Case Study: Zebra Technologies

About Client

Zebra Technologies is a public company based in Lincolnshire, Illinois that manufactures and sells marking, tracking, and computer printing technologies. Its products include thermal barcode label and receipt printers, RFID smart label printers/encoders/fixed & handheld readers/antennas, and card and kiosk printers that are used for barcode labeling, personal identification, and specialty printing. They principally serve the manufacturing supply chain, retail, healthcare and government sectors.


The Need

Zebra needed to run a real-timeDR test without taking the production environment offline. The four major goals of the initial DR test were:

  1. Prove to external customers that Zebra could meet their SLAs

  2. Validate application availability and serviceability

  3. Perform a live test and validate that no transactions were lost

  4. Meet audit and regulatory requirements

The completion of a successful DR test would provide auditable proof that Zebra can meet their Service LevelAgreements (SLA’s) as well as build real-world experience should a disaster ever occur.


The DR test was for a complex, multi-tiered application that was going to be failed over as part of the test. This was a customer facing, revenue generating, production application of over 120 virtual machines (VM’s) running on VMware’s vCloud Air in their Texas datacenter which needed to be replicated and synced to a similar data center in Nevada. These VMs included working production, mission-critical systems of multiple application types and multiple customer SLAs.

The Solution – Disaster Recovery with RMM

The Rackware Management Module (RMM) platform offers a complete disaster recovery solution along with the ability to automate DR testing. With RMM, origin machine instances can be cloned, replicated and placed in a wide variety of physical and cloud environments.

Additionally, RMM offers the flexibility to customize RPO, RTO, and cost objectives as per enterprise needs through various pre-provisioned or dynamically provisioned models. Dynamic Provisioning significantly lowers costs by provisioning servers at the DR event as opposed to pre-provisioning; this uses no compute resources until failover. Selective Sync allows for policy-driven protection and prioritization of mission-critical applications and files.

The Result - DR with Auditable Proof for Multi-Tier Production Applications

RMM enabled Zebra to execute their DR test on complex, multi-tier applications (database, analytics, and remote web interface apps), with no adverse impact to production environments. Case Study Key reasons Zebra picked RackWare include:

  • RackWare provided an enterprise tested DRaaS solution to move mission-critical applications from vCloud Air Texas to vCloud Air Nevada. The project was a true cloud to cloud disaster recovery, working with multiple cloud service provider locations without interruptions to customers’ applications.

  • Selective sync was able to help prioritize mission-critical applications and files, ensuring that Zebra would be able to meet customer SLA’s.

  • Additionally, RackWare’s cloud expertise helped Zebra through the entire DR planning, execution and testing process.

What Did Zebra Say?

Kelley Jones, Cloud Consultant to CIO: “We needed a full DR solution for our vCloud environment, and VMware recommended RackWare. It was worth investing in a true DR tool as it enabled us to know how our systems will respond when the inevitable disaster occurs.”

Scott Myers, Manager, Cloud Services: “For the first test of a DR plan, it could not have gone better. We are now able to provide auditable proof that we can deliver on our customers regulatory and SLAs requirements.”

To learn more about how RackWare can help you protect your workloads in the cloud, contact us.