Looking for a system that could meet its performance needs without requiring too much time to implement and manage, Tickets.com Inc. picked 3PAR storage systems over competing products from Hitachi Data Systems and NetApp to run its ProVenue storage-as-a-service (SaaS)-based ticketing system.
Brett Michalak, chief information officer at Tickets.com, said the company kept its Hitachi Thunder 9500 V Series system for its legacy ticketing systems, but picked 3PAR for ProVenue because it outperformed the other rivals in performance tests and was the easiest of the three to administrate. Tickets.com installed two 3PAR InServ S400s with 24 TB each, one system in one of its two Southern California hosting facilities and the other in a Northern Virginia site.
The 3PAR systems were installed about a year ago as Tickets.com was bringing its ProVenue system online. ProVenue is a web-based platform used to sell tickets to major league baseball games and other sports and entertainment events. Tickets sold at stadiums and arenas tie into the ProVenue platform, which runs on Oracle databases and the 3PAR storage.
Michalak estimates he saved $500,000 on acquisition and management costs by going with 3PAR. Tickets.com has approximately six IT people to work on the storage-area network (SAN), but none have a great deal of Fibre Channel (FC) SAN expertise. He said features such as thin provisioning, and 3PAR's Virtual Copy and System Reporter, save time in setting up and running the arrays.
"We didn't need to go back and look at disk layouts, and analyze performance and contention of the SAN array," he said. "Our engineers rely on the 3PAR platform to do that for us. We can provision storage without overallocating. We have the storage we need based on RAID selection, and we're off. Historically, we'd have to do an analysis of our disk layout and understand where we'd have to allocate storage."
Michalak said the factors he considered most important when evaluating SANs were "the need for replication and higher performance, and ease of management. I don't have a dedicated storage team. I need to use database engineers and systems engineers as primary support for storage arrays."