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Storage

Object Storage

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The DTS Hosting Object Storage product is a low-performance, unstructured data storage option available for low-access files such as long-term data archives, documents or logs generated and managed by applications, and audio/video/image files.  This storage solution utilizes scale-out commodity hardware rather than a magnetic tape infrastructure to assist with accessibility as well as reduced storage costs.

Object storage is different than a typical file service in that it stores files along with a variety of associated information as objects.  The object metadata allows for improved policy-based data management.  The data is stored across different storage media with the option to store it across different locations.  This allows for the storage to be very scalable, resilient, and highly available, avoiding the need for data backup in many cases.  The objects are also stored in such a way that they are accessible from any node in the object store, making a private cloud storage solution available to DTS customers.  All of these features make object storage a great solution for data archival and management.

Unlike most file storage services, objects are stored and accessed using web protocols.  This simplifies unstructured data storage and access for many different application types, especially web applications.  Due to this difference in access method, mapped drives to end-user desktops will not be available.  Every effort should be made to manage the data using agency or enterprise applications that support object storage access.

Product Features and Descriptions

Data Resiliency

Erasure Coding used rather than RAID for increased storage data protection.

Policy-based Management

Configurable object versioning and data retention policies.

Private Cloud Storage

Scalable storage access with optional geolocation in the Salt Lake and Richfield Data Centers.

Multiple Namespaces per Tenant

Single tenants with multiple namespaces can have billing separated by namespace.

Web Protocol Access

Representational State Transfer (REST) API storage access, including the Amazon S3 (Simple Storage Service) protocol.  

File Share Services

CIFS and NFS options for object file service access are available upon approval under a shared tenant for cold data that is not read/write intensive, does not need to be modified, but may be read occasionally.  

Data Encryption

SSL/TLS encryption for data in transit and 256-bit AES encryption for data at rest.  

Storage Space Management

Object compression and deduplication with configurable tenant, namespace, and user storage quotas.  

Storage Management

Trained, professional storage administrators.

Searchable Data

Object metadata is indexed to allow for easy searches.

Storage Archive Regulatory Compliance

Data checksum and Write Once Read Many (WORM) support.

Data Protection Options

In addition to object versioning, namespaces can be replicated between the Salt Lake and Richfield Data Centers for increased data protection.  

Features Not Included

High Level Storage Performance Tier

This product is not intended for performance solutions.

Mid-level Storage Performance Tier

This product is not intended for performance solutions.

Active Database

This product is not intended for performance solutions.

Application

This product is not intended for performance solutions.

High-accessed File Services

This product is not intended for performance solutions.

Ordering and Provisioning

If you would like assistance, please contact the DTS Service Desk at: https://dts.utah.gov/ or call them at 800-678-3440 and submit a service request.      

DTS/DET Responsibilities

  1. All storage hardware and software are maintained by DTS with full support by the hardware and software vendor.
  2. DTS provides 24×7 monitoring and support of the object storage environment.
  3. Tenants, namespaces, authorization keys, object versioning, and automated retention policies are configured by DTS Hosting staff.

DTS/Agency Responsibilities

  1. REST API client access is configured by agency and DTS application administrators.

DTS Service Levels and Metrics

In an effort to improve service to our customer agencies, DTS will measure and report on the following enterprise metric goals:

  • Application Availability
  • Resolution Time
  • Initial Response
  • First Contact Resolution
  • Customer Satisfaction Surveys

Application Availability:

Application availability measures DTS’ efforts to ensure agency key business applications meet the percent of availability goals identified in the agency Service Level Agreements (SLA).  DTS will determine application availability based upon the collective measurement of the configuration items (both hardware and software) which are determinant to supporting the agency business services applications.  These metrics will be reported each month by agency with a cumulative report showing DTS’ efforts over several months and posted to the DTS Metrics web page at https://dts.utah.gov/metrics.   

Resolution Time:

Resolution time measure DTS’ efforts to resolve customer incidents within the timelines set below based upon urgent, high, medium and low priorities.  These metrics will be reported each month, by agency, with a cumulative report showing DTS’ efforts over several months.  These reports will then be posted on the DTS Metrics web page at: https://dts.utah.gov/metrics.  

Total Time to Resolution Target: Percent of Tickets Meeting Priority Timelines
Low priority – 6 Business hour 90%
Medium priority – 4 Business hours 90%
High priority – 3 Clock hours 90%
Critical priority – 3 Clock hours 90%

Initial Response:

Initial response measure DTS’ efforts to respond to customer incidents within the timelines set below based upon urgent, high, medium and low priorities.  These metrics will be reported each month by agency with a cumulative report showing DTS’ efforts over several months. These reports will then be posted on the DTS Metrics web page at: https://dts.utah.gov/metrics.  

Time to Initial Response

Target: Percent of Tickets Meeting Priority Timelines
Low priority – 1 Business hour 85%
Medium priority – 1 Business hour 85%
High priority – 1 Clock hour 90%
Critical priority – 30 Clock minutes 95%

First Contact Resolution:

First contact resolution measures DTS’ efforts to resolve customer incidents on initial contact with either our help desk or a technical specialist.  These metrics will be reported each month, by agency, with a cumulative report showing DTS’ efforts over several months.  These reports will then be posted on the DTS Metrics web page at https://dts.utah.gov/metrics.  

Metric Description Target
First Contact Resolution 65% of all incidents reported resolved on initial contact

Customer Satisfaction Surveys and Reporting:

All users/customers whose technical incidents are resolved by DTS staff will be given the opportunity to respond to an on-line survey regarding their level of satisfaction with the support received from DTS. Responding to the survey is voluntary.

The chart below identifies DTS enterprise goals for customer satisfaction.  Cumulative monthly reports will be created displaying the customer’s level of satisfaction with DTS support.  These reports will then be posted on the DTS Metrics web page at https://dts.utah.gov/metrics.

Customer Satisfaction Target:

Metric Description Target
Average level of satisfaction with resolution efforts ≥ 4.5 on a scale of 0 – 5
Percentage of respondents expressing satisfaction (vs. dissatisfaction) 93% of respondents satisfied
Post Updated: September 20, 2016
Posted On: September 8, 2016

Mainframe Tape (including migrated)

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DTS owns and maintains tape environments at the State’s Salt Lake City and Richfield data centers.  The mainframe tape environments provide storage at a lower cost than online disk storage for data that does not require the high performance requirements of online disk.  The tape environment can also be used for backup and restore services for business resumption of data stored on mainframe disk.  

This environment includes virtual tape (CA-VTape) and physical tape configurations. Out-of-Area tape creation and removal is available for customers requiring the ability to send tapes to or receive tapes from another facility or offsite storage.  DTS provides automated remote backup and restore processing and vaulting between the Salt Lake City and Richfield data centers.

The DTS tape environment includes automated data migration/compression (called Migration Level 1 – “ML1”) and a second level process to migrate and compress data from disk to tape (called Migration Level 2 –“ML2”). DTS provides automated remote backup/restore processing and vaulting between the Salt Lake City and Richfield data centers.

Product Features and Descriptions

Robust Management Capabilities

Automated data set migration, backup and restore capabilities by using cost-effective tape media.

Automated management providing faster access to tape data.

Automated offsite backup and remote vaulting capability.

Compatibility

Supports industry standard tape formats for physical tapes.

Backup/Recovery

Provides the environment for offsite storage of data for archival or disaster recovery  

Capacity Planning

Capacity planning for future tape growth is based on historical trending.  

Data Compression

Automated data compression to increase capacity and reduce virtual tape costs.

Physically Safe

A secure, climate-controlled environment.

Monitoring

24×7 monitoring.

Reliable Power

Reliable uninterruptible power with UPS, battery, and generator backup.

Offsite Redundancy

All data stored on the CA-VTape virtual tape system is replicated offsite to Richfield Data Center

Security

Storage equipment resides in a level 3 Data Center with multi-Level security access control. Data access is controlled with RACF data security software.

Features Not Included

Business Continuity

Customers are required to establish their own off site backup processes.

Ordering and Provisioning

Standard DTS Mainframe tape storage services can be accessed via Mainframe batch jobs.  Charges are allocated by data set name and are based on MB stored per month.  Service and billing begins at data allocation to the disk storage.  If you would like assistance, please contact the DTS Service Desk.

DTS Responsibilities

All tape and tape storage hardware is maintained by DTS with full support by the hardware vendor.

DTS provides 24×7 monitoring and support for the tape storage environment.

Provide technical support and problem resolution for tape-related issues and questions including, but not limited to, JCL help, job run failure (ABEND), onsite and offsite backup, restores, and vaulting.  

Provide consulting services related to this product.

DTS/Agency Responsibilities

Agencies determine and provide their own application-level backups and restores unless otherwise requested and determine job run times and submission.

Agency purchases tape to be used for out-of-silo distribution if the tape will not be returned to DTS.

Post Updated: August 15, 2016
Posted On: January 21, 2016

Storage (SAN)

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SAN Storage provides reliable storage on a Storage Area Network (SAN) device external to the server where the application resides. Redundancy is built into the SAN to provide protection for the data from equipment failure. Storage is provided to agencies on a Logical Unit Number (LUN) basis. With the assistance of the storage administrator and system administrators, the customer specifies the number and the size of each LUN.  LUNs can be configured in the following sizes: 50GB, 100GB, 250GB, 500GB, 750GB, 1TB, 1.5TB and 2TB. Connectivity to this storage is provided through high-speed Fibre Channel networks via host bus adapters (HBA) and is suitable for mission critical applications. All servers must be connected to the SAN with 2 Fiber Channel ports following different paths configured for fault tolerant redundancy.

For applications requiring the data to be encrypted at rest, DTS offers a service and rate for encrypting data.

Product Features and Descriptions

High I/O Capability

Up to 8GB per second with full duplex per port.

Data Safety

Redundant, fault-tolerant hardware and RAID protection provide high availability for high-profile applications.

Flexible Support

Support for a wide array of operating systems and hardware platforms, i.e., Sun/Solaris, IBM/AIX, HP/UX, MS Windows, Linux, Netware and VMware virtualized systems.

Physically Safe and Secure Environment

A secure, climate-controlled environment.

Monitoring

24x7x365 monitoring.

Reliable power

Reliable uninterruptible power with UPS, battery, and generator backup.

Disk Drives

SSD, Fiber Channel, SAS and SATA hard drives.

High Availability

Dual path connectivity for high availability access to data stored on SAN.

Storage Management

Trained, professional storage administrators.

Encrypted Data

Data can be encrypted at rest.  This feature is billed out at a different rate than the typical SAN storage rate and is an additional service.

Features Not Included

Backup and Restore Services

Backup and restore services are recommended, but are sold separately (see Backup, Archive and Restore Services).

Data Encryption

Data Encryption services are recommended and may be mandatory, but are sold separately (see Data Encryption At Rest for additional details and charges).

Ordering and Provisioning

Use the order buttons on the right. If you have questions contact the DTS Service Desk.

DTS/DET Responsibilities

All storage hardware is maintained by DTS with full support by the hardware vendor.

DTS provides 24×7 monitoring of the storage environment.

DTS/Agency Responsibilities

The purchase of Host Bus Adapters (HBAs) and Network Interface Cards (NIC), for servers to attach to the storage array, is the customer’s responsibility. Before purchasing the interface devices, check with DTS to ensure compatibility.  Dual HBA connectivity is required and the Agency will be required to provide a copy of appropriate multi-path software.  

Post Updated: January 8, 2018
Posted On: January 21, 2016

Mainframe Disk Storage

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DTS owns and maintains Mainframe Disk Storage environments at the State’s Salt Lake and Richfield data centers. This storage is for State agencies and other government entities requiring high availability, reliability, high speed access, and the ability to handle large amounts of I/O for their critical business data.

Mainframe Disk Storage is allocated by the customer agency using standard mainframe methods and practices.  Storage Allocation is automatically managed through Data Facility Storage Management Subsystem (DFSMS) using Automatic Class Selection (ACS) routines customized by DTS mainframe administrators to meet individual agency needs.  

Billing is based on allocation size, duration on the storage media, and data set name.  

Product Features and Descriptions

Data Management

Automated data management for data allocation placement.

Data Availability

High availability automated data management using DFSMS HSM migration and backup/restore processes.

Data Safety

Redundant, fault-tolerant hardware and RAID protection provide high availability for high-profile applications.

Data Migration

Automated compression and migration of datasets to secondary disk (Migrate Level 1) and to tape (Migrate Level 2).

Physically Safe

A secure, climate-controlled environment.

Monitoring

24×7 monitoring.

Reliable Power

Reliable uninterruptible power with UPS, battery, and generator backup.

Storage Administration

Technical support for dataset creation, storage related mainframe task problems including JOB ABENDs and JCL errors, data management, storage classification/allocation, and training.

Offsite Redundancy

All data is customer data. Pools are replicated offsite to Richfield Data Center

Security

Storage equipment resides in a Level 3 data center with multi-level security access. Access to actual data is controlled by RACF data security software

Data Recovery

DTS provides data recovery services and support.

Reclamation

Data reclamation services are provided.

Features Not Included

Data Resumption (business resumption) storage service

This service is available but sold separately.

Application Data Backup

This is the responsibility of the customer.

Ordering and Provisioning

For existing mainframe applications:

  1. Standard DTS mainframe disk storage services can be accessed via mainframe batch jobs, TSO and FTP processes.  Charges are allocated by data set name and are based on MB stored per month.  
  2. Service and billing begins at data allocation to the disk storage.

For new mainframe applications:

Any government agency interested in purchasing mainframe storage should contact their DTS IT Director or Campus Manager.

The provisioning process includes these steps:

  1. The customer agency contacts their DTS IT Director or Campus Manager.
  2. The DTS IT Director or Campus Manager works with the agency to enter a Service Request for the product.
  3. The DTS IT Director or Campus Manager works with the storage and mainframe administrator and arranges for a needs assessment meeting between the customer agency and DTS if needed.  In this meeting the amount of storage, time frames for completion, and other parameters for the project are established.
  4. The customer agency provides approval to DTS to provision the required storage space.  
  5. DTS storage and mainframe administrators provision the required disk space. If there is a need for additional SAN storage, the mainframe administrators will request additional storage allocation from the Enterprise Storage team
  6. The Agency works with DTS to establish data set naming conventions and billing ELCIDs.
  7. Service and billing begins.

If you would like assistance, please contact the DTS Service Desk.  

DTS Responsibilities

All storage hardware is maintained by DTS with full support by the hardware vendor.

DTS provides 24×7 monitoring of the storage environment.

DTS/Agency Responsibilities

Backup of application data.
Post Updated: August 15, 2016
Posted On: January 21, 2016

Backup, Archive and Restore Services

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DTS’ data backup and restore environment is available for State agencies and government entities for the following applications:

  • Servers hosted in the Salt Lake City or Richfield data centers.
  • Servers with State of Utah WAN connectivity hosted at agency sites outside the Salt Lake City and Richfield data centers.

Server backups are sent to the backup appliances and our in-house cloud (object) storage located in the Salt Lake City and Richfield data centers. Agent software is needed on physical servers but not on virtual servers and backup and restores are managed through a web console. An initial full backup or snapshot is performed and then followed by daily incremental snapshot backups determined by the SLA policy.  Archives will be sent to object storage for long term retention. System Administrators may restore data through the management console as needed.  DTS personnel are available 24x7x365 to provide assistance.

Product Features and Descriptions

Broad Support

Supports a broad range of client and file server platforms.

Remote Management

A web based client platform provides robust customer administrator capabilities to manage all backup and restore activities from a single console.

Scale-out Design

The backup environment is made up of several appliances, each with 2 nodes. Three or more nodes make a cluster. Nodes can be added to or taken out without bringing the cluster down or affecting performance. This allows the processes of expansion, upgrading and maintenance to be done with ease and without worrying about downtime.

Instant Search for File Restores

For single file restores the file search complexity inherent in legacy backup and recovery solutions is eliminated by introducing consumer-grade file search that delivers query results instantly. As the user types the query, results are expedited by displaying suggested search results with auto-complete functionality. The user can instantly locate specific versions of files across all VMs.

Instant Recovery

For servers that are hosted on VMware, use any snapshot to quickly recover a virtual machine as a point‐in‐time replacement or as a point‐in‐time copy of the original. Recovery requests can be made to the DTS Data Protection Team.

Global Deduplication

The backup cluster uses an intelligent, global deduplication that combines the advantages of traditional approaches to deduplication without the disadvantages. During data ingest, the cluster pulls data directly to flash SSD, without deduplication processing, achieving very fast data ingestion rates. After the data lands on the flash SSD, the cluster performs global deduplication by comparing data blocks across the cluster. After deduplication, the cluster compresses the data, and then stores the data on the hard disk drives.

Data Redundancy for Disaster Recovery

Backups are being pushed to private cloud storage with redundancy in 3 locations: Salt Lake, Richfield and Logan. In the event of a disaster, the needed infrastructure will need to be acquired and put in place for a complete recovery.

SLA Domain Policies

Retention periods, number of snapshots, etc., are defined in flexible SLA domain policies that can be created to meet specific needs.

API Services

An open API to the backup product provides services such as more detailed reporting.

Physically Safe

A secure, climate-controlled environment.

Monitoring

24×7 monitoring.

Reliable Power

Reliable uninterruptable power with UPS, battery, and generator backup.

Archive Offloading

The standard backup retention policies have a 90 day retention. Backup data stays on local storage for 30 days then is offloaded to an archive location for the rest of the 90 days. In this case it is in-house cloud (object) storage which is cheaper and slower disk. This allows the faster local storage to be freed up from data that may not be accessed very much. Backups residing in object storage are still indexed, searchable and restorable from the management console, although longer restore times should be expected. This is not to be confused with long-term archives.

Long-Term Archives

The current backup product is not a long-term archiving solution, i.e. a solution to retain data for a year or more. For long-term retention needs such as 1 year, 3 years, etc., data will be archived to object storage using the s3 protocol and s3 tools. This is not to be confused with archival offloading.

Features Not Included

Local desktop / laptop drives are not backed up

Local desktop or laptop drives (commonly known as “C” or “D” drives) are not backed up. It is the end-users responsibility to store data on their network drives.

SAN Storage

Storage is not provided as a part of this product. See the product descriptions for SAN Storage and Qualified Dedicated Storage.

Ordering and Provisioning

Any Government agency interested in purchasing Backup and Restore services should work with their client server administrator to initiate the order process.  The provisioning process includes these steps:

  1. The client server administrator uses the Backup Request Form for servers needing backups: Form
  2. For long-term retention archives (1yr, 3yrs, etc), that will go to object storage. The client server administrator uses this form: Form
  3. For backups, the Enterprise Data Protection team adds the server to protection and notifies the client server administrator when complete.
  4. For archives, the Enterprise Storage team provisions the archive space and notifies the client server administrator when complete.
  5. Service and billing begins.

DTS Responsibilities

Administration of the backup environment is accomplished by the following:

  • The Enterprise Data Protection Team
  • The Client Server Administrator

The partnership between these two helps ensure that data is managed according to the needs of the customer agency.

Data Protection Administration (DTS Staff)

The backup servers in DTS data centers are centrally managed by a Data Protection Administrator. The duties of the Administrator include:

  • Manage the overall enterprise backup environment.
  • Provide orientation materials for the Client Server Administrators.
  • Maintain the backup clusters with the help of product support when needed.
  • Work with customer Client Server Administrators and provide information on backup and restore policies.
  • Provide 24×7 support for issues encountered by Client Server Administrators during data restores.
  • Notify Client Server Administrators of missed and failed backups.
  • Provide other assistance and/or consultation as needed.

DTS/Agency Responsibilities

The Client Server Administrator

The agency Client Server Administrator is the steward of the data managed by individual servers. This Administrator is identified when backup services are first ordered and understands the data and business needs of the customer agency. As a result, backup administration on client servers is managed by the System Administrator for that server. This System Administrator is normally a DTS employee assigned to the customer agency. However, if an agency has contracted with DTS to provide system administration (or backup administration duties) for a specific server, then DTS staff will perform storage backup administration on that server.

If the Client Server Administrator for the client server is a different person than the one who manages applications on the server, the Client Server Administrator and Client Application Manager must work together to ensure that backup policies for the machine are appropriate for the application. For instance, if the server is a database server where one person administers the hardware and operating system and another person administers the database, these two people should work together to ensure that backup policies meet the needs of the database on that server.  Business operations management must sign-off on all backup and archive requirements to ensure business needs are met.  The Client Server Administrator will procure this agreement.  Client Server Administration duties include the following:

  • Learn and understand how to perform backup client server administration tasks.
  • Work with the person who manages applications on the client server to ensure backup policy definitions are appropriate for the application.
  • Establish a working process to validate backup, restore and archives on a regular basis.
  • Monitor whether backups were successful and whether the correct data was backed up.
  • Manage data restores. (The Data Protection Team is available for assistance.)
  • Work with the DTS Data Protection Team to:
    • Define and manage backup/restore policies and retentions.
    • Install the agent and create and manage filesets for physical servers that define “include” and “exclude” lists.
    • Test backups and restores.
    • Take action to correct missed or failed backups.
Post Updated: August 6, 2018
Posted On: January 20, 2016