As organizations collect increasing amounts of data—including data that is subject to privacy regulations and must be protected—the demand for large-scale, secure data centers also continues to grow. Rather than spend scarce resources on data center management, many companies prefer to focus on their core strengths. New Continuum Data Centers has filled that gap by providing a state-of-the-art, secure, and environmentally friendly data center environment for organizations that don’t want to incur the expense and complexity of maintaining their own data centers.

Challenges

From the beginning, New Continuum wanted to deliver the best data center possible to meet the needs of its customers. “We made a decision that we were going to deliver extremely high-end data center services,” says Eli Scher, New Continuum’s chairman and CEO. When the company rebuilt and moved an acquired customer base to its new facility in the western Chicago suburbs at the beginning of 2015, “there were already lots of connectivity assets nearby because the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, Fermi Lab, and some other advanced research labs had moved out here,” he says.

But New Continuum—in operation for a year and a half—had a lot of work to do. “We acquired retail customers who were in a Tier 2 environment,” Scher says. “But when we started operations, we found the network we acquired had lots of single points of failure, and couldn’t meet the performance standards we set with our physical infrastructure.”

We realized that if we wanted to deliver a more sophisticated, flexible and overall better experience to our customers, we needed to invest in Juniper.
Eli Scher, Chairman and CEO, New Continuum Data Centers

Technology Solution

The company rebuilt its network from scratch. “We wanted to be able to offer the most efficient and flexible solutions, so when we took control of the facility, we put significant capital into the infrastructure,” says Scher. New Continuum’s facility spans 80,000 square feet, with 40,000 square feet of raised floor, fully redundant power, and a dynamic in-row cooling infrastructure. The data center is certified compliant with
SSAE16, PCI, Open-IX, and HIPAA.

To match its facility, New Continuum needed a data center network that was simple, smart, open—and capable of delivering the highest levels of performance and reliability. It wanted to combat the complexity of network deployment, operations, and management. It needed an open solution to maximize flexibility and prevent vendor lock-in when integrating with other data center environments. And it wanted a smart infrastructure that would optimize staff time and application performance.

“We realized that if we wanted to deliver a more sophisticated, flexible, and overall better experience to our customers, we needed to invest in Juniper,” Scher says.

New Continuum chose the SDN-ready Juniper Networks® MX104 3D Universal Edge Router to deliver advanced edge services with carrier-grade reliability. The space and power efficient MX104 packs true carrier-grade features into a small form factor and enables New Continuum to offer advanced connectivity, including resilient connections to the United Internet Exchange, a sister company that offers Internet peering services.

New Continuum also uses the Juniper Networks QFX5100 and EX4300 switches. QFX5100 switches are low-latency, high-performance switches that provide a flexible building block for data center fabrics, while the EX4300 Ethernet Switch provides high-density connectivity. Virtual Chassis technology enables multiple interconnected EX4300 switches to operate as a single device, reducing operational expenses and management complexity.

“Automation was the key for us,” says Darrell Budic, director of network operations at New Continuum. New Continuum is automating the setup for new customers with zero touch provisioning. “We were future-proofing with Juniper,” says Budic, “and we liked Juniper’s readiness for automation.”

Building an open network is critical to scaling for growth. “Juniper ris very open and lends itself to automation,” says Budic. “Juniper lets our network engineers do what’s right for our business.”

Juniper Networks Junos® operating system is a common OS that runs across Juniper’s routing and switching devices. It shortens the time to deploy new services while lowering the cost of network operations, and secure programming interfaces make it easier to unlock more value from the network.

“Moving to Junos OS has been a smooth and easy transition,” Budic says. “Automation is easier than with our previous network vendor. We’re getting better performance and more reliability on the routing layer and operations are smoother.  Juniper is a good value proposition.”

Business Results

Juniper products have enabled New Continuum to keep up with the data center and colocation needs of highly demanding customers. “Another benefit of Juniper is the ability to grow efficiently,” says Budic. “Juniper’s products are modular, which helps us expand as our needs grow.”

The relationship with Juniper has been a good one. “We have a good relationship with Juniper from top to bottom,” Scher says.

Budic agrees. “When we have questions for the tech team, they’ve been excellent.”

Next Steps

Business is growing, with strong demand from service providers and financial services firms. “We’re attracting the most interest from managed service providers and private cloud providers,” Scher says. “We don’t offer dedicated servers, so these types of businesses thrive in our space. Because we have the relationship with the United IX Internet exchange, more content businesses have also come in.”

Another potential area for revenue growth is how data center automation and virtualization could be used to deliver a managed service product. “After we replace our remaining network access layer, we can begin providing network as a service, and we can give customers more control,” Scher says.

For More Information

To find out more about Juniper Networks products and solutions, please visit www.juniper.net.

About Juniper Networks

Juniper Networks challenges the status quo with products, solutions and services that transform the economics of networking. Our team co-innovates with customers and partners to deliver automated, scalable and secure networks with agility, performance and value. Additional information can be found at
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