Case Study SAN Wonders For BSE

With trading
volumes of three thousand transactions per day and growing further,
the Bombay Stock Exchange needed a reliable storage system to consolidate
the flow of data for its BOLT and BOSS projects. Storage area networks
provided the solution.

The Bombay Stock
Exchange (BSE), one of the busiest stock exchanges in India, averages
about 3,000 online trading transactions accounting for nearly Rs2,500
crore per day, all through the year. The exchange was confronted
with an exponential growth in trading volumes, with online trading
going on in all major exchanges. "We needed a robust storage
and backup mechanism with capacity to continuously support mission-critical
applications, data consolidation and clustering. These were the
primary reasons that led us to consider a more comprehensive storage
solution," explains Sunny John, Deputy Manager, Systems, BSE.

The objectives
set by BSE were to detect potential market abuses at a nascent stage
to reduce the availability of market participants to influence price
and volume of securities, management of Settlement Default Risk
in real time, and to enable and strengthen the Self Regulatory Mechanism.
After evaluating other possibilities, BSE decided to implement two
rudimentary Storage area networks (SANs) using fiber channel for
its BOSS (BSE Online Surveillance System) and SHINTU (Shifting of
Non-Trading activities to Unix) projects with Compaq as the implementer.
The Surveillance System is the only real-time system in Indian stock
exchanges.

The
groundwork

During the SAN implementation process, the Exchange procured Xeon-based
multi-processor Proliant servers and dual controller fault tolerant
disk array systems. The two Compaq Proliant servers with four CPUs
of 1GB RAM each were connected to the disk array RA 8K using the
Secure Path Software for high availability. The RA 8K storage system
has dual redundant controllers with 256MB cache on each controller,
approximately 150GB of disk space and six redundant hot-plug power
supplies. The RA 8K system is capable of delivering up to 20,000
Iops (input-output operations per second).

The system is
connected to the servers through redundant 7-port fiber channel
hubs to create a dedicated 100Mbps FC SAN. Similarly, in the SHINTU
project, the two HP 9000 K 580 systems in a clustered configuration
along with a RA 8K was achieved. Compaq had taken the responsibility
of interfacing the RA 8K with the HP servers, failing which BSE
would have returned the equipment. However, the need to connect
the two SANs has not been taken up as they are two different applications.

"The implementation
of SAN has helped the Exchange in reducing response time, improving
risk management, strengthening the self-regulatory mechanism and
ensuring quick compliance with SEBI requirements," states John.
This has won investors’ confidence through increased integrity of
market and enhancement of market safety. Through the movement to
an open Unix environment, which has been commissioned recently,
BSE has significantly increased its capacity to transact up to 10,000
trades a day.

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