Live insight into the status of the dark fibre connection mitigates the risk of downtime.
PinkRoccade Hosting Services provides (multi)cloud and managed services to various software suppliers and organisations within the healthcare industry. Think of hosting business-critical environments, such as EHRs (electronic health records) and laboratory systems, the design and installation of the relevant infrastructure, the remote management of such environments (including monitoring and 24/7 support) and the delivery of disaster facilities.
Uptime is critical
Downtime of business-critical applications not only leads to (temporary) loss of data and high costs, but can even have a major impact on the proper treatment of patients. Maximum availability of its hosting platform, the Pink Private Cloud, is therefore key to PinkRoccade Hosting Services. Every conceivable measure has been implemented to this end. For example, the Pink Private Cloud consists of a fully redundant data centre environment. Both data centres comply with the TIER 4 data centre classification. Dark fibre connectivity between the data centres is also redundant: the connections enter and leave the data centres at different locations, are purchased from two different suppliers and do not cross each other anywhere en route.
Dark fibre monitoring
Leo Arnts, technical consultant at PinkRoccade Hosting Services: ‘Fibre-optic connections are ideally suited for an active-active data centre environment. However, as the dark fibre supplier is responsible for its management, you have less control over its performance. It is obviously possible to have (one-off) measurements carried out by the dark fibre supplier, but this is time-consuming and did not provide sufficient insight for us. We then consulted with Arcadiz, a specialist in the field of broadband optical networks. They recommended that we continuously monitor the fibre-optic connections using an ADVA ALM (Advanced Line Monitoring) system.'
After careful preparation, Arcadiz implemented the ADVA ALM system quickly and flawlessly. Almost immediately afterwards it became apparent that there was a problem with one of the dark fibre connections. The detailed report showed exactly where and at what point in the dark fibre the problem was located. This was sufficient incentive for the dark fibre supplier to get started straight away.
In the event of an unexpected disruption, it is often complex and time-consuming to discover exactly where the cause lies,' continues Arnts. ‘First, you have to exclude all other possibilities, such as a network, storage or server environment failure. Only then can it be determined that the cause can be found in the fibre-optic connection and the dark fibre supplier can take a measurement. All in all, you waste a huge amount of time and, together with a lot of people, you are looking for the reason for the problem. Now, with this new monitoring tool, we are able to immediately see whether there is a problem and where it is located in the dark fibre, and it can therefore be remedied much more quickly.'
‘Protection of privacy-sensitive data is an important aspect of our service,' continues Arnts. ‘Security at network level is also part of this, of course. An additional advantage of the ALM system is that you can also use the information from the report to determine whether a physical tap is or will be placed on the fibre. And that, in the context of compliancy, you have insight into what goes on throughout the network.’
Peace of mind
‘PinkRoccade Hosting Services' aim is to provide its clients with complete peace of mind in specific IT areas in which we specialise. We like to work together with other like-minded parties who can help us in the process,' Arnts continues. ‘Arcadiz's services are a good example of this. Now that the connections are continuously monitored and Arcadiz also manages them, this adds extra security. Our platform's availability has improved and we can devote our time to further perfect the service we provide to our customers.'
Arcadiz really thinks out of the box when seeking solutions!
About PinkRoccade Hosting Services
PinkRoccade Hosting Services is one of the PinkRoccade Healthcare business units. PinkRoccade Hosting Services take care of the availability and security of data of millions of Dutch people on a daily basis. We do so by hosting organisations innovatively as expert and professional partners and by supporting them with (multi)cloud and managed services. More than two thousand organisations are now experiencing the convenience of our Pink Private Cloud, including hospitals, mental health care institutions, care organisations, pharmacies, general practitioners and municipalities. With over 10 million medical records and more than 150 municipalities in the Pink Private Cloud, we manage the confidential data of a large portion of the Dutch population.