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Fidessa

Overview: Fidessa achieves greater resiliency with automated business continuity resulting in increased QoS, resilience and diversity for Internet services.

Sector: Financial Trading.

Solution: Resilient Internet Connectivity for Business Continuity.


Fidessa Group is a global business with scale, resilience, ambition and expertise - providing Financial Trading, investment and information solutions. 85% of the world’s premier financial institutions trust Fidessa to provide them with multi-asset trading and investment infrastructure, market data and analysis, and decision making and workflow technology. $10 trillion worth of transactions flow across its global Network each year. Being a market leader, they also offer unique access to the world’s largest and most valuable trading community of buy-side and sell-side professionals, from global institutions and investment banks to boutique brokers and niche hedge funds.

Challenges

With so many major financial institutions relying on Fidessa and the company’s commitment to providing resilient services to its customers, effective Business Continuity Planning (BCP) is imperative for the company. In a BCP situation the IT department might be dealing with ten or more different issues to resolve. Should there be a disaster, keeping resources free to resolve the issues that require manual attention is ideal.

Therefore, the challenge Fidessa faced was automating as much of its BCP as possible. Among the many Financial Trading tools and services that Fidessa provides, one of them includes delivery of web-based services, such as its award winning fragmentation analysis tools.

The company required resilient infrastructure to deliver these services to the international trading community and required automated failover to its London office in the event of a fault with the service at the company’s head office in Woking.

The major problem Fidessa came across in trying to solve this challenge was that most providers did not have the technology or expertise necessary to provide automated failover in a BCP scenario.

After having dealt with a number of Internet Service Providers (ISPs), needing to change IP addresses because of relocations and to become more flexible in the delivery of its web-based services, Fidessa first realised it needed to obtain its own subnet of IP addresses. Secondly, the organisation realised that the provider for Internet connectivity would need to have Network reach combined with innovative technology and know-how to deliver an automated, seamless failover between Woking and London.

Two of the world’s largest communications providers were approached; however, Fidessa determined that neither organisation was flexible enough nor could they provide the type of failover desired to ensure minimum impact during a disaster. These providers required manual intervention and changes to Fidessa’s core Network for failover to occur between the Woking and London offices.

This was not ideal to fulfil the company’s Business Continuity plans - time and effort needed would be labour and resource intensive - taking away from where these resources could be used in a disaster situation.


Solution

Fidessa approached Exponential-e to solve this challenge after an introduction via one of its group companies, LatentZero which was already an Exponential-e customer. LatentZero knew of Exponential-e’s technology and expertise and spoke highly of its potential to solve the automated failover challenge. Another key factor in choosing Exponential-e was its expertise in dealing swiftly with Réseaux IP Européens Network Coordination Centre (RIPE NCC) applications.

At the start of the project Exponential-e helped by fulfilling the first requirement of obtaining Provider Independent (PI) IP addresses from RIPE NCC. To get Fidessa up and running quickly, a temporary subnet of Provider-Aggregatable (PA) IP addresses were provided by Exponential-e for the 100Mbps Internet connections installed at the primary office in Woking and the office in London. After RIPE NCC allocated Provider Independent (PI) IP addresses to Fidessa, Exponential-e smoothly facilitated the migration to the PI IP addresses from the temporary PA ones provided.

At the primary connection in Woking, a dynamic routing protocol was configured to be used during normal times. In the event of the primary connection failing, a floating, static route will automatically reroute the Internet traffic via the backup circuit in London.

The failover will then be managed by a Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) session, where a lower metric is configured at Woking, ensuring it is the primary route, and a higher metric is configured in London, ensuring it is only used if there is a fault with the service at Woking. However, both locations will still be able to send outbound traffic independently as needed.

Benefits

In the event of a fault at Fidessa’s Woking office a continuous Internet service will still be provided from the London office. This automated failover will require no manual intervention - allowing the IT team at Fidessa to devote its time and resources elsewhere in a BC situation. When the final phase of implementation is complete, financial institutions using Fidessa’s web services will have uninterrupted access to business-critical tools which provide vital market information.

Results

  • Improved SLA.
  • Automated Internet failover for Business Continuity.
  • Increased QoS, resilience and diversity for Internet services.
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