CreditEase Overcomes “Growing Pains” with Nutanix Enterprise Cloud Platform
CreditEase, founded in 2006, is a comprehensive financial service provider that integrates wealth management, credit risk assessment and management, and credit data services.
CreditEase faced the pressing task of finding an effective solution to solve its various IT pain points along with its business growth.
- Powerful flexibility and scalability with delivering a 20% improvement in computing performance, 50% improvement in IOPS performance, and 30% improvement in throughput
- Easy to deploy with greatly shortened deployment time from several months to just two or three days
- Directly reduced operation and maintenance cost with saving more than 30% costs of machine room, server, network and virtual machine than the legacy three-tier architecture
With the growing popularity of P2P finance, CreditEase enjoyed an explosive growth, which, while bringing in hefty profits, also confronted CreditEase with challenging “growing pains”. CreditEase has always taken technology as the primary productive force. It adopted VMware virtualization technology very early to support its rapidly growing financial business. However, as its business steadily expanded, CreditEase’s existing legacy three-tier “x86 server + network + shared storage” architecture became problematic and hindered its further business expansion.
There were several main problems. Firstly, with the rapid increase of the virtual machines adopted as CreditEase kept introducing new services, its physical servers and lagacy centralized storage infrastructure could not provide enough resources requuired by its booming business. Secondly, due to the complexity of lagacy physical server solutions and their long implementation cycle, it could not realize quick deliver, which would affect the company’s business development. Thirdly, in terms of purchase, traditional solutions involve a long and complicated purchase process and don’t support purchase on demand. Fourthly, in terms of maintenance and management, traditional solutions have numerous management windows with a heavy maintenance workload and require significant deployment, operation and maintenance manpower, thus causing a high cost pressure. Fifthly, in terms of after-sales service, it often happens that technical support from different parties such as server and storage manufacturers is needed, with the result that once any failure takes place, it cannot be addressed in a timely and efficient way. For CreditEase, to top it all, the legacy physical servers are space-intensive so that its IDC machine room could not provide more space for new servers, but had to expand its machine room capacity to accommodate more servers. In a word, CreditEase faced the pressing task of finding an effective solution to its various business growing pains.
After a careful analysis of its needs, CreditEase decided to adopt a new IT architecture that satisfies the following requirements. Firstly, as its machine room has a limited capacity, the new architecture must be a high-density one that allows enough network, storage and computing equipment to be stored in a limited space. Secondly, the architecture must have flexible scalability with excellent stability, easy maintenance and high performance. Thirdly, given the fact that CreditEase’s business integrates finance and Internet, the new architecture needs to support continuous availability and scalability, which cannot be offered by legacy architectures. At last, in view of business uncertainty and frequent variation in resource requirements, the new architecture should satisfy resource requirements of different services in a timely way and keep the maintenance and machine room equipment costs at a low level; in other words, the new IT architecture should be similar to that used by Internet companies.
CreditEase’s CTO came to know the hyperconverged architecture of Nutanix’s Enterprise Cloud Platform in 2014 when attending a technology conference in Silicon Valley, and he was instantly impressed by the future-ready concept and powerful performance of the architecture solution, exactly what CreditEase was looking for.
Meanwhile, he learned of many successful cases of Nutanix in the financial, insurance and securities industries. In November 2014, CreditEase had its first technical communication with Nutanix and got a further understanding of the characteristics and advantages of Nutanix’s Enterprise Cloud Platform hyperconverged architecture. In March 2015, CreditEase completed the POC testing and function and performance testing of Nutanix solution.
According to the resting results, the hyperconverged architecture of Nutanix solution showed obvious benefits beyond what is offered with the traditional VMware vSphere architecture. Besides, Nutanix integrates the advantages of integrated infrastructure, scale-out architecture and software-defined storage to provide an incredible data center virtualization experience. Nutanix’s performance in terms of reliability, continuous availability, resource variation, and maintenance management is also satisfying. Its high-intensity design which integrates network, computing and storage and requires a lot less machine room space, in particular, can solve CreditEase’s machine room capacity constraint. Therefore, CreditEase chose Nutanix’s Enterprise Cloud Platform hyperconverged architecture as its new IT infrastructure architecture.
The project started implementation in late 2015. For the early phase, CreditEase adopted the 6-node NX-3060-G4, which has been expanded to have 8 nodes and 4 blocks, used for original environment assessment, POC, and production environment-based solution, and the implementation and operation service of hardware and virtualization. CreditEase’s insurance and credit operations have also gradually migrated to the Nutanix platform.
Nutanix Enterprise Cloud Platform has brought extensive enhancements to CreditEase’s IT infrastructure, which left Wang Lei, manager of the system department of CreditEase’s R&D center, deep impression, especially of the speedy delivery, flexible configuration, quick opening and strong scheduling of computing resources of the Nutanix Enterprise Cloud Platform. In terms of system expansion, Nutanix solution boasts powerful flexibility and scalability with purchase on demand support and accurate measurement of future scaling, which means a greatly shortened time of new service launch. In addition, it saves more than 30% costs of machine room, server, network and virtual machine than the legacy three-tier architecture. Meanwhile, Nutanix solution is simple and easy to deploy with deployment time shortened from several months to just two or three days; node expansion is also simple and convenient without business interruptions, greatly shortening the cycle of system launch; and it delivers a 20% improvement in computing performance, 50% improvement in IOPS performance, and 30% improvement in throughput. Furthermore, Nutanix solution also makes operation and maintenance easy. What used to require multiple dedicated roles can be accomplished now by one dedicated IT worker, thus reducing the operation and maintenance cost. Furthermore, Nutanix has a strong after-service engineer team that provides professional support in a timely way and can significantly reduce the downtime caused by unexpected failures.
“The hyperconverged architecture of Nutanix’s Enterprise Cloud Platform is the recipe for a highly reliable, efficient and scalable IT infrastructure architecture and, therefore, for reduced costs, enhanced efficiency, and easier maintenance,” said Wang Lei. “It can work wonders for a company’s IT infrastructure.”
“The hyperconverged architecture of Nutanix’s Enterprise Cloud Platform is the recipe for a highly reliable, efficient and scalable IT infrastructure architecture and, therefore, for reduced costs, enhanced efficiency, and easier maintenance. It can work wonders for a company’s IT infrastructure.”
– Wang Lei, Manager of the System Department CreditEase’s R&D Center