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Transfer has to be fitted into a weekend window

Bill Goodwin

Standard Bank's plans to relocate its IT department to Docklands have taken months of preparation. 

The bank plans to transport and rebuild more than 120 Windows NT servers, 15 Unix servers and a storage area network holding terabytes of critical data. 

The bank has a team of 15 internal IT staff and 10 consultants working on the relocation plan, which aims to move equipment, install it and have it up and running before it is needed again by the business. 

"The problem for us is that our systems are accessed by Hong Kong and New York. The window of opportunity is really Saturday morning to Sunday midnight. It has to be a slick operation," said Gary Diable, technical services manager at Standard Bank. 

The team has to make sure that servers are properly packaged to prevent damage, and in some cases transported in temperature-regulated vans. And the specialist removal firms used have to be checked to ensure they have sufficient insurance to cover damaged equipment or lost data, said Diable. 

The most difficult operation will be transferring the San, which contains financial data for the past 12 years.

"To move that six miles is a risk. We have purpose-built trucks and third-party engineers to come in and disconnect, stack, label and transport it," said Diable.  "To reduce the risk we are looking to get a secondary box, so that in the worst-case scenario we have a back-up device."


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