hardware outage," he said.

Another advantage of the system, said Mr. Schimoler, is that its management software will allow the bank to monitor the network from a remote workstation.

The disk array chassis -- hardware that is connected to the servers -- will appear as icons on the computer screen, he said. If the chassis is operating normally, the icons will appear green, if marginal, yellow. The color red denotes a failure. When a failure occurs, the icon is expanded to a full-size window and a description of the nature of the failure appears so corrective action can be taken.

"The remote management software will enable us to proactively monitor performance and avoid many failures," said Mr. Schimoler.

Before choosing the system, the bank installed a number of chassis and servers at an off-site testing facility in Hauppauge, N.Y., for a two-month test, said Mr. Schimoler.

Commenting on the results of the testing, a Conley representative said, "There is virtually no downtime attributable to the array's fail-over procedure."

Conley's system runs on multiple computer platforms, including Macintosh, Sun, OSF, AIX, and Novell.

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