The University of Oxford Success Story

PUBLISHED/UPDATED: March 11th, 2016

We chose StarWind Mainly because of the cost compared to other vendors. Simplicity of setup was also a major factor and I like the fact that you don’t need a vendor certified engineer to perform the installation.

John Harris, Windows System Administrator,
Department of Physics, University of Oxford


The Department of Physics in University of Oxford strives to be one of the best physics departments in the world by conducting cutting-edge research and by teaching and developing the careers of the next generation of physicists. They work on major facilities worldwide, develop the most advanced experimental techniques and the most sophisticated theoretical methods to investigate nature at every scale. The Department pursues fundamental science and in doing so make discoveries that enable us to contribute directly to tackling the challenging problems facing society.


The vSphere-based HA storage in the Department of Physics was unreasonably expensive to expand. It was deployed on Dell SAN and Viglen Storage servers with the help of third-party Highly-Available storage software. The infrastructure is scalable, but the cost of any increase in compute or storage resources is too high, due to major vendor lock-in and numerous proprietary hardware components.


In order to reduce the scaling price of the storage for the vSphere cluster, John Harris decided to use StarWind Virtual SAN. Already having some experience with StarWind legacy products, he knew they were reliable and easy to manage. With its “hardware agnostic” feature and capability of utilizing hardware resources with uttermost efficiency, StarWind VSAN easily lowered the cost of storage expansion without requiring any additional expertise from the IT team. As the next step, John Harris plans to purchase another license of StarWind VSAN for the department’s Hyper-V deployment in order to replace CA Arcserve RHA setup for Virtual File Servers. This way he will manage to cut down the resync time for Hyper-V hosts reboot during patching.

About the Company

Oxford is a collegiate university, consisting of the central University and colleges. The central University is composed of academic departments and research centres, administrative departments, libraries and museums. The 38 colleges are self-governing and financially independent institutions, which are related to the central University in a federal system.


Higher Education / Research

Contact Person

John Harris, Windows System Administrator, Department of Physics, University of Oxford


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