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AMPORTS Finds Flexibility and Agility in its PureFlex Solution

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Looking to improve the flexibility and agility of its IT infrastructure, Jacksonville, Fla.-based AMPORTS implemented an IBM PureFlex* System. The company provides portside vehicle-processing services for auto manufacturers through 11 terminals at seaports, railways and tracking hubs across the U.S. and Mexico.

Process automation led to a disparate IT environment that was difficult to manage and support. As a result, the organization sought to upgrade its server environment, increase data storage capacity and improve its disaster recovery strategy.

AMPORTS worked with DP Solutions to implement IBM PureFlex System, an offering from the IBM PureSystems* family. Two PureFlex Systems are now configured with IBM Flex System* p260 and x240 compute nodes to address availability issues and support its data-recovery system from Vision Solutions Inc.

AMPORTS CIO Bill Cappadora says the PureFlex System features integrated computing, storage, networking, virtualization and cloud management capabilities, allowing the company to carry out its IT simplification strategy. Also key is the capability to consolidate the workloads of the system’s x86 compute nodes and IBM i.

Cappadora explains, “A highlight of the project was how the IBM POWER* servers ran immediately without problems and with faster performance than in the past.”

As a result, AMPORTS saw performance improvements in its in-house vehicle tracking application and the JD Edwards ERP software, both of which are critical for communicating vehicle information to customers in a timely manner.

The IBM Flex System Manager* node also allows the company to deploy new applications more simply by providing a single point of control, streamlining operations and translating to a faster time to market for new services.

The system’s integrated management of physical and virtual resources allows AMPORTS to take full advantage of the private cloud. Gordon Leary, IT manager for AMPORTS, says, “The company is able to do more with virtual machines since everything is integrated into one machine. We’re doing private cloud big time.”

Several other benefits are also apparent. The PureFlex infrastructure:

  • Improves overall system performance by approximately 50 percent and reduces VMware lag time to virtually zero
  • Boosts software application response times through 75 percent reduction in initial program load time, from 20 to five minutes
  • Reduces operating costs by consolidating IT environments and increasing virtual machine capacity

The overall solution’s cloud-ready capabilities and a single management interface also position the company for growth while freeing IT staff from managing systems. This allows the staff to focus on business-critical projects.

“By simplifying our IT infrastructure, we’re able to do more with the same number of staff,” states Leary.

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