In mid-April this year when a major fire broke out in NeML’s Data Centre in Mumbai, operations in agri commodities had to be suspended temporarily. This posed a challenge to NeML leaving them with two options:
- Activate the passive Disaster Recovery site with partial operational capability – partial because the hardware available at the DR site was capable of handling only 25% of the applications and loads (an upgrade was in the process), or
- Migrate to a Cloud Computing alternative like the one offered by Amazon Web Services (AWS) with full capacity.
Fortunately, NeML had done the basic Proof of Concept validation over a period of 3 months from January 18 to March 18 for cloud deployment of some of its applications and had prepared a plan to migrate to AWS Cloud over a period of 12-18 months. Hence the option to migrate to the cloud immediately was on the table.
It was nevertheless a courageous decision by NeML’s Leadership Team, led by Mr. Ravindra Shevade – COO & CTO, who took a calculated risk to migrate to AWS Cloud immediately.
The risks were:
- Trading applications need an ability to handle high throughput and low latencies. NeML’s team had to ensure that there was no compromise on that count.
- The migration landscape was huge with more than 100 servers, 50+ Product Applications, 20 TB Storage, 15+ Load Balancers, and more than 50,000 active users.
- There was no precedent in the BFSI segment in India where a company had moved majority of its core applications on the cloud.
In spite of these potential risks, NeML’s preliminary risk assessment and cost-benefit analysis had indicated that if they pushed hard, they could migrate to AWS Cloud in a fairly short time thereby bringing down their costs and enhancing operational efficiencies on a long-term basis.
NeML decided to take the plunge and was up with its first large application within 5 hours of the primary Data Centre going down. Within the next 48 hours, all applications involving 100 servers, 50+ Product Applications, 20 TB Storage and 15+ Load Balancers were active on the cloud.
Mr. Amitesh Kumar, NeML’s IT Infrastructure Head, and Mr. Vinod Soni and Mr. Ashutosh Dubey from TCS, NeML’s Outsourcing Partner, fully supported by all the Dev and Ops teams of NeML managed this feat working from their Hotel rooms non-stop.
About 55 hours after the fire, all the 50+ Product Applications were live on AWS Cloud even while NeML’s primary Data Centre power was not restored and it’s Offices were out of bounds as per the Fire Department’s regulations.
Thanks to the cohesive effort by NeML’s IT Team, AWS Cloud’s versatile scalability features and active support from the AWS team, NeML was able to migrate to AWS Cloud in a record time, and become India’s first company in the BFSI segment to migrate 100% of its applications from Data Centre to the Cloud. A feat in itself!