Banking Data Safebox – Jinshang Bank Data Storage and DR Project

Jinshang refers to merchants in Shanxi Province in Chinese. From 13th to 18th century, Shanxi merchants run salt and money shops across China.

The Jinshang culture took its shape during that period.Jinshang Bank, formerly named as Taiyuan Commercial Bank, is a local joint-stock commercial bank in Shanxi. Headquartered in Taiyuan (the capital city of Shanxi), Jinshang Bank has deployed multiple branches in Shanxi. By the end of 2011, Jinshang Bank had CNY80 billion asset, CNY60 billion deposits, and CNY28 billion loans. The bank ranked 33 among China’s 147 city commercial banks. By the end of 2015, Jinshang Bank is estimated to achieve strategic development. Its core services will make leaps. And its support systems must be optimized to support the rapid service development

Jinshang Bank’s data center is located in Taiyuan. As an independent section of the bank’s IT department, the data center is crucial for the bank’s business operation. Jinshang Bank developed a dual-node, dual-array environment for its core service systems, and deployed front end processors and peripheral systems to ensure service reliability. The data center performed full backup for core data once every day, protecting data security. To meet regulatory requirements, Jinshang Bank periodically tested the data recovery function. During the initial phase of data center development, the bank used tapes to archive data. Its OAM personnel manually backed up banking data during off-peak hours and archived data in tapes for long-term storage. This storage mode faced the following challenges:

1. Long backup time and low working efficiency

The data center is located in Taiyuan’ CBD with complicated surrounding environments. Risks such as fire hazards and power outages could seriously impact data center operation. In addition, tapes were prone to damages during transport and storage. These risks endanger data security.

2. Low data security

Existing tape library suffered low efficiency. Replacing tapes with hard disks required backup software changes and might impact data availability. Using disk arrays could be a good choice, but required disk array upgrading. The investment costs and business risks were too high.

Huawei Solution

By the end of 2010, Huawei and Jinshang Bank worked together to look for a new approach for the bank’s data backup and remote disaster recovery (DR). After meticulous study, Jinshang Bank accepted Huawei’s proposal to divide the project into two parts. The project planned the backup and DR systems in a unified manner and developed them in two phases.

1. Reconstructs the backup system: improves the backup performance without impacting backup habits.

The solution uses Huawei’s virtual tape library (VTL) to form an intermediate layer between the physical tape library and core service data. This changes the existing backup system from the D2T mode to the D2D2T mode. During backup operation, the system first stores data in the intermediate layer, then archives data to the physical tape library. This layer meets the requirements of efficient backup and causes no changes to the existing backup system. Huawei VTL6000 uses hard disks as storage media and leverages RAID technologies to improve backup speed up to 9 TB/h. The solution simulates the VTL into a tape library to simplify system operation. This allows existing backup software to support system switchover. Additionally, the solution archives rarely used data to the physical tape library, permitting hierarchical backup storage.

2. Remote data DR: ensures data security.

When the local backup system is successfully developed, Jinshang Bank starts to develop the geographical DR system. Huawei helps Jinshang Bank deploys a VTL6000 in a remote site to enable remote synchronization with the VTL6000 deployed in Taiyuan data center. This simplifies daily data tests and enables quick service switchover when the local data center is faulty. VTL6000 supports data block

deduplication. The system matches backup data with existing data, and performs deduplication operation. Measurement results show that 95% backup data are duplicate ones. The system transfers only 5% updated data. VTL6000 synchronizes all data to the remote site during the first-time full backup and transfers only the updated data during follow-up backup operation. This greatly lowers bandwidth resource consumption.

3. Lifecycle data management : Improves Data Usage

Service systems enjoy lifecycle data management. Real-time service data is stored in front-office servers for daily use. Near-line data (stored for 10-30 days) is stored in high-speed hard disks for integrity and validity tests. When a fault occurs, the system uses near-line data for service recovery. Offline data (stored for 90 days) is stored in physical tapes for backup. In addition, the solution stored copies of near-line and offline data in the remote site for data-level DR.

Customer Benefits

1. Improves backup performance: The backup speed is increased to 400 MB/s and backup time reduced by two thirds. This effectively shortened the backup waiting queue and minimized OAM personnel’s workloads.

2. Quickly recovers tests: VTL6000 recovers backup data to the test environments, exceeding the original tape-based backup mode in recovery speed by over 5 times.

Near-line and offline data are stored in hierarchical mode to improve lifecy3. Enables hierarchical data storage:cle data management and online data application efficiency.

4 Reserves an expansion solution: Huawei provides an efficient remote DR solution for inshang Bank, allowing comprehensive security protection for Jinshang Bank’ service data.

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