PPI (Phonographic Performance Ireland) controls the public performance, broadcasting and other rights in hundreds of thousands of recordings on thousands of different labels. These include not only Irish recordings but most recordings available worldwide. The list of recordings in PPI’s repertoire is constantly increasing as new titles are released. A licence from PPI gives businesses the right to play virtually any sound recording from anywhere in the world.
PPI issues licences to thousands of businesses and organisations from all sectors across the Republic of Ireland playing recorded music and/or music videos in public. These can range from bars, nightclubs, shops and hotels to offices, factories, gyms, universities and local authorities.
PPI’s infrastructure had reached its end of life where manufacturer’s warranties had expired and aging hardware meant that parts were becoming difficult to source. This had resulted in a number of system outages and with no real redundancy in place this represented a significant risk to the company. The company was also highly dependent on their Payment Management System, a Microsoft Dynamics and SQL based application and this was experiencing significant speed issues with some reports requiring over 4 hours to complete. The current backup strategy was also still based on ‘tape-technologies’ with an RTO (Recovery Time Objective) of 3 days which was unacceptable to the business. It was clear to management that a move to a virtualised IT infrastructure would be the best course of action which would not only resolve the current storage and speed issues but provide PPI with the capability to scale as the business continued to grow.
In 2015 ERS were commissioned to design, deploy and project manage the virtualisation of the network infrastructure at Phonographic Performance Ireland (PPI). A deep understanding of the core Payment Management System was needed to design an appropriate system that would ensure the application performed as required and that the reporting processes were optimised to complete as quickly as possible. To address these requirements ERS deployed a high end DELL Rack Based server configured with Windows Server 2012 (R2). The environment was virtualised where dedicated Virtual Machines were created for each business role to ensure that each application could operate independently without impacting others. The environment was also separated using two independent disk packs, one to run the operating system and the other configured as RAID 10 to run the applications providing the highest performance and redundancy available.
In conclusion, the infrastructure upgrade at PPI has been a tremendous success with all key objectives delivered with minimal disruption to the customer. Their business critical Payment Management System now has the resources to manage the most complex transactions and reporting time has been reduced to minutes rather than hours. The new hardware has also been designed with redundancy in mind and provided PPI with an RTO (return to operation) of less than 4 hours. The new environment is now managed by ERS using their x360 End-to-End IT managed services with the complete infrastructure and critical services being monitored 24/7/365 using our managed agent software.