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    Qilu Bank Sets a Transformation Benchmark with Huawei All-Flash Storage and DME

On its ongoing journey of financial digital transformation, Qilu Bank (QLB), a commercial bank headquartered in eastern China's Shandong province, chose to deploy Huawei all-flash storage at its core. With this system now working in tandem with an intelligent storage management platform, Data Management Engine (DME), the bank has effectively supercharged financial services. Indeed, with the bank's cloud platform running on multi-layer architecture — comprised of a data source, data analytics, and base support and application platforms — QLB worked with Huawei to build an entirely new digital financial ecosystem featuring data-driven, integrated development and joint innovation and sharing, to provide its customers with a full range of online and offline services.

QLB has long trusted in technology, evidenced in the growing digital achievements made across its business lines. For instance, it provides digital credit, enhanced and upgraded credit risk control, and online, real-time, and automated risk approval. With a digital operations platform running on a data monitoring model, the bank ensures that any risks are quickly detected and handled, with staff notified immediately to prevent illegal transactions. The bank has also built an open digital platform to better develop mobile services, including mobile and direct banking, as well as accommodate all developing future services.

With business and data volumes quickly growing, QLB recognized that it needed a more resilient and stable data storage solution, as well as a more intelligent and personalized storage management mode, to ensure the continuity, reliability, and resilience of mission-critical services. To cope with new challenges in the context of rapid service growth, a number of new needs arose.

▪ Stable and reliable services: The bank needed a new solution that would comply with relevant standards, be in line with the latest developments in the wider Information Technology (IT) storage industry, and meet service needs over the long term.

▪ Data resilience and accuracy: During digital transformation, the resilience of digital assets is the top priority for any bank, in order to safeguard sensitive customer data. This means protecting both data applications and data itself.

▪ Simplified and efficient Operations and Maintenance (O&M): Traditional manual O&M isn't up to the job of supporting a digitally transforming financial industry and, in fact, often proves a stumbling block impeding development.

▪ Future development: The continued iteration of service models, the acceleration of digital and intelligent development, and a sharp increase in service volumes have all helped to strain and deplete storage resources, industry-wide. As a result, QLB's storage capacity and performance both needed to be upgraded to meet new needs, including scalability, and ensure service continuity.

Digital and intelligent applications are the lifeblood of every bank's financial system. After conducting a comprehensive technical review in 2020, QLB chose to work with Huawei in order to support its full range of innovative, high-quality products and services, as well as ensure the reliable and efficient running of mission-critical services. Huawei's all-flash data center solution is characterized by high reliability, performance, resilience, and availability, along with a host of other benefits including a reduced physical footprint and energy conservation. The solution uses Solid-State Drives (SSDs), for example, which consume 70% less power and occupy 50% less space compared with competitor products of the same capacity, significantly reducing the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). The solution also helps the bank move towards its carbon neutrality goals: replacing a traditional disk with an SSD is equivalent to planting 150 trees.

High-end Huawei all-flash storage — OceanStor 18500 and OceanStor 5600 — was chosen to form the industry's first geo-redundant Three Data Center (3DC) four-copy Disaster Recovery (DR) solution at the core storage layer. Overall, the solution delivers state-of-the-art availability and reliability, lowering TCO.

A 3DC DR Solution Ensures Service Continuity

The 3DC DR solution, featuring active-active architecture allied to replication and snapshot functions, ensures the continuity of core services even if one or more of the data centers fail, boosting availability. The DR solution is comprised of a production center, an intra-city DR center, and a remote DR center. If the production center fails, services are quickly failed over to the intra-city DR center. If both fail, data copies in the remote DR center are used to restore production services, ensuring service continuity.

High Availability and a Visualized Solution Simplify Management

Industry-leading architecture tolerates three out of four controller failures, improving the reliability of a single storage device. The active-active design, synchronous and asynchronous replication, and real-time synchronization of copies across three data centers deliver the high availability required. Plus, Huawei's storage systems visualize physical and logical topologies, with one-click DR testing and failover supported by OceanStor BCManager, Huawei's DR and backup software. In short, QLB enjoys one-click recovery of the standby service system using scripts, simplifying its DR drill process and optimizing O&M.

The DME Intelligent Data Lifecycle Management Platform Covers All Scenarios

An intelligent storage management platform, DME is equipped with four automation modes that flexibly adapt as needed. The platform provides a range of multi-dimensional reports to show the O&M status of infrastructure, featuring both proactive and reactive monitoring.

Indeed, QLB is closing in on automated O&M for its data infrastructure, giving it a true competitive edge and laying a robust foundation for digital transformation. With Huawei's geo-redundant 3DC DR solution and DME in place, brand new data infrastructure running on intelligent all-flash storage is empowering the bank to build a more resilient and stable data storage environment for high-quality business development. As such, the bank is powering forward in its evolution to a smart bank, setting a new benchmark for digital transformation and storage innovation of core financial systems.

Looking ahead, QLB Bank will continue to work with Huawei to simplify and reshape its banking business, building an ever-more resilient and reliable data storage environment, transforming itself and, doing so, championing digital financial services for all.