Hobie Cat designs, develops, and sells catamarans, kayaks, and sportswear for sailing enthusiasts around the world. While they’re known for sporty performance at it’s best, their information technology was anything but speedy and agile; so they turned to their trusted advisor, the Network Co. of California (TNCC), to help them create an IT environment that would support future growth.
Bill Baldwin, CFO, Hobie Cat, explains, ”When times were tough, we downsized to a single UNIX® box, 8 hardwired terminals and 8 megabytes of memory. Fortunately, things turned around and when we needed extra horsepower, we grew into a PC network. That’s when we knew that we needed help going forward.”
The Situation: Outdated & Antiquated IT Equipment That Needed to be Replaced for Improved Efficiency & Potential Business Growth
Hobie Cat’s old UNIX system needed to be replaced, and in an effort to simplify the process, TNCC performed a business technology assessment, wherein they found a network of 25 PC’s of mixed versions, including:
- Windows 95
- Windows 98
- Windows XP
These PCs were connected to a Windows NT® HP ProLiant 800 and 1600 server. The aging PII 200Mhz Windows 95 PC’s were of immediate concern, as there wouldn’t be enough horsepower to handle the new application environment. Plus, their legacy software, which was MAS 90, was contributing to the problem! In fact, it was only designed to handle up to 15 users – and when they tried to increase the load to 20-25 users, machines started crashing.
The Resolution: An NT4 Migration to Bring Their IT Up-to-Speed While Centralizing Data & Streamlining Operations
When TNCC looked at the cost of extending warranties, as well as the cost of buying a new server to upgrade the aging ProLiant 700 and 1600 server environment, TNCC decided it was most efficient to replace the obsolete hardware to provide better performance while reducing overall IT administrative costs.
Bill discussed how TNCC helped them resolve the constant crashes, “it was clear that we needed to make changes [to our legacy software], and I counted on TNCC to tell me what the problem was, and how I could solve it quickly and cost-effectively.” And that’s exactly what TNCC was able to do – they upgraded from MAS 90 to MAS 200 to reduce downtime while supporting their manufacturing operations.
Once their legacy software was upgraded, a new challenge had arisen: 18 of their PCs needed to be upgraded to support the more demanding environment. As a result, TNCC recommended implementing a terminal server so the Windows 95 machines could connect through Windows 2000 server terminal services. At the same time, they upgraded to Windows 2000 on the Exchange server and the application server. Ultimately, the entire process enabled Hobie Cat to:
- Avoid spending $18,000 on new PCs.
- Centralize all client management, updates, and administrative functions.
- Reduce IT administrative costs significantly over the long term.
Bill offered some insight into the migration process, “TNCC built the equipment at their facility, and then they brought it in to our shop. I threw everybody off the network on a Friday afternoon. TNCC came in and migrated us from NT4.0 on the existing boxes, brought in the new box with Windows Server 2000, and upgraded the other boxes to Windows Server 2000.”
So how does the migration benefit their company? Bill explained, “Once we made the changes to the system, life has been sweet! A crashed machine is a very rare thing now. All of a sudden, I have 1/3 of my day back! In fact, everybody can get back to work. It’s great! Customer satisfaction has improved, and we’re getting better performance out of the whole nine yards.”
The Outcome: A Happy Client with More Uptime, Productivity, and Efficiency in the Workplace
Since working with TNCC, Hobie Cat experiences a lot more uptime, productivity, and efficiency in the workplace. “They bring the technical knowledge that I don’t have to the table. Our network is now beyond my level of expertise. I need somebody who is very knowledgeable and whose job it is to stay educated on what is a very rapidly changing world of technology. I’m very happy that I have a partner in TNCC. I can always rely on them to come in and be up-to-speed on what’s available in the market, and to watch out for my best interests!”
Looking to upgrade outdated, antiquated IT equipment? Give us a call at (760) 744-0442 or send us an email at email@example.com. TNCC is the preferred IT support company for manufacturing firms in San Diego and South Orange and Riverside counties.