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Large Scale Software Upgrades

large-scale-software-upgrade-1-1024x518Software upgrades are inevitable. However, it’s important to document the challenges and create a solid plan to ensure that you achieve your upgrade performance improvement objectives.

Y&L Consulting recently helped the Argo Group with their SharePoint 2013 migration and performance optimization.

Client Profile:

 Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd. is an international underwriter of specialty insurance and reinsurance products within the property and casualty market. Argo Group has offices in nine countries, including the UK, U.S., Brazil, Europe and the UAE.

Challenge: 

Argo used SharePoint 2007 as a file storage and collaboration platform across various geographies. The employees in the UK used SharePoint for storing particularly large files (in excess of 25 MB), and were experiencing very slow response times.

Argo also used SharePoint for status monitoring, workflows, forms, etc. and wanted to take advantage of the new and advanced capabilities that SharePoint 2013 offers. 

Y&L’s Solution: 

Y&L performed a thorough analysis of the administrative and backend reports from the network and SharePoint system and determined that the problems included; packet loss, latency due to geographical distance, and demand had far outgrown the capacity of the setup. 

Y&L set up a traditional, local (to UK), three-tier SharePoint Server farm on three servers with roles distributed among them.

The following diagram represents a simplified architecture of the SharePoint Farm:

softwareupgrades

DB Clustering was done to provide scalability and business continuity. Y&L also set up full and incremental backup, optimized crawling, etc.

The following table shows the performance improvement that Argo experienced from the upgrade.

datatransferssanantonio

For the SharePoint 2013 migration portion of the project, Y&L analyzed the master page and the 36 team sites in scope, documented the various customizations, requested changes,  customized  web parts, and also identified downstream applications that would be impacted by the change.  

Detailed planning and implementation followed the tests. After which, the upgrade was rolled out to users across the UK.

The performance tuning and migration was lauded by senior management and general users alike. 

Y&L continued on to provide maintenance and support for the project over the next quarter building enhancements into the system.

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