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Huawei Active-Active Storage Solution Ensures Business Continuity for Hi3G Sweden

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Huawei Active-Active Storage Solution Ensures Business Continuity for Hi3G Sweden

2016/8/5 0:00:00

“When we ordered the first Huawei OceanStor storage system, we found it is much easier to handle than our previous platform. The advantage of having an active-active solution is security of course and it is easy to maintain. We know now we don’t have downtime. We can have everything up and running even if one room breaks.”

— Mikael Vinberg, IT Infrastructure Manager of Hi3G Sweden 


Established in 2000, Hutchison Telecom Sweden (Hi3G Sweden), the fourth biggest telecom carrier in the country, provides a network that covers 99% of the population. Its market share reached 12.1% in 2014. Hi3G Sweden is a home-grown mobile digital services provider committed to delivering superior user experience as evidenced by its No. 1 ranking in mobile network quality for several consecutive years. 


As an aggressive challenger, Hi3G Sweden is actively carrying out its digital service transformation to strengthen its presence in the Swedish telecom market. The transformation involves using cutting-edge technologies and solutions to revamp existing IT and CT infrastructures. Computing-as-a-Platform (CaaP), Storage-as-a-Platform (SaaP), cloud-based data centers, and hybrid cloud deployment are major drives for Hi3G Sweden to streamline its IT infrastructure. 

As an important part of IT infrastructure, the storage platform must provide satisfactory performance for multi-service convergence and ensure 24/7 service continuity with zero interruption, data loss, and system downtime. However, the existing storage devices and the original VPLEX gateway active-active storage solution were challenged in the following aspects: 

Appliances nearing end-of-warranty and waning system reliability: More than 10 EMC storage devices were nearing the end of warranty period, disk and device failure rates were too high, and overall system reliability was compromised, unable to deliver always-on services. 

Serious performance bottlenecks in gateways: VPLEX storage gateways were deployed in the field network to enable the active-active mode for the production and DR sites. VPLEX storage gateways brought 1 ms to 1.6 ms latency. With gateway aging and performance deterioration, the overall system I/O latency reached 10 ms to even 15 ms, severely lowering efficiency in handling billing, reports, and other services. 

Complex O&M and expansion and sky-high TCO: The VPLEX gateway active-active storage solution complicated system networking and storage network deployment, adjustment, and O&M, and incurred soaring OPEX, procurement, and expansion costs. 

Huawei Solution 

To address reliability, performance, and cost issues facing Hi3G Sweden, Huawei offered a gateway-free active-active storage solution. The solution can simplify the storage network and deliver enhanced DR assurance, ensuring that services remain up and running. 

Reliability: 24/7 operations with zero stoppage ensured by the highly reliable active-active architecture 

  • The active-active array layout ensures zero data loss in the event of fault at either site. 
  • The fully interconnected, intelligent storage architecture provides 99.9999% reliability as well as 24/7 service continuity. 
  • The dual arbitration mechanism enables real-time service takeover in the case of a single point of failure. 
  • Shared storage applications and dual-write functions ensure absolute data consistency in real time and high availability of all data. 

Performance: Free of performance bottlenecks thanks to the various methods for performance acceleration 

  • The gateway-free architecture reduces latency caused by the previous gateways to zero. 
  • Optimized data access paths shorten latency in data transfer by 50%. 
  • SmartTier and SmartCache are used to work with SSDs for performance acceleration, therefore improving array performance by 300%. 

Cost: Lowered TCO due to the gateway-free networking 

  • Active-active gateways are replaced by active-active storage arrays, simplifying the storage network while lowering deployment and O&M costs. 
  • Services are directly taken over by Huawei storage arrays from heterogeneous storage devices, reducing service migration costs. 
  • Ease of expansion to geo-redundant layouts with three data centers cuts down expansion costs. 

Customer Benefits 

Huawei solution delivered higher efficiency at a lower cost. 

  • Simplified storage network, lowering TCO for storage infrastructure by 50% 
  • 300% higher overall storage system performance and 10 ms-less I/O latency, effectively unlocking system performance bottlenecks while providing needed performance for core services on the storage platform 
  • 50% better efficiency in generating monthly reports, handling SDRs, and other core services, dramatically elevating user experience
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