Server swap helps to cut costs of IT overhaul

A central aim of the IT overhaul at the London Stock Exchange has been to cut costs by 20% while developing a system that offered scalability, availability, agility and security.

A central aim of the IT overhaul at the London Stock Exchange has been to cut costs by 20% while developing a system that offered scalability, availability, agility and security.

To help with the cost reductions, the LSE has replaced its Hewlett-Packard Tandem NonStop servers with HP Proliant x64 (hybrid 32/64-bit) servers.

Robin Paine, chief technology officer, said, "It is much easier, faster and cheaper to get linear levels of scalability [with commodity PC servers]. The previous NonStop hardware was time consuming and expensive to scale."

There is a direct correlation between the performance of the IT systems and the level of trading on the Exchange. Improvements in system performance benefits the volume of trading. Any delays in the Exchange's ability to execute trades can quickly reduce profit, Gavin Little-Gill, director at Tower Group said.

To help, the IT team and senior managers receive a daily text message giving them information on sustained peak trading.

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