For any firm involved in manufacturing and processing, ensuring continuous operation of production systems is absolutely critical to the business. Any downtime produces immediate impact on productivity and profitability, as well as serious ripple effects in terms of customer service levels and damaged reputation.

As a leading supplier of fresh meat products to many of the UK’s largest retail supermarkets, Dunbia selected always-on availability software from Stratus Technologies, Maynard, Mass., to ensure applications will continue to run regardless of any hardware failure.

Dunbia is one of Europe’s leading suppliers of beef and lamb products for retail, commercial and foodservice markets. Dunbia supplies international markets and UK supermarket chains, including Sainsbury’s, Asda, Iceland, The Co-operative and Morrisons.

Formerly known as Dungannon Meats, Dunbia operates from 10 sites in Northern Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales and the Republic of Ireland, as well as the former Rose County Foods site in Sawley, Lancashire, and the former Oriel Jones & Son facility in Llanybydder, Wales.

The situation

Dunbia operates in a fast-moving, high-pressure retail supply chain environment. Customer orders arrive via electronic data interchange (EDI) early to mid-morning on the day of production, and all orders are manufactured for same-day dispatch to a customer depot. Should the IT systems controlling production and order fulfillment fail for even half an hour, an entire day’s orders could be lost. In a very competitive market, Dunbia cannot afford to let its customers down. Therefore, the company is working with IT partner—24/7/365 Uptime—to deploy Stratus everRun software throughout its production operations.

The solution

Stratus everRun software protects Windows applications from downtime in the event of server failure. everRun pools the physical resources of two or more standard Windows servers into a single, unified operating environment. It virtualizes these servers to appear and operate as one to ensure always-on availability for Windows applications. The environment appears and operates as though the applications were running on a single stand-alone server with one identity and one IP address. The system does not require complex equipment and has very low administrative overhead.

The results

Thanks to Stratus everRun software, the risk of system downtime and associated business loss has been virtually eliminated at Dunbia.

“Stratus promises 99.999% reliability of our key production systems,” says Jay Adams, IT service delivery manager for Dunbia. “We have used Stratus software in one form or another since 2001, and firmly believe it is the best to deliver maximum availability for our business-critical applications. Stratus software works seamlessly with our factory floor management, stock and order processing systems. We are therefore working with 24/7/365 Uptime to implement Stratus everRun throughout the Dunbia estate.”