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Jakob Müller Transitions to Nasuni and Azure from Windows File Servers

For more than 130 years, Jakob Müller Group has stood for Swiss precision in the tape and narrow textiles industry. The average consumer today is probably wearing fabrics with elements produced on the company’s machines. Automobile seat belts, the tags that most people cut out of their clothes — these textiles and many others are made on Jakob Müller Group’s specialty equipment.

The company is headquartered in Switzerland, but has six manufacturing facilities around the world, plus additional sales and service locations. Like many manufacturing leaders, Jakob Müller was relying on distributed Windows File Servers to manage and share data across this distributed environment. Although this has been a typical approach in the industry, large file sizes and growing amounts of data have made such infrastructures increasingly inefficient and expensive to maintain.

At Jakob Müller, the IT team created scripts to copy files from one location to another, but when users at one site needed to access data in a distant region, they were often forced to deal with long delays. Manufacturing firms like Jakob Müller must also account for the potential impact of ransomware attacks and are now looking for solutions with built-in resilience that will reduce ransomware-related downtime and site-specific outages that could negatively impact productivity.

In the hope of solving these problems, CIO Michael Stöckli and his IT group reached out to Netcloud AG, who suggested the company evaluate Nasuni. “We saw quite fast that Nasuni would be a very good solution for us, both from the sync perspective and for ransomware recovery, business continuity, and management,” says Stöckli.

Migrating to Nasuni and Azure

The move to Nasuni represented both a modernization of the firm’s infrastructure and a single solution to their varied concerns. Jakob Müller Group chose to leverage Microsoft Azure Blub storage, and the process of migrating the company’s file data off its file servers and into the cloud proved easier than he expected. “This was quite a large amount of data and some of our most important data, but the Nasuni team really guided us through the process in terms of how it would normally be done, what obstacles we might encounter, and how to get around them,” Stöckli recalls. “They made it easy.”

Today, instead of Windows File Servers, backup software, and file synchronization solutions, Jakob Müller Group depends solely on the Nasuni File Data Platform. Virtual Nasuni Edge Appliances cache files locally at 14 locations around the world, yet all file data scales cost-effectively in Azure Blob Storage. Nasuni Continuous File Versioning eliminated the need for separate backup, the transition to Nasuni and Azure yielded multiple advantages overall.

33% Cost Savings

Thanks to Nasuni, Jakob Müller Group was able to reduce its backup storage footprint, cancel maintenance of a WORM storage volume, and drastically cut the cost of restoring data. When Stöckli added up these annual costs, he determined that the company’s initial Nasuni subscription was 33% lower.

10 Windows Servers Retired

Previously, Jakob Müller Group maintained ten Windows File Servers in various regions and needed to manage each one independently. Now IT can manage all of the virtual Nasuni Edge Appliances through a single management console.

Rapid Ransomware Recovery

Every enterprise is vulnerable to a ransomware attack, but Jakob Müller Group now has a reliable, testable recovery solution that has the capacity to restore millions of files within minutes. “If we are impacted by ransomware,” Stöckli says, “I know we will not lose any data, and that is the biggest point for me.”

Faster File Access

The company’s end users are now enjoying accelerated access to files and folders that were plagued by slow or failed syncs. Nasuni utilizes high-speed synchronization to ensure the most recent copy of each file is available in multiple locations. Users are working off the local appliance, not accessing files halfway across the world.

No More Missing Data

When the company relied on scripts to synchronize files, IT would often hear from users that they weren’t able to access key data. “We do not have any complaints that data are missing anymore,” Stöckli says. “In IT, if you don’t hear anything, that means it’s working.”

Set-and-Forget Management

“In the beginning, I had the console open almost every day,” Stöckli says. “Now it just runs. From the administration side, that’s very good for us, because we are a small team in Switzerland. We do not have the time to administer file servers in Brazil or India, move files from A to B, or control locks. It simply has to work, and Nasuni is really working.”

Outlook & Assessment

In addition to satisfying Jakob Müller Group’s immediate requirements and reducing its costs, the Nasuni platform gives the company long-term agility. The Ransomware Protection add-on service can be deployed at any point to strengthen the firm’s ability to detect, quarantine, and respond to attacks faster, and Nasuni Access Anywhere enables end users to work on their files from any location. “Our needs are always changing,” Stöckli says, “and it’s good to know that these options are there, and that Nasuni is really working to make the platform better.”