PPL the first company in Pakistan to use Microsoft Private Cloud facility

Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL) achieved a milestone by becoming the first company, among both public and private sectors organizations, to deploy multi-site Microsoft private cloud in Pakistan for its primary and disaster recovery data centers.

As part of its efforts to continuously improve services and ensure resilience of systems, the Information Technology (IT) Department at PPL has already entered into mature implementation of Microsoft System Centre 2012 and virtualization of Microsoft Windows Servers 2012 that enabled the company to adopt the private cloud technology offered by Microsoft. As a result, virtualized servers are managed through a single computing ‘fabric’, a private cloud, in which servers and applications can be dynamically and automatically configured and deployed. The process, in collaboration with Microsoft Consultancy Services, was completed in a short span of only four months without interruption of in-house facilities.

Since the company’s exploration and production business runs round the clock and staff located at geographically distant fields, PPL needed to have its IT services remain available 24/7 without disruption so that improved communication between staff can assist in quick decision making and problem solving to enable uninterrupted supply of hydrocarbons.  

The deployment of private cloud technology has assisted the company in further consolidating physical servers, automating IT processes, minimizing disaster recovery duration/ processes and speeding up service delivery. With the cloud in place, the server infrastructure requirement has drastically dropped from over 45 to only 14 physical servers with proportionately reduced hardware maintenance costs. As a result, the server maintenance cost has reduced by around 50 percent of the total expenditure.

Starting business systems in a disaster recovery location now takes only 20 minutes in comparison to at least 9 hours required earlier. New servers’ configuration requires just 25 to 30 minutes as compared with between three to seven days earlier during which business activities were disrupted. Accordingly, the IT staff has reduced its maintenance and operations efforts by 70 percent and has more time to focus on new projects. Similarly, power consumption has been reduced by 60 percent, saving considerable amount per month.

In addition, the cloud also facilitates convenient migration of workloads across the primary and disaster recovery data centers, not only during recovery drills but also planned and emergency maintenance activities, by using well-tested and reliable standard operating procedures.

Based on the success story, Microsoft has developed a case study on PPL as a pioneering company using private cloud technology in Pakistan, which can be accessed through: http://www.microsoft.com/casestudies/Case_Study_Detail.aspx?CaseStudyID=710000003774