BSE slashes operational costs by adopting Linux

by Srikanth RP, InformationWeek, April 10, 2013

Asia’s oldest stock exchange has saved huge costs by deploying SUSE Linux for powering a majority of its applications

For an institution that is Asia’s oldest stock exchange, technology plays a pivotal role. With more than 30 million trades being executed on a monthly basis, and transactions running into billions — at no moment, can the BSE afford any performance issues related to its IT infrastructure.

“We need our IT infrastructure to be extremely dynamic in nature. Almost every day, there are requests for enhancements in existing IT applications. This is extremely challenging, as every change has to be done or released by keeping in mind the impact on integrated IT systems,” says Kersi Tavadia, CIO, BSE.

In an always-on environment, there was no room for any complacency, as the team had to ensure that every change made was accurate. To improve performance and simplify management, the firm was considering deployment of Linux in its infrastructure. The exchange also wanted to standardize on Linux distribution, and leverage virtualization as a way of reducing hardware and operational costs.

Accordingly, the BSE decided to deploy SUSE Linux Enterprise Servers. By leveraging Xen virtualization in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server combined with Virtual Machine Driver Pack, the BSE was able to reduce its hardware infrastructure and operational costs. By leveraging the in-built Xen virtualization technology of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, BSE has been able to consolidate 24 servers into 7 virtual host servers. This has  resulted into savings on 17 servers and 7 virtualization licenses. 

By leveraging SUSE Linux Enterprise server’s unlimited virtualization policy, BSE has also been able to save 17 subscriptions of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. BSE was also able to virtualize both SUSE and Windows using Xen. BSE was already using SUSE in its data warehousing solution and by choosing SUSE for its OS and virtualization requirements, it was able to standardize on a single Linux distribution.

By providing a stable, virus-resistant platform for BSE’s core business systems, the deployment of Linux has offered BSE better availability and reliability as compared to what it was using previously for business.

"Today, we have deployed core apps like ERP, EMS, database, corporate e-mail, ECM, and LAMP on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server in a mix of physical and virtual servers"

Kersi Tavadia, CIO, BSE

Satisfied by the performance of the applications on an open source platform, BSE has started deploying some of the core applications on SUSE Linux. “Applications like ERP, EMS, database, corporate e-mail, ECM, LAMP, FTP, etc., are deployed on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server in a mix of physical and virtual servers,” states Kersi.

With the deployment of SUSE Linux, BSE has ensured a virus-free environment. In addition to better stability, BSE estimates that it has reduced 50 percent of its cost involved in maintaining and deploying its IT infrastructure.

Boosted by the benefits gained by deploying open source, BSE is now thinking of leveraging the benefits of an open source Office Productivity Suite. Kersi is also optimistic on the overall benefits of open source. He says, “With constant updates available and the promise of an enthusiastic community, our tryst with open source has been pleasant.”

About Author

Srikanth RP

Executive Editor

An award-winning journalist with more than 14 years of experience, Srikanth RP is Executive Editor with InformationWeek India. Srikanth is passionate about writing on topics which clearly show the business impact of technology.

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