InfraServ Wiesbaden provides IT services for the 70+ companies leasing space in the Kalle-Albert Industrial Park in Wiesbaden, Germany. Anticipating a need for new data management services like Microsoft 365 backups, ransomware protection, and individual file restores, InfraServ Wiesbaden decided to replace its on-prem backup solution. Only Cohesity met every requirement. In addition to strengthening data protection, Cohesity DataProtect delivered as a service slashed costs by enabling InfraServ Wiesbaden to decommission its dedicated backup facility.

The Challenge

The industrial companies that lease space in the Kalle-Albert Industrial Park can contract with InfraServ Wiesbaden for some or all of their IT services. “Prospective tenants always ask about data backups and security, and we look for solutions to set their minds at ease,” says Steffen Maurer, Head of IT Operations & IT Infrastructure for InfraServ Wiesbaden.

Previously InfraServ Wiesbaden operated three separate data centers—production, disaster recovery, and backup. “We’re always exploring ways to reduce our self-managed IT infrastructure, and maintaining a dedicated backup site is expensive,” Maurer says. The tipping point came as customers started asking InfraServ Wiesbaden to back up their Microsoft 365 data, not possible with the existing HPE Data Protector solution.

Mr. Maurer’s team started investigating cloud-based data management solutions. “We didn’t want the complexity of backing up cloud workloads on-prem,” he explains. Security—specifically ransomware protection—was a priority. “Though backup historically was not viewed as a security solution per se, we consider it the last line of defense should our other security solutions fail,” Maurer says. “Some of our customers are in critical industries like energy supply and disposal, and the business impact of a ransomware attack would be massive.”

The Solution

After narrowing down the options to Cohesity and other vendors, InfraServ Wiesbaden selected Cohesity. “Cohesity Backup as a Service (BaaS) running on AWS replaces our backup data center, at lower cost,” Maurer says. “A unified backup solution for M365 and on-prem applications simplifies IT. Ransomware protection reassures customers that their data is safe. Looking ahead, we’re excited to take advantage of the new data protection advances on Cohesity’s roadmap.”

Cohesity helped InfraServ Wiesbaden set up a 3-month proof of concept. To get going, Cohesity installed the Cohesity software agent on virtual machines in the data center, and InfraServ Wiesbaden registered M365 as a source using a step-by-step wizard. “During the proof of concept we saw that backups and restores are much easier to manage with Cohesity BaaS than either our previous backup solution or other solutions we tested,” says Maurer.

Today InfraServ Wiesbaden uses Cohesity to protect approximately 250 VMware virtual machines, SAP data, and Microsoft 365 workloads. Plans are underway to start using Cohesity Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS), decommissioning another one of the two remaining data centers. “Cohesity will make it possible to consolidate from three data centers to one, freeing time and budget to expand and improve the services we offer our customers,” Maurer says.

The Results

Ransomware protection is top of mind for InfraServ Wiesbaden customers whether they’re executives or IT leaders. In the event of a ransomware attack on a customer, InfraServ Wiesbaden can restore clean data from Cohesity’s immutable backups, stored in the cloud. Knowing they have an extra layer of protection against business disruption helps customers sleep better.

Shutting down the dedicated backup site slashed costs and freed up valuable resources. “Cohesity saves us the significant infrastructure and management costs of a backup data center,” says Maurer.

Cohesity’s incremental backups complete 50% faster than the full backups, the only option with InfraServ Wiesbaden’s previous solution. Customers appreciate fast file-level granular recovery. “Before, if a tenant requested an individual file or object we had to recover the entire virtual machine,” Maurer says. “With Cohesity we can restore individual files or objects—say, a customer sales document or engineering drawing—in a fraction of the time. In addition, we can help customers recover their entire mailbox or a single email, often in minutes instead of hours.”

Summing up, Mr. Maurer says, “Cohesity has improved our IT services for clients. We can offer backup as a service for on-prem applications as well as cloud-based applications and data like Microsoft 365 on a single platform. Ransomware protection gives our customers peace of mind, and cloud backup eliminates the considerable costs of running a dedicated backup data center.”

Key Benefits

  • 50% faster backups
  • Fast restoration of individual files
  • Leading ransomware protection
  • Cost savings from closing dedicated backup facility
  • Single solution to back up on-prem and Microsoft 365 workloads

About InfraServ Wiesbaden

InfraServ Wiesbaden offers a variety of infrastructure and technology services to tenants of the Kalle-Albert industrial park in Wiesbaden, Germany. It employs 850 people to support the many businesses that use its 96 hectare site. The core processes managed by InfraServ are the supply of energies and waste water disposal, but the business can also aid with the development of premises, with procurement and logistics, as well as with services in Human Resources.

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