Broking Firm Uses VMware to Smoothen Stock Trading

by Sharon Lobo    Dec 16, 2009

Shah Investors Home Ltd (SIHL) is a Ahmedabad, Gujarat based stock broking, wealth management and depository services provider to investors. It was the first broking house in Gujarat to have the membership of National Securities Depository Ltd (NSDL) and was the first broking name to render services in NSE F&O in Ahmedabad. Today, SIHL is as a Premium House in Stock Broking and Wealth Management by focusing its services on Retail Network. Thus SIHL ranks among the topmost Players in Ahmedabad.

SIHL’s business requirements and challenges

Virtualization dramatically improves the efficiency and availability of resources and applications in an organization. Most internal resources are underutilized under the old "one server, one application" model and IT managers spend too much time managing servers rather than innovating. Therefore SIHL decided to deploy a virtualization solution which could cost-effectively enhance availability and redundancy of business-critical systems, including an ODIN (Open Dealer Integrated Network) trading and risk management platform. By doing so the company could complete trades and thereby retain clients and increase their revenue.

SIHL opts for VMware

In December 2008, SIHL engaged with Avnet Technology Solutions India and found that their core business applications, SQL database and web servers operated very well when tested in a virtualized environment. Hence SIHL decided to deploy VMware virtualization over Citrix and Microsoft solutions. Avnet then helped in designing and deploying VMware Infrastructure that support Shah Investor’s most business-critical ODIN platform, which executes 30,000 to 40,000 trades on behalf of its clients through a computer-to-computer link with Indian stock exchanges.

The VMware platform deployed at SIHL includes VMware Infrastructure 3 with ESX 3.5, VMware VMotion, VMware Distributed Resource Scheduler (DRS), VMware High Availability (HA) and VMware vCenter Server.

SIHL benefits from VMware

VMware virtualization has enabled Shah Investor’s Home Ltd to consolidate and virtualize the physical servers running critical business applications. The solution also allows the company to run virtual servers on alternative physical hosts in the event of a hardware problem and allocate computing resources to applications as required. They have created a clone trading application that can immediately switch on if anything happens to the primary system.

Also by leveraging the VMware virtualization platform, SIHL has been able to optimize its existing servers by increasing average CPU utilization from the current level of 25 - 40 percent to 60 percent, whiles achieving a server consolidation ratio of 3:1. Further, it has also helped the company switch memory and CPU capacity to support database processing once a trading day is over, while reducing power and cooling costs by 20 percent. The combination of virtualization running on servers with multi-core processors has improved performance by 30 - 40 percent.