Watch how the last rays of the sun disappear into the abyss of the sea at the end of the day, while on the deck of a huge liner. For this you should buy a ticket and go on a trip! But, no matter how our generation tried to be closer to the primordial one, after dusk, no one would like to hang out on the Internet, check the page in the social network and sign another photo. Without the Internet, alas, nowhere and why, if there is an opportunity to be online almost continuously, to work, relax.
On board a cruise liner, digital services usually host their own data center. The data center on the ship is more like one of those that are usually found in large hotels: storage space, servers, network equipment for running software. But there are some differences.
Cruise ships are mobile and constantly in motion. And one of the primary tasks is to ensure the availability of services, because the main and backup server storages are usually located on the same vessel, and not at a distance of several thousand kilometers from each other.
The German IT service provider BSH IT Solutions has already equipped six vessels owned by TUI Cruises as part of the project. TUI Cruises is a shipping company located in Hamburg, a joint venture of TUI AG and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. TUI offers exclusive routes along the Mediterranean coast, the Canary Islands, the Caribbean and Central America, the Baltic Sea, the Northern Region, the United Kingdom and Iceland. The company started with the acquisition of Mein Schiff 1 in 2009, and Mein Schiff 6 was launched in 2017.
Nils Heyder, BSH project manager, and his team located the main and backup data centers in different fire zones and on different decks. One channel is located at the bow of the ship, and the other is at the stern.
"This is the same. Ships are identical with hotels, ”said Nils Heider. “In principle, nothing special. Although everything works differently when you are on a ship. It is necessary to provide a high level of availability and security for IT systems, installation and maintenance is expensive. But remote control, firstly, does not always provide a continuous connection, and secondly, the cost of 4 Mbit is about 50 thousand dollars a month. ”
Below is an example of a photo: what the server looks like on board.
Due to the presence of their own server, the organizers of the cruise boast a developed IT infrastructure, in addition to providing passengers with access to the Wi-Fi point, options are available that simplify the time spent on the ship. All systems required for cruise, tourism and administrative operations are managed. Guests can order food, drinks, use various services online. After a busy day, enjoy watching the video.
In June, TUI announced the launch of data storage virtualization software, DataCore Software, on all 6 vessels, including its recently launched first flight, Mein Schiff 6 (for 2,534 passengers).Mein Schiff 6
According to Haider, TUI uses the VMware infrastructure platform, running virtual machines mainly on the servers and network equipment of Hewlett Packard Enterprise. On one ship Mein Schiff 4, however, preference was given to the manufacturer Dell. Network equipment - Cisco or HPE.
To simplify storage management and ensure high availability, Haider’s team uses SANsymphony-V data warehouse virtualization software. Affordable, functional storage for files, backups, archives and tasks. Fault tolerance and availability of virtualized storage is achieved by synchronous mirroring of all disk operations between DataCore servers. Thanks to synchronous data mirroring, in case of equipment failure in one storage, there is no downtime. “This is really good software, plus very easy to use,” said Haider.
Advantages of DataCore SANsymphony: Scalability, performance and functionality DataCore SANsymphony, freedom of choice of equipment on which the virtualized system will be created, regardless of manufacturer, model or technology of the connected storage equipment (HDD, SSD). For all the time, only one of the ships had equipment failures. But, thanks to DataCore technology, this had no effect on the continuity of the process.
Over the past five years, BSH has upgraded and installed updated infrastructure in data centers on TUI cruise ships. It usually takes about nine months to plan, test, and install.
On the Mein Schiff 6 cruise ship, in each of the two server farms there are two physical servers on which virtual machines are raised. In addition, six more physical servers are located on board. Each data center has 26 TB of space.
To provide passengers and crew members (1000 people) with the necessary bandwidth on board, the BSH team uses 10 Gigabit Ethernet (HP) technology. The data transfer rate between data centers is 40 Gbit per second.Mein schiff 2As advertising.
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