ADCCI gears up for growth

The ADCCI has upgraded its network to cater to increasing bandwidth demands caused by continuing growth in the Abu Dhabi economy.

  • E-Mail
By  Simon Duddy Published  September 23, 2004

|~|Alneaimi6_m.jpg|~||~|The Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ADCCI) has upgraded the network at its Abu Dhabi headquarters (HQ) to cater for an increasingly large user base and more feature-rich traffic. The implementation was based on Foundry products, took place with the help of integration partner Data Processing Systems and took place at the end of 2003. The backbone switches were upgraded to Foundry’s BigIron Layer 3 technology with four FastIron switches with 24-port and 48-port capability deployed at the edge of the network. The BigIron switch brings a 10Gigbit capable backbone to ADCCI’s infrastructure, which adds a further element of future proofing. This means that the organisation can opt for trunking between multiple backbones without having to upgrade the existing core switch. On the wide area network (WAN) side, the ADCCI head office in Abu Dhabi connects to remote sites, such as branch offices in Al Ain and Abu Dhabi industrial city, using ISDN or lease line according to need. ADCCI decided on this upgrade because of the increasing strain on its network. All private businesses operating within the Abu Dhabi emirate must register with the ADCCI to trade legally and as the economy has grown in the emirate, so has the ADCCI’s customer base. “One of the main reasons for the change is that our till staff were upgraded to Oracle using more advanced databases and spreadsheets. The old switches couldn’t handle these new applications and the network slowed markedly, ” says Mohamed Ahmed Al Neaimi, assistant director general for information technology & members relations, ADCCI. ADCCI has also added numerous services to the network including web and e-mail servers, plus increased storage capacity. The organisation’s previous network consisted of an ATM backbone based on Alcatel’s OmniStack technology with Ethernet and Fast Ethernet connections to workstations. As bandwidth requirements increased the legacy network could not cope so ADCCI moved to the Gigabit Ethernet network provided by Foundry. ADCCI has opted for stability with the Foundry based network with the bandwidth provided proving more than enough to run the organisation’s applications. “Unwise companies upgrade when they realise the network can’t cater for the services they are required to provide,” says Al Neaimi. “The network is the pipeline and you have to be aware of how much is flowing through, now and in the future,” he adds. The network has been in place for almost one year and has paid dividends in terms of freeing up time for the IT team to take care of other tasks. “We have rarely had to re-start the BigIron switch since the implementation and it has only had to be re-configured a few times to add VLAN functionality,” says Shoukri Yaghi, network administrator, ADCCI. “Utilisation is running typically at 1-2% and the network is very stable,” he adds. The Foundry infrastructure has provided a base for the company to host more services for its customers. These include requests to tender, key databases, a commercial directory, SMS service, imaging document storage, access to websites hosted at ADCCI and e-mail services to both staff and members. “We provide an SMS message service that offers renewal and fees information to customers,” says Al Neaimi. “We want to make information available to people wherever they are,” he adds. The ADCCI plans to extend its network in terms of geographical area and has the capability to upgrade to a 10Gigabit network. The Al Ain branch of the organisation will receive a similar upgrade as the Abu Dhabi HQ. The timeframe for this has not been finalised but work could begin by the end of the year.||**||

Add a Comment

Your display name This field is mandatory

Your e-mail address This field is mandatory (Your e-mail address won't be published)

Security code